Recommended Focal Length: What's Your Favorite?

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by tjdean01, Jul 20, 2013.

  1. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 20, 2013
    Poll Has Failed. My fault. I'm sorry. The results aren't correct. I mis-worded everything. So let's let this thread die and I'll start another soon enough. Then we'll have some fun!

    I put this in the adapted lens category to keep the Native-Only crowd away. :biggrin: I came into m4/3 for the 20/1.7 and 45/1.8, but adapted lenses are cheaper and so much more fun! Plus I'm not spending the money for the 25/1.4, 60/2.8 or the 75/1.8 so there are focal lengths I'm missing here. 25, 30, 25, 40, 55, or anything 60-80, for example. (For anything wider native lenses are of course the best choice!)

    Part I: Any Recommendations?
    I've gotten recommendations before which resulted in a couple very nice nifty-50s. For fun, a cheap zoom and cheap CPC 28mm f2.8 macro. But I still want more, and more, and more! So, I'm looking for primes relatively small, fast, sharp, relatively cheap, and to be greedy, maybe even a closer minimum focus. I've read through A LOT of the 100s of adapted lenses threads, but since they're not sortable by FL, price, quality, price, and speed, sometimes it's easier to ask :smile:

    Part II: Poll: What's Your Favorite 35mm Equivalent Focal Length?
    This is just for fun, but could really help me out by seeing what you like. My 50mm lenses are 100mm equivalent and that seems a tad long for some instances; and in others not long enough! I'm thinking I could get a good 35 or 40 that I'd enjoy better because at 70-80mm equivalent it's not so long; or an 85mm for when I need longer. Anyway, just thought I'd ask, what Adapted FL do you personally like the best?

    Answer approximately. You can choose more than one but try to keep it to 1-2. Thanks! :wink: And don't forget, 50mm equivalent on m4/3s would be a very wide lens (like the old 24-28mm's). So NORMAL 50mm's on our cameras would be 100mm.
  2. Chris5107

    Chris5107 Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    I think you should have included small FL's in your list.
  3. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 5, 2013
    San Diego
    Doug Green
    Given the quality, and the cost, of legacy fast 50mm lenses, I think those are certainly the first ones anyone looking to explore manual focusing should give a try.

    Next up should be a Macro Lens in the 90-105mm range.

    Then finally, long fast lenses.

    These are the 3 areas which, IMHO, the adapted legacy lenses can do a great job at low cost. IMHO, for anything shorter than 35mm, the native lenses are simply better, although 28mm lenses can be OK.

    I should also add, for purposes of the poll, the OP should have grouped stuff in the 85-105mm range together, and 170-200 together. This way, 35-40mm and 24-28mm could have been added to the poll
  4. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 20, 2013
    I made the poll quickly and now I can't edit it. I should have put the actual focal length that's written on the old lenses, like 28, 35, 40, 55, 52, 85, 135, etc, but can't change it now so we'll just have to multiply by two in our heads. If you like 35 just put 70 and if you like 40 put 80, and so on.

    Anyway, a lot can be said about the wide 24, 28, 40, and 50mm equivalent focal length of the 12, 14, 20, and 25mm lenses. I do like them wide. But those options aren't the best way to go to if you're using adapted lenses. With the 2x crop factor there isn't much to choose from at that width besides fish eyes!

    Anyway, for me, I'd think the ideal focal length would be around 80-90mm. I have the Pentax 50/1.7 which I love but it seems a bit long. I'll be buying a Konica 40/1.8 pretty soon to see how that feels. I voted 90mm.
  5. Hudsonhites

    Hudsonhites Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 14, 2011
    I just finished a three week tour of churches & monasteries in the country of Georgia. My Nikon 105mm f2.5 ais mated to the EM-5 proved quite useful to be able to photograph the many paintings covering the ceilings in the dimly lit interiors.
  6. MarylandUSA

    MarylandUSA Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 3, 2013
    Poolesville, Maryland
    Paul Franklin Stregevsky
    Just wondering, Hudsonhites, do you think your 105mm will be the longest adapted lens you'll buy? Or has it given you a taste for even longer lenses?

    I ask because when I bought my Minolta 100/2.5 Plain MD (49mm filters, 311g), I figured it would be the far bookend to my Rokinon fisheye. The 100 already pushes the limit of what I can shoot handheld, and I hate carrying a tripod.

    But I find myself poring over reviews of compact 135mm lenses (f/2.5 to f/3.5, 270-400g) and compact 200mm lenses (f/3.5 or f/4, 405-550g), even though I can't imagine when I'd use them except for my two daughters' pending graduations. I think I'm just fascinated by the fact that thanks to the 2X crop factor, a fast telephoto of a given magnification now weighs only one-third to one-fifth what it used to. The longer and faster a lens you buy, the more weight you save. How can I say No?

  7. Hudsonhites

    Hudsonhites Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 14, 2011
    It's the inbody image stabilization of the EM5 and it's decent high ISO performance that makes using the Nikon 105 f2.5 ais a viable option for shooting in the church interiors.

