ALPA Capaul & Weber Ltd. also cares about the owners of historic Alpa 35mm lenses and offers now the possibility to use these vintage lenses on a current ALPA camera by introducing the ALPA Lens Module for Alpa 35mm lenses. Many of these lenses have their own unique image character and are waiting to be rediscovered.
Among the most famous lenses from the analogue era of former Alpa 35mm cameras manufacturer Pignons S.A. (defunct) belongs the Switar/Macro Switar by Kern Aarau. This specific lens series was only available for the Swiss Alpa in this specific form. Besides the Switar numerous other lenses were sourced from leading optical manufacturers. ALPA Capaul & Weber Ltd. is now bringing the historic lenses back from collectors' shelves into practical photography with a current ALPA digital camera. In conjunction with the ALPA Lens Module for Alpa 35 mm, these lenses can be focused on all conventional ALPA 12 bodies from macro to infinity (in each case the effectively usable image circles may vary).
After many years the vintage Alpa 35mm lenses, produced between 1944 and 1990, can now be used again on the current ALPA platform. Some of them are very special in character and have their own footprint. The manufacturers include, in addition to Schneider-Kreuznach lenses, the Dutch optical manufacturer Old Delft, P. Angénieux from Saint-Héand near Saint-Etienne or the Enna factory, which was then based in Munich. Lenses from Heinz Kilfitt and their successor Zoomar as well as from A. Schacht in Ulm, which were located in Vaduz and in Munich, can now also be used on the new ALPA 12 cameras. There also exist fine and rare examples the famous Apochromats of French manufacturer Kinoptik or lenses by SOM Berthiot and Spectros in Basel. Today ALPA Capaul & Weber Ltd. in Zurich, in the tradition of the ALPA brand, already offers lenses from leading optics manufacturers as well as extensive adaptation options for Hasselblad, Contax 645 or Rolleiflex 6000 lenses for their ALPA 12 models.
Since the Alpa 35mm cameras were equipped with a focal plane shutter, there is no built-in shutter in these lenses. Today the electronic shutter of the respective digital back can be used instead. This applies specifically for the Phase One IQ3 100 digital back and to some extent also to the Hasselblad H6D-100c / H6D-50c and the Sinar S30|45. At close range, the ALPA 12 FPS and its built in focal plane shutter allow the use of any digital back.
Swiss Optics Switar
The traditional Swiss lens brand Switar, which was newly registered by ALPA Capaul & Weber Ltd. in 2004, has been used by ALPA for medium and large format lenses over the recent years. In the analogue past, the brand was not only used for Alpa 35mm cameras from Pignons but also for various cine lenses of the famous Bolex 8mm and 16mm film camera under the name of Kern-Paillard. With the merging of still photography and cine / video new perspectives open up.
ALPA Lens Module Alpa 35 mm
ALPA 12 TC, Kinoptik Apochromat 2.0/100 mm for Alpa, Phase One IQ3 digital back - ©ALPA
ALPA 12 TC, Kilfitt 2.8/4 cm for Alpa, Sinar S30|45 digital back - ©ALPA
ALPA 12 TC, Kern Aarau Macro-Switar 1.9/50 mm for Alpa, Hasselblad H6D-100c digital back - ©ALPA
ALPA 12 TC, Old Delft 3.2/135 mm for Alpa, Phase One IQ3 digital back - ©ALPA
With the latest camera package, ALPA is once again addressing the friends of analogue photography. In an effort to give ambitious users of roll-film a high-quality platform, ALPA launches a limited-edition kit with the ALPA 12 SWA camera and the ALPA Apo-Helvetar 5.6 / 43 mm lens.
The ALPA Apo-Helvetar 5.6 / 43 mm origins from the production of the legendary manufacturer Schneider Kreuznach. These optics for medium/large format photography from Schneider are coveted among connoisseurs, as the company has withdrawn from the field of medium/large format optics.
With a comparable focal length of 20/21 mm (35mm equivalent), the ALPA Apo-Helvetar 5.6 / 43 mm is still a highlight in the development of symmetrical optics. Due to the large image circle of 110 mm at f 11, the shift capability of the ALPA 12 SWA can be optimally utilized. Thanks to the design, the lens has a fantastically low distortion of only about 0.5% and is thus suitable for the most demanding architectural photography without further correction of the distortion.
