Glassfilter for 210 Super-Angulon? : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I am going to buy the Schneider Kreuznach 210mm Super-Angulon and it seems like that I will have a problem in getting glassfilters for that lenssize (135mm). Does anybody know a manufacturer for glassfilters producing this size or maybe an other solution?

Thanks a lot


-- Jens Knoop (, June 19, 1998



You're right: you WILL have a problem getting filters that size. Although the filter size on the SA 210 is slightly smaller than you think--127mm (the Grandagon 200 is the only current lens with a 135mm filter thread)--that doesn't really make it much easier.

When faced with the same quandary, I first tried resin filters. A couple of years ago Calumet told me that through some company (Lee?) they could get selected colors in 4x6 (besides graduated NDs) but it's a prepaid special order from overseas etc. etc.--and with a 5-inch-plus front element you'd still have to position it pretty carefully vertically or horizontally to cover your image size (but you might call Calumet or Lee about this). Then I read in Galen Rowell's column that Singh-Ray could custom-make almost any filter a customer could want. He was right--any size that will fit in a Cokin holder (Mr. Singh just laughed when I called him and asked about a 6x6 or even a 5x5 filter).

So then I looked at glass. I see in B+W's catalog that they offer screw-in filters up to 122mm, including 120mm (which would be the back size of the SA210 ... IF it had threads) and including many popular tints for b&w and color films (of course, the 120mm offering is not as broad as it is for, say, 58mm, and it's probably a special order from Germany, and you'd have to figure out how to mount it without threads....). B&H sells the B+W "Extra-wide-angle slim filter" in 127mm and 135mm -- but only in skylight and haze(!), and even those are $201 (for 127mm) and $300 (for 135mm).

The only solution I could find was Sinar's 125mm setup, which I believe is no longer available new. I got directly from Sinar in 1996 four of the last of their 5x5 (125mm) glass filters before they discontinued this size (I bought four b&w filters--21, 25, 47, and 58--for about $100 each, including those nifty aluminum sleeves). Even after they discontinued the 125mm filters, Sinar continued to offer the Filterholders, #1 (cat. #55-1711, $281; holds one 125mm filter) and #2 (#55-1721, $309; holds two) at least through 1997. You'd also need an adaptor ring (127mm for front mount is cat. #58-1127, $132). (Sinar offered these filters, holders, and adaptor rings because they used to sell the SA 210 as a Sinaron lens.) I never bought the holder or adaptor ring, using my hand or gaffers' tape to hold the filter in position (and I've never even used a couple of my four filters). I've thought occasionally about selling the 125mm filters, but they're so rare that I know I'd regret it the next day.... You might call Sinar and see what they recommend or might have lying around (toll free # is 800/456-0203; toll was 908/754-5800, but area code may have changed).

Another solution would be to call the glass filter companies. B+W (which is distributed in the US by Schneider; 516/496-8500) says on p. 48 of their catalog "Unmounted filter glass is available for use in compendiums or special applications. Glass diameters of 8mm through 150mm are available...." So that could be an option, with B+W or Tiffen or Hoya or whomever. Again, be prepared to pay--and to wait a couple of months for it to come from overseas. (But while you're on the phone with Schneider, ask them for solutions; it's their lens!)

Perhaps, because they are presumably cut from large sheets, Kodak's gel filters (and their kin from other companies) could be obtained in at least 6x6 size; you could make a frame for each filter from cardboard. They wouldn't be as durable as resin or glass but they would be a lot less expensive! Try Kodak or the others to see if this is possible.

For even less money, you can get two-foot-square sheets of acetate/film (Roscolux) from Calumet and others for about $6 a sheet; it's not optically perfect and the colors aren't keyed to the Wratten system or such, but it may work behind the lens. If you think this has potential, call Calumet for a Roscolux sample book (they may charge you a little for it because it has at least a hundred different swatches).

By the way, none of the above solutions would provide you with a polarizer; I've never seen one that size. The polarizing film sold for lighting purposes probably wouldn't be optically clear enough.

That's all I can think of for now; if I come up with something else I'll add it below (and if you come up with a solution, please post it here for the record). The SA 210 is an amazing lens; I don't understand why it and the Grandagon 200 have to be so huge (esp. when compared to, say the Nikkor 150 SW, with its 95mm filter size) but they are the only two current lenses between 165 and 300 that offer ample coverage for 8x10 and not-bad coverage for 11x14; every other 210 or 240 lens just barely covers 8x10. So it's worth figuring something out if you want that great image circle.

Hope this helps; feel free to e-mail me if it's unclear or if you have follow-up questions....

-- Micah Marty (, June 21, 1998.

Good news! I see on pages 395-401 of B&H's big catalog (the 600-page "Sourcebook") that they offer a LOT of Kodak gel filters in 6x6 (and 14x18!) for quite affordable prices. Most of the 6x6 are $44.95, including the light-balancing, color-compensating, and b&w gel filters (a select few of the 6x6's are $109.95, but I have no idea why; they're neither the deepest nor the rarest--or most common--colors).

This looks like the most promising solution, assuming you can make cardboard frames to mount them on your lens....

-- Micah Marty (, June 21, 1998.

Me, yet again. Just to clarify: the Sinar 125mm filters are 5x5 flat squares (like resin filters), mounted in metal frames that wrap around all sides with a metal pull tab on one end. The useable area of the glass--inside the frame--is about 119mm x 119mm.

-- Micah Marty (, June 21, 1998.

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