    I have considered getting a manual focus 200mm f4 which is a 35mm format equivalent of 400mm but that would be about as long a focal length as I would ever need. I've used longer but that was on safari in Africa I'm not into birding or wildlife photography. It took a lot of practice with different techniques to obtain acceptable results.

    I would suggest if you want to use more legacy manual focus lenses that an Olympus body like an EM5 or EP5 would allow you to achieve better results shooting handheld. I used the 105mm on the EM5 handheld only and was very happy with the results.
  8. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    Whatever I need to fill the frame the moment I release the shutter.
  9. speedandstyle

    speedandstyle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    My 2 favorites are not in your list!!! I love my old Vivitar 135mm f2.8 as well as my Nikon E 28mm f2.8.

    You have some focal lengths listed that I have never seen in a 135 SLR system. Never seen an 80mm before although 85mm is highly common{80mm is very popular in medium format however}.

    As for how long can one go. I have hand-held without IS in bright sunlight a 300mm with good results. The reason I had the IS off was that it is a 70-300mm zoom. But as long as the light is good I did fine, oh the lens is f5.6
  10. uci2ci

    uci2ci Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 22, 2012
    Los Angeles, CA
    Surprise surprise....50mm leads the pack
  11. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    I suspect many of the 100 votes are also really a vote for 50.
  12. MarylandUSA

    MarylandUSA Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 3, 2013
    Poolesville, Maryland
    Paul Franklin Stregevsky

    You're right, 80mm is almost unheard of, with the notable exception of the legendary Carl Zeiss Jena Pancolar 80/1.8 in M42 mount. It's said to be based on the design of the Pentax SMC 85/1.8 (M42 and K).
  13. WasOM3user

    WasOM3user Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 20, 2012
    Lancashire, UK
    Love my 90mm Tamron 90 SP macro F2.5 - super close focus with plenty of working distance at one end and also makes a good sports telephoto with the OMD's IBIS just a bit of a challenge on follow focus.
  14. Iansky

    Iansky Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 26, 2009
    The Cotswolds, UK
    My most used lens on my OMD is the 25mm f1.4 but that is due to shooting more street than anything else and that is the perfect lens for street, especially with the OMD - IMHO.
  15. MarylandUSA

    MarylandUSA Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 3, 2013
    Poolesville, Maryland
    Paul Franklin Stregevsky
    rewording the poll question

    It's regrettable that the poll didn't simply ask,
    "What is your favorite adapted lens focal length?"

    By including "(35mm equivalent)," the question seems to be nudging us to multiply the adapted lens marked focal length by 2.

    Can the OP clarify which meaning was intended?

    Since few of us have heard of a 25mm adapted lens, 50mm must stand for a lens marked 50mm. But then, where are 20, 24, 28, 35, 40, 45mm, 57, and 58mm? And why is 80mm there, when there's been only one 80mm lens?

  16. burdickjp

    burdickjp Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 25, 2013
    No love for the wides?
  17. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    If the OP's poll refers to 35mm equivalents, the choices are divided by 2, but then he omitted the 48mm and 56 mm options.

    Anyway, my favorites are 100m, 170mm and 270mm, which implies the nifty 50's, 85mm and 135mm. These offer me the advantage of fast aperture and fairly reasonable, if not low cost.

    No love for wides at all here. My various 24, 28, and 35mm primes are not much fun for me. Mine have to be stopped down for best results, at which point they are a par with any 14-42 or 14-45 zoom. I am sure there are some great legacy 24 and 28mm primes, but when we all could have bought the Sigma 19 for $99, there doesn't seem to be a reason to spend more for them.
  18. Shadetree

    Shadetree Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Jun 1, 2013
    Chattanooga, TN
    Adapted lenses

    I always thought that an adapted lens like say a 100mm f2.8 on a micro 4/3 would be the equivalent of a 200mm f2.8 but have recently seen it written that it is like a 200mm f4 so who's wrong here? Thanks.
  19. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 20, 2013
    80 would be a lens marked 40mm. 270 would be for the 135 lenses

    Indeed :frown: We'll have to retry this in a month or so after this thread disappears to the bottom. I see m4/3s users are no longer thinking in 35mm equivalent lengths. I'll put 28, 35, 40, 42, 50, 57, 70, 100, 135, etc and I'll put "approximately" in size 7 text next time to more forcefully iterate that, say, 50 or 52 can both be counted as 50. Or maybe I'll just 27, 36, 41, 51 etc to force people to approximate.

    I already have on the first page. But, I'd say this poll has failed. My apologizes. I DID catch it right away after the very first person chose "50." I really doubt too many people's favorite lens would have "27mm" or less written on it. 28 is popular but that's closer to 60mm. But I realized that it was confusing 5 minutes after posting it but there's no way to edit it. We'll do it again soon enough!
  20. Narnian

    Narnian Nobody in particular ...

    Aug 6, 2010
    Richmond, VA
    Richard Elliott
    Don't forget 85 - my favorite is my Minolta 85/2. :D
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