The ALPA Limited Kit comes with everything you need to get the camera up and running right away: the lens, the camera, an HPF ring, the ALPA 6x7 / 6x9 combined shift mask, and an ALPA roll-film back, available as an option in format 6x7 or 6x9. Also included are an ALPA Swisstool, black and white films with film protection container, a practical carrying case and certificate.
Of course, the ALPA 12 SWA can also be used as a digital camera with a corresponding ALPA back adapter and a digital back (both available separately).
The offer is limited to five pieces and is valid while stocks last and is available immediately.
ALPA 12 SWA / Helvetar 43 - Limited Kit
Camera: ALPA 12 SWA
Lens: Schneider ALPA Apo-Helvetar 5.6/43 mm
Back: ALPA Roll-film back 6x9
Film: Ilford XP2 400
High Resolution Scans: ALPA Cloud
Sample images "Bern" by Ralph Rosenbauer
French newspaper „Le Figaro“ features extraordinary cameras in their „High End“ section. In prominent position: the ALPA / Phase One A-Series new with 100 MP. Read the full article (French only) in the attached PDF.
PDF for download (French only): Le Figaro - High-Tech - 15th February 2016
Product Page: ALPA Phase One A-Series
With the use of conventional camera systems and macro objectives, only a limited resolution could be achieved. That’s why ALPA developed a special setup for Focus Stacking. It’s a good example for our philosophy to provide solutions for special projects. Ask our specialists if you have a dedicated project.
Photographer Bernhard Schurian extensively tested the ALPA solution (ALPA Focus Stacking solution with ALPA 12 FPS and ALPA Macro Switar 5.6/105 mm) at the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin. In addition to the mass digitisation of the collection, he has portrayed particularly interesting and spectacular animals. To document their complexity, Bernhard Schurian needed equipment for macro photography and an optimal workflow.
Here some results of his work over the last year and in different stages. Two samples are available as zoomable version (Zoom 1) (Zoom 2) for exploring. The images have been combined from in general some 500 to 700+ single exposures on 100 MP digital backs.
For further details see also the detailed news article on When Even Insects Become Huge: Macro Photography With ALPA.
It is our philosophy to provide new solutions for special applications. If you are working on an according photographic project, please contact us.
Photograph: ©Bernhard Schurian
Eumorpha Achemon (Zoom Version)
Photograph: ©Bernhard Schurian
Dipt Asilidae Microstylum (Zoom Version)
Photograph: ©Bernhard Schurian
Photograph: ©Bernhard Schurian
In macro photography, ALPA offers ways to surpass the results so far. The exclusive Rodenstock / ALPA lens Macro Switar 105 mm (with floating elements) allows you to display even the smallest parts of insect hair. The lens has just been produced in series and is now available from ALPA.
Photographer Bernhard Schurian extensively tested the Rodenstock / ALPA Macro Switar at the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin in combination with the ALPA 12 FPS. In addition to the mass digitisation of the collection, he has portrayed particularly interesting and spectacular animals. To document their complexity, Bernhard Schurian needed equipment for macro photography and an optimal workflow.
Accurate to 0.1 micrometers
However, with the use of conventional camera systems and macro objectives, only a limited resolution could be achieved. Important details were not recognisable in the desired quality. In the knowledge, Ralph Rosenbauer, ALPA's scientific consultant, developed a special setup that goes beyond these possibilities and delivered unusually good results.
The requirements for this set-up quickly exceeded the previously known standards:
• On the one hand, the camera had to be movable, which required the highest precision. Every little bump would have affected the result. ALPA solved this problem with a motorised carriage which is normally used for optical experiments and lasers and allows steps of 0.1 micrometer each. This corresponds to 0.0001 millimeters. For comparison: A human hair measures between 0.02 and 0.08 millimeters. ALPA developed software specifically to control the carriage.
• In addition, the lens had to be able to resolve the fine structures of insects. A requirement that even the most powerful macro lenses meet only conditionally. The Rodenstock / ALPA Macro Switar 105 mm , on the other hand, offers an optimal resolution even at the aperture, and can be perfectly adapted to the respective imaging scales thanks to its "floating element". Its comparatively long focal length allows for a comfortable working distance and thus facilitates the light setup.
• The triggering of the shutter was another major challenge since vibrations had led to misalignment between individual images.
• The shells of many species of insects have extreme contrasts in the macro image, especially when black surfaces alternate with bright hair, bristles or iridescent spots.
