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Switar zoom lenses in Cmount?


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#1 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 17 June 2007 - 02:26 AM

I'm wondering if anyone can provide me with a complete list of all the Switar zoom lenses available in C mount, both RX and non-RX versions? I get the impression that not many Switar zooms were made with C mount.
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#2 Don Brown

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Posted 17 June 2007 - 03:59 AM

I'm wondering if anyone can provide me with a complete list of all the Switar zoom lenses available in C mount, both RX and non-RX versions? I get the impression that not many Switar zooms were made with C mount.


Hi Patrick
Have a look at this site.

http://www.bolexcoll...ses/60kern.html

Regards

Don
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#3 Ian Marks

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Posted 17 June 2007 - 12:51 PM

Missing from that page is the compact 17-85 Vario-Switar, and later lenses, like the 12.5-100 (not sure if that one was available in a C-mount, however - it might have been bayonet only).
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#4 Nick Mulder

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Posted 17 June 2007 - 03:41 PM

Missing from that page is the compact 17-85 Vario-Switar, and later lenses, like the 12.5-100 (not sure if that one was available in a C-mount, however - it might have been bayonet only).


I've seen the standard 12.5 - 100 in c-mount. Yet to see a PTL (the auto meteing, power zoom 12.5-100) in c-mount though ...
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#5 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 17 June 2007 - 08:57 PM

Good to know that there are at least some Switar zooms in C mount. Out of curiosity, would the 12.5-100mm and 17-85mm lenses be RX or non-RX? And since they are Switar optics, I'm assuming that the sharpness would be pretty good for zoom lenses?
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#6 Nick Mulder

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Posted 18 June 2007 - 12:15 AM

Good to know that there are at least some Switar zooms in C mount. Out of curiosity, would the 12.5-100mm and 17-85mm lenses be RX or non-RX? And since they are Switar optics, I'm assuming that the sharpness would be pretty good for zoom lenses?

Well, I've never seen a Switar zoom that wasn't RX - not saying there aren't any though, but thats a few years of trolling eBay and using them's worth of opinion (bad english yep, but it sounded like how I'd say it)

I have owned both a POE and PTL (auto 12.5-100) and have had a beaten up standard 12.5-100 here on occasion also, and aside from the pokey 2 blade aperture system and prism of the POE and PTL which causes naff naff bokeh i'd say they are fine zooms, better than say the Angenieux zooms - so yeh, I'd say they are at least the best zoom you can get that is already RZ collimated...

Personally I'd go for the standard 12.5-100 with the aspheron knob - not the aperture preset version - you can either have one or the other -the aspheron knob works like a macro focusing system, much more useful than the aperture preset ...

Next I'd get the PTL if say you were doing some unnatended timelapse the light meter and auto iris comes in handy... it has the aspheron/macro knob also ... just it has that ugly bokeh and is a stop slower or so
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#7 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 18 June 2007 - 06:10 AM

There's a fair chance that such lenses would be mounted on a 16mm C mount camera that is not a Bolex....so they would have to be non-RX! I'm not familiar with the aspheron knob but a preset aperture sounds very handy. There will be many times when I would need to close down the aperture without taking my eye away from the viewfinder so a preset aperture would be ideal.
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#8 Ian Marks

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Posted 18 June 2007 - 02:06 PM

The 17-85mm Pan Cinor zooms (both the compact and larger model) function fine on the reflex Bolexes, even though they did not carry the "RX" designation. They were featured prominently in Bolex brochures catalogues alongside the Switars, so clearly the company didn't have an issue with them.
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#9 Nick Mulder

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Posted 18 June 2007 - 04:22 PM

The 17-85mm Pan Cinor zooms (both the compact and larger model) function fine on the reflex Bolexes, even though they did not carry the "RX" designation. They were featured prominently in Bolex brochures catalogues alongside the Switars, so clearly the company didn't have an issue with them.


