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hiend61
4-Dec-2011, 11:53
Hello all from Salamanca, Spain
This is my first post. I need advice about which 600mm purchase. I would like to use it for 8x10, so Fujinon T 600 may not be considered. I mainly shot color slide film. My options are Fujinon 600, Nikkor T ED 600/9, Schneider Apo Tele Xenar 600/9 and Apo Sinaron (Rodenstock apo ronar) 600/9. This lens is offered me in new condition for a really atractive price, but needs a Sinar Copal shutter and a lot of extension bellows.
Which of the mentioned lenses produces the best image quality?
Thanks in advance

vinny
4-Dec-2011, 12:09
You forgot the 24" red dot artar. Much cheaper than current fujinon prices. I've owned both. The artar was very sharp.

Andrew O'Neill
4-Dec-2011, 12:09
Well, my only experience is with a Fujinon 600. I use it for 4x5, 8x10, and 14x17. All the lenses you mentioned I bet deliver top quality images...but what do you consider, "best quality image" ?

hiend61
4-Dec-2011, 12:22
Sharp and with good contrast. Sharpness is my main interest.

Steve Hamley
4-Dec-2011, 12:54
The Apo Tele Xenar, if cost isn't an issue, and especially if it is the latest version. You'll have the same "lots of bellows"bellows issue (if it is an issue) with non-teles whether it be the Artar, Fuji, or Apo Ronar.

Cheers, Steve

Arne Croell
4-Dec-2011, 13:21
There is also the Zeiss Jena (barrel) or Docter (Copal 3) Apo-Germinar 600mm, similar to the Apo-Ronar and - Artar, but a 6 element construction.

Daniel Stone
4-Dec-2011, 13:33
24" Red-Dot Artars are somewhat "commonplace" lately. Richard K. just sold his(for a great price too!), and there's been a few on ebay lately too. Prices vary.

They're APO corrected, if you shoot color it definitely helps IMO. Downside though, if you have a brass-barreled version(as I do), its not the lightest option.

I've used a friend's Fujinon-C 600mm, and it was very sharp. I like the "feel" that my RDA gives though, a little less contrast, but still razor sharp!

-Dan

neil poulsen
4-Dec-2011, 13:46
There's also the De Golden Busche lenses. There was a 610mm that had huge coverage. But, they don't come up very often. I've maybe seen three of these on EBay in several years.

http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=39289

Ken Lee
4-Dec-2011, 14:39
If you are considering using a Sinar Copal Shutter, then you can also use a 610mm APO Nikor. Wicked sharp and contrasty. But the Fujinon is really convenient, small and light by comparison. I had one for a while and should have kept it. If a lens is too large or heavy, you won't use it often - and then what's the point in having it?

hiend61
4-Dec-2011, 16:06
If you are considering using a Sinar Copal Shutter, then you can also use a 610mm APO Nikor. Wicked sharp and contrasty. But the Fujinon is really convenient, small and light by comparison. I had one for a while and should have kept it. If a lens is too large or heavy, you won't use it often - and then what's the point in having it?

It seems that Fujinon 600 is a good performer. I like its great image circle, but I dont know if it is as sharp and contrasty as an apo lens in the apo Nikkor/apo Ronar style (I own Apo Ronar 480 which I love) or a tele lens like the Apo Tele Xenar, that seems to be the best among tele designs.

hiend61
4-Dec-2011, 16:23
[QUOTE=hiend61;812912]It seems that Fujinon 600 is a good performer. I like its great image circle, but I dont know if it is as sharp and contrasty as an apo lens in the apo Nikkor/apo Ronar style (I own Apo Ronar 480 which I love) or a tele lens like the Apo Tele Xenar, that seems to be the best among tele designs.
The problem with Sinar Copal Shutter is that I have no experience with them. They were not very popular in Spain and had a bad reputation about their reliability.

hiend61
4-Dec-2011, 16:30
The Apo Tele Xenar, if cost isn't an issue, and especially if it is the latest version. You'll have the same "lots of bellows"bellows issue (if it is an issue) with non-teles whether it be the Artar, Fuji, or Apo Ronar.

Cheers, Steve

Sorry for my bad English. I translated literally from Spanish. Bellows length is not a problem in my Sinar P2 cameras, but on location this can be a problem. The longest lens I use is the Apo Ronar 480 (The Apo Sinaron version) and I must be very carefull when I shot on location. Wind is a big problem.

Steve M Hostetter
4-Dec-2011, 16:33
There is also the Zeiss Jena (barrel) or Docter (Copal 3) Apo-Germinar 600mm, similar to the Apo-Ronar and - Artar, but a 6 element construction.

Hello, I have the Carl Zeiss Jena apo Germinar f9.0 barrel lens ... Got it off ebay for I think $89.00 + shipping

It's a great lens with tons of image circle but quite a bit larger then my Fuginon 600mm f11.0

Ken Lee
4-Dec-2011, 16:38
Wind is a big problem.

You want the best lens. You want no wind. Build a portable wall to block the wind :cool:

hiend61
4-Dec-2011, 17:03
You want the best lens. You want no wind. Build a portable wall to block the wind :cool:

I want the best lens of course. I have seen an ultra light tent used by mountaineers and I think it's very usable for avoiding wind effects.

Once
4-Dec-2011, 17:19
I want the best lens of course. I have seen an ultra light tent used by mountaineers and I think it's very usable for avoiding wind effects.

Cudos to you. That's the correct answer. In any way much, much more practical than building "a portable wall" (whatever that means) and trying to dance with it according to the wind. If you know you will shoot in windy weather then a lightweight tent is the most intelligent approach to take. You'll be surprised how much it will calm the picture taking process and yourself too.

