Recommend Lenses+Adapters

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by dwrz, Mar 20, 2011.

  1. dwrz

    dwrz Mu-43 Regular

    70
    Dec 9, 2010
    What adapters and lenses would you recommend to someone who owns a good set of Micro Four Thirds lenses? I have the 7-14, 14-140, 20, 45, and may soon have a 100-300.

    What would you recommend as sub-$200 lenses? Over that?

    Some of the photographs with the "old" glass look amazing, why is that?
     
  2. mauve

    mauve Mu-43 Top Veteran

    892
    Mar 9, 2010
    Paris, France
    Maybe because owners of 'old' glass happen statistically to be 'old' photographers with a lot of experience :biggrin:

    Cheers,
     
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  3. dwrz

    dwrz Mu-43 Regular

    70
    Dec 9, 2010
    Sure, that makes sense. But beyond that, I guess I was not expecting to see that adapted lenses could still remain so sharp, and yet have beautiful bokeh.
     
  4. mauve

    mauve Mu-43 Top Veteran

    892
    Mar 9, 2010
    Paris, France
    It's like pop music from 20 years ago. We tend to see history through pink tinted glasses. We remember the few good tunes, and quickly forget the incredibly huge amount of crap we heard during the same period.

    Same for lenses. A few very good lenses retain value through ages and their reputation increase over time. Crap lenses are since long gone into the bin.

    Cheers,
     
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  5. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Don
    I highly recommend the Canon FDn 50mm f/1.4 and Fotodiox FD to m4/3 adapter. Both are readily available here in the USA for very modest investment. The lens, depending on condition, hood, box, etc. can range from around $50 to $100 and the Fotodiox adapter is on Amazon for around $27 or so. This will give you an equivalent 100mm f/1.4 lens which can make stunning, shallow depth of focus images with great bokeh and is especially suited to making great portraits! Shoot it wide open and it's a little soft in both sharpness and contrast. But sharpness and contrast can both be bumped up a bit in post, no problem. Shoot at 1.8 or 2.0 and sharpness and contrast both increase. Either way you can create great images for very little investment. HIGHLY recommended.

    I view legacy glass primarily for creating very shallow depth of focus images. For subjects where I will be stopping down for deeper DOF, I think the native m4/3 lenses are better, especially for their auto focus and OIS. But the thrill of shooting with a 35mm f/1.2, 50mm f/1.4, 85mm f/1.4 and such on m4/3 is fantastic!
     
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  6. iliakoltsov

    iliakoltsov Mu-43 Regular

    195
    Aug 7, 2010
    Paris
    Mauve again i must disagree , optical production at this time was an art which gives every lens with very specific characteristic and distinguishable from others. Obviously high end lenses were absolutely amazing , but nevertheless due to the fact that there was no computer aided design even low end lens have a personality. A good example KMZ , Helios 44 , Helios 40 the rendering is very different on full frame ( less on micro 4/3) than any modern lenses. Similar to this Tomioka fantastic optician that probably produced among the best 50mm out there but when you see a picture you know it was made with a Tomioka lens.

    Mauve then again what do you mean by crap:

    Bad build quality , i must say no the build quality at a time was equivalent to Voigtlander or Leica

    Bad optically , i must say no in the 50mm range there was NO radical changes in terms of formula since the pentacon 50 1.8 ( Gauss Planar). The only factor maybe the resolution ( glass quality) , mind you those lenses were designed for a full frame, which is no more applicable if you get a more modern lens with MC.

    Price
    As you are getting those lenses for very very cheap, the price/ performance ratio even with humble Makinon, chinon or Sun lenses will be a lot higher than if you get a modern AF lens. it is mathematics you pay a lot more but you will gain a bit so obviously old lenses have a better price performance ratio

    To resume I must disagree with you, most old lenses are more than fine on M4/3 if you start being picky the only 2 problems i noted until now some seems to be a bit soft wide open 1 step down it is awesome and sharp and some as i said before have problems with glass quality ( not really designed for m4/3).

    I have tested quite a bit of them have a look it in my blog :
    http://my.opera.com/iliakoltsov/blog/
     
  7. ksn

    ksn Mu-43 Veteran

    266
    Mar 6, 2011
    Is the equivalent focal length for all adapted lenses on m4/3s just x2?
     
  8. Yes, in terms of the equivalent angle-of-view or field-of-view on a 35mm film or full-frame digital camera. This multiplication is true for ANY lens on a m4/3 camera, not just an adapted lens. Be careful though, this topic causes all manner of arguments around here!
     
