Jump to content
Michael Schroers

Astro Berlin lenses

Recommended Posts



I just want to ask, what's so special about Astro Berlin lenses, like for example the Gauss-Tachar lenses.


Is there any especialness (look, quality etc) ?


Or are they so expensive, because they are very rare ?




Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Probably because they made pretty fast lenses in long focal lengths, and savvy ebay sellers realise there's a whole swag of digital shooters out there just begging to get fleeced while looking for an ultra shallow depth of field vintage lens edge in order to stand out. :)


I've been hunting around for old D and C mount lenses to test out and I noticed the prices on 1930s era Dr Rudolph Meyer Kino-Plasmats were just astronomical - one nitwit in Hong Kong is asking $13,000 for one! Check it out:




They pop up regularly so I don't think they're that rare, but they were quite a sensation back in the day because an aperture of f1.5 was unheard of. So when an old cameraman I know dug one out of his basement for me (in quite good condition) I was curious to throw it up on projection. Needless to say, it looked a bit like a 60s lens with less contrast and more abberations. Fun to play around with maybe, but certainly not worth hundreds, let alone thousands.


I'm not saying vintage lenses can't produce beautiful images, but the idea that ancient optics might have some secret recipe that will unleash masterpieces and so be worth paying a fortune for is a fallacy. The whole point of using older glass should be that it's affordable!

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Dom, if you've got one, go ahead and sell it for thousands. If the buyers are paying that much, let them. There's absolutely nothing wrong with you making a profit in the sub-prime lens market.... ;-)





-- J.S.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Does anybody know a company with the shortname LLC? The only rehoused Astro Lens for todays use that I’ve found in the internet was the 40mm Pan Tachar T2,0 with LLC engraved onto the housing.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

LLC ain’t a firm name, it stands for limited liability company. Else it could mean looks lathel cool. Don’t know.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Simon,

thanks for your inspiration but Limited Liability Company was not the magic name that I did expect for a lens manufacturer. In the end the third possibility is ... as I found out in the meantime ... LLC stands for London Lens Company & it’s a small collective of UK Dops and the Pan Tachar was made for them as a one-off design.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Broadcast Solutions Inc

    Serious Gear

    Metropolis Post

    FJS International

    Just Cinema Gear

    Ritter Battery

    Abel Cine



    G-Force Grips

    Visual Products

    Wooden Camera

    Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

    New Pro Video - New and Used Equipment

    Gamma Ray Digital Inc

    Rig Wheels Passport

    The Original Slider

    Tai Audio

    Paralinx LLC

    Cinematography Books and Gear
  • Create New...