Andrew O'Neill
4-Dec-2011, 17:21
Sharp and with good contrast. Sharpness is my main interest.

Then the Fujinon 600 would be fine.

Ken Lee
4-Dec-2011, 17:46
I want the best lens of course. I have seen an ultra light tent used by mountaineers and I think it's very usable for avoiding wind effects.

That's your portable wall then. Perfecto :)

hiend61
4-Dec-2011, 17:52
Then the Fujinon 600 would be fine.
Great work Andrew.

Once
5-Dec-2011, 04:54
That's your portable wall then. Perfecto :)

Mr. Ken Lee,
I have taken the liberty to add to your comment above a simple note stating that a tent has usually 4 walls (or at least 3) not 1 only. You have deleted my comment as "rude". Can I respectfully ask you, what was seen by you as rude in my note? I find it incomprehensible especially if you consider that indeed, recommending to a fellow photographer building a portable wall can hardly be seen as a recommendation of putting up a tent (the good idea of the OP). Hope you will respectfully answer my question (if not for other reason at least so that I could avoid notes that hurts your sense of civility). Very respectfully, Once

Ken Lee
5-Dec-2011, 05:09
The term "portable wall" was used in a general sense: the OP needs a portable wind block, a portable protection against the wind, a portable wind barrier, a portable impediment to the wind, a portable method of blocking the wind, a partition, enclosure, screen, panel, divider, etc. A tent fills the bill nicely.

Having already suggested that the Fujinon was a better choice because of portability, my point was that solving the problem of the wind frees the OP to choose the best lens, based on what he called "best image quality" - rather than worry about the wind and settle instead for whatever might require the shortest bellows draw.

Steve M Hostetter
5-Dec-2011, 06:22
I suppose If you want the very best 600mm lens with the best contrast over the entire image circle you might look at the Schneider 550mm XXL ...

hiend61
5-Dec-2011, 12:46
I suppose If you want the very best 600mm lens with the best contrast over the entire image circle you might look at the Schneider 550mm XXL ...
I thought about it. It is said to be sharper than Fujinon 600 C, but 5.800EUR is more than I can afford, considering that the Apo Tele Xenar combo (600+800) is in the 4.000EUR region, maybe a bit less.

GPS
5-Dec-2011, 13:16
I thought about it. It is said to be sharper than Fujinon 600 C, but 5.800EUR is more than I can afford, considering that the Apo Tele Xenar combo (600+800) is in the 4.000EUR region, maybe a bit less.

I'm surprised that nobody told you that yet - don't care about what is "said" about the apparent sharpness of this lens as "compared" to another one. That kind of sharpness is as much in the eye of the photographer as beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Nobody from this forum did (or can do for that matter) a test scientifically valid for a serious comparison between the lenses of your interest.
Furthermore, if you make a good lens shade for the Fuji C you can boost the apparent sharpness in a way nobody (well, except me :) ) ever saw - such is the effect of a good lens shade on the final result.
You would need to be a Sir Master of the Univers to be able to see a tangible difference between Apo Tele Xenar, Art 550 and Fujinon C on your pictures. The truth is that whatever difference there is in the majority of your pictures it will be buried under a ton (maybe even two) of other circumstantial effects of the atmosphere, flare, vibrations etc. etc.
Many profs take pictures with Fujinon C - does it tell you something? Regards, GPS

hiend61
5-Dec-2011, 13:24
Well, Options are clearer. Fujinon 600 or Apo tele Xenar 600. The Fujinon is more affordable, but my only consideration is to get the best I can afford. I was offered a brand new Apo Sinaron (Apo Ronar) 600/9 in new condition for 700EUR, but in that case I need a Sinar Copal shutter. I have no experience with this shutter and one in good condition is about 500EUR. The problem is that Spanish Sinar Service is a complete diaster from 2008 and nobody can repair this shutter in Spain. The 610 Apo Nikkor like Ken uses is said to be a really great lens too, but very hard to find.

Drew Wiley
5-Dec-2011, 13:33
Sharpness isn't just about the optics. Excessive weight at long bellows extensions is
going to nullify any alleged improvement in performance due to potential vibration from
wind, shutter shake, or just lack of a heavy enough support. In the REAL WORLD it's pretty damn hard to improve on the Fuji 600C. It's not only light and highly portable, but optically excellent too. Plus you've got plenty of surplus coverage. Color rendition
with this lens is excellent, just like the other C-series lenses.

GPS
5-Dec-2011, 13:37
Finally, thanks for the words of wisdom... ;-)

hiend61
5-Dec-2011, 14:01
I'm surprised that nobody told you that yet - don't care about what is "said" about the apparent sharpness of this lens as "compared" to another one. That kind of sharpness is as much in the eye of the photographer as beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Nobody from this forum did (or can do for that matter) a test scientifically valid for a serious comparison between the lenses of your interest.
Furthermore, if you make a good lens shade for the Fuji C you can boost the apparent sharpness in a way nobody (well, except me :) ) ever saw - such is the effect of a good lens shade on the final result.
You would need to be a Sir Master of the Univers to be able to see a tangible difference between Apo Tele Xenar, Art 550 and Fujinon C on your pictures. The truth is that whatever difference there is in the majority of your pictures it will be buried under a ton (maybe even two) of other circumstantial effects of the atmosphere, flare, vibrations etc. etc.
Many profs take pictures with Fujinon C - does it tell you something? Regards, GPS
Thanks for your advice. I used a couple of Fujinons time ago from a loan of a colleague (105/8S and 125/8S). I compared them to my Rodenstock Grandagons 90 and 115, and I found them superb. Fujinon is highly recommended by most of you. Is the cheapest and with the greater image circle and very compact, much like my Apo Ronar 480/9 and with same 67mm filter size.
I am a pro and shot mostly LF until 2002. In 2003 I had to migrate to digital because my clients forced me to do it. Since 2002 I use LF just for me. I know all the circumnstantial facts that can ruin a picture, and do my best to avoid most of them, and of course, I pay great attention to lens shades.

