Ross Wide-Angle Xpres : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

We recently had a post about Ross telephoto lenses.

Can someone who's used one tell me about the Ross Wide-angle Xpres coated lenses? Are they good quality; can they produce good images? Henney and Dudley indicate that they're a plasmat with an 80 deg. image circle. Does one achieve this image circle in practice?

When did Ross go out of business?

-- Neil Poulsen (, September 20, 2001


Neil: I can't be a lot of help on the Ross wide angles. Ansel Adams used them quite a bit. I believe the Ross was an English lens. No idea when they closed up shop. Maybe some of our British members can shed a little light on them.


-- Doug Paramore (, September 21, 2001.


I have quite a few Ross lenses including the 4-inch Wide Angle Xpres in a rimset Compur. A fine lens as the first of the modern Plasmat near- symmetrical configuration, on this example the coating seems very soft and looks as faded so contrast somewhat low. I have no problem using it with 4"X5".

Andrew Ross was the first British optician of consequence and supplied lenses to many pioneering British photographers. Dallmeyer can be considered an offshoot of Ross, by the way. After a succession of corporate amalgamation and breakups Ross became assimilated into a giant conglomerate and somehow got lost somewhere along the line and ceased tp exist in the fifties. Remnants of the various companies still remain, however.

BTW I am restoring an earlier Ross lens of Petzval construction, signed "A. Ross" rather than "Ross" so it was probably made before Andrew died and Dallmeyer left to start on his own, so I suspect it was made around 1858, give or take a couple of years either way. Once finished I will indeed photograph with it.

-- Samuel Tang (, September 28, 2001.

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