Which enlarger is best?

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Minox Photography : One Thread

I am planning to build my own dark room. Due my own developing and film processing. Commercial processing for the Minox 8X11 format is getting too cost prohibitive for me. I will probably just due B&W processing, at least at first. Maybe, later graduate to color (although I due possess a passion for B&W). In any case, I have several opportunities to purchase Minox enlargers (models II & III)or a Beseler 45 or an Omega D-22. With the exception of the Minox, the others I will have to buy the enlarging lens and negative carriers seperately. For the Minox I will be paying around $200, for the Beseler and Omega, once I purchase the enlarging lens and negative carrier, probabaly the same amount, maybe a little less. Question, which one would suit me better. I doubt very much if I will be enlarging anything greater than 8X10", at least I havn't yet. My standard prints are typically 3= X5" or 4X6". I have been making a lot of enquiries with regards to the enlarging lenses available to me, and their compadibilty with either the Beseler and Omega. Anyone with an opinion and some reasons why I should pick one over the other?

-- John Westbrook (j3westbrook@earthlink.net), April 22, 1999


Minox enlarger II,III are for B&W enlargement; althoug there is Minox color enlarger, but very hard to find and quite expensive, a much sought after collector item. So if you plan to do both BW and color Minox enlarging, you may either go with Beseler or Omega, and hunt for enlarging lens with focal length about 25mm or shorter, and a 8x11 carrier.

See thread "Source for enlarging lens" for using microfilm projection lens as 8x11 enlarging lens. You may be able to find all kinds of color enlarging lens from eBay. Last year I bought a 1:2.8/20mm lens from eBay for about $15 from a guy in Germany, I think this made in Munich lens is probably good for 4x6" to 5x7".

For B&W enlarging, Minox enlarger II is ideal, it is easy to find, you may be able to get a Minox enlarger II with lens for about $200 or less. It has a very efficient illuminations system, very sharp Minox enlarging lens( a new Minox enlarger lens would cost about $500 alone ) .

8x11 carrier for other enlarger is hard to find, it shows up from time to time at Swap meet or ebay; check the SWAP MEET section of SUBCLUB for it.

If you have to use a 35mm enlarger, Omega is better then Beseler for Minox 8x11

-- martin tai (martin.tai@capcanada.con), April 23, 1999.

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