  9. iliakoltsov

    iliakoltsov Mu-43 Regular

    195
    Aug 7, 2010
    Paris
    Yes as luckypenguin said , the field of view is reduced this is a double edged sword , very difficult to find true wide angle but on the other hand you can get a really fast tele with stunning bokeh. In my opinion if you really need a wide angle take it for the sensor format as it will be better than adapting a usually expensive as rare wide angle from 35mm. The other factor that is very interesting is that even very average lenses on Film will be relatively good on M4/3 due to the fact that only the center is used. Also an advantage 35mm lenses give a surplus of light , usually i shoot at -1 EV , at night or in the dark place this offers you an extra stop not bad :).
     
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  10. dwrz

    dwrz Mu-43 Regular

    70
    Dec 9, 2010
    Thanks. I've picked up a FD 50mm f/1.4 from a user here, and a 135mm f/2.8 on eBay. I'll have to look for 35mm and 80mm.

    Three questions:
    1. Is it worthwhile to check out similar lenses produced by other companies? For example, is a Hexanon 57mm f/1.4 worth it, or is it pretty much the same look you find on the Canon 50mm?

    2. My father's old camera has (saw it mentioned above) a Pentacon 50mm f/1.7. What kind of adapter would I need for it?

    3. Does lack of autofocus become very problematic at long focal lengths? Would it be frustrating a 200mm or 300mm FD lens (equivalent to 400 and 600)?
     
  11. bullmrkt

    bullmrkt Mu-43 Regular

    45
    Jan 9, 2011
    Here's another thought... The whole reason I got into m4/3 was to have a good vintage Leica lens platform because it fundamentally similar to the rangefinders. I don't find the M9 very impressive, and its exorbitantly expensive. While also expensive, Leica lenses are unmatched in quality and performance, and as far as value retention (and even appreciation) nothing can touch them.

    I ended up getting a GH2, a 14-140mm work horse lens, Voigtlander Nokton 25mm 0.95, and I already have several vintage 50's Leica lenses I use with the Panny M mount (Leica bayonet) adapter. The voigtlander adapter is good too I've heard.

    Check out kenrockwell.com for TONS of great info on Leica lenses.
     
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  12. dwrz

    dwrz Mu-43 Regular

    70
    Dec 9, 2010
    Thanks. I take it these lenses go for about the same range as the current m4/3, right?
     
  13. bullmrkt

    bullmrkt Mu-43 Regular

    45
    Jan 9, 2011
    Leica lenses? Huge range, but they aren't cheap. $500-$10,000+. For example though, a Leica Summicron 50mm f/2 can be had for about $1200ish I believe. Again, check out kenrockwell.com for Leica lens information and recommendations.

    LEICA Lenses
     
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  14. iliakoltsov

    iliakoltsov Mu-43 Regular

    195
    Aug 7, 2010
    Paris
    If you have a particular interest in Leica, you should know that KMZ ( Krasnogorkij Mashinostroitelnyj Zavod) used most parts and formulas from either Leica or Zeiss, you may have a quick look at those lense:

    A good example Jupiter 9 85 F2 is the same as the Zeiss Sonnar 85 F2

    Industar 50-2 the same as the Tessar 50 F3.5

    There are a lot of other examples.......

    Thanks to russian optics we can have leica and zeiss at affordable prices :D

    Pentacon it could be on 2 mounts depends if it is old or even older :p
    If it is a screw mount it is an M42 , then an M42 to M4/3 adapter is required

    2nd case if it a more recent Praktica , then it will be on Praktica B mount ( bayonet type ) still an adapter is available
    on the net , PB to M4/3 it is a bit more expensive because not that popular.

    here is my test of the 50 1.8

    http://my.opera.com/iliakoltsov/blog/2011/01/23/pentacon-meyer-gorlitz-oreston-50-1-8

    The lack of AF is not problematic on long telephoto , what is is the lack of stabilization which makes rather difficult to operate. My longest telephoto is around 200mm i never needed more and in fact i think 200 is already a very long reach. I useally use lenses up to 135.
     
