Lenses for Ultra Large Format

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Murph

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I apologize up front if this has been beaten to death, I tried the search function, and could not find a thread for it.

My question is; What lenses are available that are Wide Angle, and normal for the following formats please?

12x20
16x20
20x24

I have been told that a 480mm lens is a "normal" lens for 16x20, is this true?
 

garysamson

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The Schneider G Claron 355mm lens is a popular choice for the 12x20 format along with the Nikon 450 M. these lenses are often available used at reasonable prices. I would consider 600mm the normal lens for the 16x20 format.
 
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I only shoot up to 12x20 and a couple of lenses that I find work very well in addition to the 355 G Claron are the Fuji 600MM and the 24",30" and 35" Red Dot. The longer focal length Dagors are very rare and exceedingly expensive.

If I was shooting 16x20 and 20x24 the Schneider 550 XXL would be a fabulous choice because I hear that they cover like a big dog right to the edge and are very contrasty. The 122mm filter size of this lens would likely induce migration to an external compendium possibly affixed to the camera and large square filters. Everything operating within this unique domain is costly, but what else is new?
 

coriana6jp

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For ULF the only two true lenses currently being produced are the big buck Schneider XXLs one is 550mm and the other is 1100 if my memory is working correctly.

I only use 12x20, like Michael. I use a Fuji 600C, a Fuji 450mm CMW (not the little 450mm C), and a Schneider 355mm G-Claron. I am lusting for a 210mm Schneider Super Symmar XL which covers 12x20 and some say up to 16x20, also am after a 30 inch or 35 inch RD Artar.

Hope it helps.

Gary
 

removed account4

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if you want an older lens ...
the wollensak triple ( 13/20/25 ) covers 11x14 with ease
( i use it on a 11x14 camera )
it might cover a few of those formats you mention
in the 20" + 25" configurations.
the lens come in a betax shutter and usually don't cost much money.
 

sanking

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if you want an older lens ...
the wollensak triple ( 13/20/25 ) covers 11x14 with ease
( i use it on a 11x14 camera )
it might cover a few of those formats you mention
in the 20" + 25" configurations.
the lens come in a betax shutter and usually don't cost much money.

I owned at one time a Wollensak Raptar 13/20/25 convertible and the combined elements did not cover 11X14". Almost, but there was some vignetting on the corners. I don't remember about the single elements but generally the coverage of the single elements is not more than that of the combined elements. You have a longer focal length but the actual angle of coverage is much less.

My understanding was that the Raptar is the coated version of the older Wollensak triple convertible.

Sandy King
 

removed account4

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I owned at one time a Wollensak Raptar 13/20/25 convertible and the combined elements did not cover 11X14". Almost, but there was some vignetting on the corners. I don't remember about the single elements but generally the coverage of the single elements is not more than that of the combined elements. You have a longer focal length but the actual angle of coverage is much less.

My understanding was that the Raptar is the coated version of the older Wollensak triple convertible.

Sandy King


hi sandy

mine is a velostigmat 1a ..
and it is on a 11x14 portrait camera that i use pretty often.
i have never had vignetting or coverage issues.
maybe they changed something between the change of names ?

in any case it is a great and inexpensive lens :smile:

john
 

TheFlyingCamera

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I have a Turner-Reich triple, 12/19/25 that I can put on my 14x17 and see the coverage. I'll assume for now that the 12" combo will only cover 11x14, but the single cells may hit 14x17. That was snagged when things were still cheap on shopgoodwill - got it in an Ilex #4 for around $100, if memory serves correctly. Another TC I've got at home I have to make an adapter lensboard for is a turn-of-the-19th century/early 20th century Wollensak Rapid Rectigraphic 19/29/39 in a pneumatic shutter. I've never seen another one so I have to assume they're rare, but maybe not valuable. It's marked as an 11x14 lens, but it probably covers my 14x17, and maybe even something bigger. In the longer range, there's a 600 Apo-Germinar I'm saving my pennies to have put in a Copal 3.
 

sanking

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hi sandy

mine is a velostigmat 1a ..
and it is on a 11x14 portrait camera that i use pretty often.
i have never had vignetting or coverage issues.
maybe they changed something between the change of names ?

in any case it is a great and inexpensive lens :smile:

john

The one I had was a Raptar 1a. I don't believe they changed anything but the coating. But mine was not in a Betax but a #4 Compound as best I recall.

But have you used the camera for landscapes at infinity focus? I am pretty sure that the lens I had would have covered fine for portraits, but it just missed for landscape work.

Sandy
 

removed account4

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The one I had was a Raptar 1a. I don't believe they changed anything but the coating. But mine was not in a Betax but a #4 Compound as best I recall.

But have you used the camera for landscapes at infinity focus? I am pretty sure that the lens I had would have covered fine for portraits, but it just missed for landscape work.