GPS
5-Dec-2011, 14:24
Thanks for your advice. I used a couple of Fujinons time ago from a loan of a colleague (105/8S and 125/8S). I compared them to my Rodenstock Grandagons 90 and 115, and I found them superb.

...

Ah, comparisons, the glorious can of worms...;)

Clive Gray
5-Dec-2011, 14:29
I only have experience of the Apo Ronar out of the lenses mentioned I paid about 300 Euros for a mint CL version on a Sinar board two years ago. If you are using a 10 x 8 P2 in the first place presumably wieght isn't to much of any issue anyway it is still a lot lighter than the camera.

The Sinar shutter, I and I'm sure many other people have found to be extremely reliable and can often be found for about half the price you have quoted if you are patient, as a bonus it gives you easy use of a huge range of lenses and can save you a fortune the most I have ever paid for a db mounted lens was 125 for the 300mm Macro Sinaron.

If its for personal use and not comercail I would be looking to save money myself if you really don't want the siinar shutter then if you can find a Docter optics 600mm Apo Germinar in shutter they are superb lenses I have the 750mm and have happilly used it on various Sinar 10x8 setups.

It's unlikely as someone stated that anyone has experience of all of these different lenses so you will still have to wiegh up whats best for you.

If it helps .... which was the only 600mm that Sinar offered as part of their range ....

hiend61
5-Dec-2011, 15:18
I only have experience of the Apo Ronar out of the lenses mentioned I paid about 300 Euros for a mint CL version on a Sinar board two years ago. If you are using a 10 x 8 P2 in the first place presumably wieght isn't to much of any issue anyway it is still a lot lighter than the camera.

The Sinar shutter, I and I'm sure many other people have found to be extremely reliable and can often be found for about half the price you have quoted if you are patient, as a bonus it gives you easy use of a huge range of lenses and can save you a fortune the most I have ever paid for a db mounted lens was 125 for the 300mm Macro Sinaron.

If its for personal use and not comercail I would be looking to save money myself if you really don't want the siinar shutter then if you can find a Docter optics 600mm Apo Germinar in shutter they are superb lenses I have the 750mm and have happilly used it on various Sinar 10x8 setups.

It's unlikely as someone stated that anyone has experience of all of these different lenses so you will still have to wiegh up whats best for you.

If it helps .... which was the only 600mm that Sinar offered as part of their range ....

hiend61
5-Dec-2011, 15:31
I have never used a Sinar Copal shutter. They were not very popular in Spain. I only knew a colleague using it, and had bad luck with it, with frecuent breakdowns, so he ended changing to Prontor shutters. Sinar official importer of that time (mid 80's) suggested that shutter was not very reliable, prone to break, and not very quiet.
Of course it can all be an spanish urban tale, but decades listening it make their effect, and I do not find myself safe purchasing one.

Ken Lee
5-Dec-2011, 16:04
In that case, you can't go wrong with a Fujinon 600 C. All you have to do, is find one :)

carverlux
5-Dec-2011, 16:19
Hi hiend61,

I have two Sinar DB Shutters. Both have worked daily and flawlessly since new. They are very useful and if you find one that is New Old Stock (NOS) or unused with all the needed original parts, they would be a very wise investment. Careless users - or clueless assistants - can wreck anything so it's not fair to cast an evil eye on the shutter. Please remember the Swiss designed the shutter for photographers who would pay very high prices for Sinar gear so either they keep spares in case they throw one against the wall out of rage, or they respect their equipment due to the heavy-duty investment, use them carefully, and make them last. That's why I would buy a NOS one and never look back. They are not that rare and show up quite often.

For the 600mm question, you did not specify whether you are shooting color or black and white - it makes a difference. For black and white, your two choices seem to be great as they are very sharp. If you want to be hyper critical, throw a mid-yellow or orange filter up front and it will be so sharp that you're going to want to give up some sharpness. But if you are shooting color with a 600mm, you must consider more than just sharpness, you must also consider Longitudinal Chromatic Aberration (LCA) correction.

Even if a telephoto lens uses ED glass or is APO-rated, you should still carefully research whether their LCA correction - aka elimination of color fringing - is up to your expectations. Some "APO"-labelled telephotos are only LCA-corrected for 2 colors out of 3 and in color work they can be pushed beyond their designs and render color fringes around dark objects against a bright background. Suprisingly, even some "APO"-labelled process lenses I have used only minimize secondary spectrum but not eliminate it. There have been some recent posts from Arne Croell and others on the topic of what "APO" really means when you find it on a lens.

Good luck!

carver

hiend61
5-Dec-2011, 16:22
The 600C seems to be the most reasonable option. Sharp, great color and contrast, huge image circle, compact and reasonable priced. I'll try to find a good one used, if not, I'll buy a new one. Thanks all of you for the advice.

Richard M. Coda
5-Dec-2011, 17:46
I love my 600C... I have only used it a few times in as many years, but I am glad it's in my bag when I need it.