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  15. bullmrkt

    bullmrkt Mu-43 Regular

    45
    Jan 9, 2011
    I'd be shocked if the quality control and anal attention to detail was up to par with Leica. Plus one of the best reasons to buy Leica lenses is for their value.

    Which is more expensive in this example?

    A. New Leica Summilux 50mm f/1.4
    Value in 2011 $3,700
    Value in 2021 $3,500 (+?)

    B. New Panny 14-140mm
    Value in 2011 $800
    Value in 2021 $50-100?

    The answer is B. Your real cost is your upfront cost MINUS the value you could potentially sell it for at any given time. The numbers of above aren't particularly accurate, I'm just making a point.

    There are plenty of great Leica's available used, mine are from the 1950's and take better photos than way too many contemporary lenses. Buying them used only reduces your real cost of course, and will likely turn a profit.
     
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  16. dwrz

    dwrz Mu-43 Regular

    70
    Dec 9, 2010
    I would have an interest in Leica, but it's just out of my pocket for the time being. I hope one day I'll be able to invest in an M9 and a few lenses. I will have to look at some of the Russian lenses, though.

    The lens is on a Praktica MTL 5 body, but it screws in. I've attached some photographs.
    _3214948.
    _3214946.

    I'm still wondering, are similar lenses worth a look? Do people have both an Olympus 50mm and Canon FD 50mm? Is a Hexacon worth it even if you've got something in the focal range already?

    For the longer telephotos, would a 200mm f/2.8 be preferable over the Panasonic 100-300, if you're shooting on a tripod, and not sports? I mean in terms of IQ and value of the shots.
     
  17. iliakoltsov

    iliakoltsov Mu-43 Regular

    195
    Aug 7, 2010
    Paris
    Praktica MTL 5 is an M42 lens mount , 200 F2.8 to my knowledge there were very scarce :

    I would advise you :

    Vivitar 200 F3.5 pretty good lens but heavy
    Makinon 200 F3.3 seems an absolutely amazing lens
    Pentacon 200 F4

    Good lenses to look at the Tamron adaptall SP lenses :

    http://adaptall-2.org/lenses/30A.html

    this 80-200 F2.8 could be found depends on the condition for 100 to 200 euros.
     
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  18. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Don
    dwrz... if you want to keep it simple, easy, low cost, with great results... Canon FD is a great way to go. Amazingly fast and sharp lenses, the 35/1.4, 50/1.2, 50/1.4, 85/1.2, 85/1.8, 100/2, 135/2, 135/2.8, macro lenses, yada yada are easy to find, affordable to moderately expensive depending on the lens, and will provide stunning results on m4/3. One $27 adapter to fit them all.

    There are a gazillion different ways to go with different brands and types of egacy lenses and it can become a heavily time and effort consuming endeavor (and sometimes expensive) if you enjoy that and you want it to be. Or it can be quick, easy economical, and rewarding. Canon FD is the latter.
     
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  19. I have a number of examples of both the Canon FD and Zuiko OM 50s.

    These are my opinions based on the samples that I have used

    Canon new FD 50/1.8: Small, sharp. Don't really like it's out-of-focus areas. Dirt cheap, feels cheap.

    Canon new FD 50/1.4: Sharp, nicer OOF areas. Heavier and more solid feeling. Don't really like the aperture ring (same applies to all new FDs).

    Canon breech-lock FD 50/1.4: I've tried some good and not-so-good. Much bigger and heavier than the new FD. Not quite as sharp. Generally don't like it on a m4/3 camera.

    Zuiko OM 50/1.8 Silvernose: Very small but heavier than the Canon 50/1.8. Decently sharp, great OOF areas. Almost dirt cheap, feels great. Lovely piece of engineering and optics for a basic standard prime.

    Zuiko OM 50/1.8 (model with 'Made in Japan' on the front, blacknose): Slightly sharper than the silvernose. Build quality and feel is just as good.

    Zuiko OM 50/1.4 Silvernose: Haven't used it 'in the field' yet. Once again, beautifully built. Seems to be very sharp at anything less than wide open.
     
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  20. iliakoltsov

    iliakoltsov Mu-43 Regular

    195
    Aug 7, 2010
    Paris
    I can only agree with you Dhart , but the fact that he already has some praktica lenses , it will make 2 mounts which starting to be a bit hectic hence my recommendation. I personally shoot mainly on FD , i think the size of the mount is great it balances really well on a G1.
     
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