Sandy


nope, never took the camera outside of the shooting space.
its one of those huge century cameras on a semi centennial stand ...
i have thought of it though ... but a little voice inside my head
told me it probably wasn't the best thing to do :wink:

john
 

illumiquest

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I've got a Goerz 14" f/11 Trigor which will cover up to 20". It's a barrel lens but could be mounted in a shutter or used in a Packard type. It's for sale, pm me if interested
 
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Murph

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Thanks all for the excellent replies.
 

eclarke

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I have 3 lenses for my 11x14, the 450 Fuji c which is too soft, a Nikkor 450M which does everything wonderfully and a 360 Nikkor W. The 360 supposedly has the largest image circle of the 3 lenses but I always get a top vignette with the damn thing (stopped all the way down) if I use some rise. Do you think the 355 G claron will cover more??..Evan Clarke
 

coriana6jp

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I use a 355mm G-Claron on 12x20 and it does cover with some movements at f/32 and beyond. Also I have grown really fond of my Fuji 450mm f/8 CMW, this is not the little C lens. It is a huge heavy plasmat, but it more than covers 12x20 with plenty of movements. Both of them are sharp across the field, so they would work very well for 11x14. Also the Fuji 600C covers up to 12x20, another great lens.

Gary
 

2F/2F

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If the G Claron will cover 12x20, then so should the Schneider Symmar 360mm f/6.8 or f/5.6, which I believe give more coverage than the G Claron. They are extremely reasonably priced in a barrel (SINAR DB or DBM mount), and give top-notch performance from what I can see, even on 4x5 (which is what I usually use it for). I got mine (f/6.8 model in DB mount) for under $300 shipped with caps in outstanding condition. LF prices are INSANE!!! This is a lens that I would used to have needed to save up for for YEARS to afford, and I got it for what amounts to allowance money in the grand scheme of things.
 
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coriana6jp

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The 360mm Symmar won't cover 12x20, I tried it, at least mounted in copal 3 shutter. The Clarons have amazing amounts of coverage the farther you stop down, much more so than the Symmars.

Gary
 

sanking

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The 360mm Symmar won't cover 12x20, I tried it, at least mounted in copal 3 shutter. The Clarons have amazing amounts of coverage the farther you stop down, much more so than the Symmars.

Gary

Gary,

The 360mm f/5.6 Symmar convertible covers 12X20 as well or perhaps a tad better than the G-Claron. I have not checked in a while but I believe you get full coverage with the Symmar convertible beginning at about f/32, which is about the same as with the G-Claron.

I would personally much work with the Symmar than the G-Claron if weight and space is not a consideration because composing and focusing at f/5.6 has it all over focusing and composing at f/9.

And I frankly believe the Symmar is a better lens for landscapes than the G-Claron. And they can be real bargains. Going price in a big Compound shutter is generally $500 or less.

Sandy
 
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I've been using my !4" Rodenstock Gerogon Process lens for the 8x20. Nice and sharp to the corners. Also have the 21 1/4" Ilex Process Paragon that is real sweet on 8x20. No problem with coverage and it did not cost a fortune.

Jim
 

eclarke

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I use a 355mm G-Claron on 12x20 and it does cover with some movements at f/32 and beyond. Also I have grown really fond of my Fuji 450mm f/8 CMW, this is not the little C lens. It is a huge heavy plasmat, but it more than covers 12x20 with plenty of movements. Both of them are sharp across the field, so they would work very well for 11x14. Also the Fuji 600C covers up to 12x20, another great lens.

Gary

I have the hots for the 450 CM-w but haven't seen one for sale this year (could have missed one), I have the two 450s I mentioned before and the Nikkor is great. I want something wider for my 11x14 and thought the 360 Nikkor would be the ticket. Where I have used it so far, I need rise for architectural subjects and have about 15 sheets with top corner vignettes. I'm surprised by the vignetting with the 360 because all the other Nikkor lenses I have are extremely generous in coverage..EC
 
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I'm using a 15" Ilex Process lens for my 11x14. It is a great wide and close up lens for me. I have not used a lot of movements on the 11x14 but it seems to cover well and is sharp as all get out. If you can find one or a 14" Gerogon I'd give either one a try for a wide on 11x14.

Jim
 

eclarke

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Well, I went a little bit off the wall and bought a Rodenstock 300mm f5.6 Macro-Sironar-N. with reversing elements. I have one of the in a 210 and it's a really nice, very sharp lens. This 300 has a 550mm image circle at f22 but the angle of coverage is 50 degrees so it'll have it's own look. I'll report as soon as I have it..EC
 

coriana6jp

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Evan,

Good Luck finding one of the 450CMW, they are rather few and far between. I have seen exactly 3 for sale in the last three years. I bought mine new in Tokyo a couple of years ago.

Gary
 
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Murph

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WA for 12x20

What would be a decent WA lens for 12x20? 16.5" Dagor?
 

coriana6jp

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I use a Schneider 355mm F/9 G-Claron on 12x20 it covers with some movement when stopped down. The 305mm computar and the Schneider 210 Super Symmar XL also will cover. The 210mm Super Symmar is on my shopping list.......someday.

Good Luck.

Gary
 
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