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stradibarrius
24-Jul-2012, 06:35
I would like some information about 300-350 mm lenses. It would be used for portraits, still life shots and general stuff.
What are some reccomendations.
Something like a Symmar-s or Nikkor-M????

Leigh
24-Jul-2012, 09:52
Why did you cut off @ 350mm? That's an unusual FL. 360mm is quite common.

What format?

Nikkor W in 300/5.6 and 360/6.5 are quite good. I have both. They cover 8x10 with generous movements.

The Nikkor M 300/9, which I also have, is an outstanding apo lens. Its 325mm IC will just cover 8x10 but with no movements.

- Leigh

goamules
24-Jul-2012, 11:09
Get one of each and decide which you like.....wait, I see in another thread you already HAVE one of each:


I was going to sell my Fujinon-W 150 f/6.3 which is a Tessar design but I am re-thinking it now. I also have a Symmar-s 180 f/5.6 and they are really close as far as focal length but not in design. http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?93137-Pros-and-cons-of-tessar-design-lens&p=913167&viewfull=1#post913167

So what are you asking? "I would like some information about 300-350 mm lenses...Something like a Symmar-s or Nikkor-M?" is a little more than vague.

Jeff Keller
24-Jul-2012, 11:21
"Still life shots" could imply close focus. Verify that you have enough bellows to focus as close as you want. That could determine whether 300 or 360. Also, 360mm lenses tend to be big and heavy. If you have a studio type monorail camera it probably can handle it. If you have a field camera you might want to choose a lens whith a smaller aperture so that the lens will be smaller and lighter. If you are working in a studio, the larger aperture can make focus quicker and provide a little more choice with DOF.

Jeff Keller

Kevin Crisp
24-Jul-2012, 11:31
G CLARON 305, a jack of all trades and especially well suited to close ups. Cheap and Fast? 14" Wolly telephoto.

Leigh
24-Jul-2012, 11:37
If you want small, the Nikkor M 300/9 is definitely the choice.

It only weighs 290g, almost a full kilogram lighter than the Nikkor W 300/5.6.

And it's mounted in a Copal 1 shutter as compared with the huge Copal 3 used on most other 300mm lenses.

In the small size range you'll find the Fujinon A 300/9, a superb apo with a 420mm IC, 410g in a Copal 1,
and the Fujinon C 300/8.5, smallest of the bunch at 250g in a Copal 1, 380mm IC.

- Leigh

lbenac
24-Jul-2012, 11:38
The Nikkor M 300/9, which I also have, is an outstanding apo lens.

- Leigh

Another endorsement for the M-300/9 I would not do without it on my 4x5.

Marc B.
24-Jul-2012, 12:28
You may also want to look at Commercial Ektars from Kodak.
Image circle of 380mm, for the 12" Ektar, and 440mm, on the 14" Ektar.
A limited, yet acceptable amount of movement with the 12" on 8 X 10,
(for use with your portrait and still life requirements).
Using the 14" on 8 X 10, you'll also have more then ample movement for architectural needs.

adam satushek
24-Jul-2012, 12:42
Another endorsement for the M-300/9 I would not do without it on my 4x5.

I agree that the Nikkor 300-M is awesome on 4x5...its one of my favorites.

However, I do not use it my 8x10 as it has an image circle of 325 which allows for very little movement. Some people love it on 8x10, but for me its too confining. If you dont need movements, I'm sure its great on 8x10.

Any big 300 f5.6 plasmat(i think that term is correct?) will have much more coverage, but then they weigh much more so that may be an issue.

Drew Wiley
24-Jul-2012, 12:55
Still life MIGHT imply closeup work, in which case the Fujinon A or G-Claron series will excel.
You've got a choice of either 300-305 or 355-360, all of which will easily cover 8x10. Nikkor
M and Fuji C are avail 300 but less versatile on 8X10 and infinity optimized rather than close-up. All these lenses are much more compact than traditional 5.6 plasmats.

Leigh
24-Jul-2012, 13:19
We still don't know what format the OP is shooting.

That's sort of critical for determining an appropriate lens.

- Leigh

Joseph Dickerson
24-Jul-2012, 13:19
You don't mention what format you're shooting, which will make a difference with recommendations.

Two lenses I've owned and been happy with are the 300mm APO Ronar and the 300mm Geronar. I also nearly bought a Nikkor 300M years ago, I should have.

You might also consider the Fujinon 400T if you're shooting 4x5.

JD

stradibarrius
24-Jul-2012, 13:35
Sorry I didn't say it was 4x5.
I currently have a 90mm, 150mm, 180mm and a 250mm. I will probably sell the 180mm.

