View Full Version : Schneider Angulon

Annie M.
26-Mar-2004, 15:19
I am presently on the hunt for a Schneider Angulon 90mm 6.8 to replace my Rodenstock Grandagon 90 4.5 ( although gorgeous ...the thing is a brick... so it has only been used once... sad I know) for my Sinar 4x5 and I would appreciate some clarification about which lens this actually is. The photo on Kerry T's site does not afford a good view of the face of the lens so I am wondering if someone could direct me to a photo of one on the web. I notice that there is a Schneider listed on eBay but it is listed as a Schneider-Kreuznach ( item # 3805026129 ) is this a different lens? Excuse my ignorance but the only lenses I have ever seen are my own. What about shutters for this lens.... what should I be looking for? Thanks in advance for your help.

Gem Singer
26-Mar-2004, 15:50
Hi Annie,

Take a look at Badger Graphic's website (www.badgergraphic.com). Click on large format. Click on lenses. Click on Schneider. Follow the prompts to see pictures of most of the new Schneider lenses available.

Annie M.
26-Mar-2004, 16:22

Thanks for the link to Badger I had not seen the site before, however I could not find a photo of the Angulon just the Super Angulon.... Or is this a special hint for me to avoid that dog of a lens on eBay!

Cheers Annie

Bob Fowler
26-Mar-2004, 16:23
Hey Annie,

From the vade mecum: (section on postwar Schneider lenses)

- - - - -

Angulonf6.8 65mm, for 6x9cm; 90mm, for 9x12cm or 5x4; 120mm for 13x18cm, 165mm for 18x24cm, and 210mm for 24x30cm. These were now an important sales item as a wide angle lens, and the 90mm is especially common for use with 5x4in, allowing some movements, but they tended not to be used over as extreme wide angles as before- being recommended perhaps for 95. And there was little mention that they were convertible as always. Incidentally the longer versions are sought after today as offering really wide coverage such as 120mm and longer on 5x4in, and command good prices. Angulon was not in a 8/1968 list, although it was in 1960 lists so it was probably phased out in the mid-1960's.

- - - - -

Having quoted that, you will find most 90mm Angulons in size 0 Compur shutters, some Compur Rapid, others Synchro Compur. If you see one in a Copal, it's most likely been reshuttered (not that that's a bad thing). You'll also see them in Linhof branded Compur shutters - quite a few of those show up on eBay. I have one that came in a sick Synchro Compur. While the shutter was being repaired, I "temporarily" put the cells in a size 0 Vario. Though the Synchro Compur is fixed, it's still in the Vario... I don't use it much! :-) The problem with re-shuttering a 90mm Angulon is that there is a collar on the front lens cell that must be dealt with - the collar prevents the cell spacing frm being correct with a "modern" Copal without a bit of machine work.

I've seen a lot of these lenses with element seperation problems. While it's not too big a deal to get the elements recemented if you already own the lens, I'd be careful buying one sight unseen (read that as eBay) as it isn't a cheap repair.

Brian Ellis
26-Mar-2004, 16:57
Krueznich is just another part of the Schneider name that some people use and others don't. There are no differences between a "Schneider" lens and a "Schneider Krueznach" lens.

But either there's something I don't know (always a distinct possibility) or else there are some odd responses here to your question. The Schneider 90mm F6.8 lens that I know is a very old lens, it wouldn't be shown on Badger's web site of new Schneider lenses. It was superceded by the Super Angulons some time in the 1960s. The lens gets mixed reviews from users, probably due in part to the fact that Scheider's quality control back then wasn't what it is today so there was a pretty wide variety among these lenses as they left the factory and even more so after 40 or more years of use. They just cover 4x5 with little or room for any movements. Their principal desirable feature is their small size and weight, which makes them attractive for backpackers. Given their age, you're likely to find defects in the glass and shutter. I wouldn't buy one sight unseen unless you can return it without a restocking fee. There has been a lot of discussion about this lens here (assuming that I'm thinking of the right lens and Schneider hasn't come out with a new lens having the same name and maximum aperture as the original F6.8 Angulon) and you should be able to find a wealth of information by searching the archives.

