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2x3 Wide angles and other back packing trivia
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troublemaker



Joined: 24 Nov 2003
Posts: 715
Location: So Cal

PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2006 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since we got off on the wides angle and other topics on the other post, I thought I would make this a littel looser see where it goes...
I do have another 65mm lens besides my 65 Raptar. It is a Mamiya Sekor 65mm 3.5. IT seems to cover on the GG of the 23 sereis cameras, but have no idea what this lens is or what is was origianlly intended for. Awful fast for a 65. Ont the up side it appears pretty sharp, more so certainly than the littel Raptar, but the outer cell is very scrathced up. Regardless I intend to keep it long enough to test with both B&W and Color on a couple subjects. Anyone know much about this lens type ort wher eI should go for info? IT is pretty small for being a 3.5, though mounted on a polaroid copal shutter with a max 4.5 available. It is not too heavy to backpack with by any means if performs well even with the scratched up front element; looks kinda flary because of it.
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R_J



Joined: 03 Aug 2004
Posts: 137
Location: Europe

PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2006 1:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi troublemaker,

not being a Mamiya fan other than a user,I wonder if it's from the Mamiya Press camera. The press cameras had faster lenses of course, or perhaps from a Mamiya TLR?

The Mamiya lenses have always been razor sharp but somewhat underestimated. Their rangefinder lenses have some of the most impressive modulation transfer curves.

Would it be worthwhile polishing or recoating??
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troublemaker



Joined: 24 Nov 2003
Posts: 715
Location: So Cal

PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2006 5:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's kinda what I thought might be an option. I can redo shutters and clean elements etc, but not sure about polishing. I have a couple coated wollensaks that I could try it on. I heard toothpaste, but ?
Japanese Optics were pretty darn good according to anyone on the receiving end of thier salvos off Savo in August 1942. And they Turned the Gambier Bay into Swiss cheese in '44. (Of course we are going a bit beyond simple rangefinders and lenses, and rather than firing off shutters, we are talking lethal 8" armor piercing exposure of the most dreadful kind). But also, just as we had the Speed Graphic recording all those carrier landings so on, I wonder what the Imperial Japanese navy was using? A smaller faster replica that got better film mileage?
Did the Mimiya press use the Copal Polaroid shutter? It is a press type...

[ This Message was edited by: troublemaker on 2006-01-18 21:24 ]

[ This Message was edited by: troublemaker on 2006-01-18 21:26 ]
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djon



Joined: 05 Nov 2004
Posts: 174
Location: New Mexico

PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2006 6:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wrong about generic Mamiya sharpness. The press
camera was a loser in that respect, not to mention other respects. RBs weren't too hot in the beginning either, nor were the TLRs by comparison even to Yashicamats. The most hideously sharp lenses of that era were Noritars etc. Also in the seventies, Fuji produced two extremes: offensively scary-sharp and contrasty as well as soft, subtle, prurient view camera lenses that were too erotic for most commercial commercial photographers.
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3203
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2006 6:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Mamiya Press is very simular to a Graflex XL which is very simular to a Linhof Press in any order you wish to state them.

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djon



Joined: 05 Nov 2004
Posts: 174
Location: New Mexico

PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2006 10:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I shouldn't have started my previous post so crudely, with "Wrong about..." I apologize.

As I recall, when the Mamiya Press cameras were new, they had poor reputations for optics, as did the TLRs. I'm referring to the buzz, the gossip. I never met a pro who used either of them when they were new, but I was the only pro I ever knew who used a Graflex XL so what do I know?