Bolex literature is not the most consistent I've come across - the amount of misinformation still trolling itself around the net is quite high ...   Wide non RX lenses will still be ok if they are stopped down enough which leads me to ask how fast were the Pan Cinor zooms ?  Their largest aperture may have been small enough for the average punter (who would be in the market for such a lens) to accept as ok - or at least for Bolex to accept on their behalf ... 17mm isn't super wide by any means either. Also you have to ask why then did Kern/Bolex go ahead and make RX lenses if non RX collimated version were fine  - >>sale$<< is my guess ...

Although I could be about to partially contradict myself: are you sure they weren't in the section of the brochure set aside for lenses that go with the M and J Bolexes which weren't RX ? Are they dog-leg style ?

There's a fair chance that such lenses would be mounted on a 16mm C mount camera that is not a Bolex....so they would have to be non-RX!

Sorry, dont quite get your reasoning here - an assumption is used as proof of a fact ?   'fair chance' = 'have to'   ??

Show me a picture of a non-RX Switar c-mount zoom on a non Bolex camera ...

I'm not familiar with the aspheron knob but a preset aperture sounds very handy. There will be many times when I would need to close down the aperture without taking my eye away from the viewfinder so a preset aperture would be ideal.


The Aspheron knob pulls the rear element into the body of the lens - its basically a back focus adjustment, quite a major one which allows the lens to focus on the aspheron adaptor which turns the 12.5-100 into a 6.5mm lens - like I mentioned it can be used without the aspheron lens as a macro function, allowing you to focus on objects inside the lens hood even - zooming is all up the wall but its ok as long as you keep on the one focal length, or plan for the plane of focus to pump with the zoom ...

The preset is good for the reasons you outline for sure - its depends on what you prefer/need. Its a pity they cant fit both mechanisms in at the same time ...
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#10 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 18 June 2007 - 04:37 PM

"Sorry, dont quite get your reasoning here"

Well as everybody knows, an RX lens can only successfully be used on a Bolex H16 reflex camera. Additionally, I have read of someone using non-RX Switar lenses on his Beaulieu R16. So if that is the case, then any Switar non-RX lens could be used on any 16mm C mount camera theoretically.
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#11 Nick Mulder

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Posted 18 June 2007 - 04:51 PM

Well as everybody knows, an RX lens can only successfully be used on a Bolex H16 reflex camera. Additionally, I have read of someone using non-RX Switar lenses on his Beaulieu R16. So if that is the case, then any Switar non-RX lens could be used on any 16mm C mount camera theoretically.

Yep, I get your point and have made it on occassion myself there are exceptions though (see below) - but back to original discussion>> I thought this discussion was about zooms - I guessing the lens your friend used on his R16 would have Switar AR primes - not zooms ...

I should add that it is possible to interchange RX and non RX lenses on RX and non RX cameras succesfully as long as you stop down enough (f16 or so) with the wides - this is only relevant for focal lengths below 50mm (some might say 26/25mm /1inch) - there are no 75mm RX lenses for instance ;)
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#12 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 02:12 AM

"I thought this discussion was about zooms - I guessing the lens your friend used on his R16 would have Switar AR primes - not zooms ..."

If someone has used non-RX Switar primes on their R16 with success, then I assume there wouldn't be any problems using non-RX Switar zoom lenses on an R16 or any other 16mm C mount camera for that matter, unless you can prove me wrong. By the way, what does the 'AR' designation mean in the Switar lenses that you mentioned?

Edited by Patrick Cooper, 19 June 2007 - 02:17 AM.

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#13 Nick Mulder

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 03:37 AM

AR = anti reflection - I'm about %80 sure on that one... It refers to coating I think, which is not to say the RX Switars aren't coated - its just marketing ...

Ok so if non RX lenses work fine - then what are RX lenses for ? More marketing hoohah ?

A prime is a different beast from a zoom in terms of picture clarity and other factors (whatever terms you choose to define a particular lenses characteristics) - Personally I wouldn't be so hasty with assuming they would be as acceptable as the primes without testing ...