Ken Lee
5-Dec-2011, 18:14
http://www.kenleegallery.com/images/tech/LonePine.jpg


Just for fun, please consider "Winter Sunrise from Lone Pine, 1944" by Ansel Adams. In Examples: The Making of 40 Photographs (http://www.anseladams.com/Examples_The_Making_of_40_Photographs_p/2440120.htm), pp. 164, he writes the following:

"I used my 8x10 Ansco view camera with the 23-inch component of my Cooke Series XV lens with a Wratten No. 15 (G) filter. The film was Isopan, developed in Kodak D-23"

(23 inches = 584.2 millimeters)

hiend61
5-Dec-2011, 18:50
Hi hiend61,

I have two Sinar DB Shutters. Both have worked daily and flawlessly since new. They are very useful and if you find one that is New Old Stock (NOS) or unused with all the needed original parts, they would be a very wise investment. Careless users - or clueless assistants - can wreck anything so it's not fair to cast an evil eye on the shutter. Please remember the Swiss designed the shutter for photographers who would pay very high prices for Sinar gear so either they keep spares in case they throw one against the wall out of rage, or they respect their equipment due to the heavy-duty investment, use them carefully, and make them last. That's why I would buy a NOS one and never look back. They are not that rare and show up quite often.

For the 600mm question, you did not specify whether you are shooting color or black and white - it makes a difference. For black and white, your two choices seem to be great as they are very sharp. If you want to be hyper critical, throw a mid-yellow or orange filter up front and it will be so sharp that you're going to want to give up some sharpness. But if you are shooting color with a 600mm, you must consider more than just sharpness, you must also consider Longitudinal Chromatic Aberration (LCA) correction.

Even if a telephoto lens uses ED glass or is APO-rated, you should still carefully research whether their LCA correction - aka elimination of color fringing - is up to your expectations. Some "APO"-labelled telephotos are only LCA-corrected for 2 colors out of 3 and in color work they can be pushed beyond their designs and render color fringes around dark objects against a bright background. Suprisingly, even some "APO"-labelled process lenses I have used only minimize secondary spectrum but not eliminate it. There have been some recent posts from Arne Croell and others on the topic of what "APO" really means when you find it on a lens.

Good luck!

carver

I shot color. I suppose Fujinon 600C and Apo tele Xenar are good performers about LCA, because nobody has mentioned it. The longest lens I use is Apo Ronar 480/9 which has a very good behavior in this aspect. Have you experienced LCA's with Fujinon 600C or Apo Tele Xenar 600?

Ken Lee
5-Dec-2011, 19:00
In the interest of thoroughness, here are 2 pages with recent sample images made with a 610mm APO Nikkor:

http://www.kenleegallery.com/html/tech/Nikkor610Test.html

http://www.kenleegallery.com/html/tech/Nikkor610Nov2011.html (http://www.kenleegallery.com/html/tech/Nikkor610Nov2011.html)

.. and here's what one looks like on a Sinar P with a Sinar Shutter:

http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showpost.php?p=682128&postcount=1017

hiend61
5-Dec-2011, 19:00
http://www.kenleegallery.com/images/tech/LonePine.jpg


Just for fun, please consider "Winter Sunrise from Lone Pine, 1944" by Ansel Adams. In Examples: The Making of 40 Photographs (http://www.anseladams.com/Examples_The_Making_of_40_Photographs_p/2440120.htm), pp. 164, he writes the following:

"I used my 8x10 Ansco view camera with the 23-inch component of my Cooke Series XV lens with a Wratten No. 15 (G) filter. The film was Isopan, developed in Kodak D-23"

(23 inches = 584.2 millimeters)

A great well known classic picture!. I also know Cooke lenses series XVa. As you probably know they are avaiable. Robert white stocks it.

hiend61
5-Dec-2011, 19:17
In the interest of thoroughness, here are 2 pages with recent sample images made with a 610mm APO Nikkor:

http://www.kenleegallery.com/html/tech/Nikkor610Test.html

http://www.kenleegallery.com/html/tech/Nikkor610Nov2011.html (http://www.kenleegallery.com/html/tech/Nikkor610Nov2011.html)

.. and here's what one looks like on a Sinar P with a Sinar Shutter:

http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showpost.php?p=682128&postcount=1017

Impressive lens indeed!, and according to the pictures it renders very impressively.
By the way, I was very surprised to see a P2 with this huge and heavy lens on a manfrotto 410 head. I own this head, and use it with my digital cameras, but I never thought it was able to hold this setup properly. I'll run a try with mine!

J. Fada
5-Dec-2011, 20:47
I will only add that you really can't go wrong with the lenses mentioned here. If you really like your Ronar then why not another Ronar? Or a RD Artar which is practically the same? I had a 24" RD Artar once upon a time and wish I never sold it, but I sold my 8x10... If I ever go back to 8x10 again it will be the first lens I buy. I believe the Fujinon is a dialyte design as well so the three of them are born from the same mould and for all intents and purposes are interchangeable. A while back I was looking for a 300mm RD Artar but I came across an APO Ronar for a good price so I bought it and am very happy with it. You really can't go wrong. The Sinar shutter I know nothing about.

That lake image is really beautiful Ken.

hiend61
6-Dec-2011, 04:30
I visited Ebay in search of a Sinar Copal Shutter. Saw a lot of them, but some are offered with cables and others without. Can anyone please tell me how many cables compose the full set?

Ken Lee
6-Dec-2011, 05:00
Impressive lens indeed!, and according to the pictures it renders very impressively.
By the way, I was very surprised to see a P2 with this huge and heavy lens on a manfrotto 410 head. I own this head, and use it with my digital cameras, but I never thought it was able to hold this setup properly. I'll run a try with mine!

Those photos have been sharpened carefully in Photoshop - but we can't sharpen what isn't there.

For landscape photography, the Fujinon has one major advantage already mentioned, but worth repeating: it takes 67mm filters. I don't know how big the filter size is on the 610 Nikkor, because I use gelatin filters, hand-held believe it or not.

The 410 head will hold the camera, and will allow you to make fine adjustments. However, it is at the limit of its capacity, and if I were using this kind of setup all the time, I would consider one of their larger heads.

