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A few samples from a Schneider-Kreuznach Xenar 50mm f/2.8 lens

It was a few months ago that I bought an Edixa-Mat Reflex B slr camera which came with a Schneider-Kreuznach Xenar lens fitted and I thought I would try fitting it to my Ricoh GXR A12 module and get a few sample shots to see how it performs.

The Xenar lens is an M42 mount unit but it has a somewhat non-standard auto/manual lever which fouls on the mount adapter, so in order to fit the lens it needs to be switched to the manual position. Once this is done, the lever is retracted into the lens body, and the aperture can be controlled manually using the aperture ring in the usual way.

The lens is a Tessar design, with a max aperture of f/2.8 and a close focus of about 0.5 meter. The aperture consists of 6 blades, and the focus ring has quite a short travel which makes it relatively easy to focus, especially with the GXR’s excellent focus peaking mode (mode 2). There are some pictures of the lens in the post about the Edixa linked to above.

These pictures were all taken on a walk this morning using Shutter Priority and Auto ISO which allowed me to set both aperture (on the lens) and shutter speed (on the camera) and the camera to set the iso. The images were imported into lightroom and processed using my normal processing steps. To view these pictures in more detail look at the full sized versions here – use the arrow keys to navigate.

Overall I’m quite impressed with the quality of the pictures this combination of lens and camera has produced. The colours produced are nice, and the contrast and definition also very good – some of which may be down to the lack of AA filter on the GXR M-Mount sensor module.

Interestingly, although I only paid £26 for the Edixa-Mat with this lens fitted, if I look on eBay for the lens itself, I find it is considerably more than that to buy a copy. Looks like one of those occasions where you get a better bargain buying the pair together.

Schneider-Kreuznach Xenar Images

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I’m a software developer by profession but I’ve been taking pictures since I was about 8 years old. In that time I’ve owned cameras of all types and sizes from 120 roll film thro’ 35mm to my current Pentax K-5, Ricoh GXR + P10/S10/A12 28mm/A12 50mm, Canon S95 and recently acquired Sony NEX 6.

  1. R says:

    You got a very nice one! Beautiful stopped down. Thanks for the review.

  2. Charlier L says:

    This is a late comment. Are you sure it has a six-blades diaphragm?
    I possess a 5-blades Edixa-Xenar and a 10-blades Edixa-Reflex Xenar. And then you rarely find (expensive) the wonderful five-elements Super-Xenar, with 15 blades. But six ? Could you check, I’m interested? Thank you and nice post otherwise.

    1. simon says:

      Hi – unfortunately that’s difficult at the moment because we are in the middle of some building work and all my vintage cameras and lenses are packed away. When I eventually get a chance to look at the lens again, I’ll try to confirm that.

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