Posted 09 August 2017 - 07:51 AM
that lens is in the older Mitchell or Newall (a British Mitchell clone) mount, basically a plate with the outer helical that screwed on to the camera turret with 4 screws. It's the sort of mount used on NC Mitchells, the ones with a 4 lens turret (a derivative of the classic Bell and Howell 2709 camera that was the granddaddy of studio motion picture cameras). Very old school, and dates the lens to probably the 40s or 50s. Mitchell introduced their BNC mount (for the blimped NC) in the 60s which was a very sturdy flanged type of mount with a lock ring, that led directly to the PL mount of today.
There were several iterations of Cooke Speed Panchros from their invention in the 20s to their final manufacture in the 60s (I don't think they were made into the 70s, but could be wrong), and during that time they were made in various mounts for many different cameras.
The ones favoured for use these days and best for re-housing are the later series II and for the 18 and 25mm series III, which I believe date from the mid fifties on. There's a bit of confusion about the dating because the Cooke website has a history page which gives some dubious dates, but from what I've researched the series II and III lenses are mid 50s to 60s and usually have serial numbers in the 6xxxx to 7xxxx region. They usually come in Arri Standard, Mitchell BNC, or Cameflex mount, rather than those older mounts.
So I would say the lenses that seller in India has are series I (despite the label) and certainly not worth several thousand dollars. The optical quality is not as good as the series II and III.
Speed Panchros are very expensive these days because of the demand for re-housing, so you're buying into a bit of a bullish market. Ten years ago a full set might have sold for a few thousand, now that's what you pay for a single lens. Without rehousing, they can be hard to use with their small barrels and tiny marks, and if there is wear in the focus helical it can produce image shift and make accurate focus pulling tricky. Internal dust, spots and coating scratches can add softness and accentuate the lowish contrast so be prepared for a different look to modern lenses. But having said that, these lenses have been used on countless films, including now a number of modern classics like Mr Turner and The Witch (rehoused versions these days).
Some focal lengths have a definite colour cast due to the glass composition (not the coatings or the Canada balsam glue), which according to P&S Technik can be reduced through a heat treatment process, but it's not hard to white balance it out in camera.
Because of the rear protrusion, not all of the focal lengths could be converted to EF mount, but I imagine some of the longer focal lengths could be done. It would need machining and optical experience, so not that cheap.
You could rent a set of rehoused Speed Panchros for a weekend to try them out, but you'd need a PL camera.
Cooke are currently releasing a newly manufactured batch of the original Speed Panchro lens formula with modern focus mechanics and mount options that include Micro 4/3 and Sony E, so that may be a better option, although they won't be all that cheap either (and I'm guessing there's already a very very long delivery time).