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 "Yes the 28s (and I have a small collection, tried Pentax, Olympus and Canon - currently using a Pentax f2.8 M) are not as good as the 50s (yet to find a bad one).  I find that none are razor sharp at the edges, but they still produce JPGs that are larger than those I get from the Sony 16-50 zoom, which is perhaps a tad better at the extremes. The images from the 28s also seem to have more life about them. I know that you have the earlier Sony zoom which is possibly a superior piece of glass.

 

I don't use the 50 as often as the 28 , but I quite like the 75mm equivalent focal length, it compresses the perspective a bit, good for some landscape shots etc." Bryan from the thread titled "sharpening"

 

Instead of replying to your comments in the other thread, Bryan, I thought I would open a new one, since we seemed to be going off topic there. I hope that's okay with you? 

 

Most of my pro shooting was done in the Film Age, and back then almost everything I did was with primes. I think working with primes gives us a better feel for the different perspectives and personalities of focal lengths. There's a great deal of difference between a 24mm and a 28mm, for example: The 24mm has a stronger look. It's why, in addition to the EVF, I picked the RX100 iii over the earlier Sony models. (Of course sometimes the 28 is the best choice, but rarely, I think.) With primes and film, not doing much cropping, I owned Nikon 15, 16, 20, 24, 28, 35, and 50. 

 

There's also a differences between the 85 and the 105, the best choices for most portraits. I worked for a number of years with the 105, but then when doing multi-destination trips, for a while I switched to the faster, smaller 85. After maybe two years with this lens, I switched back to the 105 -- because I missed its unique personality.

 

Edo

Edited by Ed Rooney
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Instead of replying to your comments in the other thread, Bryan, I thought I would open a new one, since we seemed to be going off topic there. I hope that's okay with you?

 

Most of my pro shooting was done in the Film Age, and back then almost everything I did was with primes. I think working with primes gives us a better feel for the different perspectives and personalities of focal lengths. There's a great deal of difference between a 24mm and a 28mm, for example: The 24mm has a stronger look. It's why, in addition to the EVF, I picked the RX100 iii over the earlier Sony models. (Of course sometimes the 28 is the best choice, but rarely, I think.) With primes and film, not doing much cropping, I own Nikon 15, 16, 20, 24, 28, 35, and 50.

 

There's also a differences between the 85 and the 105, the best choices for most portraits. I worked for a number of years with the 105, but then when doing multi-destination trips, for a while I switched to the faster, smaller 85. After maybe two years with this lens, I switched back to the 105 -- because I missed its unique personality.

 

Edo

No problem Edo, the thread had drifted well off topic.

 

I guess that I get a nostalgic buzz from using my old film era lenses. Maybe I'm a bit of a control freak, but I like to be in command of the focus etc, while there is a certain pleasure to be had from handling these beautifully made pieces of kit.

 

The most sensible lens that I have owned, and still have, is a Canon 24-105 f4, which, on full frame, covers a large chunk of the range of focal lengths that you were using. It's also wonderfully sharp, although it suffers from CA and distortion. If it, and the camera, were not so heavy, I might still be using it for stock shooting. I was very disappointed when the reviews of the equivalent Zeiss 16-70 f4 for the NEX were not more positive. Surely it has to be possible to make a quality lens over this focal length range and limited maximum aperture.

Edited by Bryan
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...

 

The most sensible lens that I have owned, and still have, is a Canon 24-105 f4, which, on full frame, covers a large chunk of the range of focal lengths that you were using. ...

 

 

I agree. It is the one lens from my, now sold, Canon outfit that I miss since I went mirrorless with Fuji; it was my permanent walk around lens.  I would love a 16-75mm, I have the 16-55mm (24-83 equiv) but I miss the extra reach and the 18-135mm is not really wide enough. Actually 16-90mm would be even better as I got into photography when the 135mm was everybody's first telephoto - because of that and like the 50mm they were relatively simple to design and became highly optimised; I suspect even modern ones are not significantly better.

Edited by Martin P Wilson
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Instead of replying to your comments in the other thread, Bryan, I thought I would open a new one, since we seemed to be going off topic there. I hope that's okay with you?

 

Most of my pro shooting was done in the Film Age, and back then almost everything I did was with primes. I think working with primes gives us a better feel for the different perspectives and personalities of focal lengths. There's a great deal of difference between a 24mm and a 28mm, for example: The 24mm has a stronger look. It's why, in addition to the EVF, I picked the RX100 iii over the earlier Sony models. (Of course sometimes the 28 is the best choice, but rarely, I think.) With primes and film, not doing much cropping, I own Nikon 15, 16, 20, 24, 28, 35, and 50.

 

There's also a differences between the 85 and the 105, the best choices for most portraits. I worked for a number of years with the 105, but then when doing multi-destination trips, for a while I switched to the faster, smaller 85. After maybe two years with this lens, I switched back to the 105 -- because I missed its unique personality.

 

Edo

No problem Edo, the thread had drifted well off topic.

