lens choice for 8x10

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I am trying to decide on my first 8x10 lens. Right now, I am considering either a 240 or 300 apo-symmar or sironar-s. Advice from the experienced will be appreciated. Thanks in advance - Mark

-- Mark Audas (maudas@flash.net), February 01, 2000


I use the caltar 360, really nice lens and very sharp, I would check on prices before going with the symmar. basically the same lens.

-- mark lindsey (lindseygraves@msn.com), February 01, 2000.

The 240 mm will give you a moderately wide view. A plasmat type lens, like the Apo-Symmar or Sironar-S, of 240 mm focal length will permit only small movements for 8x10 film. The 300 mm will allow significantly larger movements. The choice depends on your intended subject matter and photographic style.

-- Michael Briggs (MichaelBriggs@earthlink.net), February 02, 2000.

I guess I should add that I mostly shoot outdoors with about a 50-50 mix of landscape and closeup detail work.

-- Mark Audas (maudas@flash.net), February 02, 2000.

I think the 240 shoud be right for you. But you should also look at the Caltar II lenses as well as the Schneiders.

-- Ellis Vener (evphoto@insync.net), February 02, 2000.

I think the 240 shoud be right for you. But you should also look at the Caltar II lenses as well as the Schneider and Rodenstocks.

-- Ellis Vener (evphoto@insync.net), February 02, 2000.

I use the Apo-Sironar S 240 as a moderate WA in 8 X 10. It is a sharp lens, as are all the S's. It's not cheap at $1700, and I have almnost never seen one used. The image circle of 372 mm provides for moderate movements. Some other lenses to consider as "normal" lenses for 8 X 10:

Nikkor 300M (Very light, relatively cheap at $600, minimal movements)

Nikkor 360 W (Available used quite regularly at ca $1100 for mint specimen. Advantage of moving up to 360 is you get a huge image circle of 500 mm, and a still-manageable 95 mm filter size. The penalty is weight: about a 3 lb lens).

The 355 G Claron is also frequently mentioned as a first lens for 8 X 10.

To consider about the Schneiders: the 300 Apo Symmar has a filter of 105 mm, which really starts to get $ and difficult when you want to buy filters, polarizers, lens hoods. The Nikon lenses are cheaper, most seem to agree equally sharp, and provide a somewhat more convenient filter size. Look on this site or at B + H photo's web site for weight, cost, image circle and filter size info on all the lenses you're looking at. It's all a question of balancing out these factors.

Good luck, Nathan

-- Nathan Congdon (ncongdon@jhmi.edu), February 02, 2000.

Keep in mind how much bellows extension you have for doing close up work. A shorter FL will give you 1:1 with less extension than a lens with a longer FL.

-- Ron Shaw (shaw9@llnl.gov), February 02, 2000.

I have a Fujinon 240mm A for my 8x10 and I am very happy with it. It is in a copal #0 shutter, not #3 like the ones you mentioned, and it has a 70 degree angle of view. The G-clarons are also possiblilites. Do you really want the huge lenses you mentioned.

-- William Marderness (wmarderness@hotmail.com), February 02, 2000.

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