In the meantime heres some light reading:

http://www.apecity.c...6mm_cameras.pdf
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#14 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 06:22 AM

A prime lens is indeed a different beast to a zoom. Though I wouldn't say that there is too much difference in image clarity. The photographs that I have exposed with an old Vivitar 75-300mm zoom on my 35mm still cameras have very nice clarity. In fact, when I was projecting a slide that was exposed with that particular lens, one of the audience members remarked how clear the image looked. However, I wouldn't use extension tubes with a zoom lens. If I ever get my hands on a Switar zoom, any compatibility problems should hopefully be detectable in the initial test film.
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#15 Leo Anthony Vale

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 02:53 PM

Ok so if non RX lenses work fine - then what are RX lenses for ? More marketing hoohah ?


here's another link with a paillard/kern paper on the mysterious Rex Prismus:

http://www.city-net....olex/truth.html

Basically the same as your link, Rx lenses are corrected for prism related spherical abberations at wide appertures. Both state the abberations are minimised or disappear at small apertures.
Yours says at what apperture depends on the lens, while this one syas f/3.3 is safe.

The 17-85 Compact Pan Cinor is f/3.8, the 12-120 Hunting Pan Cinor is f/3.3 & the 17-85 Switar is f/3.5.
So unlike an f/1.4 or an f/1.8 there's no need for them to be rexisized.
Too bad that term isn't in the Scrabble dictionary.
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#16 Ian Marks

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 03:38 PM

The 17-85 Compact Pan Cinor is f/3.8, the 12-120 Hunting Pan Cinor is f/3.3 & the 17-85 Switar is f/3.5.
So unlike an f/1.4 or an f/1.8 there's no need for them to be rexisized.
Too bad that term isn't in the Scrabble dictionary.


Amen to that.

BTW, and a little off-topic, I've also seen a few 10mm Switars marked "DV" instead of "AR" or "RX." My understanding is that was an early designation for Rex-compatible lenses, and that these lenses were the same as those marked "RX."
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#17 Nick Mulder

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 05:30 PM

Amen to that.

BTW, and a little off-topic, I've also seen a few 10mm Switars marked "DV" instead of "AR" or "RX." My understanding is that was an early designation for Rex-compatible lenses, and that these lenses were the same as those marked "RX."


Deep thread ? D-mount ? no idea ... got any pics or links ?
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#18 Ian Marks

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 11:15 PM

Deep thread ? D-mount ? no idea ... got any pics or links ?


Nope... identical to a regular 10mm Switar RX, except for the designation, if my memory is any good. Surely there's a Bolex guru here who could comment? Clive?
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#19 Clive Tobin

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Posted 20 June 2007 - 09:42 PM

Nope... identical to a regular 10mm Switar RX, except for the designation, if my memory is any good. Surely there's a Bolex guru here who could comment? Clive?

Sorry, this is new to me. I know some other lenses (25mm?) were double duty and would work on RX or C cameras, but I don't recall how they were marked.
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#20 Michael Tisdale

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 09:36 AM

BTW, and a little off-topic, I've also seen a few 10mm Switars marked "DV" instead of "AR" or "RX." My understanding is that was an early designation for Rex-compatible lenses, and that these lenses were the same as those marked "RX."


RX, of course means "Reflex" but DV was also a designation for some of the very first reflex Kern lenses; it simply means "Direct View" which was an early marketing term for the Bolex reflex prism system according to Bolex literature. So, yes a 10mm Switar DV and 10mm Switar RX are the same lens.

You probably won't come across many of the Kern lenses marked "DV" though, as they seem to have only been inscribed with those letters for a short time after being introduced, and (for some unknown reason) were predominately marketed in the UK.

Incidentally, in the United States, the Pan Cinor 10-30mm was sometimes labeled or marketed as the "30 DV" or "Pan Cinor Direct View" around the same time as the introduction of the H16 Reflex. But, this is a D-mount lens and the DV in this case referred only to the built-in viewfinder.

Whatever the marketing term, any Kern-Paillard lens marked "DV" in red letters should be understood as being a "RX" mount lens.


Oh, and "AR" stands for "Anti-Reflective" coating. All Kern lenses are coated, whether they're D mount, C mount or "RX mount." According to Kern history, they were the first company to introduce anti-reflective coating on motion picture lenses (approx. 1944.)
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