Annie M.
26-Mar-2004, 17:18
That clears things up considerably.... I had researched it a bit and was looking to purchase one for backpacking.... I am finally in the process of downsizing my 4x5 kit. I just wanted to know what it looked like so I do not end up buying the wrong lens and have another behemoth arrive in the post. Now I see there are other aspects of this lens to watch out for.

Thanks Annie

Michael S. Briggs
26-Mar-2004, 17:35
Besides the possible issues of quality control in manufacturing, wear and tear with age or damage inflicted by a previous owner, another reason that photographer's might find Angulons inadequate is that the design isn't as good optically as today's wide coverage lenses. Annie, as an alternative to your f4.5 Grandagon you might want to consider a modern lens with a slower maximum aperture -- this will reduce the weight, though not down to the weight of an Angulon. The slowest current 90 mm offerings from Rodenstock and Schneider are f6.8. Both Fuji and Nikon made f8 90 mm lenses. Nikon lists the 90 f8 Nikkor-SW as weighing 360 g and Fuji the 90 mm f8 Fujinon-SW as weighing 407 g These weights are still well above the Angulon, so if weight is the preeminent factor, the Angulon may be the lens for you.

Kerry Thalmann discusses, with photos, the 90 mm Angulon at http://www.thalmann.com/largeformat/wide.htm and the 90 mm f8 Nikkor-SW at http://www.thalmann.com/largeformat/future.htm.

Kerry L. Thalmann
26-Mar-2004, 17:51
Hey Annie,

There is a current thread going on over in rec.photo.equipment.large-format on lightweight 90mm lenses for backpacking. You might want to give it a read.

Also, I have pics of a few different 90mm Angulons I can email you. I'd love to post them inline here with the discussion, but that doesn't seem possible.

In addition to condition, the main thing to consider when buying an Angulon is the age. The first Angulons were made in 1929 and the last in 1978 (a special run of 165mm Angulons, the last 90mm Angulons were made around 1970 or 1971). You can obtain the date of manufacture of any Schneider lens at:


I generally recommend only post WWII coated Angulons - the later the better. Also, Linhof selected Angulons seem to be of generally consistent high quality. So, if I was looking for one, I'd keep my eyes open for a generic Angulon from the mid-1960s or early 1970s, or a Linhof select model (again the later the better). You can get a perfectly decent older Angulon, but your odds increase with newer lenses as Schneider's quality steadily improved.

As far as the shutters go, most came in No. 0 Synchro Compur shutters. However, very late samples did indeed come in Copal No. 0 shutters. I currently have one from 1970 that is in a factory original Copal shutter (the old chrome ring variety).


jerry brodkey
26-Mar-2004, 18:23
There always seem to be alot of 90mm. angulons on eBay - probably the most popular. Go to eBay and search for "angulon -super" and you'll see lots of pictures and as you follow them you can see what the going price is...


Scott Sharp
26-Mar-2004, 18:24
Hi Annie-

I was embarked on the same search as you were about six months ago. I found a 70's vintage 90mm Angulon with an 11,xxx,xxx serial number in a clean Copal No. 0 shutter. I think I paid under $200.00 for it. The lens as has been mentioned is very small and lightweight. My sample is sharp with good contrast. I think it has a slight edge over the Linhof select 120mm Angulon I have of 1954 vintage. If size and weight are a prime concern then I would recommend one. Kerry Thalman's information on the Angulon was excellent and helped me decide on that lens. Good luck with your search.

Annie M.
26-Mar-2004, 18:26
Thanks Kerry..... I haven't visited wreck.photo in ages, I'll check it out..... Please e-mail me the pics of the Angulons!

Cheers Annie

26-Mar-2004, 19:19
Two other little items. 1) needs to be used at f:16-22, 2) and be sure that there is a "Press-focus" or "blade arrester" on the shutter so you can open it to view and focus without setting it to "b" and using a locking cable release.

