View Full Version : Linhof super screen.

Karo from Moscow
15-Oct-2003, 06:47
I am going to buy Linhof Super Screen for us it with 55-90 mm lenses on 4"x5" film.Would be glad to receive any information about this screen

Jean-Louis Llech
15-Oct-2003, 09:05
I don't use the Linhof super screen, but the original GG with a Fresnel behind it.
Try with the "Search" option and Super Screen as keyword.
You'll get a lot of answers.



Geoffrey Swenson
15-Oct-2003, 10:34
Go ahead and buy the Super Screen! People will tell you that it buckles, which is not true. You have to install it according to the instructions and along with a clear (or grided) cover glass (the glass is towards you). It is a kit and you can get it from Badger Graphics. I think it costs around $99.00, but they will rob you on shipping though.

It is very easy and bright to focus with this setup from 58-360 mm. At least this are the lenses I have. Also the Super Screen will not warp. Iíve had mine for four years and it is still in excellent shape.

Cheers, G.S.

Richard Boulware
15-Oct-2003, 11:49
With all respect for those who disagree with my comments...the Linhof Super Screen is a disaster and the only Linhof product (IMHO) which is junk. Had one, installed and had to send my Technika V back to Marflex where they installed a new ground glass and fresnel screen....and had to recalibrate my six lenses. They won't tell you publicly but they told me they don't like it. It DOES warp. Been there, done that. Your buying a headache.

Geoffrey Swenson
15-Oct-2003, 14:37
Did you have the cover glass sandwiched with the plastic screen? I don't know why so many have problem with warping...my hasn't done, so far in four years. I even took it out for cleaning a few times. I also don't have focus problems. Or, am I the luckiest?

Michael Kadillak
15-Oct-2003, 15:40
With exposure to heat, which is hard to avoid in the desert or in the car at times, the screen can and most certainly will warp. I purchased a Master Technica with the plastic screen installed and I could see the effects of the warped plastic screen when I was focusing aftet I received the camera. After I called Bob S. to understand what was installed on my camera, I immediately called Marflex to talk to them about a solution and they said to get rid of it immediately and it went Fed Ex to them remove it and re-calibrate the ground glass and then installed the simple Linhof fresnel behind the glass. I have been pleased with the combination since. Finding out that your critical focus is off (even just slightly)over a light table after a long shoot is not a risk I am willing to take. I have to much invested in my equipment and the time I allocate to shooting LF to not have absolute certainty and control over the variables affecting my negatives. Cheers!

Geoffrey Swenson
15-Oct-2003, 16:46
Michael, just out of curiosityÖhow do the Super Screen and the Fresnel combo compare in terms of brightness and/or grain?


Michael Kadillak
15-Oct-2003, 18:10
Honestly, I cannot really tell any visual differentiation between the super screen and the fresnel combination. Either seem to me to be perfectly capable of precise focusing. The qualities and properties of the ground glass have as much differentiation to me on the focusing process as any fresnel or focusing improvement technologies. Bottom line if you have a bright subject, focusing is a relative breeze for me even if I have only a straight ground glass. Dim subjects and/or smaller f stop lenses require extra attention such as point light sources placed in the scene or other measures to get it right. I have a Boss screen on a 5x7 Linhof Bi camera back and it has a different look completely. I cannot say it is "better" because fresnels in general seem to me to require focusing at 90 degrees to get the best results. What I so desperately require is a precise focusing plane that stays in the correct position over the long haul.

I will say that without question, the best "focusing" camera I have is my metal Canham 5x7 that incorporates a fresnel underneath the ground glass. The grain literally pops out in front of you. I do not know the technical aspects of what Keith employs, but it is truly amazing and in a class by itself IMHO. The Linhof plays second fiddle to the Canham no matter what is on or in front of the ground glass. But that may just be me.

Saying that, when I need to go to the 8x10 or the 11x14 to express myself, I do not think for a minute that I am working behind a standard "naked" ground glass. You do what you have to do to secure the sharp image on film - period.

Julio Fernandez
15-Oct-2003, 21:45
Karo: A flat plane for the viewing screen is absolutely essential. Plastic can never ever be as flat or stay as flat as glass. To think otherwise is just wishful thinking.

Martin Patek-Strutsky
15-Oct-2003, 23:03

In the factory catalogue Linhof does not even mention a "super screen". You can get the standard GG plus fresnel and thats it.

Obviously some distributors try to make additional money by labeling their proprietary "super screens" as a Linhof product...

Jean-Louis Llech
16-Oct-2003, 01:11
Mr Patek-Strutsky,

I'm sorry but I think you're partially wrong...

The Superscreen really exists. It is labelled "4x5 Super Screen", and has the reference 052522 on the Linhof Catalog.

The second fg. is 5, I think this means that it's not a genuine Linhof part, but a third-party-manufactured product.

But it is nevertheless on Linhof Catalog.


Martin Patek-Strutsky
16-Oct-2003, 01:24
Monsieur Lech,

in front of me is the factory pricelist 2003/2004, valid since 6/2003, issued by Linhof Munich and there is no super screen and no ref.no 052522.

What document do you look at?

Jean-Louis Llech
16-Oct-2003, 09:13
I have an older pricelist, where the Super Screen was at $79.95.
It has probably been withdrawn recently from their "catalog", but it was already on their pricelist when I bought my Master Technika in Munich. I had hesitated to buy one of them.

That's why I said "you were partially wrong" when you wrote "Obviously some distributors try to make additional money by labeling their proprietary "super screens" as a Linhof product..."

Nothing else.

I've been using for several years the standard GG with a Fresnel behind. I'm very glad with it, and I don't intend to buy something else.

