With Yashica 635 - why lens sharpness sometimes doesn't matter in medium format

The best bit of advice I ever received from a Hasselblad repair technician: If you're not cropping images, don't worry that the lens is a mere triplet and not a better formula.

My trusty 635 has the triplet Yashikor instead of the highly desirable Yashinon lens found on the Yashica Mat 124-G.

Horst Wenzel, camera repair tech extraordinaire, said, "Pah, what difference does it make. You'd have to blow it up the size of the wall to see the difference."

Indeed, the bigger the image the further back one stands.

Lens sharpness has a parallel to the passion for more pixels in the digital era. If cropping is not involved, a photographer can get by with a mere 2.7 pixels even less (depending on the size of the print).

A big negative makes up for a humble (not crappy) lens. Above is Park Wong tailor from the shop where I apprenticed, Modernize Tailors.

It's a scan made with a mini light table as the backlight...I don't have a medium format scanner.

I picked up the gist of this technique from John Sypal of Tokyo Camera Style. Good enough for me.


  1. I just purchased one of these delightful cameras and I stumbled upon your site looking up info on it. Great picture. I also totally agree about lens types and obviously some pretty important people do too. German lens manufacturer Meyer Optic just start back up production of their famous Trioplan and like the name suggests it is a simple triplet. These new versions sell for over $1000 dollars.


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