Origional designed use for Nikkor 260f10

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I recently purchased a nikon 260f10. looking back through old postings, It is said to be either a Metrogon or Topogon design. Anybody know intent of these designs? The nikon 260f10 has a barrel design like their apo lens, but the glass is shaped like large hemispheres on both sides. Looks odd, Just curious on any background.

-- Beau Schwarz (ejschwarzjr@hotmail.com), October 25, 2001


Beau: Those lenses were used on the huge flatbed cameras used by newspapers and print shops to make lithographs for offset printing. I used one on an 8x10 without shutter and found quite sharp at greater distances also.


-- Doug Paramore (dougmary@alaweb.com), October 25, 2001.

Doug is right about their original use in newspaper/graphic arts apps. I use a 240mm f/10 Process Nikkor for both 4x5 and 8x10. I have found it to be very sharp at all distances- at least as sharp as my Schneider 90mm XL. I had it mounted into shutter by S.K. Grimes and it has served me well. The color rendition this lens provides is a bit different from my 90mm, but I'm still not exactly sure how. Be forewarned that if you're looking into having yours mounted into shutter, it'll take a sizable bite out of your wallet. FWIW, I'm currently planning to switch over to a Schneider 240mm Apo-Symmar, so if anyone is interested in one of these lenses and doesn't want to go through the hassle of getting it mounted into shutter, I can help. I'm pretty sure it would cover 11x14 at infinity.

-- David Munson (orthoptera@juno.com), October 25, 2001.

These lenses carry the name "Process-Nikkor", which indicates that they were intended for process cameras, which are cameras that were used in the printing industry. Mostly these cameras and lenses have been replaced by digital techniques.

One ebay seller provided the following information: symmetrical construction with four elements in four groups, coverage of 68 degrees at f10 and 74 degrees at f22.

These coverages are wide for process lenses and the lenses would have been used in cameras designed to take up less space. As an example, making a 1:1 reproduction places the object at four times the focal length from the film, so reducing the focal length reduces the size of the camera by a factor of four more.

-- Michael Briggs (MichaelBriggs@EarthLink.net), October 25, 2001.

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