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  #1  
Old 21st June 2022, 08:23 PM
Nat Polton Nat Polton is offline
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Default El Nikkor or El Nikkor N Enlerger lens.

I have been looking at El Nikkor 105mm enlarger lenses on
The Big list of Enlarging Lenses, Photo Cornucopia.

There are three versions including the Apo, but this is probably beyond my wallet.

The Big List Of Enlarging Lenses details the other two as

El Nikkor 105mm f5.6 - f45 6 elements in 4 groups

El Nikkor 105mm N f5.6 - f32 6 elements in 4 groups

Apart from the difference in smallest apertures are there any other differences between the N and the other?

I have had no luck trawling the internet for any useful information about these two lenses, apart from macro sites saying they are jolly good on the end of a set of bellows.

Does anybody have any experience of these lenses or information.

Cheers.
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Old 21st June 2022, 10:11 PM
John King John King is offline
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I have only used the shorter focal length lenses 50mm and 80mm and they were both superb. I use an APO Rodagon 50mm which is possibly a gnats whisker better than the Nikon 50, but have never heard of Nikon making an APO enlarging lens in any focal length.
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Old 21st June 2022, 10:14 PM
Stocky Stocky is offline
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I remember reading that there was a Nikkor enlarging lens of stupendous quality that is rare and commands prices in multi 1000s.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 06:23 AM
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Extract form the Ctein book in his table of enlarging lenses.
"Nikon
Apo El-Nikkor 105mm f/5.6N
Most perfectly made lens and priced accordingly. No detectable aberrations of any type, no decentering. Good contrast at f/5.6. Sharpness not quite as high at optimum aperture as lenses with f/4 optimums because of diffraction. Same performance at 5X. The only true Apo lens. NOTE: Also qualifies in 120 format category."

If they can be found they do seem to be highly priced.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 12:15 PM
Nat Polton Nat Polton is offline
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Ctein skipped my memory I will have a look there.

The Big List Of Enlarging lenses has the APO down for 8 elements in 4 groups.

8 elements = more glass + more expense.

I include the link to The Big List again. I find it very useful when window shopping, but this shopping trip is for real.

https://www.photocornucopia.com/inde...larging%20Lens


Thank you all very interesting.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 04:57 PM
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B&W Neil B&W Neil is offline
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I have been using an EL-NIKKOR 105mm 5.6 lens for my 6x9 negs for quite a few years now without any issues / concerns at all. In fact most of my enlarging lensres are EL-Nikkors.

If you are about to buy one just make sure the optics are in decent condition and it looks not too used. Mine would have come from Japan and of course there would have been import taxes to pay but I don't mind paying for a top spec optic in great condition - after all - it's an investment ;-)

Neil.
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Last edited by B&W Neil; 22nd June 2022 at 05:00 PM.
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  #7  
Old 22nd June 2022, 07:55 PM
John King John King is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill View Post
Extract form the Ctein book in his table of enlarging lenses.
"Nikon
Apo El-Nikkor 105mm f/5.6N
Most perfectly made lens and priced accordingly. No detectable aberrations of any type, no decentering. Good contrast at f/5.6. Sharpness not quite as high at optimum aperture as lenses with f/4 optimums because of diffraction. Same performance at 5X. The only true Apo lens. NOTE: Also qualifies in 120 format category."

If they can be found they do seem to be highly priced.
I stand corrected about there not being an APO Nikko EL. But the largest film format I use is 120.
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Old 22nd June 2022, 08:16 PM
alexmuir alexmuir is offline
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If you have a suitable enlarger, it can sometimes produce better results using a longer than normal lens for enlarging a particular format. I知 sure I値l be corrected if I知 wrong, but I believe you can achieve better quality as you are using the centre of the lens. I produced good results enlarging 6x6 negatives with a 135mm Rodagon. I was using a 4x5 enlarger with a fairly tall column.
Some of the best 35mm prints I have made used the El-Nikkor 50mm f2.8N, so I would expect the other lenses in the series to be top quality.
Alex


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  #9  
Old 22nd June 2022, 10:13 PM
Stocky Stocky is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexmuir View Post
If you have a suitable enlarger, it can sometimes produce better results using a longer than normal lens for enlarging a particular format. I知 sure I値l be corrected if I知 wrong, but I believe you can achieve better quality as you are using the centre of the lens. I produced good results enlarging 6x6 negatives with a 135mm Rodagon. I was using a 4x5 enlarger with a fairly tall column.
Some of the best 35mm prints I have made used the El-Nikkor 50mm f2.8N, so I would expect the other lenses in the series to be top quality.
Alex


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and at least theoretically speaking, the longer lens will have less light falloff at the frame edge, meaning more uniform illumination and less edge burning.
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  #10  
Old 23rd June 2022, 12:12 PM
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Martin Aislabie Martin Aislabie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stocky View Post
and at least theoretically speaking, the longer lens will have less light falloff at the frame edge, meaning more uniform illumination and less edge burning.
All this is true - however, the taking lens will also suffer from light fall off towards the edge of the frame.

The problem of light fall off is particularly true for wide/very wide angle lenses - large format wide angle lenses had centre filters available, even if the prices are rather high.

The X-Pan had a Centre Filter for the 30 mm.

So, the light fall off issue can be something of a red hearing/non-issue.

If you are using a longer than normal enlarging lens, it is important that you mask the unused negative area within the negative mask - all that excess white light bouncing around is bound to produce some level of internal flare. Even the very best lenses suffer from flare - even if their flare suppression reduces the problem to almost immeasurable levels.

Martin
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