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Thread: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

  1. #31
    Dave Karp
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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    He said this: "I plan to shoot predominantly architecture and portraiture" which should give us an idea of what he wants to do with the lenses. He also said "Could anyone please give any recommendation as to which one may be a better choice? (and which focal length is closer to 35mm on a 35mm camera). I appreciate both are heavy lenses but I would like the flexibility of a large image circle."

    A 120mm would be great for shooting architecture. My understanding is that many architectural photographers preferred to use a 115mm to 120mm if they could get all of the subject into the frame. If not, then hopefully the 90mm would work, and if not that, then go to the 75mm or 65mm. It might be helpful if Kirk Gittings pitched in here. If I remember from prior posts, I think he often used his 120mm Nikkor for architecture and still uses it for landscapes with his 4x5 Phillips, which is similar to the OP's Chamonix.

    In my experience, a 125mm Fujinon NW (one of my very favorite lenses) does not have enough image circle to use effectively for architecture. A 120mm Super Symmar, a 125mm Fujinon W (older, single coated), or 120mm Angulon would have the same problem.

    ADDITION: I purchased a 120mm f/8 Fujinon SW, which is single coated, because I wanted a lens in the 120-125mm range with more image circle. It was probably less than half the cost of the 120mm Nikkor, which would have been my #1 choice due to reputation and the fact that it uses 77mm filters instead of the larger 82mm filters used by the 115mm Grandagon-N. I shoot black and white only and have no problem shooting single coated lenses.

  2. #32

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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    Quote Originally Posted by David Karp View Post
    He said this: "I plan to shoot predominantly architecture and portraiture" which should give us an idea of what he wants to do with the lenses. He also said "Could anyone please give any recommendation as to which one may be a better choice? (and which focal length is closer to 35mm on a 35mm camera).
    OK, to complicate things even more -- just trying to interpret -- I think a 125mm or 135mm is closer to a 35mm on a 35mm camera. There are a ton of options there. I love my Minolta Rokkor-X 35mm f1.8 as well as my Fujinon NW 125mm f5.6 which I consider to be very similar in perspective.

    I can't recall every using my 35mm Rokkor or 125mm Fujinon for portraiture, but I have used both for architecture, for sure.

    But I'll wait until CWHILL clarifies.

  3. #33

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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    Jock Sturges used a 250mm f/6.7 lens on 8x10 for photographs of people. A 120mm lens on 4x5 can be great for environmental portraits.

  4. #34

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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    And I once took a few portraits (apparently we have a different definition) of my girlfriend with a 17mm lens. She dropped me.

    I learned a lot from the experience -- about photography and women.

  5. #35

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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    Quote Originally Posted by David Karp View Post
    He said this: "I plan to shoot predominantly architecture and portraiture" which should give us an idea of what he wants to do with the lenses. He also said "Could anyone please give any recommendation as to which one may be a better choice? (and which focal length is closer to 35mm on a 35mm camera). I appreciate both are heavy lenses but I would like the flexibility of a large image circle."

    A 120mm would be great for shooting architecture. My understanding is that many architectural photographers preferred to use a 115mm to 120mm if they could get all of the subject into the frame. If not, then hopefully the 90mm would work, and if not that, then go to the 75mm or 65mm. It might be helpful if Kirk Gittings pitched in here. If I remember from prior posts, I think he often used his 120mm Nikkor for architecture and still uses it for landscapes with his 4x5 Phillips, which is similar to the OP's Chamonix.

    In my experience, a 125mm Fujinon NW (one of my very favorite lenses) does not have enough image circle to use effectively for architecture. A 120mm Super Symmar, a 125mm Fujinon W (older, single coated), or 120mm Angulon would have the same problem.

    ADDITION: I purchased a 120mm f/8 Fujinon SW, which is single coated, because I wanted a lens in the 120-125mm range with more image circle. It was probably less than half the cost of the 120mm Nikkor, which would have been my #1 choice due to reputation and the fact that it uses 77mm filters instead of the larger 82mm filters used by the 115mm Grandagon-N. I shoot black and white only and have no problem shooting single coated lenses.
    Unless he will be doing environmental portraiture both lenses would be far too short for classic head and shoulder and portraits. Th3 foreshortening would be far too great, unless he wants that effect!

  6. #36
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    Not only is the WA effect, bad for the self-conscious, the mirror effect is also a problem. People don't really know what they look like or sound like.

    I found a solution for one poor soul. I set up a vertical 40" monitor (life-size) beside a DSLR/135 mm DC and gave my friend the remote. Click and shoot until you see what you like.

    Nothing but, 'Delete all that, right now!'

    We remain friends.



    Quote Originally Posted by xkaes View Post
    And I once took a few portraits (apparently we have a different definition) of my girlfriend with a 17mm lens. She dropped me.

    I learned a lot from the experience -- about photography and women.

  7. #37

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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    Quote Originally Posted by xkaes View Post
    And I once took a few portraits (apparently we have a different definition) of my girlfriend with a 17mm lens. She dropped me.

    I learned a lot from the experience -- about photography and women.

  8. #38

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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Have used both on 5x7 for decades. The image circle is large enough to allow significant camera movements on 5x7. Both are not small, not light weight. On 4x5 the larger than needed image circle could be excessive for what is needed.

    What about a modern 135mm f5.6 Plasmat (Rodenstock, Fujinon, Schneider, Nikor) in place of the 115mm or 120mm?

    Better light weight combo could be a 135mm f5.6 and a 90mm f8.


    Might also consider a 120mm Angulon, 4 3/8" Wide Angle Dagor or similar, it is much smaller is does fine at f16 and smaller apertures.


    Bernice
    When you use Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 on 5x7,could you tell me about fall off with velvia 50,100 color transpаrеnt film?Or you use center filter?

  9. #39
    Indiana, USA chassis's Avatar
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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    Hi Vincent, I use the Nikkor 120/8 with color negative and black and white film, and do not use a center filter. The landscape is stopped down, the portrait is probably f/11. vis:




  10. #40

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    Re: Nikkor SW 120mm f/8 vs Rodenstock Grandagon N 115mm f/6.8 for Chanomix 45N-2

    Schneider and Rodenstock recommend center filters only for lenses that cover more than 90 degrees. This recommendation is somewhat conservative.

    90 degrees off-axis is down two stops from the center. Fine, wonderful.

    Thing is, with a 120 mm lens shot centered on 5x7, for example, the image circle is 210 mm, i.e., the frame's corners are 82 degrees off-axis and cos^4 puts them 1.6 stops down from the center. This is well within negative film's latitude. Slight cropping will improve things.

    Small wonder that we disagree about when a CF is really needed.

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