 

I guess that I get a nostalgic buzz from using my old film era lenses. Maybe I'm a bit of a control freak, but I like to be in command of the focus etc, while there is a certain pleasure to be had from handling these beautifully made pieces of kit.

 

The most sensible lens that I have owned, and still have, is a Canon 24-105 f4, which, on full frame, covers a large chunk of the range of focal lengths that you were using. It's also wonderfully sharp, although it suffers from CA and distortion. If it, and the camera, were not so heavy, I might still be using it for stock shooting. I was very disappointed when the reviews of the equivalent Zeiss 16-70 f4 for the NEX were not more positive. Surely it has to be possible to make a quality lens over this focal length range and limited maximum aperture.

 

 

Bryan, have you tried using a teleconverter with any of your legacy lenses? A 2X converter might come in handy with a 50mm lens on APS-C.

 

I was looking at these for Minolta MC/MD lenses. The prices are right. Question is how good would the results be.

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John wrote "Bryan, have you tried using a teleconverter with any of your legacy lenses? A 2X converter might come in handy with a 50mm lens on APS-C."

 

The short answer is no. I have a Sigma 100-300 f4 lens and a matching 1.4 x teleconverter but have been unimpressed with the results (the zoom is not brilliant at 300). It's not any better than a digital enlargement. However I know that some people use them successfully with good quality prime lenses, so there might be a case for trying this.

 

I carry an old Pentax 75-150 F4 zoom, used infrequently but not bad optically, so have no real need for a 100mm lens.

Edited by Bryan
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The most sensible lens that I have owned, and still have, is a Canon 24-105 f4, which, on full frame, covers a large chunk of the range of focal lengths that you were using. It's also wonderfully sharp, although it suffers from CA and distortion. If it, and the camera, were not so heavy, I might still be using it for stock shooting.

 

My favourite lens, too. You learn to accept the small disadvantages. A great walk-around lens on  a Canon full-frame.

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I find it fascinating that this thread has so quickly and totally morphed into yet another 'my favorite zoom' discussion. The point I was trying to make was about primes, not zooms. Yes I use zooms now.

Edited by Ed Rooney
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Glad you posted this Ed as it prompted me to dig out my much ignored 24mm and give it a work out. I'd forgotten just how good it is and, as you say, what a strong look it produces. My normal kit is 35, 50, 75 and 90 and the 24 was a refreshing change.

 

Greenie for that.

Edited by ReeRay
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24 has always been my go-to wide look. 

 

Nice looking Thai food, ReeRay. I've got two Thai restaurants around the corner from me here. They both are expert at producing totally tasteless Thai cuisine. How do they do that? The saving grace is they have Singha beer.  ;)

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^ next time you order from them ask for "pet mak mak" (spicy please) or "Prik nam pla" (fish sauce) which you sprinkle over the food. That'll spice it up a bit.

 

p.s. Brace yourself!

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When I read the title of this discussion I felt I had to but in.... 

 

My dad gave to me, the most impractical lens I can imagine: a 1000mm Sigma Apo lens. He bought it new in the 1990's for ca. $3000 I think. 

In trying to use this lens a few problems become apparent. For one, the first thing everybody thinks when pulling out such a big lens (with hood it must be 4-5 feet) everybody assumes I'm trying to compensate for some shortcomings. Then you realize, even though this camera is on a sturdy tripod, lens shake is a huge issue. For shorter shutter speeds I use two tripods, sandbags, and try and shield the whole kit from wind. 

 

Then there's the other things I'd never guessed: even if you can keep the whole kit completely still, all that atmosphere is magnified. So things that are very distant have that distortion- so despite the lens being pretty sharp, there's no way to get really sharp distant cityscapes. 

 

I also have a slightly radioactive 36" (almost 1000mm) Aero Ektar and have been planning to finish a 4x5 with the help of family for some crazy bokeliciousness.. 

 

File under #firstworldproblems and #thestruggleisreal ?

 

49ce5c4e7497f.jpg

(that's me with the 1000mm APO)

 

silhouette-of-photographer-and-woman-by-

(this lens is really nice for silhouettes though- I have no idea who these people are, they were like two blocks away)

 

sillhouette-of-girl-on-park-bench-with-l(another silhouette with the 1000mm- this time of my daughter computing)

 

san-francisco-golden-gate-bridge-with-tr

(Another 1000mm pic on Alamy)

 

Sorry again, couldn't help myself given the topic !!!

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Yeah, Michael, unless you've worked with a super-telephoto, it's impossible to anticipate all the issues one has to deal with. I had a Nikon 500mm mirror lens, and if I added the 2X extender it made it almost impossible to manage. You did a nice job on the pics you posted. (I hope the FBI are sending you sizable checks.) 

Edited by Ed Rooney
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John wrote "Bryan, have you tried using a teleconverter with any of your legacy lenses? A 2X converter might come in handy with a 50mm lens on APS-C."

