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Thread: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

  1. #1

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    Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    and have looked for images taken with this lens, but cannot find so far. Can anyone post any? also, was this lens ever made in a coated version? I understand most are pre-war and uncoated? What's the going rate for one of these in Ex+ condition?

  2. #2

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    Re: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    Is it in a working shutter? What make shutter? Who built it? What format are you planning on covering?

    If you really like the images, that should be plenty reason to make an offer. In general though, f/4.5 Tessars don't go for a lot of moolah---which might be a good thing for "bottom feeder" photographers such as I

    My favorite f/4.5 Tessar is the Wollensak Velostigmat. Real sleepers IMHO.
    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.

  3. #3

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    Re: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    Quote Originally Posted by BigSteveG View Post
    and have looked for images taken with this lens, but cannot find so far. Can anyone post any? also, was this lens ever made in a coated version? I understand most are pre-war and uncoated? What's the going rate for one of these in Ex+ condition?
    If you don't need a lens that covers more than perhaps 160 mm, say "thank you very much" and accept the kind offer. These lenses produce images that are sharp centrally, not so sharp in the corners wider than f/16. They were produced in the DDR and BRD post-WWII and post-WWII lenses from Zeiss East and Zeiss West were coated.

    Prices? Depends on vintage, condition, whether in shutter. Look at closed eBay auctions, i.e., do your own legwork.

  4. #4

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    Re: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    the lens is a Zeiss.....but that's all I know. Oh well, if it's real cheao <$50 I may buy it.

  5. #5

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    Re: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    I have two 4.5s. A 4x5 and 5x7. The 5x7 was 58.75 after shipping, and the 4x5 came with a Goerz 12'' and it was probably about 40 after shipping.

  6. #6
    All metric sizes to 24x30 Ole Tjugen's Avatar
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    Re: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    The post-WWII East German (aus Jena) versions of the Tessar are superb lenses, and possibly the best bargain there is at "normal selling prices" - less than the cost of a shutter.

  7. #7
    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    I've been using and testing one of these f4.5 135mm Tessar lenses on a Crown Graphic. Mine was made in 1932, the glass is in excellent condition, and the Compur shutter reliable and accurate.

    The lens is very sharp when stopped right down, but slightly softer at the corners f4.5-f11, but when prints are compared to images made with modern Schneider & Rodenstok lenses the older Tessar lacks micro-contrast in the more detailed areas of the prints. Coating would make a huge difference.

    For $50 or less it's worth buying, the Compur shutters are far more reliable than the modern Copals.

    Ian

  8. #8

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    Re: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    I paid about $40 for one and used it infrequently, then began to shoot with it a lot last summer after I tested all the lenses I owned... it holds its own within my lens kit. That test is below (including a blowup section), plus another while comparing out of focus areas in different lenses (notice the flare from my uncoated Tessar).

    I teach photography and honestly I don't know what micro-contrast is or how to tell if my lens has good or bad MC. I look at (regular) contrast, sharpness across the film plane, tonal rendition and its bokeh. I don't expect a 50+ year old lens worth <$100 to compare with modern optics, but there are some real beauties out there in this category worth investigating, IMHO.

  9. #9
    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    Darryl, we don't normally go looking at the micro-contrast of an image, but it's the kind of thing people show in lens test reports usually with very enlarged small sections of an image.

    You only start noticing the more rounded tonality of old lenses when you make a direct comparison. I tried asking my wife which images were sharper last night and she could tell the difference immediately.

    That doesn't mean the Tessar is useless in my case, rather that I need to be very careful using images made with it alongside those from my modern lenses.

    Ian

  10. #10
    multi format
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    Re: Being offered a 135mm Tessar 4.5....

    i've a sunken mount 150 f4.5.
    it is a nice lens.

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