Ken Lee
6-Dec-2011, 05:09
That lake image is really beautiful Ken.

Thank you very much. You have encouraged me to use the lens more !

hiend61
6-Dec-2011, 05:17
Those photos have been sharpened carefully in Photoshop - but we can't sharpen what isn't there.

For landscape photography, the Fujinon has one major advantage already mentioned, but worth repeating: it takes 67mm filters. I don't know how big the filter size is on the 610 Nikkor, because I use gelatin filters, hand-held believe it or not.

The 410 head will hold the camera, and will allow you to make fine adjustments. However, it is at the limit of its capacity, and if I were using this kind of setup all the time, I would consider one of their larger heads.

Of course I believe you. I do the same and worse things to hold filters. I hold my cameras on Gitzo 1500 + gitzo 1500 3way low profile head and on top Sinar Vapo bank.
For a 480 setup I use a long plate base and 2 Vapo bank. For short lenses I just use the standard bank.
Your gallery has been of great help with Sinar Copal Shutter!!!!!!

Clive Gray
6-Dec-2011, 05:27
The Sinar Copal shutter has gone through a couple of versions the early ones are shutter only and do not control the aperature the later auto apature has also developed a bit with time biggest change being maxium apature increase to F4 from F5.6.

With regard to cables it as a minimum requires the dedicated shutter release cable which must be in good condition ie the plunger rod must not have been bent at all. The Auto cable that cocks the shutter automatically when a darkslide is inserted is nice but not essentail. Some earlier shuuters like the one in this auction (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Sinar-Obturateur-f5-6-db-Copal-Shutter-314-/250937919852?pt=FR_IQ_Photovid%C3%A9o_Photo_Appareils_Argentiques&hash=item3a6d10c96c) have the flash sync lead as a captive part on the later ones like in this auction (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/SINAR-P-F-DB-COPAL-SHUTTER-W-SYNC-AND-RELEASE-CABLES-/110689209627?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item19c5974d1b) you can see it is a seperate detatchable lead.

It is still available new in the uk (http://www.image2output.com/image2outputcom/photographic/sinar-accessories/sinar-accessories-view-cameras/sinar-autoaperture-shutter-p-2418.html) at least


In Summary you need at least the release cable and depending on the age of the shutter if you need sync you will want that cable too a lot of people are not to bothered about the auto cable.

hiend61
6-Dec-2011, 05:42
The Sinar Copal shutter has gone through a couple of versions the early ones are shutter only and do not control the aperature the later auto apature has also developed a bit with time biggest change being maxium apature increase to F4 from F5.6.

With regard to cables it as a minimum requires the dedicated shutter release cable which must be in good condition ie the plunger rod must not have been bent at all. The Auto cable that cocks the shutter automatically when a darkslide is inserted is nice but not essentail. Some earlier shuuters like the one in this auction (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Sinar-Obturateur-f5-6-db-Copal-Shutter-314-/250937919852?pt=FR_IQ_Photovid%C3%A9o_Photo_Appareils_Argentiques&hash=item3a6d10c96c) have the flash sync lead as a captive part on the later ones like in this auction (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/SINAR-P-F-DB-COPAL-SHUTTER-W-SYNC-AND-RELEASE-CABLES-/110689209627?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item19c5974d1b) you can see it is a seperate detatchable lead.

It is still available new in the uk (http://www.image2output.com/image2outputcom/photographic/sinar-accessories/sinar-accessories-view-cameras/sinar-autoaperture-shutter-p-2418.html) at least


In Summary you need at least the release cable and depending on the age of the shutter if you need sync you will want that cable too a lot of people are not to bothered about the auto cable.

Thank you. This is of great help.

Steve M Hostetter
6-Dec-2011, 07:54
I'm surprised that nobody told you that yet - don't care about what is "said" about the apparent sharpness of this lens as "compared" to another one. That kind of sharpness is as much in the eye of the photographer as beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Nobody from this forum did (or can do for that matter) a test scientifically valid for a serious comparison between the lenses of your interest.
Furthermore, if you make a good lens shade for the Fuji C you can boost the apparent sharpness in a way nobody (well, except me :) ) ever saw - such is the effect of a good lens shade on the final result.
You would need to be a Sir Master of the Univers to be able to see a tangible difference between Apo Tele Xenar, Art 550 and Fujinon C on your pictures. The truth is that whatever difference there is in the majority of your pictures it will be buried under a ton (maybe even two) of other circumstantial effects of the atmosphere, flare, vibrations etc. etc.
Many profs take pictures with Fujinon C - does it tell you something? Regards, GPS

I suppose this is accuate if one is to assume that the op is in fact going to use the lens for landscape purposes ... Up to this point I see no evidence of that..
The use of a lens hood is good advice but as Ken's set-up shows he doesn't seem to use one and the examples are crisp and free of flare

carverlux
6-Dec-2011, 07:55
Here's an example how useful the Sinar Shutter can be if you decide to go with it.

One of mine is used with a Deardorff V8 in combination with an iris flange using custom-made adapters. This setup holds many lenses including a 24" Red Dot Artar barrel lens perfectly and is portable for field use. With bracing help using a tripod/clamp combo on the front standard, it performs well outside in light winds. The 600 Apo-Ronar f/9 is a larger and much heavier lens than the 24" RDA and is likely too much for the front standard of the V8.

carver

Dan Fromm
6-Dec-2011, 08:54
That hanging a heavy lens in front of a standard is a bad idea has been mentioned a couple of times in this thread. I've faced that problem at both ends of the camera -- 900/10 Apo Saphir hung in front of a 2x3 Cambo SC standard, 2x3 Graflex RB hung behind a 2x3 Cambo SC standard. BTW, I have a 610/9 Apo Nikkor, the Apo Saphir weighs roughly three times as much.

