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MF tele for m43

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by nickthetasmaniac, Aug 13, 2011.

  1. nickthetasmaniac

    nickthetasmaniac Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2011
    Hi everyone.

    I was wondering if people could suggest any high quality MF teles (around 200mm)? I'm after a telephoto for my GH2 and I'd like to look into some options faster than the native Oly/Pana zooms. I've used the the SMC M50/f1.4 and Nokton 25/f0.95 extensively on the GH2 so I'm quite comfortable with manual lenses.

    Speed and quality is more of a consideration than price (the alternative is buying a brand new zoom), so I don't mind paying up to $500 for a mint example. I would like something reasonably compact though (of course fast glass is going to be a bit bigger...).

    As an example of the kind of thing I'm after, a lens I've had my eye on is the SMC Pentax K200/f2.5. I'm pretty familiar with Pentax glass but know buggerall about the other brands :smile:

    Cheers, Nick
  2. thearne3

    thearne3 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 28, 2010
    Redding, CT USA
    Both Nikon and Olympus made nice 180mm f2.8 MF lenses. Not sure what they go for these days. The 200mm's seem to be slower, eg, OM at f4 or f5). Good luck!
  3. carpandean

    carpandean Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 29, 2010
    Western NY
  4. Sammyboy

    Sammyboy m43 Pro

    Oct 26, 2010
    Steeler Country
    Olympus made a trio of top line telephotos for the OM, the 180mm/2, 200mm/2, the 350mm/2.8, and a 1.4 teleconverter for these lenses. They would be mega-bucks if you could even find them on the used market.
  5. WJW59

    WJW59 Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 20, 2011
    Vivitar Series 1 200mm F3 (really 2.8). Compact but heavy and I have no idea what the current prices are like.
  6. John M Flores

    John M Flores Super Moderator

    Jan 7, 2011
    FWIW the Mega OIS of the Panny zooms are worth about two to three stops of stability. So they may be slow, but you can hand hold them in situations that you would not think possible.

    This shot, for example, is with the Panny 100-300 on the GH2. 258mm (35mm equiv = 516mm), hand held at 1/125s @ F5.6. ISO640

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    parlor by john m flores, on Flickr
  7. gscara

    gscara Mu-43 Regular

    Top rated 180mm lens

    I have used a number of manual focus lenses around the 200mm focal length. While the Pentax 200mm f2.5 is an excellent lens, it does not have any ED or low dispersion glass and will display CA and purple fringing on high contrast shots. As will the Vivitar Series 1 lens. There are two lenses that are available on the used marked that employ special corrected glass.
    1. The Nikkor Ed Ais 180mm f2.8 lens is one of Nikons legendary classic lenses. It is sharp wide open, has breathtaking color reproduction, and well deserves its status. The only downside to this lens is that it has a classical helicoid focusing and does not use internal focusing which I prefer for longer focal length lenses. These are widely available on the used market, as they were very popular with newsprint photographers.
    2. Canon FD 80-200mm F4 L version. This lens employs flouride elements and delivers crisp, wonderful images with no artifacts. Again, the lens is sharp wide open and the zoom increases its flexibility. This was one of the last lenses designed for the FD mount and came to the marketplace after the introduction of the EF mount.
    Good luck with your search.
  8. brnmatsumoto

    brnmatsumoto Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 18, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    I will put a third vote in for the Nikon f2.8 180 mm lens. Fantastic optics. There are several models of this lens-it evolved from the strictly manual focus to an automatic focus lens. You might want to check out the latter. While it is more expensive because it is more recent model, it has the advantage of being smaller and lighter than the original black finish Nikon f2.8. In my hands, it balances better than the larger lens. Good luck on your hunt.
  9. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    What about regular 43 lenses like the 50-200 f/2.8-3.5 or 150 f/2 or Sigma 150 f/2.8?
  10. brnmatsumoto

    brnmatsumoto Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 18, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    I've tried the 50-200 mm f2.8 -3.5 Zuiko lens. It is sharp and it is a zoom, but it is awful when used in automatic focus mode. The focus "hunts" and is slow. When switched to manual focusing only, focusing feels, well, odd. Manual focusing with an older lens that relies on direct gearing from focus ring to focusing ring has much more precise feeling to focus. The 50-200 mm is considerably larger than the 180 mm f2.8 Nikon.
  11. drizek

    drizek Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 5, 2011

    What about the FD 80-200mm S.S.C?
  12. sLorenzi

    sLorenzi Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 15, 2010
    I believe that long teles in Panasonic bodies are of limited use, unless they are very fast, because with 200mm you'll need to shoot at 1/640 or so to have sharp images. Besides the problem of the longer focal length all cameras have, a heavy old long tele will be very bad balanced in hands IMHO. It's true in my G1, don't know how it goes in GHs tough.
  13. nickthetasmaniac

    nickthetasmaniac Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2011
    Hi everyone, thanks for your replies...

    First of all, I'm not interested in the classic Four Thirds zooms. I owned and loved a 50-200 SWD when I had an E-3, but I'm not willing to deal with it's AF on the GH2, and I never liked manual focussing mine. Plus all of the Four Thirds ZD lenses are pushing my budget (although I've always lusted after the 150mm f2)...

