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Should I get a mirror lens?

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by sinophilia, Mar 23, 2010.

  1. sinophilia

    sinophilia Mu-43 Regular

    135
    Jan 22, 2010
    Verona, Italy
    Hello everybody,
    I was looking for a cheap telephoto lens on eBay and I stumbled across some Tokina 500mm mirror lenses starting from about 100 euro. I really like the size of these things, which would be just perfect for a micro4/3 camera.

    I saw a couple of bird photos taken with this kind of lens on this forum and I'm wondering if it's worth to get one for my GF1. The donut bokeh looks good to me. And such an inexpensive 1000mm telephoto lens is really tempting! Of course I should also get an adapter (probably a Canon FD). Any thoughts?
     
  2. back alley

    back alley Mu-43 Regular

    119
    Feb 21, 2010
    people will make fun of your bokeh...
     
  3. hohoho

    hohoho Mu-43 Regular

    170
    Jan 24, 2010
    Tokyo
    You haven't said what you want to use it for. (Birds?)

    I'm assuming here that "bokeh" is not your prime interest. If on the other hand you want to produce "bokeh photographs", then go for it.
     
  4. sinophilia

    sinophilia Mu-43 Regular

    135
    Jan 22, 2010
    Verona, Italy
    I'm not really sure what I could use it for, I guess moving subjects would be pretty hard to manual focus accurately... but why not, I saw some good bird/mammal photos taken with this kind of lenses. I'd just like to have a super-telephoto. Could be useful for flower close-ups too, maybe some astronomy shots. Of course with a tripod.

    As for the donut bokeh, some people like it, other hate it. I guess it depends on the background you have.
     
  5. mauve

    mauve Mu-43 Top Veteran

    892
    Mar 9, 2010
    Paris, France
    I find donut bokeh very dated, very 70ish ; it's almost a time-stamped signature. Plus I think the effect is pretty much 'cliché' now. But like many fads, it can make a come back, or who knows, be used differently and bring totally new pictures.

    Anyway, for 100 €, you can't be really wrong.
     
  6. bilzmale

    bilzmale Mu-43 All-Pro

    I have a Sigma 600. The bokeh is not too bad but it lacks contrast ooc. Postprocessing fixes that quickly enough. They are very light and compact for the reach which could suit MFT.
     
  7. sinophilia

    sinophilia Mu-43 Regular

    135
    Jan 22, 2010
    Verona, Italy
    thanks bilzmale, any place where I can see photos taken with the Sigma? it is the most expensive but I may have found one pretty cheap...
     
  8. hodad66

    hodad66 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    806
    Jan 27, 2010
    Indialantic, Florida
    all of these shots are from the Sigma 600

    4292194161_9f197a8b4e.

    4279689065_c2fd24e637.

    4280326822_39876beb26.

    what I find is that it works best at close range. Distance shots
    loose contrast.
     
    • Like Like x 4
  9. Graham_of_Rainham

    Graham_of_Rainham Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Feb 16, 2010
    I too use the Sigma 600mm and fully agree. I think it's the best Mirror lens that I have ever used (I sold the 500mm)

    However on a 4/3 sensor 1200mm (effective) is quite "Interesting" :wink:
     
  10. hohoho

    hohoho Mu-43 Regular

    170
    Jan 24, 2010
    Tokyo
    It's so big that you won't want to carry it around other than for a particular purpose. I find it really hard to imagine how it would help with flower close-ups. If you want to take photos of the moon, you'll need a telescope; for interesting starscapes, something much wider than a mirror lens.

    For birds and wild mammals, you'll need patience by the truckload.

    I'd wait till you know what you want to photograph for which none of your lenses is long enough, and only then get something for the job.
     
  11. sinophilia

    sinophilia Mu-43 Regular

    135
    Jan 22, 2010
    Verona, Italy
    thank you for the photos hodad66. impressive.
    you're probably right hohoho, let's say I like new (old) toys.
    I have my eyes on a Sigma but will only buy it if it remains a bargain.
     
  12. sinophilia

    sinophilia Mu-43 Regular

    135
    Jan 22, 2010
    Verona, Italy
    I just found this photo gallery by Pierre Rousseau... wow!! Not on a micro4/3, but still... lovely.
     
  13. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Sure is! Thanks for the link. I think this is a nice demonstration that the classic mirror lens bokeh is apparent only in specific circumstances.
     
  14. hodad66

    hodad66 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    806
    Jan 27, 2010
    Indialantic, Florida
    busy background or points of light.... doughnuts.
     
  15. pellicle

    pellicle Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 10, 2010
    Southport, OzTrailEYa
    pellicle
    nice to know ... have to test one back home
     
  16. sinophilia

    sinophilia Mu-43 Regular

    135
    Jan 22, 2010
    Verona, Italy
    Seems like I will be trying not one but two mirror lenses! I just won a Sigma 600mm for 50 pounds on eBay, and a Tokina 500mm for 90 euros (had bidded on it before I found the Sigma). Both have a Canon FD mount.

    Yay! New toys :)
     
  17. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Jim Radcliffe showed some nice results with his new 500mm Rokkor mirror lens and GF1 here. The rhino and the cheetah photos were made using this lens.
     
  18. ballfresno

    ballfresno Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Feb 11, 2010
    West Sussex, UK
    I like my 300 mm lens on my G1:

    3343913297_7e678926dc.

    Yes, you do have to be careful with the background if you dislike torii... but you can't beat the focal length versus weight aspect of such a lens! Some photos taken with it in the flickr set devoted to FD lenses on my G1.
     
  19. sinophilia

    sinophilia Mu-43 Regular

    135
    Jan 22, 2010
    Verona, Italy
    thanks ballfresno and Amin, I'm eagerly waiting for my mirror lenses that should be here early next week!
     
  20. Warren T.

    Warren T. Mu-43 Veteran

    338
    Mar 10, 2010
    San Francisco
    I was testing out my Reflex Nikkor 500mm f8 the other day on the G1.

    Lumix DMC-G1, Nikkor 500mm f8, on monopod:

    2010Mar25G1500mm+002-web.