Olympus lens glare issue

Jason Stamper

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Mar 13, 2014
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Hi all, I seem to be encountering some glare issues with my Olympus FTL 135mm lens even with the lens hood. It is worse the smaller the aperture is set to, and almost goes away completely at f3.5. Would a filter of some kind help? This is a m42 mount too by the way, perhaps a cheap adapter is the culprit. This is easy to fix in post, but I prefer to get it right to start with. Thoughts? I really like this lens as it is really sharp, but if the glare is going to be a problem I might go for plan B.

Plan B is to sell it and buy a Canon FDn 135 f3.5 to replace it, which would also simplicity my kit. I am also looking at replacing my cheap fd adapter for the polish one, that open/closed ring annoys me, and is too loose for comfort.


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Jason Stamper

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Examples

I have been looking at the adapter I have and there are no "grooves" machined inside it like my Canon FD adapter. It is painted satin black, but it is a bit more reflective than the other adapter with the grooves, so I am wondering if this might be the issue.

Here is an example of a shot of a young bear that shows the issue well.

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On the other hand I do not see it in this picture I took of a bell tower.

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So what gives? Is the satin black paint in the adapter possibly to blame? If so, what's the best fix?

Oh and just for comparison, here is another of the bear that I fixed in PS.

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HarryS

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I always thought that was lack of contrast, not unusual for old lenses with 1st generation or no coatings, and a reason why many users don't use legacy lenses. WIth Lightroom, I'm used to applying a preset to fix.
 

mr_botak

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Looks like veiling flare, which manifests itself as reduced contrast. This is a single coated lens, so is much less resistant to flare than a modern lens, with my OM version essentially the sun *has* to be behind the camera. You might find putting a dark matt foam around adapter helps, but probably not.
 

Jason Stamper

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I did a little testing last night and I think the single coating veiling flare is very likely the suspect. I can get some nice images out of the lens as long as the sun does not hit the front element. I did cover the inside of the adapter with the soft side of some self adhesive velcro, that helped a good bit. Although the lens is VERY sharp I am not sure if I like the colors coming out of it. The Canon lenses I have are producing warmer colors, so I might switch to a Canon 135. I just hate to give up an a really sharp, well built lens.

Here are a few samples from last night, what do you all think? These are jpegs straight out of the camera by the way.

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Jason Stamper

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Sharp enough. Looks like dust right by the bottom of the flag pole,
Good eye Harry, that was actually a tiny bit of the velcro from trimming it. I got it out now, but I agree it is a really sharp lens, just not sure if the colors are ok. What do you think of the colors?
 

Timmy

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If you're losing contrast because of older coatings, perhaps you could try a multi-coated CPL filter - worth having one for sunny days on any lens.
 

mr_botak

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I think the colour is fine, certianly in the first shot, and looks very similar to the shots I've taken with either of the 135s I own. I'd use it within its limitations for a bit and see if you want to keep it. As an aside I rarely use the 135s adapted as I find them too long, they are nice on the OM2 though. The 3.5 is the better of the two.
 

OzRay

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I wouldn't worry about the colours, tonality and contrast is what often differentiates lenses. My 1965 era Leica lens vs a modern Voigtlander produces tones that are chalk and cheese; the Leica is warm while the Voigtlander is on the cold side. I prefer the Leica in this respect.
 

ScottGee1

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Mar 22, 2014
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What do you think of the colors?
Jason, should we assume you custom WB for your tests?

AWB is certainly convenient and CWB is a PITA, but can make a significant difference in color rendition.

And can you imagine anyone but a photographer being capable of deciphering that sentence? :tongue:
 

Jason Stamper

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Mar 13, 2014
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Scott, I believe these shots were taken with the AWB, I agree the CWB would likely help. I have one custom white balance setting that I use in our house, I set the WB for it using the white balance cat.... :wink: Seriously, I did, and it works great in our house! I'll try messing with that a bit and see if it helps the Olympus. Thanks for the thoughts!

White Balance Cat
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G5 with a Pentax 40mm f2.8 pancake
 
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