105 Xenar results

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Ran the first test (on TMX) of my new old 105 f3.5 Xenar today....

The lens is a coated Schneider Linhof 105 f3.5 Xenar of 1959 vintage in a Linhof Compur #0 shutter, tested on a Galvin camera with Horseman 6x7 rollback. Test subject is a chain-link fence and vines etc about 75 feet away

The first "decent" aperture is f8, with the center crisp while the sides 3/4 out are still a little soft. There's some improvement at f11, but the first "really good" aperture is f16; the center is sharp and contrasty while the sides show just slightly less contrast. At f22, sharpness declines slightly while otoh contrast at the sides increases slightly.

It's sort of a tossup whether f16 or f22 is better overall, but this is viewing the negs at 30X; at 5.5X they're indistinguishable.

At f32 overall softness sets in; it's not terrible, but probably won't be an aperture to use unless DOF demands it.

This lens shows higher contrast overall in comparison to the previously-mentioned 105 Xenotar and 90 Angulon at equal apertures plus it's somewhat sharper than the Angulon.

In a couple of shots using rear tilt for "toes to fence" sharpness, f16 and f22 look very good, with lots of crisply-rendered blades of grass and weeds.

Bokeh deserves a mention; the Xenar renders out-of-focus areas as just plain soft in comparison with the Xenotar, which smears off-axis out-of-focus areas in a particularly ugly manner.

-- John Hicks (jbh@magicnet.net), August 14, 2000


Sounds like you have a winner there John. You ought to get some good stuff with that lens. My 150 Xenar peaks out at f16-22. I use f32 occasionally. Can get by with it at that aperature on 4x5. I like the brilliance of the negs with the Xenar (tessar) formula lenses.. Good shooting,


-- Doug Paramore (dougmary@alanet.com), August 15, 2000.

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