Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 19

Thread: f/4.5 Tessars

  1. #1

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    211

    Question f/4.5 Tessars

    Lots of manufacturers made lenses in the f/4.5 Tessar (4 elements in 3 groups) fundamental design in all sorts of lengths but are there performance differences between these (for similar focal lengths, of course)?

    For example, are any particular ones that are better because of coatings or because of the use of better quality glass, etc.?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    IanG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Aegean (Turkey & UK)
    Posts
    4,122

    Re: f/4.5 Tessars

    My best all round Tessar is a T coated CZJ f4.5 150mm made 1953/4 and bough off this forum and have used extensively, the coating's excellent but has a distinctly blue bias. It's probable the later Voightlander Color Skopars are better in terms of coatings and colour rendering and they should be just as sharp. I also have a 135mm f4.5 Tessar on a Patent Etui.

    It terms of other competitors Xenar lenses are equal in terms of quality I had an f4.5 150mm Xenar for a number of years and now have f4.7 135mm and f5.5 150mm Xenars. Many of the Kodak Ektars (and similar uncoated Anastigmats) are Tessar designs and have an excellent reputation, I have 2 101mm Ektars but haven't used them much.

    If you move away from the f4.5 the best Tessars wwere the f6.3 which has better sharpness throughout the aperture range, corners tend to be sharper, it was sold for more critical work. I have 3 (one's in the post from the US) all made around 1913-18, one's a CZJ f6.3 165mm in a Compur, anoyher an f6.3 1700 Kodak anastigmat in a Velosto (renamed Baausch & Lomb Tessar, the Velosto is the export name for the Wollensak Optimo shutter), the third is a Bausch & Lomb Tessar in an Optimo approx 4" FL (yet to be seen)

    I have other Tessars yet to be used, an CZJ f4.5 1800 in a weird Wollensak shutter (size #4) limited apertures and Instant only, an almost mint CZJ f5.3 (rare) 165mm and a set of Tessar type Congo f6.3 210 lens cells. That's the LF Tessars, I have a few on MF and 35mm cameras all quite capable.

    Summing up the best Tessars are obviously the post WWII coated ones (although there's a few CZJ 150mm T coated from 1938 onwards), some of the 1930's Tessars used new optical glass that doesn't seem to age as well, Novars & Summars used it as well, some lenses can be clean & scratch free but soft and prone to flare. I've made some suberb images with old Tessars so they are worth thinking about at f22 they areas sharp as modern Plasmats and have more character at wider aperures than most modern lenses.

    Have a look at some of the superb images Ken Lee has posted here on this forum made with Tessars

    Ian

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    7,615

    Re: f/4.5 Tessars

    There were many redesigns. Visit www.dioptrique.info . It is not the case that all f/4.5 tessar types are equal.

    Ian, take a close look at y'r 170/6.3 Kodak Anastigmat. All of the ones I've seen, including the one I have in a drawer, are dialytes.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Posts
    8,982

    Re: f/4.5 Tessars

    The lilttle Kodak 127mm Ektar is, optically, among the very best 4.5 Tessars I've used----but suffers from small coverage on 4x5 film.
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.
    I'm not OCD. I'm CDO which is alphabetically correct.

  5. #5
    IanG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Aegean (Turkey & UK)
    Posts
    4,122

    Re: f/4.5 Tessars

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Fromm View Post
    There were many redesigns. Visit www.dioptrique.info . It is not the case that all f/4.5 tessar types are equal.

    Ian, take a close look at y'r 170/6.3 Kodak Anastigmat. All of the ones I've seen, including the one I have in a drawer, are dialytes.
    Good point Dan, the problem is Kodak used a 170mm f6.3 Tessar as well as a Dialyte both sold as Anastigmat, part of the confusion is markings differ depending on where sold, and WWI seems to break the formal link in terms of Patent Royalties with Zeiss. Some of these US made 170mm f6.3 lenses are marke Zeiss Kodak Anastigmat - and of Tessar design, and then there were the Bausch and Lomb 170mm f6.3 Tessars .

    On double checking mine is in fact a Dialyte, the shutter's a Velosto No 1a WOCo, Rochester, USA- identical to an Optimo No 1a (internally as well) but these are marked as made by Wollensak Optical Co.

    Ian

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    1,587

    Re: f/4.5 Tessars

    Kodak made some f4.5 tessars as Ektar, they are excellent in the coated versions.

    The common Schneider f4.5 Xenar is very good. These usually do not sell for much on the market specially if they are in barrel. IMO, these are an excellent value for their cost.

    Ilex Paragon f4.5..

    Boyer Saphir would be another f4.5 tessar and there are many others.

    The most common dis-like about tessars is image circle, this is a perceived limitation and not always significant as tessars are typically normal to longer than normal focal length lenses which many times have enough image circle for the majority of camera movements required.


    Bernice

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Southland, New Zealand
    Posts
    2,081

    Re: f/4.5 Tessars

    I have an f4.5 210mm Fujinar that has something special.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    7,615

    Re: f/4.5 Tessars

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post

    Boyer Saphir would be another f4.5 tessar and there are many others.

    Bernice
    Saphir is a Boyer trade name. Lenses Boyer sold as jes' plain Saphirs include tessar types (f/6.3, f/4.5, f/3.5, and more), 6/4 double Gauss types and a complex one (the Saphir f/1) that's hard to characterize. Apo-Saphirs (a somewhat different trade name, not exactly Saphir) are heliar types, except for the earliest ones, which are dagor types. Saphir B and BX (more slightly different trade names, not exactly identical to jes' plain Saphir) enlarging lenses are all 6/4 plasmat types, as are Color Saphir taking lenses.

    To see Boyer lenses' cross-sections, visit http://www.dioptrique.info/base/m/m_boyer.HTM . To learn more about the company and its products, visit http://www.galerie-photo.com/boyer-lens-optic.html

  9. #9
    jp's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    5,251

    Re: f/4.5 Tessars

    I've got one of those 4.5 210mm fujinars as well. It's real nice.

    Other things being equal, aperture blade roundness is important to me as well. A copal3 will be smoother than a copal-1. A pre-war or oldish compound might be smoother yet. Some of the barrel ones are great too.

  10. #10
    (Shrek)
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Montreal
    Posts
    1,662

    Re: f/4.5 Tessars

    I am rather partial to the 135 Xenar, but my favorite was a MF lens, a SOM Berthiot Flor 105/4.5 on my Pontiac Bloc-Metal. However, like many SOM lenses, it suffered from a little bleeding in the cement in the rear group. So a couple of weeks ago, I decided to take it apart and re-cement it. I was quite surprised to discover that the lens is in fact 5 elements in 3 groups; the rear is 3 cemented lenses similar to a Dagor construction (inner curve not as pronounced). I do think the lenses we assume are 4/3 Tessars might be more varied than they appear.

Similar Threads

  1. Tessars and image circle
    By BetterSense in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 13-Apr-2011, 20:44
  2. 135mm f2.8 tessars?
    By monkeymon in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 15-May-2009, 01:27
  3. 90mm Tessars for 4x5?
    By John Brownlow in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 1-Apr-2006, 14:30

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •