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Thread: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

  1. #1

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    Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    Hi all,

    A few months ago I have purchased a Nikker M 300 f/9 and I have taken about 10 pictures with it, but except one they are all unsharp.
    The sharp one was taken of tree root about a distance of 10 meter, all the other are landscape pictures and the fares subject is always way out.
    I always use my loupe for focusing and never have the same problem with my 150 mm.

    Can this be repaired, does anyone have an idea, there is a little bend where you can put some filter in.
    Also on advice of someone of this group a have changed something to to chrome ring:
    https://www.largeformatphotography.i...65#post1509165

    For me it was quite an expensive purchase 600

    Thanks
    Patrick

  2. #2

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    Re: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    If the image appears sharp on your ground glass, the lens should be fine, right? Maybe it's caused by wind. You have a much longer bellows that catches more wind then when shooting a 150mm. Or perhaps you need a more rigid tripod (or tripod head) for shooting this longer lens, or a 4th leg.

    Try a shot indoors (no wind), if possible with flash (flash will eliminate any camera/tripod/head movement errors). Good luck.

  3. #3

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    Re: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    What apertures did you shoot at? Where did you focus? Near, far, in between, ... ?

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    1,527

    Re: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    Check the distance between film holder -vs- ground glass on the camera. Possible the two are not identical. Is the image on the ground glass sharply defined-focused using a loupe with the lens aperture no smaller than f22?


    Bernice


    Quote Originally Posted by PatrickMarq View Post
    Hi all,

    A few months ago I have purchased a Nikker M 300 f/9 and I have taken about 10 pictures with it, but except one they are all unsharp.
    The sharp one was taken of tree root about a distance of 10 meter, all the other are landscape pictures and the fares subject is always way out.
    I always use my loupe for focusing and never have the same problem with my 150 mm.

    Can this be repaired, does anyone have an idea, there is a little bend where you can put some filter in.
    Also on advice of someone of this group a have changed something to to chrome ring:
    https://www.largeformatphotography.i...65#post1509165

    For me it was quite an expensive purchase 600€

    Thanks
    Patrick

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    784

    Re: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    Were there any camera movements involved? Were you using the center of the image circle or something closer to the outside? What camera was used? Tripod? Tripod head and mount? Was it windy? If the image is sharp on the groundglass and you're using a film holder revealing no issues with other lenses, then your 300M negatives should be sharp. I've used a Nikkor 300M for several years at all focus distances and it's tack sharp.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Seattle area, WA
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    910

    Re: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    What format are you trying to cover with the lens? Is it possible you are shooting on too large a format and/or shifting the lens too much and running out of coverage.

  7. #7

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    May 2019
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    Re: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    All,
    I shoot all images with this lens on f45, I start focussing at the near then go to the far and check between.
    Of course some lens movements if needed.
    The tripod is sturdy and also the ball head, never with wind. All with a Chamonix 45F-2
    I have included a link and also enabled the metadata.

    https://adobe.ly/34gtwGN

  8. #8

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    Dec 2001
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    Re: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    If you want the far to be in focus, focus on the far.

    I think you are confusing motion blur due to wind with unsharpness. Look at the near plants in your second shot.

    Evaluating image quality by looking at scans is a bad idea. Examine the negatives/transparencies with a loupe. Digitizing can only reduce image quality.

    In theory shooting at f/45 limits resolution to 33 lp/mm at the center of the frame, less off axis. In practice the limit is lower. More than good enough for contact printing, but not quite good enough for a 4x enlargement.

  9. #9

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    Oregon and Austria
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    Re: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    Quote Originally Posted by PatrickMarq View Post
    Hi all,

    A few months ago I have purchased a Nikker M 300 f/9 and I have taken about 10 pictures with it, but except one they are all unsharp.
    ...
    Can this be repaired, does anyone have an idea, there is a little bend where you can put some filter in.
    ...
    Thanks
    Patrick
    Patrick,

    Do you mean that the threaded ring that the filters screw into is bent? If so, this may be an indication that the lens has been dropped. If that is the case, it may well be unsharp due to damage. If you have some really sharp images made with this lens, it probably is alright, but check anyway.

    I would first try to unscrew the front element to see if it unscrews easily and is not cross-threaded from possible impact. (Be careful not to lose shims if they are present!). When you have the front element out, shake it gently to see if you hear any rattling. If so, something has likely been knocked loose. Reassemble if all is well and do the same with the rear element.

    If both elements seem alright, I would check sharpness using a flat, detailed subject, like a brick wall or the like. Focus carefully and make sure the camera back is parallel to the wall both vertically and horizontally. If the image is sharp using your loupe on the ground glass, it should be alright on the film. Nevertheless, I'd shoot a couple test negatives. Shoot one at your sharpest aperture (f/22) and also wide open.

    Here are some other considerations: When I first mounted my 300 M, I didn't notice that the lens board I was using was a bit too thick and prevented the rear element from screwing in completely. My first images with the lens were unsharp; I was very disappointed till I discovered the problem. A new lens board fixed things superbly.

    Depth-of-field with this lens on 4x5 is relatively shallow. Using movements can easily throw part of the image out of focus. This seems to be the case in a couple of the images you posted (distant treetops out of focus, etc.). Maybe you aren't checking all parts of the image carefully when composing and focusing? It's pretty easy to make this mistake.

    Hope this helps,

    Doremus

  10. #10

    Join Date
    May 2019
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    Re: Nikkor M300 f9.0 not sharp

    Hi Doremus,

    Thank you for the answer, I’m using the lensboards from Chamonix, and going to check the lens.

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