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View Full Version : Actual examples of usingi the wide and tele in the IIIc?


julio1fer
06-14-2015, 08:32
Sorry for the typo in the title, it should read "using".

I just got locally a IIIc with Xenon and with the Schneider Curtagon and Longar, as well as the auxiliary finder and incident light cover for the meter (although the meter is dead). The top of the body has lots of chrome loss, but the lenses are pristine and the operation is smooth. I hope to post pictures after the camera comes back from the standard CLA with my technician.

Besides this one I have a IIIc with Heligon, but only the nornal (excellent) lens. I know that I cannot use the Schneider auxiliary wide and tele lenses with my other IIIc.

When trying the camera operation, I was surprised at the complexity of it all. The RF is not synchronized with the auxiliary lenses, and the scale distances in the auxiliary lenses are at the bottom, quite inconvenient and awfully slow shooting. The good point is the tiny size of the 35mm Curtagon. The Longar makes for a very impressive display. The viewfinder is so-so but works. Of course you must keep the camera open when using the wide or tele.

This is probably the most cumbersome RF camera system ever made. I wonder if people really used the auxiliary lenses. Do you know of any pro that did?

And more important, how good are the Curtagon and Longar in the Schneider version? I plan to test them myself soon, but in the meantime, do you have examples of their good use?

Thanks for any comment.

JPD
06-15-2015, 01:53
I have two IIc with both lenses in 2,8, and the Heligon is sharper than the Xenon, but it could be due to sample variation. And the difference between the Curtar/Longar and Heligon-C 35/80 is the same, the Heligons are sharper. I suspect that the rear cell of the Xenon isn't the best on my camera. Maybe yours is better.

Stop down a stop or two, and I think you will find that the Curtar and Longar will perform about the same as the 50mm. The 35mm will vingette a little in the corners, but it's not that bad.

I haven't used them for "real" photography yet, but I have some quick test shots on my flickr page. But remember that your Xenon may be better than mine: http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

Rob-F
06-15-2015, 03:54
This is probably the most cumbersome RF camera system ever made. I wonder if people really used the auxiliary lenses. Do you know of any pro that did?
Thanks for any comment.

I guess the IIIc when used together with the lenses you mention is not really much of a "system." If it were me, I would get rid of the funny lenses that don't work well with the IIIc, and get maybe a 90mm f/4 Elmar for the long lens. For the wide end, I use a 35mm/2.5 CV, and a 28/3.5 CV. Both are rangefinder coupled. For a legacy wide angle, you could try a 35mm Elmar or Summaron. The IIIc is great. Your frustration :bang: comes form using lenses that are not part of the Leica system.

julio1fer
06-15-2015, 18:04
Thanks for the comparison of lenses. JPD. Nice exercise and very decent results! I'll try something like this when I get the camera and lenses back.

There may be variations in lenses and mount tolerances between these samples. Doing three focal distances with a common back element set is a significant restriction for design. I would not expect the Schneider and Heligon sets to be much different in average quality.

It seems that the Heligon set is rarer than the Schneider. Maybe it was Kodak's second source, and if so maybe they tried harder than Schneider. I know my Heligon is very good.

Rob-F, thanks for your lens comments, but my post was about the Kodak Retina IIIc, not the better known, L-named IIIc.

Dwig
06-16-2015, 05:23
...
It seems that the Heligon set is rarer than the Schneider. Maybe it was Kodak's second source, and if so maybe they tried harder than Schneider. I know my Heligon is very good. ....

If memory serves, for most (all??) of the post-war Retina production only the Schneider lensed variants were sold in the US. Both lenses were offered in Europe. This would account for the larger number of Schneider lensed versions.

JPD
06-16-2015, 06:21
Thanks for the comparison of lenses. JPD. Nice exercise and very decent results! I'll try something like this when I get the camera and lenses back.

There may be variations in lenses and mount tolerances between these samples. Doing three focal distances with a common back element set is a significant restriction for design. I would not expect the Schneider and Heligon sets to be much different in average quality.

Yes, both Kodak and most users say that the image quality should be the same, and I believe them too. I may get another IIc (or IIIc) with Xenon someday.

When you test the lenses, please post the results here on RFF. They don't have to be scientific. :)

It seems that the Heligon set is rarer than the Schneider. Maybe it was Kodak's second source, and if so maybe they tried harder than Schneider. I know my Heligon is very good.

And Dwig is right, both lenses were offered in Europe. If you buy the wide and tele Heligon C from Europe, it shouldn't matter if they have the scales in Meters, since they only are DOF scales. You use the camera's scales to focus anyway.