• For a photograph to document the insects, more than 1000 individual shots are necessary. This enormous amount of data could hardly have been solved by a computer, so several of them were used simultaneously. For control, a Windows tablet served, to capture the images a laptop with CaptureOne
Setup for documentation at the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin. © Ralph Rosenbauer
In addition to the above-mentioned design and the Rodenstock / ALPA Macro Switar 105 mm lens, various digital backs were used, with the IQ3 100 MP resulting in the best results due to the dynamics. As a camera, the ALPA 12 FPS was predestined for this task because its electronically controlled slit shutter and the absence of a back-flip mirror allow a vibration-free release.
In the end, the finished motifs had to be optimised. The dust, lint and the preparation needles of the insects were removed and the data were prepared for further processing. The end result makes it possible to look at insects as you have never seen them before with your own eyes: with clear sharpness, clear details and colours.
The results of the project - for the presentation on the Internet in strongly reduced resolution. © Bernhard Schurian
Impressed experts at Smithsonian
The setup of ALPA, the workflow and the photographs by Bernhard Schurian proved so convincing that he has already presented it to a specialist audience. In the USA, at the end of June, Bernhard Schurian gave a lecture at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum in Washington. It houses the world's largest insect collection with around 35 million specimens. "The audience at the Smithsonian consisted mainly of photographers and IT professionals," Schurian says. "The number of questions asked during the lecture shows that this solution is of great interest."
Another opportunity to study the project from a somewhat different perspective is from 21 July to On 9 September in Berlin, Bernhard Schurian will be present during these days as an artist at the exhibition "The Beauty of the Formula" at the Alte Schule Gallery in the Cultural Center Adlershof For the Museum of Natural History, some of which are displayed in the large format of 1.5 x 2 meters, to make the viewer even closer to a world that is otherwise hidden from the eye.
Follow the links and visit our website to learn more about this Project and the modular ALPA system. If you have any questions, ALPA of Switzerland ([email protected]) and your ALPA dealer will be pleased to help you.
Rodenstock / ALPA Macro Switar 5.6/105 mm
ALPA 12 FPS
Museum für Naturkunde Berlin
Galerie Alte Schule, Adlershof Berlin
In 360 Degree Panoramic Photography, cameras need full freedom in movement. To us, it was only consequent to test our new ALPA GON Tripod Case in this environment. Our testing person was Thomas Bredenfeld, one of the most respected experts in Panoramic Photography. Bredenfeld has been working in this field for more than 20 years. His name is known especially in Germany, Switzerland and Austria.
For more than ten years, Thomas Bredenfeld has been a member of the Pano-Tools list. He is a lecturer for a wide range of events referring to panoramic photography, image editing and multimedia aspects of photography. In 2011, he helped to organize the annual PanoTools meeting in Vienna. Bredenfelds book „Panoramafotografie – Digitale Fotopraxis“ is a standard reference for German speaking panoramic photographers.
We hope, our ALPA GON Tripod System will also be a standard reference for all photographers, whether they focus on panorama or other subjects. ALPA GON is based on a modular design and can be used for any purpose in photography.
One solution for all
This summer, Thomas Bredenfeld took our new ALPA GON Tripod Kit on the road. The set is now available. It contains the ALPA GON Tripod Head, Triobal Mini Leveling Head, Pano Plate, Nodal Point Rail, Carbon Tripod Legs and Drumstick Legs as well as other accessories.
Product Page: ALPA GON Tripod Kit 1
Amongst other places, the ALPA GON Tripod Kit has been tested at IVRPA in Vienna and at Thomas Bredenfeld's workshop at Photo-Adventure in Duisburg. It was mainly used as an exemplary construction for an „Astro-Panorama“-setup – completed with VR-products from Novoflex.
Astro-Panorama-Setup with ALPA GON. © Thomas Bredenfeld
According to Thomas Bredenfeld, the ALPA GON proved its versatility once again. „The setup with ALPA GON has high load carrying capacity“, he says. „The modules are very stable and precise, even if you add a lot of parts to your setup. The participants at the workshop were pretty impressed.“
Panoramic photography with ALPA GON, showing the Landscape Park Duisburg-Süd. © Thomas Bredenfeld
Also check out the interactive panorama view
ALPA GON Tripod Kit is another example of our modular philosophy. All our prodcuts correspond to the UniQ/C-Standard. Photographers, therefore, are able to combine different products from different brands as needed. We look forward to inform you about the full potential of our gear. For any further questions, please contact ALPA of Switzerland or your local dealer.
