Camera for FD 400/2.8?

Started Dec 23, 2010 | Discussions thread
BigBarney Senior Member • Posts: 2,722
Those FD to EOS adapters and Dr. Johnson!

Nazgman wrote:

I recently bought a canon FD 400 2.8 L lens with elefoto FD to EF adapter. Frankly, I'm a bit disappointed by the quality of the adapter, and now I'm looking for a glassless alternative.

I invested quite a bit of time and money in a range of Canon FD lenses back in the days of film, and just as I reached a stage in my life when I could afford better lenses, what did Canon do?

They launched their EOS cameras which were incompatible with FD series lenses. Well they actually produced a limited number of FD to EOS adapters, but at the time everyone said that they were of doubtful quality and that it was best to reinvest in EOS bodies and EF system lenses. I carried on shooting with my FD lenses and fortunately did not throw them away or try to sell them off. Having come into m43 systems via a series of so-called high end compacts, I am now glad that I kept those FD and M42 screw thread lenses as I can now use them again with passive adapters. Having said that the advantages of native m43 lenses from both Panasonic and Olympus are so great that I only shoot with legacy lenses for fun.

I largely feel about legacy lenses as Samuel Johnson felt about women preaching:

"Sir, a woman's preaching is like a dog's walking on his hind legs. It is not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all."

However, for long telephoto shooting it may be your only choice at present since the longest native m43 lens is the Panasonic 100-300mm zoom, which is still showing a larger angle of view than your 400mm FD lens.

The micro 4/3 format seems to be appropriate to convert to, and I've done some reading up on the various posts in this forum.

Am I correct to conclude that all micro 4/3 cameras can handle legacy lenses with an adapter?


Or are there certain cameras which get confused if there is no answer from the lens itself?

Provided that you have set them up to 'Shoot without lens' they do not get confused.

What I primarily bought the lens for is astrophotography. Plenty of time to focus, preferably using the maximum aperture, and long exposure times. Which camera would you recommend? I'm trying not to spend too much additional money on this, and don't really need the latest features.

For still photography probably the best budget camera in the US at present is the Panasonic G1, which has the added advantage of an articulated LCD display. For videography the current darling is the Panasonic GH2, but any m43 camera body would work with an FD to m43 adapter on your lens.

When I am working on a tripod or copy stand I typically use a remote release to reduce unwanted vibrations. I avoided the more expensive Panasonic one and bought a good quality generic one and it works well and reliably.

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