My solution to supporting the 900 is a mutilated 4x5 SC standard. My solution to supporting the RB is an inexpensive 4” x 4” lab jack from Lab Connections (www.labconusa.com , their SKU 3588-1, “Lab Jack Aluminum 4"(100mm)”). Both sit on the rail.

I doubt that another front standard will be practical for the OP, but a lab jack might.

Clive Gray
6-Dec-2011, 09:57
Bellows length is not a problem in my Sinar P2 cameras, but on location this can be a problem. The longest lens I use is the Apo Ronar 480 (The Apo Sinaron version) and I must be very carefull when I shot on location. Wind is a big problem.

The original poster has a P2.

Link to crappy pic of the 600mm Apo Ronar on a light wieght sinar front standard not looking particularilly distressed (http://www.flickr.com/photos/abbandon/6466634565/sizes/l/in/photostream/).

A P2 is going to be lesss worried.

And you can of course bolt bits on (http://www.flickr.com/photos/abbandon/4541249083/sizes/l/in/set-72157606209982421/) if you want to get extreme about the rig not moving


Rubbish scan in silly size of the result of the above (http://www.flickr.com/photos/abbandon/4590334786/sizes/o/in/set-72157618644348542/)


I confess it was more playing about then anything else

Ken Lee
6-Dec-2011, 10:20
And you can of course bolt bits on (http://www.flickr.com/photos/abbandon/4541249083/sizes/l/in/set-72157606209982421/) if you want to get extreme about the rig not moving

Whoah - Now you're talking !

Drew Wiley
6-Dec-2011, 14:42
That's distinctly the WRONG way to do it if you want to eliminate front vibration.
What I have done is mill a long flat of maple with a suitable 3/8-16 thread insert,
mount this directly to the large flat platform of a Ries tripod, then mount two rail
clamps at the extreme ends of the flat. Only need a single tripod. But the bigger problem in the picture is the way the thin rods are racked way up. I'd keep them as
low as possible and re-level using parallel tilts.

Ken Lee
6-Dec-2011, 14:52
That's distinctly the WRONG way to do it if you want to eliminate front vibration.
What I have done is...

Can you share a photo of this setup ? A picture is worth...

Drew Wiley
6-Dec-2011, 16:23
Sorry Ken ... I'll have to wait until my wife brings the digital camera home from the
clinic (it's not supposed to leave there). I've been doing a lot of shooting with long
lenses on the Sinar in windy conditions lately, though I've switched to the Norma vs
my worn-out F2. The tapered bellows is wonderful. But if I give up the option to instantly use short lenses, I have an even better way of doing it. I took a length of
5/4 X 3" maple and cut a curved trough down the entire length on a router table to precisely nest a third the diameter of the Sinar rail, which is snugly tightened into this using cushioned stainless steel U-bolts. Bolted directly atop the Ries platform this is exceptionally stable (don't even use the usual Sinar rail clamps in this case). This is
sealed with penetrating epoxy so weather trustworthy, and really lighter in cumulative weight than the more official options. Or I can simply have a long rail section like this
ready to go, plus the ordinary clamp, for quickly converting the setup. With the tapered bellows I generally don't even need to pack a separate bag bellows - it works
from everything from 120 to 240mm. Longer than that and I use a 28" Horseman
bellows. Neither will sag like the current Sinar bellows.

Steve M Hostetter
7-Dec-2011, 04:21
I'm surprised that nobody told you that yet - don't care about what is "said" about the apparent sharpness of this lens as "compared" to another one. That kind of sharpness is as much in the eye of the photographer as beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Nobody from this forum did (or can do for that matter) a test scientifically valid for a serious comparison between the lenses of your interest.
Furthermore, if you make a good lens shade for the Fuji C you can boost the apparent sharpness in a way nobody (well, except me :) ) ever saw - such is the effect of a good lens shade on the final result.
You would need to be a Sir Master of the Univers to be able to see a tangible difference between Apo Tele Xenar, Art 550 and Fujinon C on your pictures. The truth is that whatever difference there is in the majority of your pictures it will be buried under a ton (maybe even two) of other circumstantial effects of the atmosphere, flare, vibrations etc. etc.
Many profs take pictures with Fujinon C - does it tell you something? Regards, GPS

Hey GPS,

I'm gonna have to disagree with the circumstantial effects theory.. If this be true it has to be true for all the lenses mentioned so that doesn't change the fact that there might be a "sharpest" lens in the bunch..
Also, the fact that many prof use a Fujinon C, "to me", just might mean that they are by nature tight asses or just can't afford better...$1000.00-$1500.00(fujinon C) seems to be the cut-off point for what most will pay for a lens which doesn't tell me awhole lot about what lens I need.. As you can see by following the for sale thread that many a photogr are the most fickle of persons :D me included

steve

Letoco
7-Dec-2011, 05:19
I’m sure the higher price of let’s say the Art 550 lens is not because of its higher optical quality than the Fuji 600 C but simply because it is a lens of a specialized category - just compare its 900mm IC with the 620mm for Fuji C. Even more so, the Art 550 is a lens made in a small batch (for the same mentioned reason) hence the price.
Professionals usually can afford whatever lens they really need for their profession (that’s the advantage of being a pro) unlike amateurs so I would not bang on the pocket when it comes to their choice of lenses. I think GPS is right when warning about the danger of a hunt for the sharpest lens in the bunch - what is the sharpest picture today can be a lemon tomorrow with the same lens for the reasons said. It is very professional to be able to have constant quality pictures with a given lens. Only those who reached this level of craft can start the hunt. But then they probably don’t care as only a very small part of photography is demanding sharpness that surpasses the common levels of today’s modern lenses.

