In the world of speciality lenses, there is nothing more specialized than perspective-control or tilt-shift lenses. The idea was to give 35mm photographers some movement control that large and medium format photographers used to adjust perspective. While the level of control could never be as discrete as with a large format camera, a perspective-control or PC lens provided some form of tilt and shift to grant a photographer a way to recompose an image without moving the camera body itself. Nikon’s original release in 1962 as part of the Nikon F system presented the world with the PC-Nikkor 35mm f/3.5, a relatively simple lens withRead More →

Minolta certainly got right if there is one thing the number of sleeper lenses in their initial autofocus offerings. Mostly among these sleeper lenses are the zoom lenses, and one of the best is the 35-70mm f/4. Without breaking the bank, a lens with little fanfare or flare can certainly deliver quality images. This lens was my first experience with Maxxum glass, first on a Maxxum 5000 and then again on the 7000. And while this lens looks proper on those two cameras, it is dwarfed on the Maxxum 9, but it doesn’t matter as the image quality is superb. Lens Specifications Make: Minolta Model:Read More →

If there is one type of lens that many photographers look for in a good street photography camera or any compact camera body is a good pancake lens. And while Nikon is not known for producing many ‘pancake’ style lenses, they did have a couple of winners. One of these lenses is the Nikkor 50mm f/1.8, a real winner. In contrast, there have been many versions of this lens, including a long-nose version, the 50mm f/1.8 is a solid performer for the smaller form-factor camera bodies (think FM, FE) and while it may look like a Series E, it is all Nikkor. Lens Specifications Make:Read More →

When it comes to fast Nikon Zooms, the modern trinity is the 14-24/2.8G, 24-70/2.8G and 70-200/2.8G (although I’m sure these have all been updated to the new E-Type lenses by this posting). However, a pair of these lenses have older versions; while the focal lengths are different, the constant f/2.8 aperture is the same. Now in my own lens catalogue I have only a pair of the G-Type in the trinity, the 14-24 and 70-200, but the cost of the 24-70 plus the word being it doesn’t work too well with film (I’ll have to test that) kept me from purchasing the lens. But theRead More →

I’m a sucker for wide-angle lenses. And when it comes to it, sometimes the wider, the better, and while the 28mm is an excellent lens to work with, sometimes you want something that little bit extra. The trouble is that the wider and faster the lens is, the more expensive it is on the used market. And some lenses have a cult following around them, which drives up the price. So often have to compromise on focal length, speed, image quality, or cost. Well, I can certainly say that by going with some of the less expensive lenses in the Nikon manual focus catalogue, IRead More →

When it comes to fixed telephoto lenses, something is satisfying about these lenses, while they may not always be the ideal lens in a situation. When I first picked up that kit, the lenses that I got were a Soligor 200mm f/4, and it was the first lens I used when shooting my first roll of film. And for many years, I was happy with having only the 135mm f/2.8 in my manual focus Nikon kit. Then a chance at a 200mm f/4 brought me back to my first SLR, the Minolta SR-T 102. , That lens puts the Nikkor 200mm f/4 to shame inRead More →

While I’m not always a fan of third-party lenses, every so often, one comes along that impresses me as an alternative to an OEM lens. And the Osawa is one of those lenses that I probably would have used more if I had known what a sleeper I was sitting on. Unlike Vivitar, Osawa is a lens manufacturer in their own right and produced lenses starting in the 1970s when many SLRs were beginning to gain popularity in the consumer market, and many were clamouring for inexpensive alternatives. While working with this lens in an OM-Mount, they also produced for other major camera makers likeRead More →

Throughout these reviews, I have shied away from third-party lens makers. But I have a long history with third-party lenses and often with good results. My favourite lenses are from my first SLR system, the Minolta SR-T 102, a Kiron 70-150mm f/4 lens and a Vivitar 75-210mm f/3.5. Although that Vivitar is different from today, the Series 1 70-210mm f/3.5 in many ways. The biggest is the size and function; the Series 1 is a beast and a lens that surprised me that they even released the lens in an OM-Mount. Lens Specifications Make: Kiron Model: Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm 1:3.5 Macro Focusing Auto ZoomRead More →

When it comes to a 50mm lens, they are often overshadowed by faster fifties, the f/1.4 and f/1.2 and even crazier f/0.95. But sometimes, all you need is something at f/1.8, and the Olympus F.Zuiko, 50mm f/1.8, is a spectacular choice for your OM-System. While the lens has gone through several changes since its inception, this chrome nose version fits in nicely next to my 50mm f/1.4 chrome nose and is a tack sharp option for the more budget-minded Olympus user. Lens Specifications Make: Olympus Model: OM-System Auto-S F.Zuiko 1:1,8 f=50mm Focal Length: 50mm Focal Range: ∞ – 0.45m Aperture: f/1.8 – f/16, 6 BladesRead More →

When I first started into the Minolta Maxxum system, my first two lenses were zooms, the iconic duo of f/4 classics, the 35-70mm and 70-210mm. A trip to Burlington Camera yielded a couple of prime lenses that would be perfect additions to my kit; they were the classic 50mm f/1.7 and the lens I’m reviewing today the 28mm f/2.8. The Maxxum 28/2.8 is a great lens and a perfect fit. Doesn’t take too much space. It is close to the same size as the 50 and even the 35-70 and is my favourite prime lens for my Maxxum 9 system without a 35mm prime. AndRead More →