Go Back   Rangefinderforum.com > Cameras / Gear / Photography > Classic Film RangeFinders & Other Classics > Kodak Retina and Ektra Rangefinders

Kodak Retina and Ektra Rangefinders This forum is for 35mm Kodak Retinas and Ektras rangefinders. The Retinas are known for their German engineering, relatively modest price and superb lenses. The Ektras are known as by far the finest 35mm American made rangefinder ever made.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes

Retina lens question
Old 01-17-2007   #1
bkrystad
Registered User
 
bkrystad's Avatar
 
bkrystad is offline
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Seattle, Washington
Posts: 117
Retina lens question

I'm new to classic rangefinders, and I'm definitely hooked. I've been working with a Retina IIa that I have to return under 60-day warranty (cocking lever and rewind release button problems) but I'm not cured. I'm looking for another.

I'm trying to decide between the IIa and the IIc. My question has to do with the switch from the f2/50 Xenon lens on the IIa to the f2.8/50 Xenar lens on the IIc.

I _love_ the results from the Xenon, but I'm drawn to the build of the IIc. What I'm concerned about is that the optics were compromised in some way in the switch to the interchangable Xenar configuration on the IIc/IIIc models, and may have lost some of the quality of the fixed lens Xenon.

Anyone had enough experience with both lenses to comment? Or is it too fine a distinction to care? Example photos to compare?

[MOVED 01/18 -- Sorry, new here, I think this should have been on the "35mm,other" forum from the start.]

Last edited by bkrystad : 01-18-2007 at 16:37.
  Reply With Quote

Classic Tessar
Old 01-17-2007   #2
FPjohn
Registered User
 
FPjohn's Avatar
 
FPjohn is offline
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Brunswick, Canada
Posts: 1,617
Classic Tessar

Hello:

Retinas with a Xenar are using a classic Tessar design which gives up a little in edge sharpness for a characteristic plastic look. Later Retinas, IIIc etc , used limited aperture Xenons at f2.8. It is perhaps a matter of taste rather than quality in choosing between the two.

yours
Frank

Last edited by FPjohn : 01-17-2007 at 11:10. Reason: correction
  Reply With Quote

Old 01-17-2007   #3
drewbarb
picnic like it's 1999
 
drewbarb's Avatar
 
drewbarb is offline
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 1,418
I inherited a IIIc which has a 50mm Xenon f2. The camera is beautifully designed, and it seems more robust and reliable than the II's I've handled. Mine is still going strong, and while it could use a cleaning, still functions perfectly, except for the selenium meter which died maybe five years ago. Maybe you can find one of these, and not have to give up the faster Xenon lens at all?

Edit: I forgot to mention that my IIIc has the interchangable lenses, and I've alwats been quite pleased with the performance of all the front cells. I have a 35mm and an 85mm, as well as the 50mm. All three perform very well, althoguh I have never performed serious careful tests. Under regular shooting, I have been very pleased with all the lenses, especially the 50mm and 85mm, even wide open. The 35mm wide open is a touch soft at the edges, but not unpleasantly so, and closing down one stop helps this. I have never compared my results to any of the older Retinas, however.

Last edited by drewbarb : 01-17-2007 at 11:41.
  Reply With Quote

Old 01-17-2007   #4
bkrystad
Registered User
 
bkrystad's Avatar
 
bkrystad is offline
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Seattle, Washington
Posts: 117
Sorry about the Xenar reference in my original post. I should have said Xenon C (red C), which is indicated on the interchangable lenses on the IIc and IIIc. Told you I was new!
  Reply With Quote

Old 01-17-2007   #5
dazedgonebye
Registered User
 
dazedgonebye's Avatar
 
dazedgonebye is offline
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Arizona
Age: 57
Posts: 3,927
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkrystad
Sorry about the Xenar reference in my original post. I should have said Xenon C (red C), which is indicated on the interchangable lenses on the IIc and IIIc. Told you I was new!
Ok...I feel better. I was looking for Xenar info on the IIC and could not find it.

That said, I have nothing solid to add because I've never shot the IIC.
Ok, I'll add something anyway.

