Remeber, Sharpness is not everything !

Started Feb 20, 2014 | Discussions thread
Les Lammers
Les Lammers Veteran Member • Posts: 3,510
Re: Remeber, Sharpness is not everything !

brecklundin wrote:

leopold wrote:

Just wanted to talk about something that is now too much valued in lens testing and peoples priority when buying a new lens or comparing lenses.

Sure i like sharp lenses but when buying a lens sharpness is not the only thing i look at. The lens need to be sharp enough for my needs and taste. Bokeh, rendering, color rendition and flare are other aspects that i look in a lens. Vignetting, distorsion and CA are not as much of a problem now.

There is no point in owning "THE SHARPEST" lens if all the other charactheristics don't meet my needs or taste !!!

Not forgetting also as a side points ... size and weight.

I have photos taken with my kit lens on my Sony NEX-3 that were accepted by my Stock photo agency and they are quite severe, so when good technic is used and you know the limit of a lens then you can just concentrate on your composition.

Discussion is open now

Amen all goes to create a lens with character. I remember an episode of Murphy Brown where the photographer character, Frank, was completely distraught over losing a particular lens, a lens that he had a special relationship with that he grew to love over the years of use. It was Frank's "lucky lens" and no other lens was ever going to replace it. That has long stuck with me about how to evaluate a lens. It's all there. To me that describes anything from a favorite hammer that fits your hand just right to a lens which fits your vision of a shot.

I just don't get the idea of needing cookie cutter sameness out of each and every lens in the bag. I don't want anything like that, I want lenses to be different with strengths and weaknesses. Like you mention it is knowing those limits which allow you to get the most from a lens. And honestly sometimes I want a lens that won't give a perfect shot under given conditions because it's a look I have in my head.

The differences you talk about are what I call "character" of a lens. And trust me I HATE some lenses I've owned. Could be the highest rated glass around but to me it could be dull as dishwater.

Nice post Leopold...well stated.

I bought a used collapsable 50mm Summicron M about 40 years ago for $80 or so. That particular lens had a special rendering that was unique. I still think about it. Sharpness across the frame is a modern thing and way over rated.

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