Steve M Hostetter
7-Dec-2011, 05:55
There again, just the fact that you are considered a professional doesn't mean that you can afford any equipment ..
I think the photography business is just like anyother business you have to stay within your means.
I think if Schneider thought this art 550mm was only gonna be purchaced by ppl using a 20x24 camera they wouldn't have made the lens to begin with.. They are both considered ULF lenses and as such puts them both in a specialized category.
steve

Letoco
7-Dec-2011, 06:55
It's not for what you're "considered" as but what you are that says you are a professional. You could argue ad absurdum about everything but professionals usually can afford lenses they need for their profession. Again, you can argue everything but lenses of the same (almost) focal length with a difference of 300mm in their IC have different reason for their manufacturing and marketing. These 2 lenses we speak about are not in the same category. Their price should tell you something too. After all, Schneider put there the ART name for the right reason.
In any case, Schneider did not come out with the Art lens because it wanted to put "the sharpest" 600mm lens on the market, so much is sure.

hiend61
7-Dec-2011, 09:29
I'm a pro and I'm fortunate enough to can afford the the gear I need to earn my living as a photographer, in spite of the 22% unemploiment level in Spain now. Lately I have seen some reputable colleagues closing their business.
A true pro has an atitude to the business in order to get always consistent good results, because clients pay only for the quality they need, no less, and most times there is no chance to repeat a bad shot. In other words, a pro is as good as his last job. Not to mention the fierce competence.
When I shot for myself, I have the same attitude, because I know how to do to get consistently good results, but I'm more relaxed and take more risks, because I'm the client and shot for fun... and also good results, that I usually get.
If I don't like the pictures, I'll repeat them other day, no problem.
Since 2003 I shot digital to earn my life and LF for me, for fun.
My LF gear is the one I used almost daily until my change to digital. Lately I was able to sell some old gear and I want to invest that money in the best 600 I can afford with my budget. I was allowed to try the Apo Sinaron 600 before buying, next options are Fujinon C or A and Apo tele Xenar. The ART 550 is out of my reach, and has a problem, 122mm filters. I have a big Sinar polarizer that I could attach to the ART 550, but I find my Heliopan kasemann 105 much better. I tried tons of polarizers until I found one I love and I use it with steeping rings in all my lenses. Believe it or not, but my second option is The Cokin circular in P size which I still use daily.

Steve M Hostetter
7-Dec-2011, 09:47
In the business I'm in the guy doing the kind of incredible work that we all expect can live in a double wide trailer and the guy doing the shit work can live in a three story brick mansion...
Being a professional is just a title :)

Drew Wiley
7-Dec-2011, 10:05
Unduly heavy lenses have their drawbacks. They're not only a less portable and more
difficult for the camera to support without vibration, but they also require larger and
heavier accessories like filter, and are a helluva lot easier to drop if you're fatigued
and have sweaty fingers! - and in this case, a helluva lot more expensive to replace!
I'm not suggesting that there isn't a valid niche for these low-production specialized
optics, but alleged sharpness would be pretty low on my list, since nearly all modern
lenses will capture a surplus of detail on large format film. You need a different justification than just that. And more expensive does not necessarily equate into
"sharper" in the first place. In the real world, that's a function of several variables.

Steve M Hostetter
7-Dec-2011, 11:07
I agree Drew,,

The best lens is the one that works for you in "the real" world :) I'd still love to get my hands on the 550 though :D

Drew Wiley
7-Dec-2011, 11:53
The only lens I've ever dropped would have to be one of the cult lenses: a multicoat
Kern dagor! I blame sweaty hands after a steep uphill climb, and the fact that this
lens was just about twice the weight as the other lenses I was packing. Ironically,
I sold it scratched for just as much as I paid for it brand new, then flipped the cash
into a 360 Fuji A, which is more versatile and portable for me, though I have since
replaced the dagor itself for its special look. At some point in time one simply has to
make the determination of what one really needs, and what is mere luxury.

Eric Leppanen
7-Dec-2011, 12:53
Over the years I have owned the Fuji 600C, Nikon 600T and APO Tele Xenar 600, which I shot on 8x10 and actually did some comparison testing between these lenses. The Fuji 600C and APO Tele Xenar were roughly comparable in terms of sharpness and contrast. The Nikon had slightly less contrast and was a smidge less sharp, although it was nothing that Photoshop (or a bit more development time if shooting B&W) could not reasonably compensate for. At typical 8x10 enlargement factors I doubt you'd see any significant differences between these lenses in terms of real world prints. The main criteria for choosing between these lenses are their functional differences.

If you are certain that you don't need a focal length longer than 600mm, and your arms are reasonably long, then the Fuji 600C is hard to beat. It has a much larger image circle than the Schneider and Nikon telephotos, allowing ample front movements (the limited image circle of the telephotos often mandates using rear movements only). If you have short arms, then reaching the front standard when the Fuji is at full extension may be problematic. The telephotos do have the advantage of requiring roughly 10cm less bellows extension than the Fuji, which I did find useful in minimizing wind-caused vibration. However, if you plan on using a tent or other shelter, or have an exceptionally rigid 8x10 rig, then this advantage may not be significant. In benign conditions on an Ebony 8x10 I was able to get equally sharp photos with the Fuji and Schneider, despite the extension difference.

The Fuji is also drastically smaller than the telephotos, and can be mounted on a relatively small lens board (such as a Technika board) for easy packing. The Nikon can also be mounted on a Technika board. The Schneider rear element is so large that it requires a larger lens board (such as a Sinar-sized board). Because of their bulk, the telephotos are effectively "close to the car" lenses only.