The XL was killed, IMO, by the cheap lenses they introduced,Ysarex especially, which were ultra sharp and so distressingly contrasty that the natural customers, wedding/portrait guys, hated them.
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troublemaker



Joined: 24 Nov 2003
Posts: 715
Location: So Cal

PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2006 1:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is where I got this 80mm Rodenstaock we chtted about on the other post, form an XL. I wouldn't consider it a cheap lens, nor the Planars and so on, but I need the sharpness for color landscape. I wouldn't even consider using the thing for portraits. I am not a portrait photographer, but apply the same principles to my projects and still life stuff. I have shot a few portraits with different Optars, and the littel Trioptar and a few others and all just blatently too sharp. But for the high Sierra, the sharper the better, and still I am planning to try diffusing a few things just to see how they turn out. I can ussusally tell a lot just from the GG, but always nicer in print.
Somone dauis something about lens polishing, but I think that will total the coating will it not? I wrecked a nice pair of glasses once trying to fix some light scratching. It might be worth poliching and recoating the Mimiya if it will work for me, but I have also considered the 4x5 coverage route so I can adapt to both formats and just drop a few more bucks. Trying to go cheap seems to work out well for home projects but I no what I am after when I head to the hills.
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renes



Joined: 13 Feb 2009
Posts: 42
Location: Warsaw

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 12:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi everyone,

I have just bought Graflex Century Graphic 23 camera with 103mm Trioptar f/4.5 lens and GG with Fresnel to use it for landsape. Now I look for 2 wide angle lenses: 50/55/58mm and 75/80mm.

On my list are:
(from Mamiya Universal Press)

* 50mm f/6.3 Mamiya Sekor
* 75mm f/5.6 Mamiya Sekor

(from Mamiya TLR S330/220)

* 55mm f/4.5 Mamiya Sekor
* 80mm f/2.8 mamiya Sekor

I do not know whether they cover 2x3 film and will fit to lens board...
Has anyone tried to use them with 23 Graflex Century?
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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 1:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

djon wrote:


The XL was killed, IMO, by the cheap lenses they introduced,Ysarex especially, which were ultra sharp and so distressingly contrasty that the natural customers, wedding/portrait guys, hated them.


Well I don't know about cheap lenses. Those Planars and Sonnars are still hot stuff on that Swedish camera, but the Ysarex was brutally sharp I think they were intending the Ysarex (a radioactive tessar) for press work. .

According to Tim Holden, their original packaging did them in. It was the first modular camera made by Gralfex and Singer was hot to use this new styrofoam material. Everything got it's own box. The body, the roll back, the gg back, each lens etc. An outfit made up of a body, a lens, a roll back, and a flash would take up the same room as several of the competitors cameras. Small and medium camera stores just didn't have the room to stock a wall of XL pieces. Add to it Singer wouldn't let them spend what Graflex wanted, so you got the weak focus pin and a plastic tube that won't focus in the cold.



As to what we were originally posting about, a 65mm f3.5 sounds like a TLR lens to me, so don't be asking it to do much more than 6x6cm. Not that I have any proof, just a gut reaction.
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Dan Fromm



Joined: 14 May 2001
Posts: 1882
Location: New Jersey

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Renes,

All Mamiya Press lenses will cover 2x3. As Les wrote, it isn't clear that Mamiya TLR lenses will cover much more than nominal 6x6. 80/2.8s for 6x6 from Rodenstock, Schneider, and Zeiss don't cover 2x3, that should be a hint.

The 50/6.3 Mamiya has a good reputation, the 65 Press lens is said to be a bit soft. I have no experience with either.

Other wide angle lenses you might consider:

47 Super Angulon, f/8 and f/5.6. I use an f/5.6 on my Century.

58/5.6 Grandagon/Technikon. Also works on 2x3 Speeds. Beware of separations, be prepared to replace the original issue shutter if the lens was made for a Graflex XL. The XL version is in a #00 with no shutter release socket and no "T" speed.

80/6.3 Wide Field Ektar. Also works on 2x3 Speeds.
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renes



Joined: 13 Feb 2009
Posts: 42
Location: Warsaw

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for your recomendations.

47mm on Century is a bit too wide for me (equivalent to 35 mm is about 17mm if I am right ?) and the price also matters. But what about vignieting wit this lens, do you use center filter?

My favorite wide angle lens for 2x3 camera is 55mm (equivalent 24mm) or 50mm (equ. 21mm). The second wide I need is 75mm (if with 50mm) or 80mm (if with 55mm). That's why I consider mamiya press lenses 50mm and 75mm. I wondered if they can be use with Century (the 75mm seems bigger than 50mm... do you know anybody who use them with Century?)