Get another IIa. It's sweet and the size is perfect (heavy though it is).
I haven't heard much good about the wide and tele interchangeable lenses for the C series cameras. Perhaps someone here can contradict me on that one.
__________________
Steve

"And I know now that the cure for my childhood was not to be looked after, as I once believed; it was to look after someone else." ~Philip Norman

Photography Blog
Flickr
Twitter
  Reply With Quote

Retina lla or llc
Old 01-20-2007   #6
leica M2 fan
Registered User
 
leica M2 fan's Avatar
 
leica M2 fan is offline
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: NorCal
Age: 82
Posts: 19,021
Retina lla or llc

I own both and enjoy them equally. The lla feels smaller and the lens is absolutely great. It is a great shooter. The llc has a bottom film advance which doesn't slow me down at all. I kinda like it. Also, the llc has the EV system that a lot of people don't like, but there is a workaround on it to uncouple it. I don't mind using the EV at all. The llc is a nicer looking camera in my opinion. The f2 is a wonderful lens and the f2.8 is also. Personally I prefer the 2.8. Mind you, I have never shot either one wide open, I'm usually at 5.6, 8 or 11. Hope this helps. Either one is a great choice. The llc is probably more robust as far as the winding and cocking mechanism.
__________________
Good Light and Good Luck (thanks to Edward R Murrow)


TONY
Leica M2 l Nikon D 700 l Sony A7 I

MyGallery
  Reply With Quote

Old 01-20-2007   #7
VictorM.
Registered User
 
VictorM.'s Avatar
 
VictorM. is offline
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Toronto
Age: 72
Posts: 1,668
I have both and it is difficult to chose between them. The IIc usually gets taken out because it's easier to hold and the lens is less likely to flare. My IIc is a user condition camera I bought as a parts/repair camera. The pictures are from a couple of days ago, when the temperature was low enough to freeze the old grease on the rewind shaft and tear the film. All of the pictures have been cropped, resized and compressed using Irfanview.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Glove.jpg (68.0 KB, 70 views)
File Type: jpg Tower.jpg (86.8 KB, 88 views)
File Type: jpg lunch2.jpg (86.6 KB, 67 views)
  Reply With Quote

Old 01-20-2007   #8
bkrystad
Registered User
 
bkrystad's Avatar
 
bkrystad is offline
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Seattle, Washington
Posts: 117
Thanks for the insights, everyone. I'll get another IIa to replace the previous one, and wait while my father and I work on getting his IIIc in good repair. (He picked it up in Stuttgart during the service and used it for 20 years until the cocking rack stripped, then he stored it.) With both cameras in the family, we can do our own comparisons as well. I'll try to post the results in future.
  Reply With Quote

Old 01-20-2007   #9
JCT
Registered User
 
JCT is offline
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 144
I'll just add that my first rangefinder was a IIc -- I was truly startled at the quality of the pictures when I developed my first roll. It's quite a robust camera and I like the film advance position on the base though it was a bit odd at first.

Notice that I said "first" rangefinder -- now I own an M3 and just picked up a Canonet QL17 G-III. So beware-- it seems that it is difficult to only own one.

JT
  Reply With Quote

Old 01-25-2007   #10
Letien
Registered User
 
Letien is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 105
I have been using rangefinders for many years but I was very impressed when discovered Retina. I just have an IIa and an IIIc recently. Only got one roll through the IIa. It's a wonderful camera and lens. As a camera, I like the IIa better than IIIc because the top winding level and the compactness. I will find out if the IIIc with color correction lens give me better result. Definitely, I like to have both. I thought about an IIc too, but I prefer the 2.0 lens on IIIc.
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Fed 3 with lens question colyn FSU Former Soviet Union RF 4 07-29-2006 17:08
question re: using Bessar R w/ 85mm lens Warren T. Voigtlander Bessa Leica Mount Cameras 14 03-02-2006 19:32
Question on Rangefinder Lens Focal Length V0IGTLANDER Rangefinder Photography Discussion 2 03-11-2005 00:09
Newbie question about Leica Lens Designer Leica M Film Cameras 5 07-27-2004 19:59
Mamiya 7II lens question rickruss 120 / 220 film RF's 3 09-23-2003 11:36



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 02:39.


vBulletin skin developed by: eXtremepixels
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

All content on this site is Copyright Protected and owned by its respective owner. You may link to content on this site but you may not reproduce any of it in whole or part without written consent from its owner.