Rodenstock Imagon : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I am thinking about investing in a Rodenstock Imagon lens for my 4x5 field camera. I wonder if any of you have any experiences with this lens that you would be willing to share. I have various soft focus filters, but don't seem to get the look I am seeking. I would be using the lens for both portraits and landscapes. My understanding from Rodenstock is that the 250mm is recommended for 4X5. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.


-- Mark DeMulder (, March 06, 2000


Hi Mark, can you describe the "look" you are looking for? There are different ways of getting soft focus. You might want to turn these various soft focus looks over before you spring for an Imagon and find out it isn't what you wanted. For instance, do you what the whole image soft, or do you want a sharp part in the center with diffused portions in the corners. If you can me more specific, there might be a cheaper solution. Also, what do you require from a shutter? Do you need high speeds? Do you need a sync function? David

-- david clark (, March 06, 2000.

The 250 is the only Imagon that covers 45 with full coverage and the proper amount of halation at all points.

Longer lenses will have different halation at the same exposures and shorter ones won't cover 45.

-- Bob Salomon (, March 07, 2000.

Mark, I would advise you not to buy one before you can test it and see if you really like it. I have bought one recently, a 200 mm, cheap, and have made a barrel to mount it on a Pentax 67, using the helical mount for close-ups for focussing. But the results satisfy me moderately. If there are light spots, each one will be surrounded by a little "spoke-wheel", interesting the first time you see it, but quite annoying afterwards, like the circles produced by a mirror lens. I have taken tables and every candle, glas and silver have these wheels of light which I find awful. I have previously used a set of softening filters sold by Sailwind. Among them is the "Glamour soft" that gives very interesting results. It'a a square sheet of glass with some circular waves and the effect is of a sharp image overlapped with a soft diffused one. I made some very interesting portraits with it on a 150 mm on a Bronica 6x7. I have heard of the Softar from Zeiss being good also, but expensive. Sailwind have a Pro Soft that is fine too and cheaper. If you want a pronounced effect, you can try a neutral filter with vaseline. Doesn't take much to have the most dramatic effects! The Imagon 200 mm is alright for 6x9. It might perhaps cover 4x5 if you are close enough from your subject, but the 250 is recommended. Both are shutter Nb 3.

-- Paul Schilliger (, March 10, 2000.

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