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Thread: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

  1. #11

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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    Hi Drew,
    Thanks for the reply. Yes I think its easy to get over exited and want to strap the longest possible lens onto the camera not thinking about the practicalities of using on location!! I certainly don't know much about camera movements yet, especially for maximising bellows extension - still learning. So will look into it thank you!

    I think I am looking to purchase the Fujinon 400mm T. Has anyone had experience with using this on a Wista eque wooden cameras? Do you think the front standard will be able to hold it well enough?

  2. #12

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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    Drew has a very good point there, I just weighed my Komura 400T which is fitted with a Copal 3 shutter. On my electronic kitchen scales it comes in at 914 grams with a 4x5" board fitted.

    My Fujinon chart mentions the Fujinon 400T weighing in at 600 grams. Even allowing for the small weight of the mounting board, the Komura is substantially heavier.

    I've used my Komura 400T quite a lot with my Shen Hao HXZ45-IIA. The HZX45-IIA is a reasonably strong camera, but whenever I had the Komura 400T on, I certainly knew it was on the front. Great care was needed to ensure things didn't move, or sag. I wouldn't think a top hat extension of any great length would be the best idea, but it is certainly doable.

    If you do find a Komura 400T then be sure to find one with the spacer behind the shutter, like mine has. If you look at the lens, follow back to the shutter, then follow further towards the camera, there you can see a shiny section. That is a spacer which is apparently not a standard feature of this lens, as I was informed by someone many years ago. I am unsure of the reason, perhaps others better informed than me can butt in here.

    For your information, that is a Toyo 45G monorail camera with my Komura 400T fitted. That is a substantial camera, it too feels the weight of that Komura lens.

    Mick.





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  3. #13
    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    Quick and cheap way to get a "longer lens" would be to buy a 6x7 120 back for your 4x5 and use that 210mm (i.e. smaller FoV). Just a thought.

    I don't think many of the telephoto lenses out there are particularly cheap. But the Nikkor-T set has really gone down in price in the last couple of years so you may be able to find a 360/500 set for $500-700, if you are dead-set on really long lenses. They are very good, but big and heavy, as someone has already said.
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  4. #14
    Les
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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    It might be worth to look (various websites) as there are plenty of articulated arms that attach to a tripod and simultaneously supports the lens or whatever the lens is attached to. One can even cobble something DYI. Naturally, more care is given especially in the wind, since everything is magnified.

    Les

  5. #15

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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    Take your camera and extend it as long as it will go without employing any extra tricks like front tilts. If the bellows seems stressed or the front becomes very wobbly, back up a bit. Now take a ruler and measure the distance from the ground glass position to the lens board and use this "comfortable max extension" for your considerations, not a theoretical maximum you read from a spec sheet.

    A rule of thumb: add the focal length to the flange back distance to get the bellows extension at 1:1 maginification. Telephoto lenses help with the starting point (flange back distance) but not with the amount of extension needed to reach a given magnification.
    Some "back of the envelope" calculations below.

    210 mm normal lens with 210 mm flange back distance, 300mm max extension = closest focus at 0.7 m

    300 mm normal lens with 290 mm flange back distance (e.g. Nikkor M), 300mm extension = closest focus at 9.3 m

    300 mm telephoto with 195 mm flange back distance (Fujinon T), 300mm extension = closest focus at 1.16 m

    400 mm telephoto with 252 mm flange back distance (Fujinon T), 300mm extension = closest focus at 3.73 m

    500 mm telephoto with 287 mm flange back distance (Yamasaki Tele-Congo), 300mm extension = closest focus at 19.7 m

    Based on the first formula here: http://www.kennethleegallery.com/html/tech/bellows.php
    For telephoto lenses you can get effective max extension like this: focal length + max extension - flange back distance.

    You can also get the close focus distances with a calculator like this: https://monochrome.sutic.nu/2018/05/...alculator.html – ignore the sensor format. Enter your focal length, set the "extension tube length" to whatever amount of extension you have left after focussing the lens to infinity (i.e. max extension - flange back distance) and the Far focus is what you want. Ignore the rest.

    Personally, I find a long lens to be very useful for detail shots in the medium to close distances. 2m closest focus feels okay for a 300mm (4x5), anything beyond 3m would be quite limiting. Your needs may be very different of course.

    Also, don't discard the idea of cropping or using a roll film back too lightly. Most, if not all telephoto lenses fall a bit behind normal designs in terms of quality. And a fairly large lens with a more or less fully extended bellows can create other problems (wind shake, shutter vibration). So the difference between a crop and a longer lens can be less than you think.

