75 or 72XL for 5x4

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I'm in the process of deciding on either a 75mm SA or the 72XL and need some advice! I shoot 5x4 (no larger) and rarely need extreme movements. I currently use the 110XL and the 180 Apo Symmar. Would I be better off with the 75 or opting for the 72? Are there any pitfalls with either lens as regards front/rear elements touching filters/lenscaps etc (as with the 110XL). From previous threads I understand that they are both as sharp as each other. ANY HELP/ALTERNATIVE SUGGESTIONS WOULD BE GREATLY APPRECIATED!! (AS USUAL!!) Regards Paul

-- paul owen (paulowen_2000@yahoo.com), December 28, 2001



I would heartily recommend the 72mm XL - it is a truly great lens; it is a newer formulation and you can never have to much image circle up your sleeve.

The only two point I would mention by way of caution:

1. The 72mm is physically much bigger than the 75mm and the rear section may present problems with some 4x5 cameras with small mounting apertures in their lens standards.

2. I used my 72mm on a Linhof MT 2000 where it sat on the inner focussing track with a lens panel with a forward spacer. If you have an older Technika using the micrometer drive WA Focus device you might not be able to fit it to the camera. On that point I would suggest that you speak to Bob Salomon.

Happy New Year ... Walter

-- Walter Glover (walterg@netaus.net.au), December 28, 2001.

I had a 72mm XL, but sold it. THe enormous image circle was nice, but the lens was just too darned big! If you do architectural work, the 72mm is a safe bet, but since you say you rarely use extreme movements, the smaller, cheaper 75mm might be the way to go. Then again, I'm planning to sell my 75mm SA to invest in an 80mm Super Symmar.

-- Todd Caudle (todd@skylinepress.com), December 28, 2001.

you should also consider the rodenstock grandagon N 75/4.5 !

-- dg (sacripant@online.fr), December 28, 2001.

Hi Paul, I would go along with dg above and consider Rodenstock's 75/f4.5 Grandagon-N. It's as sharp as a "tack" and beautifully built, a lens I use a lot for both 4x5 and 6x9cm. A lens I would not be without. Your Ebony will love this lens. Good luck,

-- Trevor Crone (tcrone@gm.dreamcast.com), December 28, 2001.

I own a 72mm. I sold an older 75 mm to get more coverage. It provides that. As others have said, check with the mfg or spokesman for the mfg. of your camera to make certain you can use the lens on your camera. It is large and heavy. The front standards on some field cameras may be overwhelmed by its weight. Extremely tapered bellows on some 4x5 cameras may be restrictive. If you use filtration frequently, be prepared for extreme filter costs--in glass or gelatine or plastic, purchasing and mounting a 95- 110mm filter on the front is costly. Rear mounting the filter is a viable option.I know that is a controversial procedure, but ity does work. But there again tapered bellows on smallish cameras preclude that possibility.

I use both a Pocket Expedition and a Technical field--Both are Wisners. The lens works well on either camera with a bag bellws. Rear mounted filters are not an option, however. I wanted a lens which would allow for ample movements. The 72 will cover a 5x7 with ample movements. On my 4x5 it is eye candy. But mounting and filtration provide questions one should address before shelling out that cash. Bob

-- Bob Moulton (bobmargaretm@home.com), December 28, 2001.

Paul, I am in almost the same situation as you and tell myself this: "Think out of the box. You're buying an OPTIC, not dressing up your G.I. Joe doll. Have got a normal(180) and wide(110)and like archetectural subjects, therefore consider a 65 or 58XL instead of the 72XL. The 72 XLcan come later, if ever. Forget the 75 unless it's given to you as a gift by a wealthy friend."

-- Andre Noble (andrenoble@yahoo.com), December 28, 2001.

I've had the 72XL since 1997 and can highly recommend it. I use it with three different formats 4x5 (wisner), 5x7 & 8x10 (deardorff).

This is by far my most versitle lens for wide angle. It covers 4x5 with more movement than my wisner will allow (and that's a lot) and the 5x7 (I have reducing back for the Deardorff) with some movement.

From time-to-time I've even used to do a panorama-type image on 8x10. No, the image circle doesn't cover the full format, but stopped down to f/45, it covers all but the corners and I can pull a great 4x10 image with 140 of coverage (equal to about a 12mm on 35mm format!).

An added benefit to using this already sharp lens like this is that there is absolutely zero bellows flare potential, since the entire circle of light is striking nothing but film.

Just my opinion, but I LOVE this lens and never miss an opportunity to suggest it.

Hope this helps.

-- David Haynes (studioblsp@mindspring.com), December 31, 2001.

What's important is the ratio between consecutive focal lengths. So if you find that your 110 and 180 are in about the right relationship to each other (not too far apart), you'll want a lens of focal length x, where

x/110 = 110/180,

i.e., x = 67.2. This suggests that a 65 would be best for you.

-- Stewart Ethier (sethier@goez.net), December 31, 2001.

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