Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/07/28

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Subject: Re: [Leica] OT-Large format lens & shutter
From: Rob McElroy <>
Date: Sat, 28 Jul 2001 13:07:53 -0400
References: <>


Don't worry about the very slight yellow cast from the Xenotar. It most likely came from the factory that way, due to Schneider's choice of one or
more of the elements used in its 1950's design.  I doubt whether there has been, or will be, any color change to the elements unless you are having a
problem with the cement used to glue elements together. My 150/2.8 also has a slight warmth to it when compared to current Nikon, Schneider, or
Rodenstock offerings.  If you want to look through a VERY warm (yellowish) lens, look at any of the Voigtlander Apo-Lanthar lenses from the 1950's and
60's.  The glass they used was inherently warm and incredibly sharp!  I have both the 150 and 210mm.  The effect is quite pleasing, especially when
shooting skin tones, and I would only consider it a problem if I were shooting transparencies under controlled color temperature lighting of white or
grey objects, where accurate neutral tones were an absolute necessity.

As a side note, the lens performance of the Xenotar at f2.8 is not stellar, but then again, it is 2.8!  By stopping down just one stop to f4.0, the
detail sharpness increases quite dramatically, and you are still a stop faster than most 150mm lens.

Shoot and enjoy.  I do.

Warm Regards,
Rob McElroy
Buffalo, NY

Charles Harris wrote:

> I just got a Schneider Xenotar 150mm 2.8 lens for my Linhof. Fast! Bright!
> Very cool. Warm actually. That's the thing, while the glass is very clean
> and blemish free, it's rather yellow in color. I ran some E6 to see exactly
> how it will render on film, but I won't see it till Monday. I don't mind a
> bit of warmth so if the color is pleasant I won't be too concerned about
> that aspect. However, I am concerned about it's long term affect. Such as
> resale or a continued yellowing of the lens. Can any of you optical gurus
> tell me about yellowing? What causes it? Age I presume. What harmful effects
> may it have? Will it get worse? Etc. I have a two week return period, should
> I consider sending it back? Again, if the film test isn't hideous, I don't
> mind a bit of extra warmth.
> According to the serial # and Schneider's web site, the lens is from around
> 1955! Original leather lens caps and case. I'm not so fond of the shutter,
> an old Compur. What's the story with Prontor shutters? From what I've seen,
> they seem to be the answer to someone like me that can hardly remember to
> open, close, cock, set aperture, and all those other annoying view camera
> operations. I'm spoiled by the M6, it's a tiny bit easier. Any shutter info
> would be great.
> >From what I've seen so far, the bokeh is great. Imagine 2.8 on a 4x5, very
> lucious OOF area. Creamy smooth. Exceptionally bright ground glass viewing.
> charles h

In reply to: Message from Charles Harris <> ([Leica] OT-Large format lens & shutter)