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Luigi Castellitto

Switar for H8

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I am referring to those who know the slightest difference between the products for Bolex H8.


Everyone knows the three famous C mount lenses for Bolex H8 reflex:


Switar 5.5mm f/1.6 H8 rx


Macro Switar 12.5mm f /1.3 H8 rx


Macro Switar 36mm f/1.4 H8 rx


But:


1) Do you know that the last two lens (12.5mm abd 36mm) exist ALSO NOT MACRO?

I ask because I see, in various market, that some report "Switar" on the lens, other "Macro Switar" on the lens, but I have never seen any differences. Unfortunately I never had it in my hand and I could not test it,


2) Is it true that 5.5mm exists ONLY NOT MACRO? Being a very wide angle...


Thank you!

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Ciao, Luigi

 

The lenses you mention were specifically designed for the H-8 Reflex and they exist in one form only, whether people forget to write RX or Macro or something. The wide-angle Switar wouldn’t need to have a macro facility because it takes quite a short extension for shorter conjugates with that short focal length. The 5,5 mm can be focused down to 11 cm and if you want to go closer with it, a shim washer or an extension ring will take you there. 11 cm can already be treated as macro.

 

The correct designations are

 

Kern-Paillard Macro Switar 12,5 mm, f/1.3 RX;

Kern-Paillard Macro Switar 36 mm, f/1.4 RX;

Kern-Paillard Switar 5,5 mm, f/1.6 RX.

 

The 12,5 is a wonderful lens, it derived from the 50 mm Macro Switar for the Alpa 35-mm. film SLR camera.

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Thank you, Simon.

about the words "macro switar" or only "switar", I was referring to the writing on the gray part of the lenses themselves. Can you confirm that also on the lenses tthe writing may vary (maybe for different years of production) and is it always macro? Not the 5.5mm, of course.
I have always used a Pan-Cinor 8-40mm 1.9 RX, a very good lens, but it does not have the macro and does not have a very wide angle (although I have a filter that allows me to reach up to a meter).
And even 1.9 maximum aperture, while Kern Switar lenses have larger apertures.
How are general qualities of these Switar compared to the Pan-Cinor 8-40mm 1.9 RX?

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You mean the aluminum rings, there are no grey parts. Obviously, the engravings got changed over time but from the red lacquer together with the extension you can tell it has the macro function. Please, don’t ask me when the changes occurred.

 

For the Pan-Cinor, it cannot hold up against the primes, especially in the shorter focal range. The thing is that we need the very best projection lenses, if we want to compare images from different taking objectives, and fine-grain films. I have Kodachrome II and Kodachrome 25 exposed behind these lenses, incomparable. There was a time when the Eastman-Kodak Company mastered a so-called cascade or cataract coating which resulted in the thinnest layers ever given to films. KM 25 has two separate layers for each primary colour, that is six distinct gelatine layers for RGB alone, plus a number of filter, subbing, and top coat layers. Together the package was not thicker than that of an ordinary black and white film. Kodachrome slides 24 × 36 and bigger exhibit a unique image quality primarily due to the thin layers. In short, try black and white positive (print) film to evaluate a lens’ performance. It’s got only one layer, a bit thicker for the maximum density of log 3 or so (enough silver stacked in space) but it is the most honest answer to the question.

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Yes, aluminium, sorry for my bad English, Simon.

I'll try to take these three lenses, and I'll test them with the proper films. Too bad for the Kodachrome end, but I have a pair of spare Ektachrome.
Do you know how the macro was active? How did the red band go out? By loosening? Pulling?

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So, for enter the macro "mode" function just pull the lens forward and the red band painted comes out? And for return in normal mode have to press in the opposite direction and the red band disappears?

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I found an image that shows that even the 36mm with the only written "Switar" has the red band.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Kern-Paillard-Switar-36mm-f1-4-H8-RX-C-Mount-lens-/252450426753?nma=true&si=kYYMpJv5ymMS4CWCjiQ9b0p6WsU%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

 

Sorry, Simon, without the lens in hand, I did not understand how to insert the macro function (from without red band to with red band).

 

 

 

P.S. How do I post pictures? I've seen the previous ones have been removed. Is not the external link good? I can'tfind the regulation.

Edited by Luigi Castellitto

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Ok, I bought the three lenses at a good price, waiting to test them.

 

P.S. The external link now are Ok.

Edited by Luigi Castellitto

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I think with Macro Switars the lens focus scale rotates twice, to extend the lens further out. During the second rotation the red section is revealed so you know you're in macro mode. I think that's right, been a while since I had my hands on a Macro Switar.

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Ok, lenses have arrived.

The Bolex is busy, for now I can not fit them, but I've seen that they are in excellent condition, not fungus, focus and iris smooth.
Only one thing: I've seen that in all three also turn the "base ring", the point in the red arrow of the image. It's normal? Is it necessary to place the lens upright as you want it?
Edit: Okay, I tried screwing one of lens at Bolex. Stay stop, okay. I thought it would serve to position the value scale up (for comfort) or as you want, I probably missed it.
Edited by Luigi Castellitto

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Hello I agree 

Macro Switar 12.5 f/1.3 H8 rx

is a great lens.

Unfortunately I don’t have cap, do you know where I can find one?

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10 hours ago, Franco Consales said:

Hello I agree 

Macro Switar 12.5 f/1.3 H8 rx

is a great lens.

Unfortunately I don’t have cap, do you know where I can find one?

There seem to be plenty on ebay.

  • Like 1

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13 hours ago, Mark Dunn said:

There seem to be plenty on ebay. 

Are you talking about the lens or the lens cap, which is what the OP asked about? 

I don’t see any lens caps for that lens on ebay.

lt might be easiest to measure the front diameter and find a generic clamp-on plastic cap that fits.

Jean-Louis Seguin might know the thread diameter and whether lens caps from other Kern lenses will also fit, you could PM hin.

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Dom Jaeger said:

Are you talking about the lens or the lens cap, which is what the OP asked about? 

I don’t see any lens caps for that lens on ebay.

lt might be easiest to measure the front diameter and find a generic clamp-on plastic cap that fits.

Jean-Louis Seguin might know the thread diameter and whether lens caps from other Kern lenses will also fit, you could PM hin.

Not this one? 32mm? Pricey though, I've made lens caps out of card before now.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Kern-Paillard-Bolex-Aluminium-C-Mount-Lens-Cap-for-16mm-Movie-Cameras/352648876295?hash=item521b82d107:g:PKEAAOSws6dcWDy6

Camera shops-remember them?- sometimes used to have a box of odd caps to rummage through.. Long gone.

Edited by Mark Dunn

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The very correct designation is M 32 × 0,5 mm.

Jean-Louis, I know you won’t feel insulted, it’s just to set things straight. My second love, cinema being the first, is the black art. Since most mechanics don’t care much about typography and orthography, I steer against.

📓

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Posted (edited)

Thought I found a cap for Franco but it is just the same link above!

Edited by Todd Pinder
Already mentioned in thread!

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Posted (edited)

In case anyone west of Calais is confused, in number notation Europeans use the comma where we Anglophones use the decimal point and vice versa. This extends to lens engravings.

So 1,000,000 becomes 1.000.000  It makes sense, in handwriting at least- you can't confuse a comma for a badly written decimal point. You might see it on a hand-written bill at a bar: 4,50€

Edited by Mark Dunn

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