Fotoguy20d
24-Jul-2012, 13:47
What length bellows do you have? What size lensboard?

stradibarrius
24-Jul-2012, 14:30
I am using a Sinar F2 and I have a 6" rail extension for a total of 18". My 90mm lens will not focus to infinity without using about an inch of the extension.
The lens board size??? Are you talking about the mounting hole size or the dimensions of the board itself? I have several lens boards and the are all flat so no recessed lens boards if that is what you mean? Sinar boards a 6"x6"??? Sorry for my ignorance.

Leigh
24-Jul-2012, 14:47
My 90mm lens will not focus to infinity without using about an inch of the extension.
I don't understand that statement at all. Infinity focus is the closest the lens ever gets to the film.
As the subject gets closer, the lens must move away from the film (towards the subject) to achieve focus.

Your 90mm should focus with no problem on the basic rail, without an extension.

You'll have no problem with any of the 300mm-360mm lenses at any subject distance from infinity to 1:1
using the F2 and standard bellows (~711mm). You might need an additional 12" extension.

- Leigh

DKirk
24-Jul-2012, 14:54
It's a little longer but the Symmar f5.6 360mm lens is decent enough, but is a bit of a beast for extension, but you'll run out of movements before you run out of most coverage. I managed to pick one up for 140 in near optically perfect condition, a touch of Schniederitis but otherwise fine.

Vaughn
24-Jul-2012, 16:08
I use a Fuji W 300/5.6 (Copal 3 shutter). A bit big, but will easily fit on a 6x6 board. I like it (on 8x10) because I usually focus in low light situation and like the speed. It can be tough to see under the redwoods! A bit over-the-top as far as 4x5 coverage (and weight), but it would be a nice lens if/when you move up to 8x10!

Drew Wiley
24-Jul-2012, 16:31
With a flat board and 90mm lens one needs a bag bellows. The regular bellows won't compress that much. Think that is the issue he was implying. Personally, I can't understand why they discontinued the Norma-style tapered bellows, which was far more
versatile. But a big 300 or 360 plastmat in heavy no. 3 shutter can cause real vibration
issues on a Sinar F2 4X5 if a second tripod support it not involved. That's why I suggest something in a no.1 shutter. But originally, he stated P2. (??)

Leigh
24-Jul-2012, 16:36
But a big 300 or 360 plastmat in heavy no. 3 shutter can cause real vibration issues on a Sinar F2 4X5
Huh???

I've never had any vibration issues from a Copal 3 on regular folding field cameras, much less on an F2 (which I have and use).

- Leigh

Alan Gales
24-Jul-2012, 17:50
The Nikkor M 300 f/9 is a fine lens. Small, contrasty and razor sharp. I own one.

I would never use it for portraits of women. The older the woman the softer the lens she prefers. They do not want to see every wrinkle that they have! :eek:

mandoman7
24-Jul-2012, 18:31
I would have to concur regarding the vibration of Copal 3 shutters, or Ilex #5's for that matter. There are tons of people using those with field cameras.

stradibarrius
25-Jul-2012, 05:26
Leigh, I just mis spoke the 90mm focus fine at infinity on the F2. I need a bit of extension for the 250mm doing product (my violins) photography. The Nikkor 300 looks great except for the f/9...in a lower light environment it would be hard for me to focus???

E. von Hoegh
25-Jul-2012, 06:50
Leigh, I just mis spoke the 90mm focus fine at infinity on the F2. I need a bit of extension for the 250mm doing product (my violins) photography. The Nikkor 300 looks great except for the f/9...in a lower light environment it would be hard for me to focus???

I have no trouble whatsoever focussing my f9.5 Artar. Just take a minute to let your eyes adapt to the GG light level.

adam satushek
25-Jul-2012, 06:53
Some will say f9 is just fine in low light and some will not. It depends on you eyes and your definition of low light. The way to tell would be to stop your 250 down to f9 and then look at the ground glass. The 300-m will be a little longer so maybe a little brighter, but this will give you a good idea of focusing a f9.

The 300-m is one of my favorites but my closest focal length is a 210. If I had a 250 like you do id be looking at a 360.

Frank Petronio
25-Jul-2012, 08:04
The brokeh of the symmetrical lenses is usually more pleasing the the process lenses. If you aren't backpacking, go for the big glass as it is usually less expensive and better in every way but size.

BrianShaw
25-Jul-2012, 08:26
The brokeh ...

Please say that you intentionally did that. Brilliant!

Leigh
25-Jul-2012, 08:34
The Nikkor 300 looks great except for the f/9...in a lower light environment it would be hard for me to focus???
The f/9 aperture may be a problem. It depends on your subject and your lights.
In studio you can always add light to focus then turn it off for the real shot.

Or you can buy a Maxwell screen for the F2. Expensive, but well worth the money. I have one on my Zone VI field camera.