 

The short answer is no. I have a Sigma 100-300 f4 lens and a matching 1.4 x teleconverter but have been unimpressed with the results (the zoom is not brilliant at 300). It's not any better than a digital enlargement. However I know that some people use them successfully with good quality prime lenses, so there might be a case for trying this.

 

I carry an old Pentax 75-150 F4 zoom, used infrequently but not bad optically, so have no real need for a 100mm lens.

 

Thanks for the reply. I had an inexpensive manual focus 2X converter way back when and can remember not being very happy with the results. Perhaps a better quality converter with more elements would be worth looking into. Not sure that I'll bother, though. I find the Sony SEL 55-210mm to be a good enough lens for what I do. It's nice and light too. Parsimony wins again!  B)

Edited by John Mitchell
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I guess my ideal prime outfit for full frame would be 24mm, 35 or 50mm and 135mm. If 35 and 135mm worked for Don McCullin that's good enough for me. Problem is on Fuji the 24 and 135mm equivalent are fast and therefore rather large for street/news type work.

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Back to primes then. I currently carry a 12mm (18 equiv FF), 19 (28), 28 (42), 35 (53) and 50 (75) for use on the NEX 6.

 

The most used, although I don't keep records, is probably the 28 and the least the 35. Pity, as it's an excellent lens (Samsung badged Pentax f2).  A 16 (24)  would be good, but I am carrying enough glass.

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Back to primes then. I currently carry a 12mm (18 equiv FF), 19 (28), 28 (42), 35 (53) and 50 (75) for use on the NEX 6.

 

The most used, although I don't keep records, is probably the 28 and the least the 35. Pity, as it's an excellent lens (Samsung badged Pentax f2).  A 16 (24)  would be good, but I am carrying enough glass.

Almost identical to my little Sony (a6000) kit's primes: 12mm Rokinon, Sigma 19, Sigma 30mm, and Sony 50mm- I also have the kit standard zoom and 55-210.

Edited by Michael Halberstadt
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Yeah, Michael, unless you've worked with a super-telephoto, it's impossible to anticipate all the issues one has to deal with. I had a Nikon 500mm mirror lens, and if I added the 2X extender it made it almost impossible to manage. You did a nice job on the pics you posted. (I hope the FBI are sending you sizable checks.) 

Mirror lenses come with some other bugs too. I've got a Tamron 500mm floating around and have also contemplated picking up the only AF Mirror lens, the Minolta/Sony. But I think the out-of-focus highlights of mirror lenses would be best described as a bokatastrophe! 

 

There is also some irony in putting a mirror lens on my mirrorless camera ;-)

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Yeah, Michael, unless you've worked with a super-telephoto, it's impossible to anticipate all the issues one has to deal with. I had a Nikon 500mm mirror lens, and if I added the 2X extender it made it almost impossible to manage. You did a nice job on the pics you posted. (I hope the FBI are sending you sizable checks.) 

Mirror lenses come with some other bugs too. I've got a Tamron 500mm floating around and have also contemplated picking up the only AF Mirror lens, the Minolta/Sony. But I think the out-of-focus highlights of mirror lenses would be best described as a bokatastrophe! 

 

There is also some irony in putting a mirror lens on my mirrorless camera ;-)

 

 

I had a 500mm Tamron mirror lens and sold it a couple of years ago. It was well made and fairly sharp. However,  the overall results weren't really good enough for Alamy, I thought, and I seldom used it.

 

You also had to be something of an octopus in order to focus the darned thing.

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Like this you mean?  That lens is long gone. No more catamarans passing in front of the setting sun. 

 

a-lone-figure-walks-barefoot-in-a-dream-

Exactly!! Too funny! I can totally see that on the cover of a Time-Life book! Perhaps it could be complimented by a fisheye shot too?

 

(what's that "forbidden donuts" quote Homer Simpson uses...)

Edited by Michael Halberstadt
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Cracking shot Edo.

 

I've still got my T-amron 500 mm (spell checker insists on changing that word to Garmin!). I work on the principle that, if it eats no meat, keep it. Uploaded a Live News shot taken with it last winter. Despite hand holding (at 1/1000th) it was sharp and doughnut free, if a tad flat. Didn't sell though. Can't include image FK5871 as using Android Tablet.

Edited by Bryan
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Cracking shot Edo.

 

I've still got my T-amron 500 mm (spell checker insists on changing that word to Garmin!). I work on the principle that, if it eats no meat, keep it. Uploaded a Live News shot taken with it last winter. Despite hand holding (at 1/1000th) it was sharp and doughnut free, if a tad flat. Didn't sell though. Can't include image FK5871 as using Android Tablet.

That image (FK5871 ) looks just fine, at least the preview I can see. Mirror lenses are of limited use however-just the fixed aperture and Bokestastrophic highlights.

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That image (FK5871 ) looks just fine, at least the preview I can see. Mirror lenses are of limited use however-just the fixed aperture and Bokestastrophic highlights.

Thanks Michael. Fixed f8 not such a problem, I probably take around 80% of my shots at f8, but certainly a lens with limitations.

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