Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2015/04/24

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Subject: [Leica] Don't Trust Everything You Read On The Internet, or: 2 Myths of the Biogon Lens
From: weiljr at (weiljr)
Date: Fri, 24 Apr 2015 08:34:12 -0700 (GMT-07:00)

Just out of curiosity with respect to medium format super wides; Kowa had a 
rectilinear 35mm lens (98 degrees) for their Six/Super 66 cameras. 
This is 3 mm wider than the 38 Biogon that Hassy put out and should appeal 
to those people who really like wide angle lenses.  

That said, there almost no information about 35mm Kowa on the web and it 
does not appear to have sold that much when it was around.
Was it because it was a poor performer or was it because Kowa was such a 
small player in still photography?

I know Jim Shulman shot with a Kowa (not sure about the 35mm lens) and 
posted images on this list but then put it for sale on the LUG a while back. 



-----Original Message-----
>From: Mark Rabiner <mark at>
>Sent: Apr 23, 2015 8:21 PM
>To: Leica Users Group <lug at>
>Subject: Re: [Leica] Don't Trust Everything You Read On The Internet, or: 2 
>Myths of the Biogon Lens
>On 4/23/15 5:44 PM, "George Lottermoser" <george.imagist at> 
>> And the 60s through 80s 'blad Zeiss glass, that I own, definitely always
>> pleases the eyes.
>> Regards,
>> George Lottermoser
>George the Hassy wides, 40 through 60 were as I'm sure you know retrofocal
>wides just like you'd find on any SLR or beam splitter unite camera its not
>symmetrical at all as there has to be nothing going backwards into the
>camera body very much getting in the way of stuff.
>But in the case of these Zeiss Distagon's made for a Hassy and also perhaps
>for Rollei and Alpa these were beyond the standards of the industry. They
>were the premium choice for medium format wide angle photography and roll
>film just like Leitz was for 35mm. If you used a medium format back on a
>view or technical camera perhaps you'd get to shoot with Schneider Super
>Angulon (SSA) and just typing those words out makes my heart skip a beat.
>The look the Zeiss Distagon's brought to the image is imbedded in our
>collective minds from all the commercial and magazine photography we'd ever
>seen especially before they got competition from the Japanese camera
>industry in the 80's with medium format Mamiya, Bronica and Pentax which
>undercut them by quite a bit on the price point.
>Mark William Rabiner
>Leica Users Group.
>See for more information