Hello again, Kickstarters!
I'm Denys Ivanichek and I'd like to welcome you to my second Kickstarter project. My first project was for the Petzvar 3.8/120, a medium format lens, which was successfully funded in December 2013. With the support of our original project backers we made our first batch of these unique pictorial lenses.
I'm back this time to fund the creation of the 2nd generation Petzvar lens - the Petzvar 4/120, which incorporates a leaf shutter and is being made specifically for Hasselblad 500 series cameras.
As it's still a standard Hasselblad V-mount, the 2nd generation Petzvar can still be mounted and used on 200 and 2000 series bodies!
What is the Petzvar?
As I described in my first project description, the Petzvar lens uses a genuine Petzval scheme: two achromatic groups of elements. This classic design has not been redesigned, or improved and it retains the design's inherent flaws and imperfections - we prefer to call this character. The Petzvar lens was designed primarily as a portraiture lens, but it can be used as a pictorial lens for landscape photography as well, as stopping down reduces the Petzval design's inherent wide-open charachteristics, while increasing contrast and sharpness. The optical configuration of the Peztvar 120 is exactly the same as one you probably have seen already on antique drawings like this one:
Years ago, when I was building my first lens prototypes, my goal wasn't to pursue the creation of the sharpest lens ever made. No, I wanted to create a lens completely different from the modern lenses we see from any number of manufacturers today.
I wanted to create a lens that would produce an image resembling the kinds of images we saw in the first years of photographic era. I wanted to produce a lens that would be unique for our time.
It is for that reason that I originally chose the Petzval design and continue to use it for the 2nd generation lens.
By today's standards, this primitive design can't compete with or be compared with modern lenses in any respect. It has lots of known optical flaws, which are corrected in the contemporary lens schemes.
But it's those imperfections which are exactly what makes the Petzvar such a fun lens to use. It creates a feeling completely missing from lenses designed today, it is unpredictable and absolutely bursting with its own character.
The original Petzvar 120/3.8
The first generation Petzvar was available in two mounts: Pentacon Six and Hasselblad V. In addition, due to its lack of an in-lens shutter mechanism, it was limited to Hasselblad's 200/2000 series of cameras.
The Petzvar lens was designed primarily as a portraiture lens, but it can be used as a pictorial lens for landscape photography as well.
Although the first generation batch of Petzvar lenses have all now been shipped to backers, or sold, I have continued to receive requests from photographers all over the world asking if I still have any left for sale.
Each lens was hand-made by me from a limited source of custom made parts, but in order to satisfy these requests, I am about to start a limited production run of the first generation lens and offer them as rewards for pledges to this 2nd generation Petzvar project.
You can find out more about the first-generation Petzvar here:
The 2nd generation Petzvar 4/120 lens with central leaf shutter
The Hasselblad 500 series is still a weapon of choice for many professional and amateur photographers the world over. This legendary camera remains one of the most popular among medium format users. When the 1st generation Petzvar was introduced, I received numerous inquires regarding the Hasselblad V-Mount option. Specifically, people wanted to know about its compatibility with 500 series bodies, such as the 500C/M, 501C, 503CW, etc. The difficulty with making a custom lens for these cameras is the fact that they can only be reliably used with lenses equipped with an in-lens leaf shutter system. Considering the relatively low demand for such a special lens as the 1st generation Petzvar, building an entirely new custom shutter would have been prohibitively expensive and as a result, I had to make a choice to focus on Haselblad's 200/2000 series cameras, and those with a Pentacon 6 mount. Nearly two years have passed since the original project and following considerable research and extensive prototyping, I have created a new design, which repurposes EXISTING leaf shutter lenses for the purpose of creating a new 2nd generation Petzvar lens. This time, it's fully compatible with all Hasselblad V-Mount cameras ever made; 500, 200 and 2000 series alike.
The 2nd generation Petzvar shares the same optical design as the 1st but this time has been integrated with a Hasselblad Synchro-Compur leaf shutter mount, harvested from the famous C-generation lenses. Well researched readers will be aware that Hasselblad C lenses were built in very large numbers and to a very high quality from 1957 until 1970. With the cleaning, lubrication and adjustment (CLA) service, that each 2nd generation Petzvar will include as part of the build process, these lenses will continue to offer many decades more of excellent service.
Prior to construction, each lens' donor shutter and helicoid assembly will be completely disassembled and cleaned. Dried-out helicoid grease will be replaced with a new synthetic lubricant and the helicoid will be rebuilt. Each lens' shutter will undergo a comprehensive rebuild and calibration. Shutters will then be tested in order to ensure that every speed from Bulb through 1/500th of a second is accurate and reliable - no small feat. Finally, the donor mount, original rear assembly and a new front assembly will be sand blasted and anodized prior to being reassembled before final calibration and testing. The end result is a truly stunning lens, beautifully colour-matched in a chrome finish and mechanically perfect both inside and out.
More: 1st generation Petzvar 3.8/120 for Pentax 645 and Mamiya 645
There are many different types of adapters which allow the use of Pentacon 6 and Hasselblad mount lenses on Mamiya 645, Pentax 645 and Contax 645 medium format cameras.
In addition, adapters also exist to mount these lenses on Canon EF/FD, Nikon F, Minolta AF/MD, Contax/Yashica, Pentax K, M42, and Leica R 35 mm cameras...as well as Micro Four Thirds system cameras.
Naturally, the 2nd generation Petzvar lens can be mounted on a multitude of both, medium format and 135 cameras, just like the original lens.
Although all well and good, some of us don't like to mess around with adapters. Therefore, I will also be offering the first generation Petzvar 3.8/120 lens in two alternate mounts: for Pentax 645 and Mamiya 645 cameras as part of this campaign!
Why do I need your support?
Building a custom lens is time consuming and expensive. In order to make it an affordable proposition, the lens must be made in larger quantities. This is where this Kickstarter campaign comes in. Part of the tooling required for this project was funded by the first project and I'm happy to say that this is why my financing goal for the 2nd generation Petzvar is even less than previous project's goal. Specifically, the goal I have set for the 2nd generation lens will cover the tooling and build costs for the new lens. I can only guess how many people will be interested in my new generation Petzvar, or in an original Petzvar for 645 medium format cameras, but I believe that there is enough appettite to at least satisfy my modest funding goal.
Risks and challenges
There are always a risk of unforeseen supply issues, or delays involved with manufacture or shipping. I gained plenty of valuable experience whilst delivering my first Kickstarter project and have been realistic with the project milestones described in my pledge descriptions.
You can be certain that just like my first project, all rewards to project backers will be fulfilled and I will tirelessly work to deliver this incredibly exciting and totally unique lens to each and ever backer!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)