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Thread: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

  1. #1

    Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    There was a thread about this lens some months back seeking information from the owner. The lens recently showed up on eBay and I purchased it. It's a very large and heavy lens but was able to mounted it to my studio camera so I could use it for wet plate collodion photography. What's interesting about this lens is it's an f2 lens and not f2.5 and 23.5cm not 21cm. I've only seen the Heliostigmat listed in Voigtlander catalogs as being at f2.5 and in focal lengths of 21cm and 33.5cm for 1/4 plate and half plate respectively but I've also seen focal lengths listed at 280mm to 335mm and also 315mm in the vade. I've yet to find any reference to an f2 version. This fast speed puts it in the class of lenses as the Cooke Opic f2, the Reitzchel Prolinear f1.9, the Ruo f2 and the Ernostar f1.8. Upon receiving the lens I disassembled it to find it was not triplet with four lenses in three groups but a triplet with five glasses in three groups with a cemented pair in the front, a single glass in the center and an air spaced pair in the rear. This is similar to the Cooke Speedic. I'm curious to learn more about this lens. If any forum members have any primary source material, lens catalogs etc., about this f2 lens, please share on this thread. Attached is my first test with this lens. It's a 4x5 tintype shot wide open at f2 using strobe. This lens certainly covers 4x5 and more as the lens is mounted on an 8x10 camera with a 5x7 reduction back. It clearly covered 5x7. The tintype was made using a modified 5x7 film holder to take 4x5 tintype plates. What's surprising about this lens is how sharp it is even thought the depth of field is extremely shallow. I've read both that the f2.5 version is sharp and also that it is soft. This f2 version certainly is the former. A very interesting lens. The fall of is quite pleasing and contrasts very well with the sharpness of the field in focus.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2

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    Re: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    Nothing in Prochnow 3 about it - only the F2.5 kino versions at 3.5 - 10cm and the 2 "Press camera sizes" 21 and 33.5cm.

    These were in Voigtländer's catalogues from 1926 to 1938.

    Is there a serial number? Voigtländer had a history of short-run/prototype lenses (Super-Farron, R-Nokton, Super-Nokton - Procknow 3 page 643).

  3. #3

    Re: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    Hi Steven, Thanks for the info. Serial # is 235419. All best and Happy Holidays, Geoff

  4. #4
    Green Hand pierre506's Avatar
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    Re: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    Does it have the aperture?
    Sometimes love just ain't enough.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/pierre506/sets/

  5. #5

    Re: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    Yes, it has an aperture that goes from f2 to f12.5.

  6. #6
    Green Hand pierre506's Avatar
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    Re: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    Sounds good~
    We don't need it wide-open all the time.
    I just got a 340mm f2.4 lens without the aperture from a film machine. It's huge.
    Sometimes love just ain't enough.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/pierre506/sets/

  7. #7

    Re: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    Quote Originally Posted by pierre506 View Post
    Sounds good~
    We don't need it wide-open all the time.
    I just got a 340mm f2.4 lens without the aperture from a film machine. It's huge.
    Post a picture of it and an example taken with it. What does it cover?

  8. #8
    Green Hand pierre506's Avatar
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    Re: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    It should cover 8x10 according the Aero Ektar 305mm f2.5 covers 9x9.
    I will make a lens board for it.
    The lens images will come.
    Sometimes love just ain't enough.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/pierre506/sets/

  9. #9

    Re: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    Quote Originally Posted by pierre506 View Post
    It should cover 8x10 according the Aero Ektar 305mm f2.5 covers 9x9.
    I will make a lens board for it.
    The lens images will come.
    I'm certainly curious to see. I will also check coverage on my Heliostigmat and report back.

  10. #10
    Green Hand pierre506's Avatar
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    Re: Voigtlander Portrait Heliostigmat 23.5cm f2

    Click image for larger version. 

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    It seems such kind of structure.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Size

    Click image for larger version. 

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    5 glasses, 4 groups
    Sometimes love just ain't enough.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/pierre506/sets/

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