It seems that there is no 55mm lens that could fit to Century and costs about 400$... and there is also no 80mm lens with f/2.8-4.5 that covers 2x3 camera. Kodak Ektar WF 80mm f/6.3 looks interesting and probably I will put it on my list as second wide lens. I could probably live with one wide angle but than it should be 55/58mm but definitely with shutter release socket and "T" speed, and not "darker" than f/6.3.

And the last lens I will look for my Century is 180mm/190mm. Do you know Kodak Ektar 190mm f/4.5 , is it good? Or should I rather consider
Schneider TELE-XENAR 180mm F5.5 or Schneider Symmar-S 180mm f/5.6?
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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 1:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 190mm f4.5 is a tessar formula that will cover 5x7 so using it on a 2x3, you would be using only the "sweetest part of the sweet spot"

I got through RIT and made a lot of money with my 180mm Symmar S and nobody complained about my chromes being soft, even when sitting next to work that used the latest to come out of Sinar bron (Each of the RIT studios had a Sinar P and three DB lenses, which were at least a generation newer and multicoated than my Symmar S.

The tele Xenar will be much lighter than the previous lenses, and because it's a tele lens you'll be able to focus much closer than with the lenses above.
But because it's a tele it won't be as sharp as the lenses above, which for portraits, maybe a good thing.

The disadvantages of the Ektar and Symmar is that they are big and heavy. You'll need to build a special lensboard for the tessar because the hole for the flange will probably exceed the size of the standard Century lensboard. The Symmar-S may need the same.
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renes



Joined: 13 Feb 2009
Posts: 42
Location: Warsaw

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 3:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Les wrote:
The tele Xenar will be much lighter than the previous lenses, and because it's a tele lens you'll be able to focus much closer than with the lenses above.
But because it's a tele it won't be as sharp as the lenses above, which for portraits, maybe a good thing.


I need 180mm for landscape... does it mean that TELE-XENAR is not very sharp at f/16-22?

Tele-Xenar and Ektar WF 80/6.3 would be at the moment my choice.

But still can not find the main wide angle (not big and expensive) 55/58mm lens I need with f/6.3-6.8 stop... ???
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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 5:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sharpness has many variables and a lot of them are subjective, and whether or not a lens is sharp enough can only be decided buy the photographer using the lens and looking at a print.

Tele lenses use a negative element in the rear cell to expand the image circle of a short lens, buy using the center section of the image circle an object magnification is gained, thus a lens can have the image size of a 180mm lens but the bellows draw of a 120mm lens.

The drawbacks are usually either barrel or pincushion distortion, and some softness.

I think the tele-Xenar would work well for most work, modestly enlarged. But I also believe that a non-tele lens like the 180 Symmar would perform better at wider apertures. But it has drawbacks of being heavy and large. it's always a compromise.

The 80mm WF Ektar really needs to be stopped down to f11 to be sharp.
that I know from experience.
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renes



Joined: 13 Feb 2009
Posts: 42
Location: Warsaw

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 6:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Les wrote:

Tele lenses use a negative element in the rear cell to expand the image circle of a short lens, buy using the center section of the image circle an object magnification is gained, thus a lens can have the image size of a 180mm lens but the bellows draw of a 120mm lens.

The drawbacks are usually either barrel or pincushion distortion, and some softness.


Thank you for explanation. Then the choice is not easy. I don't want to have 120mm focal lenght but 180-200mm and not to heavy and big lens. Probably is the same with Schneider Tele-Arton 180mm f/5,5.
Have heard good opinions about Graflex Ektar/Optar 203mm f/7.7... if it be f/5.6 than I would buy it. Is there any f/5.6 180-200mm Graflex which comes close in sharpnes and keeps lenght on Century?

I found out this for 80mm Kodak Wide Field Ektar f/6.3 Resolution in Lines per mm (center/middle/edge)

f/8 38 30 34
f/11 60 38 34
f/16 48 48 48
f/22 54 60 48

Test was made on 4x5 camera.
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