B&W contrast filters for beseler 45 mcrx enlarger

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Hi, am new to the darkroom, just beginning. Have a beseler 45mcrx enlarger but need to locate a set of filters of the appropriate size. The manual states they are 2 1/4" to 2 3/8 " square. B&H doesn't list this size and I performed a search w/o results. The filters go between the condenser and lens. I have a set of filters that are too large {I would trim to fit} but they appear too thin to fit the filter holder and would probably warp due to the heat of the enlarger bulb. Have seen the appropriate set but wasn't able to purchase them with the enlarger. Any suggestions/ sources. Thanks, Lloyd T.

-- Lloyd Thurnau (ar15m@softdisk.com), October 09, 1999


My answer will bring a slew of responses from "authorities," but here it is. Get yourself the set of Kodak filters that go below the lens. They are by far the easiest and most adaptable to use. You can change them without disturbing the enlarger, and the mount fits any lens. They are also much thinner in density than most others. I gain a full stop over the Oriental ones I bought to put in the filter tray. People theorize that a filter below the lens is not as good as one in the light path, but they make no difference whatever. You won't lose any sharpness or degrade the image. But, I bet someone will tell you you need a very fancy, complicated version that's a pain to use.

-- Chris Wray (cpwray@hotmail.com), October 11, 1999.

Hello again, have since tried the Ilford MC contrast filters, above the lens, and have run into no problems with unsharp images due to heat warping of the filter. I had to trim them to fit using only a pair of scissors, with no problems. I understand that with time light may alter the contrast given by these filters but I haven't noticed this, possibly due to my acute inexperience. I recheck focus after replacing a given filter with another and have noticed no problem. I never need to adjust focus after pulling out the filter tray to change filters for dodging/burning or whatever. Did not try the below the lens filters so can't comment on those. For a newbie my Beseler 4X5 MCRX is very easy to use and change between formats...ie., 35mm to 4X5. Hope this information helps. Lloyd Thurnau.

-- Lloyd Thurnau (ar15m@softdisk.com), January 14, 2000.

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