Omega D2 Enlarger for 4x5 : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Im looking to add a 4x5 enlarger to my MF & 35mm B&W darkroom.Are these good machines,capable of professional quality?They seem priced affordably.(I owned B22's Omega's for years,and always found these satisfactory.)Is there any thing bad about these?Thanks in advance.

-- Edsel Adams (, March 31, 2002


They're just old, Edsel. The reason you see so many of them around is that they were built well, had lots of accessories [still available] and the parts were [and still are] available. I would look elsewhere if you are even thinking about color, but for B&W, if you get a decent one it will retain its value.

See for more information about older Omega enlargers.

-- Alec (, March 31, 2002.

I have used an ol' D-2 for years, and don't intend to change. It is a good, solid old workhorse that can turn out some beautiful work. Mine has stayed in alignment for several years, but if you get one, set it up properly. I put a cold light on mine a few years ago and it has done everything I ever wanted an enlarger to do.


-- Doug Paramore (, March 31, 2002.

i too have a d3 .. it is a great enlarger after it is aligned / tightened down it will remail "in tune" pretty much unless a bomb goes off in your darkroom. even then it will probably still work as if it were brand new. if you need parts &c, harry taylor is the guy to call. his web address (classic enlargers) was already given by alec.

best of luck john

-- jnanian (, April 01, 2002.

The Omega D2 has been the standard for 4x5 enlargers since at least WW2. Kinda like a Jeep or a DC-3. Indestructible and a real workhorse. Like any enlarger, make sure it's corrctly aligned when you set it up. A D5 w/ Super-Chromega D head would be the choice for color.

-- Mark Sampson (, April 01, 2002.

The D series Omegas are pretty much the industry standard. For every Durst or Besler you see you'll see five Omega's. Subsequently there are lots of used ones out there and even more importantly lots of used "bits" like film holders and such.

If the enlarger you are looking at is a D2 rather than a D2-V then it doesn't have variable condensors that you'll need when you change formats. I had used a D2-V at university and found that the light output - with a D2 that I later bought - was very uneven when I used a 4x5 neg.

I fixed this problem by adding a colour head. I got much more even light across the entire negative - whatever size I chose - and it sure reduced my spotting.

I don't think that I'd own an enlarger now that didn't have a diffusion cold head or colour head. The cold head will reduce the dust without doubt and a colour head will do that AND let you throw out your PC filters!

Some will say that you will get better contrast out of a condenser enlarger and this may well be true, but the dust is a much bigger problem as far as I'm concerned. By the way I replaced my D2 with colour head with a D5-XL with colour head. The new enlarger came with two Schnieder Componon-S lenses an 80 and a 135. I have no doubt in my mind that this combination give me more natural contrast than my old D2 in concensor mode and with two ancient Woolensak (sp?) lenses. These two Schnieders give me ALL the contrast I'd ever want.

-- David Grandy (, April 01, 2002.

My D2 is really an old jalopy. The bellows has been replaced with a home made bag bellows made from black vinyl. I have a cold light head as a light source. My lenses are Schneider. It's wall mounted, vibration free, level, light tight, sharp lenses, good light source. Any number of enlargers would foot the bill. It's all in the hands and eyes of the one printing with it. Weston used to contact print with a light bulb.

-- Rob Pietri (, April 01, 2002.

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