View Full Version : Schneider Super-Angulon 5.6/38XL

Dick Roadnight
24-Oct-2003, 11:55
I think he 47XL is superior in many respects... and I think it gives better coverage and/or angle (120 degrees)

Michael S. Briggs
24-Oct-2003, 12:17
At pdf datasheet is available for this lens from http://www.schneideroptics.com/photography/large_format_lenses/super-angulon/. The datasheet includes a graph of relative illumination. The graph is a bit confusing since it has two families of curves, while the legend indicates three families: f5.6, f16 and f22. I think the resolution of this confusion is that the curves for f16 and f22 are identical and fall on top of each other on the graph.

Guessing the diagonal of your 6x9 format as 100 mm, u/u_max on the Schneider graph is 50 / 68.3 mm = 0.73. For f16 or f22 we should read from the top curve, which gives a relative illumination, corner compared to center, of about 25%. Using theory (cosine to the third theta with theta of 51.8 degrees), I calculate 24% illumination, which is in near perfect agreement with the graph. This is a light falloff of 2.0 stops. Movements such as front rise will make the falloff worse.

With B+W negative material, some would find this falloff acceptable. If you tend to use substantial movements, you are more likely to find the center filter useful. Probably best is to try the lens and see whether you find the falloff objectionable or not.

Henning Wulff
24-Oct-2003, 16:26
I don't have this lens, but I have a few others that are similar. I have the 47, 58 and 72 SA-XL's, and the 35 Apo-Grandagon and older 65/4.5 Grandagon.

I would assume from what I have seen of the MTF data that the performance is just as good as that of the other SA-XL's.

I use the 35, 47 and 65 on Cambo Wides, and the 58 and 72 on 4x5 field and monorail cameras.

From the performance of the 47 and 58 lenses, I would suggest that you would most likely be quite unhappy without the centre filter, as the falloff is quite strong. I use the 35 mostly on 6x12, but also 6x7 and would not want to be without the filter. Occasionally I use the 35 on 4x5, and then I usually leave off the filter as the gradual fading into black of the corners is less objectionable than an abrupt descent into black. The 47 gets used on 4x5 mostly, but also 6x12 and 6x7, and it is just barely useable on 6x7 without the filter, and only when it is not shifted or only very slightly. I have centre filters for all these, as well as for my 90 and 120 lenses and would not be without them. They are just part of the cost of using these lenses to their potential.

Extreme wide angles are best used on rigid cameras as fcussing in the corners and keeping things aligned is very difficult with extreme angles of view. With a 38 the DOF at useable apertures is in any case very large, so movements other than shifts are rarely of value, or at least a lot less important than with longer lenses.

Dick Roadnight
25-Oct-2003, 08:22

I have the 47XL, but have not used it much yet.

How do the SA XLs compare with Hasselblad/Zeiss lenses for res and contrast?

Michael J. Kravit
25-Oct-2003, 10:32

I have the Schneider Super Angulon 38 XL and use it with my Ebony 45SU. Not only will it produce excellent images with you 6x9 camera, but it will barely also cover 4x5 without movements. I know that Schneiders specs don'y indicate so, but my actual negs show that it does.

The lens is sharp, and has excellent and pleasing contrast. I have never compared it to any of my Hassy/Zeiss lenses or Rollei/Schneider lenses as I shoot only b/w and don't worry too much about such things.

I do not use a center filter and find the falloff pleasing especially for landscapes. Falloff means that I have less edge buring to do. ;-) For critical studio work or fashion you may certainly opt for a center filter.

I also own the SA58XL, SA72XL, SA90XL, SS110XL and Symar APO 210.

I have found the Schneider product to be excellent and second to none.


Michael J. Kravit
25-Oct-2003, 10:33
Oops, sorry Michael, I meant to address my response to you.

Henning Wulff
25-Oct-2003, 13:09

The only MF Zeiss lens I have right now is the 38 Biogon on a Hasselblad SWC, and in comparison to that lens the 47 SA-XL seems slightly contrastier with possibly slightly higher resolution. The Biogon has a 'smoother' image quality. This relationship is understandable, as the Biogon is a 50 year old design, and the SA-XL series is very recent, and seems more highly corrected. It is the undercorrected spherical aberration that gives the Biogon images the smoothness that it is noted for.

As Mike has written, the current Schneiders are second to none.

George Hart
27-Oct-2003, 00:50
Michael I hate to raise this issue, but from the Ebony specs it seems that the minimum bellows distance of the 23S is too long for it to be possible to focus this lens, even with a recessed lensboard. However, I would be most interested to learn of your experience if you do decide to go ahead and try it. I have a 45S which is a bit shorter at the closed end of the bellows spectrum, and if this lens would fit on your camera, I would be reassurred that I could give it a go! All the best.