Product page ALPA GON Head
Website Thomas Bredenfeld
3D Printing or Additive Design really makes a difference when it comes to producing small batches on demand. It can also help professional photographers solve quality issues. ALPA has been researching for years and is using the technology to produce Lens Shades as well as other camera parts.
ALPA Lens Shades are laser sintered and come in various shapes. They match precisely with the features of different lenses and digital back sensors. Furthermore, ALPA Lens Shades are highly effective when it comes to light reflection.
They are durable, flexible and at the same time dimensionally stable. This means, you can stuff your ALPA Lens Shade into your bag, leave it there for hours and it still will be able to return to its original shape.
Avoiding light spots
Just like any of our products, ALPA Lens Shades had to withstand the high expectations in the field tests. On of the recent testers was Swiss architectural photographer René Dürr. In spring 2017, he took several Lens Shades on a photographic trip to the region of Veneto, Italy.
The intention that led him to this field test was a quality issue. "I am used to working very precisely and I've had some problems with light spots different than usual on my pictures", he explains. "I discussed the matter with a lot of experts, but we couldn't find the reason. I was not even able to correct the spots within the post production, so I couldn't use any of the pictures affected." ALPA technical advisor Hans-Peter Ochsner knows the problem. „light spots are quite common, especially when the weather is clouded.“
After a short briefing with ALPA, René Dürr decided to try our printed Lens Shades. The result was exciting, he says. "They have proven successful. The spots are just gone and I can confirm all the other advantages, too. For example, I keep the ALPA Lens Shades in my backpack and they never distort. Another pro is the simple handling. I just put them over the lense and they stay right there."
Two of the pictures René Dürr sent us. The light spots in the middle may be small, but they ruined the whole photograph. So he tested different types of ALPA Lens Shades.
"In the end, they save me a lot of time and money as a professional photographer", Dürr says.
You'll find more information about Additive Manufacturing of serial components in Frederick Waldern's blog on zuehlke.com (only in German). He also names ALPA as an example.
Venez découvrir les nouveaux produits ALPA chez PROPHOT au Forum Pro Images pour sa 13ème édition les 19 et 20 juin 2017 au Cyclone Le Studio à Paris.
C’est une occasion exceptionnelle de découvrir des nouvelles technologies et l’entrée est entièrement gratuite.
Nous vous attendons nombreux au Stand Prophot!
Pour en savoir plus : Forum Pro-Images
Prophot: ALPA à Prophot
Date : 19 & 20 juin 2017 • 10h-19h
Lieu : Cyclone Le Studio • 16-18 Rue Vulpian, 75013 Paris
There are still places available for ALPA Class in South Tyrol from August 23 to 27.
We therefore extended the deadline from End of May to June 30.
ALPA Class is taking place on the wine estate Lageder in Margreid as part of the IF/Summer Academy. The focus is on architectural photography as well as still life photography. The heritage buildings on the estate lead back to the 13th century. They build a strong contrast to the modern industrial structure.
Your course instructor will be ALPA-photographer Dan Lindberg, assisted by several experts. They will give direct feedback and allow you to improve your skills and learn new techniques.
If you always wanted to work with ALPA-equipment, you will have the opportunity to do so. Cameras, objectives and kits will be available on demand. To read the details about ALPA class, please follow this link.
The application form can be found directly on the IF/Summer Academy website.
© Ralph Rosenbauer
© Ralph Rosenbauer
ALPA will attend the STAND OUT photographic forum in Zurich on Juli 3, 2017. STAND OUT is an industry event in different cities with Phase One as a major sponsor. The event is aimed at all who want to differentiate themselves and their business from the crowd. Participants and visitors will listen to the best photographers, business minds and stand out influencers discussing topics from their successes, tips and tricks as well as areas of expertise.
The STAND OUT event will also bring leading photographic brands under one roof to demonstrate their products in an intimate and meaningful manner. This event is ideal for professional photographers, serial enthusiasts or aspiring students or any imaging professional that would like excel their work and business.
STAND OUT in Zurich takes place at Volkshaus, Stauffacherstrasse 60. Doors are open from 10 AM to 6 PM. The regular ticket price is CHF 53. Early birds pay a special price of CHF 43.
Get Your Ticket
Website Phase One