Graflex Optar 135mm f4.7 : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

How sharp is the (Graflex Optar 135mm f4.7) lense? Do I gain detail going from a (6x7cm transparency from a pentax 67 90mm lense) to a (4x5 transparency from the Graflex Optar 135mm f4.7 lense?

-- jon miller (, November 13, 1999


I have the Graflex Optar 135mm f4.7 that I use on both my Crown Graphic and my Tachihara field camera. I have some chromes that I can see really great detail using a loupe that I cannot see with the naked eye, including the name "Wisconsin" on a license plate where with the naked eye you can't hardly see the license number itself which is much larger than the state name. I was amazed at what I could see with the 3x loupe with the chromes taken with the Optar. I am very pleased with mine. I think that with any halfway decent lens when you go to a larger format you certainly will gain the capability to record more detail. I have read a description comparing 35mm format with 4x5 that 35mm can hold a closet's worth of info where 4x5 holds a "ballroom" by comparison. Anyway, just my observations from my experience with the Optar. Best luck,

-- Thomas R. Young (, November 13, 1999.

I have both the Optar 135 and the Schneider 135. There is a difference in contrast and a little bit in sharpness, but IMHO, the price difference isn't worth it. If you have a good Optar, enjoy it. You can pick up an Optar on eBay for about $50 or less. Schneiders will set you back $150 to 200.

-- chuck k (, November 14, 1999.

Jon, I actually have wondered about the same thing. I do have the Optar lens and have considered it to do well for my needs and budget. I know it is much superior to my Yashica MAT at probably 11X14 or larger, but I'm not sure about a top of the line MF lens. I am still gaining experience, and actually would wonder more how the Optar would compare at normal viewing distance with a $500+ lens on a 16X20 print (sorry of the digression). I can't answer you question from direct experience, but I actually think you will have a good start on the answer if you take a look at this link:

-- Roger Rouch (, November 14, 1999.

Hear is another link on the same site which shows tested resolution for various lenses, including yours:

-- Ron Shaw (, November 16, 1999.

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