Enlarger Lens

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I have D2 enlarger with Omegaron 135mm lens. I would like to change the lens to be Nikkor or Schneider or current Rodenstock 135mm lens for my 4x5 printing (Omegaron made by Rodenstock). I would like to know if this change will improve the printing quality obviously. Thanks for any comments.

-- Yong-ran Zhu (yzhu@post.its.mcw.edu), February 22, 1999


I use two 4x5 enlargers when we're really cranking out prints at work [Smith College]. Each has a Schneider 150mm lens [and each has an identical Zone VI coldlight]. One lens is 40 years old, and the other is 10 years old. We cannot tell the difference in the prints. Both lenses produce super prints. Hence, I would suggest that your older Rodenstock will do just as well as a newer one..........UNLESS we're going into color printing. In that case, multi-coating of newer glass will certainly be apparent.

-- Dick Fish (dfish@javanet.com), February 22, 1999.

I agree with Dick that an older lens of the same type can do just as well. OTOH the Omegaron is, I think, a second tier, 4 element lens. A Rodenstock Rodagon (or EL Nikkor or Componon-S)is a better 6 element lens, and will perform better, especially if you use a glass carrier.

-- Tim Brown (brownt@ase.com), February 23, 1999.

Well you certainly received a lot of wrong information.

1: Rodenstock enlarging lenses, except for the Apo Rodagon N are NOT multi coated. They are coated. Only the Apo Rodagon N is multi coated.

2: It makes no difference if you are printing B&W or color. Unless resolution, contrast, eveness of illumination, magnification range only matter for color printing. But since most B&W printers are very serious about their results you will see a marked improvement with a Rodagon over an old private label lens from Omega. It never was one of the better rodenstock l

-- bob salomon (bob@hpmarketingcorp.com), February 23, 1999.

BTW, the way you make an old lens perform the same as a new lens is to print with a glassless negative carrier and an un-aligned enlarger.

The way to see the difference between old lenses and new lenses is to print with a glass carrier and an aligned enlarger.

This, of coure, presupposes that you have a good negative, are printing within the optimization range of the lens and within the optimal aperture range of the l

-- bob salomon (bob@hpmarketingcorp.com), February 23, 1999.

I wanted to buy a Nikkor 150, but could not find one for the price I wanted to pay. I bought a Rodenstock 150 in excellent condition. I think it's about 20 years old. I believe the older Nikkor's are multi coated, but perhaps not. I don't know if the Nikkor would have printed better that the Rodenstock. I do know it cost half as much.

-- Tim Kimbler (starman2@gte.net), February 26, 1999.

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