Nikon 24mm PC-E T/S Lens
I just received the lens purchased from 17th Street Photo for the same price of a D300 body! I played with it for a few hours and wanted to share some impressions. I wont have time to do any serious shooting until the weekend.
The viewfinder image is very bright, quick to (manual) focus, and simple to apply Scheimpflug’s rule of DOF. On the D300, one can lock the aperture open, use the command dial to set aperture, and preview DOF either with a button on the lens or the camera. Also, Live view is usable and one can magnify areas of composition to check focusing accuracy!
There’s been some discussion about not having full use of tilt/shift controls on the D300. This is not so. Full use of tilt (swing) is no issue because the adjustments easily clear the camera’s finder. There is one position where the shift (rise) adjustment screw must be rotated to the bottom of the camera, then full movement is possible with no interference.
The amount of tilt/shift movement seems very generous for this focal length. According to Nikon, the picture angle is 61°, which appears very useful for a 36mm lens in DX format. So far, I haven’t tested extreme movements for vignetting or other aberrations. This is not an issue for me because one can stop-down and/or clean it up post-processing.
I’m more involved in landscapes than architecture and studio photography. I spoke to Nikon tech support and they said the lens could be modified for $126 if sent to Melville. The modification would place the movements on the same axis, therefore, one would have a tilt/rise (or swing/shift) lens. They would replace knobs with larger ones for no charge (bad idea on the D300). I’m not in a hurry to modify yet, I want to work with what I have for a while and see.