Experience with 50mmf/4.5 Focotar lenses?

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I have a line on two 50mm f/4.5 Focotar enlarging lenses (which I assume are pre Focotar-1). One is mint, the other ex+. My current 50 is a 2.8 Rodagon, about which I really have no complaints other than the click-stops are missing. Anyone out there care to share their experiences with the 50/4.5 Focotar? I've heard that the Focotar-1 (50/2.8) and the 40mm WA Focotar's are each stunning, but how about the earlier one?

-- John Layton (john.layton@valley.net), March 26, 2002


The 50mm 4.5 focotars are great,even wide open,and the 50mm focotar- 2 is even sharper.I've heard the regular focotar is better in the corners and the focotar-2 is better in the center.I own both and I think it's true but it is splitting hairs.

-- Emile de Leon (knightpeople@msn.com), March 26, 2002.

I have both : schneider componon-s 50/2.8 (compareable to the rodagon I think) and the focotar 50/4.5 (the 2nd version which was a schneider design and was made before the focotar-II). I compared once the componon-s, focotar and focotar-II and I have to admit that it was very hard to see which print was made with which lens at f5.6 and f8 which are the openings I use in general when enlarging. If there is a difference, it is in contrast at the wider openings. As far as I know the rodagon is also a very good lens and I don't expect the focotar to be very different from it. In general enlarging lenses are sold quite cheap and I would buy a focotar if the price is good and find it out for yourself. Good luck,

-- Frederik Boone (frederik.boone@harol.be), March 27, 2002.

Hello John. The Focotar 50's are not only good enlarging lenses.With the right Visoflex and bellows set up the Focotar makes a superb macro lens.

-- Sheridan Zantis (albada60@hotmail.com), March 27, 2002.

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