I think the main attraction of the telephotos is the convertibility to longer focal lengths. The Schneider supports an 800mm focal length with a reasonably large image circle (480mm); the Nikon supports both 800 and 1200mm focal lengths with a tight image circle ("straight-through" shooting only).

I have never shot with the 550XL. My understanding is that there is a lens design trade-off between center sharpness and coverage (compare MTF charts and you'll see this, at least theoretically), so unless you need large coverage for a ULF format I don't see the point of using the 550XL. You can compare the MTF charts of the 550XL and APO Tele Xenar 600 to illustrate this (Schneider posts the 600 charts on their web site; search this forum and you should find the 550XL charts posted in one or more archived threads).

hiend61
7-Dec-2011, 14:35
Eric, Thanks for your post. My intention is to try the Apo Sinaron 600 first. The lens brand new+a brand new Sinar copal shutter will be 1700EURO. The Fujinon 2200EUR and Apo tele Xenar 3350EUR.
If Im happy with the Apo Sinaron (Apo Ronar), I'll buy it. I have 240 and 480 ronars and I am more than happy with them. When I shot LF, the 240 ronar was my lens for food and jewelry shots in 4x5. very sharp, perfect colors and a bit bussy bokeh, but a great lens.
Other point to favour first the Sinaron+Sinar shutter is that except the 65, all my lenses are Sinar mounted and have the spacers needed to use Sinar shutter with them. I see it as an advantage, same exposure time for all the lenses, while now I have 8 lenses and 8 shutters.

carverlux
7-Dec-2011, 15:06
If you have a way of attaching a DSLR or better still a MFDB to your p2, then you can really put the lenses to the test. LCA did not show up as glaring problems until I set up my p2, attached my Phase One back, and starting testing. Some very famous and expensive lenses fared miserably. Sharpness was never an issue between most comparable brands, but coverage, bokeh and LCA can easily spoil the party - especially when you are doing this for yourself, not for a paying client.

hiend61
7-Dec-2011, 17:35
When I started change from film to digital cameras I tried to use my P2 with a phase one digital back and experienced the same. Traditional LF lenses are not for digital. Only certain Hasselblad V lenses were ok with a Phase one back. Other lenses, including some venerable ones with flawless performance on film were a LCAs factory with a digital back. More interesting was what experienced a friend of mine with several top of the line Nikon SLR lenses when he tried them on a D200, they were lemons. Years later he got a D3, tried the lenses again and were flawless again.
I started from the begining and purchased a whole set of camera and lenses dedicated to digital and problems were solved.
I'll try LF lenses in their natural environment, film.

carverlux
7-Dec-2011, 18:22
When I started change from film to digital cameras I tried to use my P2 with a phase one digital back and experienced the same. Traditional LF lenses are not for digital. Only certain Hasselblad V lenses were ok with a Phase one back. Other lenses, including some venerable ones with flawless performance on film were a LCAs factory with a digital back. More interesting was what experienced a friend of mine with several top of the line Nikon SLR lenses when he tried them on a D200, they were lemons. Years later he got a D3, tried the lenses again and were flawless again.
I started from the begining and purchased a whole set of camera and lenses dedicated to digital and problems were solved.
I'll try LF lenses in their natural environment, film.

Sounds like we have identical setup's and experiences!

From my testing, there were two consistently good performers in both digital and film domains even though there were definitely designed only for film: Red Dot Artars and - believe it or not - 100-yr old Carl Zeiss Protar V's and VII's. Also, most but not all of my Hasselblad V lenses were very sharp with little to no detectable LCA with the Phase One back until they were paired with a Mutar - then it got ugly.

carver

hiend61
7-Dec-2011, 18:51
I also did a test in the opposite direction. Digital lenses on film. An Alpa camera, Rodenstock HR Digaron 32 and 70 and Schneider Apo Digitar 90. Film Fuji Provia 100F.
I shot 6x6, these lenses have only 90 mm image circle except 70 which has 100, so I didn't make movements, and WOW, tons of sharpness, ideal contrast and great color.

carverlux
8-Dec-2011, 07:13
I also did a test in the opposite direction. Digital lenses on film. An Alpa camera, Rodenstock HR Digaron 32 and 70 and Schneider Apo Digitar 90. Film Fuji Provia 100F.
I shot 6x6, these lenses have only 90 mm image circle except 70 which has 100, so I didn't make movements, and WOW, tons of sharpness, ideal contrast and great color.

So great minds think alike!

I did the exact same thing after getting my Rodenstock Digital lenses, the generation just before the current Digaron's. They are really "perfect" as perfect gets, perhaps some times a little too sterile perfect when I was hoping for a little more "personality".

And every one of the non-HR's I got - 55, 90, 105, 150 - exceeded their coverage spec of 90mm to varying degrees. I found the 105 and 150 perfectly useable on 4x5 with some movement. The other revelation was that it was not easy to fully exploit the limits of increased resolution of these lenses while being handheld. I used them on my Master Technika and after securing the camera on a sturdy tripod, I saw additional resolution gains on the film.

Sorry for being off-topic to the original post.....

carver

Letoco
8-Dec-2011, 07:40
Its all a question of optical design compromises. Indeed, the digital lenses have better performance in many important aspects, at the price of the limited IC. Once you dont need it for 4x5 they are superior.

hiend61
8-Dec-2011, 13:34
One of the things I like best about LF is the texture and feeling of the images. It isn't a secret that LF provides a more natural contrast more and more natural as larger is the format. I also love the way in which LF lenses "write", despite general type diferences.
Modern high end digital back and lenses are clinically perfect, and anyone here feels well in a clinic?