  6. #16
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    Quote Originally Posted by jnanian View Post
    hi lorien
    you might look for the 15" tele-raptar ( also called tele-optar )
    it is sometimes sold in a shutter ( i have seen them in betax, alphax and rapax shutters )
    it has a very small bellows draw. it also has a smaller cousin the 10" tele-raptor( tele-optar )
    same sort of thing, tiny bellows draw and sometimes in a shutter.
    they do not sell for bags of gold and are usually "sleepers" and overlooked by people
    who only want brand new modern lenses... ( because they don't know anybetter )...

    have fun !
    john


    I have this lens as a Wollensak Tele Optar in an Alphax shutter (#4?). I have taken a few shots with it at infinity, but I've always been a bit confused about figuring correction for bellows extension.

    So it infinity focuses at about 8". How is the correction figured from this 8" baseline?

    the method I have used with my regular lenses (150mm and 210mm) is to add a third or a quarter stop respectively, for each additional inch of extension beyond the infinity focus bellows extension.

    The 150mm is a six inch lens, therefore 3inches beyond infinity requires a full stop of additional exposure, or 1/3 stop per inch.

    How do I figure this for the 15" telephoto?
    Last edited by Drew Bedo; 18-Dec-2018 at 18:59.
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  7. #17
    Arca-Swiss
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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    Quote Originally Posted by lorien14 View Post
    Wow! Thank you all so much for such detailed and fast responses. It certainly has given me a lot to think about.

    Mick Fagan, I have been looking at the Komura. Obviously I would love to get a Nikkor or Fujinon. But do you think it worth saving a few hundred quid for? Or to invest a bit more for a keeper? I will only be shooting black and white due to college darkroom facilities. I do hear what you are saying about cropping. certainly not something I object to too much if necessary! Nice photos as well!

    One more question to all if possible. How exactly are peoples experience using these top hat/extending lens boards? Are they cumbersome and not worth the hassle? Are they worth nearly a hundred quid also?!


    The Nikon T 360mm requires only about 10.5 inches for infinity and so you can move it and get a bit closer. It is almost totally flare free, even with specular highlights or street lights etc, in the frame. It has better contrast and color contrast than most other telephoto lenses, as well.

    I had the set for many years and it worked well. The only problem was the 720mm was difficult as the depth of field was so truncated. I used the lens in 360mm on a Cherry wood DX and the longer on a metal 45SP.


    I cant thank you all enough for all your help! will be sure to use these forums in the future!
    Last edited by Rod Klukas; 20-Dec-2018 at 15:01. Reason: added info
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  8. #18
    multi format
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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Bedo View Post
    I have this lens as a Wollensak Tele Optar in an Alphax shutter (#4?). I have taken a few shots with it at infinity, but I've always been a bit confused about figuring correction for bellows extension.

    So it infinity focuses at about 8". How is the correction figured from this 8" baseline?

    the method I have used with my regular lenses (150mm and 210mm) is to add a third or a quarter stop respectively, for each additional inch of extension beyond the infinity focus bellows extension.

    The 150mm is a six inch lens, therefore 3inches beyond infinity requires a full stop of additional exposure, or 1/3 stop per inch.

    How do I figure this for the 15" telephoto?

    hi drew

    hate to sound like a hayseed but i have no clue and just kind of wing it. i don't typically do the type of image making
    that requires bellows extension calculations... one thing i might do is put a "roll back" on your camera or use a paper negative
    and use something inexpensive compared to sheet film to bracket and figure out what you might use for your calculations a few cents
    ( paper ) is much cheaper than a few bucks ( film ) and if you do your experiments close to your darkroom you can figure this out in no time.
    sorry for not being much help... love the lenses though they render nice photographs....
    enjoy your coffee

  9. #19
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    Thanks. I will try his question in a dedicated thread here or in the Stle and Technique forums.
    Drew Bedo
    www.quietlightphoto.com
    http://www.artsyhome.com/author/drew-bedo




    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

  10. #20

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    Re: New to Large format - need help about telephoto lenses!

    I regularly use a Nikkor M 300mm on my Wista DXs with an extended lensboard. You can find "top-hat" boards on eBay and through other sources; I built mine. Mine allows me to focus as close as 9-10 feet. Using front tilts/swings is a bit more complicated with the top-hat board and the danger of vignetting in increased. Still, I find the set-up more than adequate for most applications. If I wanted to use a longer lens than this on the Wista, the Fuji 400T would be my choice.

    Best,

    Doremus

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