View Full Version : Mo' Lens Questions

24-Mar-2012, 08:21
I've asked before, but have had differing input so I'll ask again - using a 5x7 w/22" of bellows extension (it's a Seneca City View), Im interested in mostly landscapes, but will probably do some architecture,too. What would be a REASONABLE lens kit? I don't have Powerball money, so it's got to be reasonable - I've got about $2K to spend. I've already got a Schneider Super Angulon 210mm as my standard, but was thinking about adding a 90 & 360. Someone said I should add a 120-150 in the middle & the camera store said to definitely add a 75! So, what do you think? 90 - 120 - 210 - 360? Or something else? Thanks for all the help you guys always give. How about filters - is a Lee kit pretty good & reasonably priced? Thanks.

E. von Hoegh
24-Mar-2012, 08:29
A 210 SA on that camera??!!?
http://www.piercevaubel.com/cam/seneca/sencamcity3.htm You're kidding, right?
For 5x7, and landscapes, I'd go 120/135 - 210 - 300. I'd stick with Dagors but I use exclusively B&W and maintain my own shutters.

24-Mar-2012, 09:11
The 210 is what the camera came with. Dagors would be nice, but $$$$$ It's a Seneca City View (so marked), but the real standard differs from any shown & it's ebonized oak (I think) with nickel fittings. Thanks for your advice, I wasn't sure a 90 would work well.

Oren Grad
24-Mar-2012, 09:18
A 210 Super-Angulon weighs about 6 1/2 pounds and would crush a 5x7 Seneca. Perhaps you have one of the generations of the 210 Symmar.

In any case, don't spend $2000 on lenses just because someone else told you what a 5x7 kit is supposed to look like. Nobody else has any idea what will work for you. You don't have any idea what will work for you - which is fine, and to be expected, because you're just getting started. Go out with your 210 and start making pictures. Experience will tell you what kinds of pictures you want to make that you can't get with a 210, and therefore whether you need any other lenses and what they will be.

My own 5x7 field kit usually has just a 210 and a 150 - I rarely take anything else along. That's not a recommendation for you - your needs will likely be different. But you don't necessarily need four lenses, or any particular number.

BTW, anyone at a camera store who said you "definitely" need to add a 75 to a 5x7 kit is not competent to be giving advice. 75 would be ultra-ultra-wide on 5x7 - roughly similar to a 15mm lens on 35mm. It would be an expensive, highly specialized tool that most users will never need or be able to use effectively.

E. von Hoegh
24-Mar-2012, 10:12
The 210 is what the camera came with. Dagors would be nice, but $$$$$ It's a Seneca City View (so marked), but the real standard differs from any shown & it's ebonized oak (I think) with nickel fittings. Thanks for your advice, I wasn't sure a 90 would work well.

If you're a beginner at this, take one lens, say a 180 or 210 out and make some photos. Spend some time with it. Do you need a wider lens? A longer lens? The jump from 210 to 360 in your lineup is too big. A 90mm is damn wide on 4x5, more so on 5x7. A 90 that will cover 5x7 with movements for architectural work is $$$$$. A 75? the guy who told you that is on dope. A 120 on 5x7 is damn wide, like a 90 on 4x5. Again, not a lot of coverage unless you spend. And, a 210 SA - is that what you have? Just because it came with, doesn't mean it's suitable I'm surprised it even fits on the lensboard. It's an expensive lens - it covers 11x14; peddle it and get something else like a 210 Symmar.

24-Mar-2012, 10:23
For 5x7, I'd suggest two lenses to begin with: a 210 and a 120.
For 210, try to get one of the older Fujinon-W lenses; they're not expensive, they're sharp, and cover up to 8x10 with decent movements.
When you've played around with that, see if you need a 120.
If so, an older SA 121 should do the trick; it's sharp, inexpensive, and will cover 5x7 with room to spare.
If you want more coverage, the Nikon 120 is more expensive, but has a larger IC than the 121 SA.

24-Mar-2012, 12:13
I agree with the 210mm Fuji, and a 120mm to start. You do NOT need to go on a lens buying spree since you don't yet know what you need. A guy at a camera store was suggesting you buy a bunch of lenses? LOL here! First you need to envision exactly what shots you want to make, then you buy what you need to make them. Buying gear and then making your images fit what you bought is backwards.

Kent in SD

Frank Petronio
24-Mar-2012, 13:19
Gee a 210/5.6 Symmar (or newer version) is just about a perfect 5x7 lens, period.

Perhaps after you shoot a bit you'd like something in the 150 and 300 range but personally I would be happy with the 210 and put the money in the bank, buy film, go shooting....

That's an older camera that might be lovely but it might also be a bit wobbly... you might actually consider a tighter, more capable camera like Michael Graves' $600 5x7 Toyo listed in the classifieds. It would be very robust in comparison. A really solid tripod would be a very effective way to improve sharpness and the overall experience.

24-Mar-2012, 14:07
Maybe... an older 90mm SA f/5.6, 210mm Symmar-S and 355mm G-Claron? Tough to beat the quality... mid-priced used.