- Leigh

Drew Wiley
25-Jul-2012, 08:42
Leigh and Frank - I'll bet if you took an otherwise comparable 360, one in a #1 shutter, the
other in a number #3, took well-controlled negs and looked and looked at the results in a
reasonable degree of enlargement, you'd see the effect of vibration due to the bigger shutter. Since I have often done exactly that, I am painfully aware of the difference. Most
4x5 cameras just dont have the mass to dampen it. Then you've got the issue of trying to
stabilize the significant extra weight at the front end, often at maximum extension. And optically, those big fat 5.6 plastmats aren't any better at all than their smaller cousins.
They're just a bit brighter due to the larger max aperture. What you incorrectly relegate to
the classification of "process lenses" (Fuji A, G-Claron, Apo-Nikkor, etc) are actually very
versatile and in certain respects optically remarkable.

Drew Wiley
25-Jul-2012, 08:47
Another myth - that these f/9 lenses are hard to focus. I don't use a fresnel (hate them)
and can't think of any situation where focus has been difficult. You're talking about fairly
long focal lengths relative to format, so you don't have dim corner falloff like with wide angle lenses. "Bokeh" is an entirely different subject, and I can't think of any fully modern
lens which excels at it, unless you want one of the soft focus tweaks. But that is something very subjective and often at odds with "sharpness". I personally prefer different
lenses for portraiture than for acute work.

Leigh
25-Jul-2012, 08:56
Drew,

If you are having a vibration problem, then your tripod is not adequate to the task. You are using a tripod, not hand-holding, yes?

I use a massive Majestic tripod that could easily support my car for an oil change. Get a better tripod.


Most 4x5 cameras just don't have the mass to dampen it.
The lens itself has quite sufficient mass to dampen any vibration. The large 300-360mm lenses are huge.

Your claim that the relatively slow movement of a set of shutter blades that weigh maybe 5 grams would cause
vibration in a lens assembly that weighs 1250 grams simply doesn't work mathematically.

- Leigh

E. von Hoegh
25-Jul-2012, 09:17
Drew,

If you are having a vibration problem, then your tripod is not adequate to the task. You are using a tripod, not hand-holding, yes?

I use a massive Majestic tripod that could easily support my car for an oil change. Get a better tripod.


The lens itself has quite sufficient mass to dampen any vibration. The large 300-360mm lenses are huge.

Your claim that the relatively slow movement of a set of shutter blades that weigh maybe 5 grams would cause
vibration in a lens assembly that weighs 1250 grams simply doesn't work mathematically.

- Leigh

Leigh, tape a laser pointer to your lens and put the dot on a distant wall. You might be surprised at the wierd stuff that will happen at some shutter speeds and extensions.

Drew Wiley
25-Jul-2012, 10:02
My tripods are more than adequate! I use big Ries units directly on the platform - no tripod
head, period! I am 1000% NOT guessing. This is just common sense. A big heavy brick of
a lens at the maximum extension of most field cameras is just plain difficult to support,
and all kinds of vibrations get amplified. Maybe your definition of a sharp image in different
than mine. What works perfectly well on a big 8x10 wooden folder can create sheer havoc
on an F2 at long extensions. I know what I am talking about. I use my Sinar mainly for
long lenses - it's equipped with a 28-inch bellows, though I have more recently converted
it from f2 to a Norma for slightly better support. Big lenses per se don't dampen anything -
they just make the problem worse on a lightwt front standard. Two rail clamps on a long
maple rail will help a Sinar or other monorail (or they make an alum. one - I prefer wood for
its dampening properties) - but this is only a partial solution. It's helluva lot easier just to
use a lighter lens in smaller shutter.

mandoman7
25-Jul-2012, 14:20
Leigh, tape a laser pointer to your lens and put the dot on a distant wall. You might be surprised at the wierd stuff that will happen at some shutter speeds and extensions.
A water glass on top of the 4x5 can reveal vibrations amazingly well. Something I heard about on this forum...

E. von Hoegh
26-Jul-2012, 07:13
A water glass on top of the 4x5 can reveal vibrations amazingly well. Something I heard about on this forum...

The laser pointer will show EVERYTHING, even when the water isn't apparently disturbed.

Frank Petronio
26-Jul-2012, 07:33
I have no doubt Copal 3, Ilex 5, and Sinar shutters vibrate more than smaller shutters. That's why I don't use shitty little cameras made of plastic and toothpicks.

Bill, 70's military B&W
28-Jul-2012, 09:40
E. von Hoegh,
I have not tried the laser pointer trick yet, but I want to thank you for putting the idea in my head. I have a lot of problems with movement with long lenses on my 35 mm.
Bill

E. von Hoegh
28-Jul-2012, 12:05
E. von Hoegh,
I have not tried the laser pointer trick yet, but I want to thank you for putting the idea in my head. I have a lot of problems with movement with long lenses on my 35 mm.
Bill

You're welcome. I heard about it from a biathlon coach.