Lives in Ookay
Works as a unlucky enough to employ photographers
Joined on Aug 16, 2012
About me:

Once upon a time in a land far far away...

MisterHairy's current gear

Nikon D700
Nikon D810
Nikon Df
The old faithful. Keeps on going and never misses a shot. Had two but we replaced one recently with a Df.
We have now replaced both of our D800Es with a pair of these. Much much better all round although still not giving perfect AF with the high end Nikon f/1.4 primes.
Bought it for a laugh while in Hong Kong. Still looking for a pair of shoes to go with it. It is an extremely likeable camera though, and when paired with manual lenses, it feels like it gets in the way less than our other cameras. I just wish that it had no metering or AF systems so that the mirror could be fully opaque, and thus allow for a brighter viewfinder with a better screen. Then, it would have 5 stars.
Carl Zeiss Distagon T* 1,4/35
Carl Zeiss Distagon T* 2,8/21
Carl Zeiss Distagon T* 2/25
Absolutely love everything about this lens except the weight. It's a brick! The sheer amount of detail that this lens projects onto a high resolution sensor makes for images that you can spend hours reading and still find more each time you return to them. Fringing is still shocking at large apertures, presumably to promote smoother boke but once stopped down a bit, the images are very clean and crisp. Just amazingly so really. This lens is often described as a disappointing bigger brother of the popular 35/2 but it beats that lens (at least mine does) on every objective and subjective quality. An amazing lens.
Not perfect but still very good. Excellent clarity and realism are almost guaranteed with this lens and with a high resolution camera, it rewards the user with images that almost invite the viewer to walk in and interact with.
Really want to love this lens. It reminds me a great deal of a wider version of the ZF 35/1.4 lens but is essentially free of CA at all apertures, unlike the 35. Focusing can be "challenging" at mid distances as the viewfinder image has less "snap" than other wide lenses seem to. Additionally, although I have read a number of reviews which mention reduced field curvature, my experience is that both this and the 2.8 suffer almost equal amounts of curvature.
Carl Zeiss Makro-Planar T* 2/100
Nikon AF Nikkor 35mm f/2D
Nikon AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.4D
Not so thrilled with this one. Pretty good for its intended purpose (not surprisingly) but it fails to blow me away at longer focal distances.
Small, light and generally good enough for the Df. Not great wide open and suffering from field curvature which will normally spoil corners, it is still a great choice as a travel lens.
About as good as any other fast fifty. Maybe a smidge softer than the new G version but a lot smaller. Interestingly, CA seems better controlled with this lens than the G (1.4 or 1.8 versions) and by f/5.6 or f/8, I think that this lens is pretty convincingly better.
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8G ED
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 200mm f/2G ED VR II
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 20mm f/1.8G ED
This is the third one of these that I have had. The first got stolen in China and then I sold the second after hardly using it for a year. The thing is though, there's nothing quite like it and if you need the wide end, this is the only game in town. Field curvature imposes the need for careful focusing but for interior work, which is how I use the wide end, the curvature normally works in one's favour. At 20mm and 24mm and stopped down to f/8, I actually prefer this lens over the Nikkor 20/1.8G and the 24/1.4G primes. It is a very heavy, niche lens though so it still doesn't get used so much. Resolution wise, it is still just about up to the job, even on the D810.
Pretty much the best 200mm lens ever made. And heaviest. Basically free from all optical imperfections. Rather wasted on me as I most often find myself using it as an outdoors portrait lens where all of its optical excellence is not really necessary but when it occasionally gets lugged out for a landscape shoot (not often because of its formidable weight) it is an absolute knockout.
Good for the money, but not as good as some say. AF is patchy and requires different fine tune values for different distances and edges do not get good much before f/8, depending on the scene (they may never get good). It is obviously going to get compared to the Zeiss Distagon 21/2.8 but it is not in the same class, unfortunately. It's a good lens for snapping in tight city environments but I would not use it for demanding landscape projects.
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24mm f/1.4G ED
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.4G
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G
Much better on the D810 than it ever was on the D800E but I still don't love it. Oddly, I prefer the images it makes on the Df/D700 although I hardly use it on those cameras. How odd? Lots of CA and edge/corner softness, even stopped down to f/8. The Zeiss 25/2 is visibly sharper than this lens and has much better control of CA but is only a bit better in the corners and is a bugger to focus.
Although it is better on the D810 than it is on the D800(E), this is still somewhat unreliable in its focusing. To be honest, the f/1.8 lens betters this f/1.4 one in terms of raw sharpness and focusing speed and accuracy. Excellent flare resistance and occasionally nicer background blur may not be enough to make this lens a keeper. Shame because I absolutely loved it when I was regularly using it on a D700. [update - I have just given up on this lens again. The f/1.8 version continues to work better than this lens on the D810 just as it did on the D800E]
Bought it cheaply while in Hong Kong. Seems surprisingly good and is nice and light. This lens focuses more quickly and accurately than the f/1.4 version and is a bit sharper as well at pretty much every aperture. Therefore, while it has slightly harsher BG blur, (I don't use WA lenses for soft out of focus shots) I shall keep this one and let go of the 1.4 lens.
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8G
Nikon PC-E Nikkor 24mm f/3.5D ED
Solid and reliable although I can't help feeling that I preferred the first version. If I am travelling in Asia, I often leave this one at home and take the 80-200 AI-S which is a LOT lighter and is just about good enough for most things.
Bought before the D800Es and kept after finding that it had more reliable AF on those cameras than its 1.4 big brother. This lens has critical sharpness across the frame and is ideal for telephoto landscapes or cityscapes. Awesome value for the money.
Great great lens. Mine is very sharp although it needs very careful zeroing of tilt/swing to be used as a "conventional" lens.
Voigtlander 28mm F2.8 Color Skopar SL II
Voigtlander 40mm F2 Ultron SL II
Voigtlander 58mm F1.4 Nokton SL II
Small and light which makes it great as a travel lens but field curvature makes for some difficulties getting side to side sharpness even at infinity. The infinity stop is a little off which makes distant focusing a game of guesswork given the relatively small starting aperture.
Actually the N version After initially dismissing this lens, I now have a second copy which is excellent. Much flatter field than the 28 and a good bit sharper. The infinity stop is way off though, which means that extra care must be taken in those final fractions of a degree.
It's actually the "N" version. Dreamy wide open, super sharp stopped down a bit. The hood is sadly screw on and the caps are crap but it's a very nice lens. Calling is a "Nokton" seems a little generous as while bright, it is not a good lens for point sources so much night shooting is out.
Other gear:
  • Nikkor Zoom Ai-S 80-200mm f/4
  • Nikon Ai-S 20mm f/2.8
  • Nikon Nikkor Ai-S 105mm f/1.8