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Thread: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

  1. #1

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    Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    On the left is a f/4.5 180mm Tessar in shutter. On the right is a f/4.5 250mm Tessar in barrel.
    Both are identified as "Carl Zeiss Jena"


    On the left is a f/4.5 210mm Heliar in shutter. On the right is a f/4.5 300mm Heliar in barrel:
    Both are identified as "Voigtlander Braunschweig Heliar"


    I could understand if the 250mm Tessar were ~39 % longer than the 180mm Tessar, but it's more than twice the length. Similarly, I could understand if the 300mm Heliar were ~43 % longer than the 210mm... but it's roughly 3 times the length.

    Why do we see such a disproportionate difference in size between the shutter barrel mounted versions of the "same" lenses ? Is there a difference in lens design ?

    Last edited by Ken Lee; 15-Apr-2018 at 09:01.

  2. #2
    the Docter is in Arne Croell's Avatar
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    Re: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    Well, for one your examples are not the same focal lengths. In each case your shuttered lens has a shorter focal length. The linear dimensions of a lens scale in direct proportion to the focal lengths, as you wrote, so the volume (and weight) scale to the 3rd power of it. This accounts already for a factor of 1.6 in volume for the top example, and a factor of 2.9 in weight and volume for the bottom one. In my experience, the difference is not huge for the exact same lens - some difference maybe due to the fact that the barrel versions use more blades in the aperture than the shutter often does, needing more room. Now, a weight difference is usually due to the fact that barrel mounts are often made from brass and shutters and the cells for shutters from aluminum. I'll provide some pictures with lenses of the same focal lengths later today.

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    Re: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    Thanks - That makes perfect sense.

    I should have given a better title for the thread: Why big difference in length ?

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    Re: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    Something Arne hasn't said is the use of those lenses.

    The Tessar design in particular was used for different types of lenses of the same focal length. So a process lens may be larger than a normal camera lens. In addition the Tessar's were redesigned and the later shutter mounted lenses were longer, so my 1950's 150mm Tessar is longer and bigger than a 1919/20 165mm Tessar.

    Ian

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    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Re: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    What is the front/rear element spacing on the barrel vs shutter lenses.

    I don't know of any correlation between physical length of veiw camera lenses and their focal length.

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    Re: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    The Tessar design in particular was used for different types of lenses of the same focal length. So a process lens may be larger than a normal camera lens. In addition the Tessar's were redesigned and the later shutter mounted lenses were longer, so my 1950's 150mm Tessar is longer and bigger than a 1919/20 165mm Tessar.

    Thanks - That is quite helpful: perhaps Tessar is less a specific design, than a trade name.

    Others have explained elsewhere that the Heliar design was replaced with a Dynar design - but Voigtlander continued to brand them as Heliar. I guess the same is true of Tessars.

    I'm looking to settle on a portrait lens in the 210mm length, and now I realize I will probably have to try out a number of them, before I find the one I like.

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    Re: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    What about coverage?
    Do the huge lenses cover proportionately more than the focal length ratio?
    And/or was the intent for critical work, that is, was the advertised angle of view restricted to a narrow zone that is the limit of low distortion or other special characteristic, as for repro work ? [and lots less than what works well for pictorial]

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    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    Tessar is a Zeiss trade name for the basic design, it was used by both East & West German arms of Zeiss after WWII, so passed to Doctor Optic who took over part of Carl Zeiss Jena.

    While the original Tessar was a patented design Zeiss took out further patents over the years to cover Tessar variations, including the faster f2.8 Biotessar which is a different design to the Biotar.

    Ian

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    Re: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    Quote Originally Posted by ic-racer View Post
    What is the front/rear element spacing on the barrel vs shutter lenses.

    I don't know of any correlation between physical length of veiw camera lenses and their focal length.
    Spacing is the same regardless. Otherwise the lens would perform worse in one mount or the other.

    As Arne said, within a prescription, all dimensions of a lens scale linearly with focal length. Double the focal length, double the distance from the front element's outer vertex to the rear element's outer vertex. Note that this has nothing to do with packaging. Also note that not all lenses in the same design type, e.g., Tessar, have been made to the same prescription. To get a sense of the possible variations, visit www.dioptrique.info and look at the tessars ...

    Cheers,

    Dan

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    Re: Barrel vs. Shutter: Why big difference in size ?

    Quote Originally Posted by EdWorkman View Post
    What about coverage?
    Do the huge lenses cover proportionately more than the focal length ratio?
    And/or was the intent for critical work, that is, was the advertised angle of view restricted to a narrow zone that is the limit of low distortion or other special characteristic, as for repro work ? [and lots less than what works well for pictorial]
    Ed as Arne wrote, within a prescription coverage scales linearly with focal length. Double the focal length, double the diameter of the circle covered.

    It isn't aways clear what criteria manufacturers use to define coverage. As best as I can tell, Schneider and Rodenstock use the radius (or angle off-axis) at which MTF goes to zero to define coverage. Look at Schneider's MTF curves for, say, Xenars. Scary, eh?

    For a contrary view from Rodenstock, look at the MTF curves for the 75/4 Apo-Rodagon D. They're nearly flat to the edge of the field, and then, at least with the one I had, there's no more image. I'd say that lens is a wide angle with deliberate mechanical vignetting to keep users from, um, misusing it.

    Cheers,

    Dan

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