Donald Miller
26-Mar-2004, 22:22
My mid 80's vintage 90 mm F 5.6 Super Angulon came in a Copal O shutter.

Colin Carron
27-Mar-2004, 04:28

An Angulon was the first LF lens I owned and it served me well till the elements fell apart as noted above. I bought another which is still going strong. They are TINY (130g) compared with Super Angulons - the down side being mainly the small image circle. The Angulon image circle business is worth looking at closely. Schneider quote 154mm as the image circle which only just covers 4x5. However an Angulon will illuminate a circle a good deal bigger than that. What happens is that the image becomes increasingly blurry beyond 154mm so if you use much by way of movements the corners start looking out of focus. But in many landscape pictures that does not matter and often it means that the sky may be a touch blurred which is no big deal. I prefer the Super Angulon for sharpness and colour rendering as well but on balance the Angulon still has a lot going for it. Get as recent an example as possible as quality control improved through the 60's.

Chris Gittins
27-Mar-2004, 05:07

I picked up a used 90/6.8 Angulon in a Synchro Compur on eBay last fall. It's serial number dates it as manufactured ca 1957. It's in very good condition and, although I haven't used it extensively, I like it so far. It's light, as Colin noted above, and was reasonably priced. (Think I paid about $170 including shipping. I'd imagine you can find one cheaper if you're more patient than I was.) The corners are not tack sharp as they are with my much newer, longer focal length Symmar-S and Nikkor-W lenses, but I typicaly shoot landscapes which require little or no movement, so the limited image circle isn't a big issue for me.

Best regards, Chris

Annie M.
27-Mar-2004, 07:11
Thanks everyone.... The tiny 90/6.8 will be perfect for my hiking adventures this summer. Kerry kindly sent me some photos of various vintages in assorted shutters so I know precisely what I am looking for. A bit of softness at the corners is a small sacrifice considering my Grandagon probably weighs the equivalent of a stack of Angulons.

Frank Petronio
27-Mar-2004, 07:16
I tested a late 90/6.8 Angulon against a modern 90/6.8 Rodenstock Grandagon N, and the centers were both good, at least at f/16-22. The gotcha is the corners, and the room for movements. But I regret selling the Angulon all the same, they are nice lenses for their size.

Philippe Bedfert
27-Mar-2004, 08:01
Dear Ann,

I bought two years ago an Angulon 6,8 90mm. I used it for around a year. It covered 4x5 with almost no movement. The constrast was very poor because mine was not coated. I sold it last year. I just bought a Congo 6,8 120mm. As there in no reseller in France (and not in Europe) I have dealt directly with the Japanese manufacturer. It is a very light lens, same kind of the Angulon but coated and with more movement. There is also a 90mm. You can easily buy it in US (maybe Badger sells it). It is not as sharp as my Nikkor 8 90mm but the constrast is nice and the B&W negative are very good. As I use to hike I prefer my Congo rater than my Nikkor in my backpack. And it is enough coverage for the landscape.

Brian Ellis
27-Mar-2004, 08:19
I don't know how much money you're willing to spend, but if size and weight rather than price are the most important things you might consider the 80mm Schneider Super Symmar XL as an alternative to the Angulon. The 80mm XL is not much bigger than the Angulon, considerably closer in size to it than the 90mm F8 lenses made by Schneider and Nikon. I have the 80mm XL and it's an outstanding lens. Plus it's an F4 so it's easier to view the image on the ground glass with it than with the F8 lenses. And of course you get a somewhat wider angle of view than a 90mm but still not an extreme wide angle. All in all I think it's a great choice as a wide angle lens for back packing. The big downside is its price - around $1,200 - $1,400. But I figured I'd have it the rest of my life and would never need another wide angle lens if I bought it so I was willing to pay the price.

N Dhananjay
28-Mar-2004, 08:22
If you are looking for other options, another good option is a 100mm wide field Ektar - gives you a bit of movement where the Angulon gives you almost none. And Ektars always had a good rep for quality control. An L in a circle stands for lumenized - Kodak's name for coating. Good luck. Cheers, DJ