Other (than Schneider) enlarging Lenses As A Camera Lens

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A thread here recently considered Schneider enlarging lenses as camera lenses. The consensus is that Componons make quite good camera lenses.

Are there other enlarging lenses which are suitable as well? I'm thinking of Ektar enlarging lenses in particular. The older Ektar enlarging lenses seem to be available quite cheaply

-- Ed Balko (veggie@monmouth.com), December 05, 2001


it all depends on the quality of the lens, as low budget Schneider lenses will not reach the performance of the Componon. IMHO the main difference between taking lenses and enlarging lenses is the ratio they are designed for. Some enlarging lenses are designed or 8:1 others for 20:1. You find Gauss-types as well as Tessar-types. Apo- Ronars or Apo-Artars are optimized for 1:1, first designed as enlarging, say copying lenses and perform well as taking lenses. I've used Nikkor enlarging lenses on 35mm + bellows with good results. If the design of the lens is not symmetrical, one should consider to mount it in retro- or reversed position, as one can use the normal lenses on 35mm on bellows. Conclusion: if you have already an enlarging lens, try it as taking lens. If the result fits your needs you can go on an buy more cheap. Happy shooting

-- Thomas Vaehrmann (Tvaehrmann@web.de), December 06, 2001.

I don't see the reason why other enlarging lenses would not work well. I've used many different lenses including old russian single coated and new Rodenstocks and all of them much better for macro photography than ordinary LF lenses. The only problem IMO is aperture. Sometimes f22 or f32 is not enough for DOF I want.


-- Janez Pelko (info@janez-pelko.com), December 06, 2001.

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