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 →

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 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 →

When I first started working with the Maxxum system, there were two lenses recommended; the first is the 35-70mm f/4 (which will get a review next year) and the 70-210mm f/4; these were both parts of the original lineup of lenses in 1985 and have stood the test of time. Affectionately known as the ‘beer can’, a name was applied to several different lenses of the same type. While it might not be a fast lens (f/4), it still produces fantastic results, and despite the solid metal construction, the lens remains a well balanced long lens for outdoor use and one that works perfectly withRead More →

One of the least appreciated focal lengths in the world of photography is the humble 35mm lens. And I make a point to have one for almost all camera systems that I own. So I made a point that as soon as I got into the OM-System that a 35mm lens was on the shopping list. Like Nikon, the f/2 version carries a hefty price tag but like all systems, there is always an alternative. After a positive experience with the Nikkor 35mm f/2.8, I made a point to hunt down the Olympus equivalent. And it quickly became the lens of choice when I takeRead More →

When it comes to Zuiko lenses, I don’t think there is a bad one, sure some are better than others, but all of them are excellent performing optics. And the Zuiko 28/3.5 is one such lens, might not be the fastest lens for a wide-angle, but it is a strong performer. When I was putting together my OM kit, I did not want to spend too much money, and when it came to Zuiko glass, you can get some excellent deals on solid optics, but wide-angles are not one of them, especially the fast glass, but there is always a third option, the slower ones.Read More →

If there is one lens that I use even less than my Rokkor 135/2.8, it’s my Nikkor 135/2.8. This beat-up lens is one of the groups that I got when I received my Nikon F3 kit back many years ago. In that kit along with the 135/2.8 was the 105/2.5 which got all the attention and the glory. I was always more of a fan of the 105mm focal length and the 85mm focal length before that. The 135mm length seemed a little redundant. Then last year when Dan Novak ran the 135mm challenge I dug out this lens from the back of the shelfRead More →

If there is one lens in my entire lineup that I know and have used the least, the Rokkor 135/2.8 is that lens. I’ve had the lens for some time and decided to keep it after I got out of Minolta cameras as my primary camera kit but dug it out when I got the XG-M and XE-7 in close succession to each other. And I have used the lens a total of twice. Once on the XG-M and once on my a6000 at Disney. As you probably have seen when it comes to short telephoto lenses my focal length of choice is the 100Read More →

Last month when I reviewed the classic 105mm f/2.5 Nikon lens I mentioned that I’m a big fan of the 105mm focal length. And while I could use the classic lens on my modern cameras, the smaller size looks funny on my larger autofocus cameras, namely the Nikon F4, F5, and D300. On my first trip to New York City and a visit to B&H Photo resulted in the purchase of this beauty. And immediately did a photoshoot in Central Park with a friend and her then partner. a new version of the classic lens that has more than a few tricks up its sleeve.Read More →

If there is a single lens within the manual focus Nikon catalogue with iconic status, it is the 105mm f/2.5. National Geographic photographer Steve McCurry used one to capture the stunning portrait of Sharbat Gula that caught the world’s attention. You may know her better as “The Afgan Girl.” It is a highly sought after, near-perfect quality lens that has changed little since its introduction. I got my copy of the lens from a member of my home church who gave me her grandfather’s press photographer kit which included the Nikon F3, a 50/1.4, 28/2.8, 105/2.5, and 135/2.8. I still have almost all those lensesRead More →