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Voigtlander Heliar lens the ones from the late 1800-1900

Lenses & Lens Accessories - www.largeformatphotography.info
I take landscapes, night scapes of cities/bldgs, some portraits, some close-up work, flowers, gadgets, etc Eventually will try old school astrophotography

I am looking at buying one or two of these for my 4x5 (and 8x10 if I start liking portraits and such). From the research I have done, reading on the patents, visiting the Kenneth Lee Gallery website and some others, the images for portraits and other objects appear to be really good. (I am not sure how well it would work for landscapes though) Anyway, from what I can tell unless I am missing something, there is a diaphragm which I really like is it is practically round at any aperture, but not "shutter" so, if I am seeing this correctly, one would have to determine the length of exposure for given aperture, then manually expose the film by using a lens cap or dark cloth to uncover lens for required amount of time then cover back up.

If I wanted to convert one of these lenses to use an actual shutter to "automate" the exposure portion, what are my options? One of the reasons I want to use this lens and similar types is the absolutely round diaphragm of these lenses. I wish the more modern ones that I use for landscapes had round diaphragms. I wonder if it is possible to convert a modern lens to accept a diaphragm that provides for round apertures.

Aside from the old Voigtlander Heliar designs, #3A and up, what are other lenses of this era that are comparable or better? The scientific lens company, Bausch and Laumb, Wallensack are some I have run across that for the most part have decent reviews and round diaphragms.

I saw one guys website where he was selling lenses for like 30K for old school ones and his photos for like 100K plus, so unless those lenses are made of pure gold, etc, I don't think I will be buying those lenses anytime soon, they cost as much as the 2.7 acres of land I am looking at!

Thanks for any help


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