On another hand, all focusing screens (Beattie, Bosscreen...) have so many pro's and con's that I would not know which one to buy without a serious trial before, and it seems impossible to try one before buying.


Martin Patek-Strutsky
16-Oct-2003, 09:42
agreed ! sorry for the missing "L"

Geoffrey Swenson
16-Oct-2003, 09:44
I donít want to beat a dead horse, but I have the feeling that the ones who say that the Super Screen buckles didnít use it with the cover glass. I am sure that a plastic screen by itself will warp. The Super Screen, I believe, was meant to be used with an additional support Ė the cover plate glass.

I also donít intend to invalidate your opinions, but any mention of the Two-part Set is suspiciously absent.

Bob Salomon
16-Oct-2003, 10:01
The Super Screen is still current and it is still made by the makers of the Beattie Screen (Beattie's parent company). It is an American product and has never been sold by the factory to other markets or to the German market. Currently the MSRP for the Super Screen is $115.00. The current MSRP for the Overlay is $40.00.

Please be aware that the manufacturer of this system has raised the price so high that the overlay will be more then the Super Screen in the future. For that reason the Super Screen and the Overlay will be discontinued when our present inventory is depleted. That will mean that most of the remaining Super Screens will not be available with the Overlay as we did not order Overlays at the vastly increased cost.

The current Super Screens are the latest production and have been in stock since the beginning of this year.

Geoffrey Swenson
16-Oct-2003, 10:16
According to some sources of mine Beattie sells a 4x5 clear antireflective overlay glass for Linhof for about $30.00, but I can imagine one can just cut a piece if glass of the appropriate thickness and be done with it.

Iím still interested to hear those who used the Super Screen with the overlay and had a warping problem (I did not). To use the Screen without support IS foolish, I agree.

Geoffrey Swenson
16-Oct-2003, 10:20
Sorry. The Beattie antireflective overlay glass is not part of the Linhof set, only an individual item to be used with other Beattie products.

Michael Kadillak
16-Oct-2003, 12:13
All I can tell you Geoff is that the screen on my Master Technica was in fact installed WITH the glass overlay and it warped to the point that it looked like a chicken bone on an x ray. Call Marflex and talk to them if you want the skinny. They are factory trained professionals and deal with these variables every day. I trust their judgement and when they told me that they were junk, I had no reason to not trust their opinion. Cheers!

Geoffrey Swenson
16-Oct-2003, 12:42
Doggonit :-))

Bob Salomon
16-Oct-2003, 14:34
"I trust their judgement and when they told me that they were junk"

Sorry Michael, I just spoke to Martin at Marflex and he says he did not and his employees did not say they are "junk" this is not a word that they use for equipment they service.

And to quote him further he states that Marflex can shim the screen to eliminate problems.

Thousands of the Super Screens have been sold over the 20 odd years that we have offerd them. Yes there was a problem with warping on early ones. The second and later batches were made from a thicker material with a higher heat tolerance. But it is still plastic, unsupported, except at the extreme ends of the screen. For use in areas where warping may be a problem we recommend that shims be placed along the sides.

If this is inconvenient the latest version of the Linhof ground glass and the latest fresnel screen are substantially brighter then older ones. Of course, with Linhof, "older ones" is an uncertain amount as they have been making cameras for so long a period. But if your current Linhof screen and fresnel is 10 or more years old a newer one will be benificial.

Geoffrey Swenson
16-Oct-2003, 14:57
Thanks Bob,

This must be the reason. I was very surprised to hear of the warping, (because my hasnít) but that might be it. And yes, the instructions that came with mine expressly stated that the original shims must be used for proper operation.

By the way Iíd also like to try the Fresnel on my other (Linhof 4x5) camera. Who would sell it the cheapest?

Bob Salomon
16-Oct-2003, 16:53
Geoffrey, All authorized dealers buy the fresnel from us for the same price. You would have to contact the dealers for a retail price. Just be sure you get the latest one.

Geoffrey Swenson
16-Oct-2003, 17:21
How do I know which one is the latest one? Is it a different Part#?

Sorry, I know I'm getting pesky here :-))

Paul Metcalf
16-Oct-2003, 17:34
I bought one for my Linhof Tech V, like it so much I put in on my Wisner Tech Field with grid cover (sorry Ron). I've used it for 3 years with no warping, including shoots in Idaho in 98 deg temps and high humidity areas like the Olympics. I would think some of the other camera elements might be subject to warping (e.g. the film holders) if this was really a problem. And forget about using a Holga!

I've also hit it accidently and it didn't break!!! (Unlike the ground glass on my 5x7 and 8x10's). Try focusing around a duct taped field repair (one of my best shots was done this way). I think I'll stick with the superscreen.


Bob Salomon
16-Oct-2003, 17:35
Ask how long it is in their stock.

Michael Kadillak
16-Oct-2003, 18:45
When a reputable service entity tells me to go another direction (versus another Super Screen whatever the current technology or re-design)and it means that I need to pay to Fed Ex my camera and then pay again to have them re-calibrate my camera back, it should not (and was not) taken lightly. Whatever vocabularly was utilized to convey the recommendation is rather meaningless as the only thing I give a hoot about is results. The thought of wondering if the clips were put in the correct place or if they are still there is a variable that I cannot tolerate from purely a statistical perpective. The engineer in me trusts a precisely calibrated piece of rigid ground glass and nothing less.

When you take out your loup at some point in the future and look carefully over your light box and things look just a little less sharp than what you remembered when you made the exposure, you will remember this post. Only one corner of the screen has to move a fraction of a centimeter and you are chip beef over toast figuratively speaking.

I appreciate the opportunity to speak my mind and let the reader draw their own conclusion. Thats all folks..............