    Likewise, I'm not particularly interested in the older manual zooms. Not sure why, I just prefer my manual primes :smile:

    For the people that recommended the Nikkor 1880/f2.8, is this the one you mean - https://www.mu-43.com/f17/nikon-180mm-f2-8-ed-m4-3-adapter-14394/? As I said, I don't know anything about Nikkor glass and get muddled with model numbers and so on...

    I'm quite fond of the old SMC Pentax glass, especially the 'M' series, partly because it's so compact...

    @ John M Flores - Yeah I know the OIS will help with the native teles, especially on the GH2. But the faster glass also helps in other areas, like faster shutters for moving action (I love shooting surfing at dusk/dawn) and blurring backgrounds into oblivion... Realistically though, eventually I will probably get the 100-300mm anyway, just because it's so practical.
  14. Blastop

    Blastop Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 20, 2011
    I managed to grab an Aetna(?) 200mm f3.3 from Greece on the big auction site. OM mount. I don't know much about film era lenses and haven't used it enough to know if it has any major inherent problems, but I caught some reasonably sharp whale pictures, handheld, on a recent ferry trip. It's a lot more work using the 200 than the OM 100 that I'm more accustomed to, and the lens is almost twice as long and maybe four times as heavy. Still, I've found it to be indispensable, and it was hardly more than fifty bucks.
  15. brnmatsumoto

    brnmatsumoto Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 18, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA

    The link you cited shows the older style 180 mm f2.8 lens. A very fine performer. That is the older model. There was an autofocus model in black finish. And finally, there is a model in a gray crinkle finish. This is the latest version and is still in production. There are some subtle variations in the models, but unless you have a Nikon camera body, they will not matter. I used to own the older model, but replaced it with the current version. I still shoot Nikon, a little bit.

  16. nickthetasmaniac

    nickthetasmaniac Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2011
    Thanks Brian. Was there only the one pre-AF version?
  17. brnmatsumoto

    brnmatsumoto Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 18, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    There are a couple model variants in the manual focus version. The good news is that all of them had a reputation for excellent optical performance. When the lens first came out, there was no mention of ED glass being used. Later, Nikon released an upgraded model, bragging that ED glass was being used. Interestingly, many pro photographers said there was little if any discernible difference in the optical performance between the older and newer model. This caused some speculation that ED glass was always used in this lens.

    In any case, this optic is a solid performer. It is one reason, I still shoot Nikon. It is nice to have that 2.8 aperture. Thanks to the electronic viewfinder, the Nikon operates almost as conveniently on the Panasonic as on the Nikon body. You use the Panasonic in aperture priority mode and focus wide open. Then you can stop down. Nikon's aperture ring has click stops so you can tell how far you stop down by the number of clicks you feel as you turn the ring. The electronic viewfinder stays nice and bright even though you are reducing the light hitting the sensor.

  18. CarlB

    CarlB Mu-43 Veteran

    The standard four-thirds telephotos are slower on m43, but I think usable now on the E-P3.

    I have the 70-300 Oly, a big beautiful beast which the PEN's in-camera isolation works a charm with.

    I also have the 14-150mm Pana-Leica that I shot to full effect a week ago at the Detroit Institute of Arts with the E-P3. Another big beautiful beast, linear, crisp, colorful throughout.

    EVERYONE is remiss in not mentioning the mirror (catadioptric) manual prime telephotos. I have a Quantaray (Japanese) 300mm f5.6 about the same size mounted to the E-P3 (i.e., with adapter) as a standard coffee mug. No extension, it's a prime lens. Perfect for the PENs for size versus reach.

    Matched with the in-camera stabilization and VF-2, that sucker is an absolute blast to shoot. Not everyone's mug-of-joe, as you'll likely want post contrast and sharpening (to completely satisfactory effect), and ... you'll often get marvelous "donut" bokeh artifacts. I think they're a blast, others say "blast them." Personally, I like to do shots that show-off the "donut bokeh."

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
  19. nickthetasmaniac

    nickthetasmaniac Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2011
    Thanks again Brian!

    Hi Carl, thanks for your suggestions. The main reason I wanted to go with a legacy lens is speed - the ones I'm looking at are f2.8 at the slowest. If I was going to get something with a max f5.6 I think I'd probably just get the Pana 100-300mm :smile:
  20. Chris5107

    Chris5107 Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    Canon FD 200mm f2.8

    The Canon FD 200mm f2.8 seems to be one of the better bargains out there and the quality is pretty good. They are known for a little bit of CA on sharp edges under some lighting condtions but I have not found this to be a big problem in most photos.

    I have three of these lenses and would like to sell two of them. They have very nice glass.

    These are a little heavier than something like an Olympus 200mm but they are very useable on a m4/3 body. In decent light, I am able to get good shots hand held with my E-PL2 which is impressive for a 400mm equivalent FL.

    Very easy to focus too, IMO.

    see >>>

    I am selling these for $175 + s/h. For $25 more I will throw in an FD to m4/3 adapter.
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