Tilt/Shift lens Review: Hartblei 35 Super Rotator

Started Mar 15, 2006 | Discussions
Mike K Veteran Member • Posts: 5,525
Tilt/Shift lens Review: Hartblei 35 Super Rotator

Despite some planning I managed to post this review in the wrong forum, its in the 1D/5D forum. notice the review is in 4 parts to fit under the character limitations:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1032&message=17612257

It is a thorough description of this lens tilt and shift movements and lots of pictures comparing it to Canon 24 TSE and other Canon zooms.

Finally an evaluation of the lens performance when fully shifted Vs the Canon TSE

Sorry to send everyone to the other forum for the read. Come back and post here.
Mike K

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Daniella Forum Pro • Posts: 53,000
Re: Tilt/Shift lens Review: Hartblei 35 Super Rotator

what do you mean by this?

"Kind of odd, but usually the tilt axis is not very sensitive, I doubt if one could tell 80 from 100 degrees with the modest 8 degrees tilt max."

does the Canon TS-E have more than 8 degree of tilt? what is it for the canon?

Also your lens at 10 mm shifted looks quite bad. Mine did not look that soft and the most problem I have seen with the lens shifted was the chromatic aberation. it did seems a tad softer shifted but your exemple is quite bad. I can,t remember much at what aperture I did my test but I used mostly F8 to F11 that day. i don't have anotation with my XT so can,t take notes with the shots by voice.

I tested mine on architectural subject..I still have to get the shift on landscapes. I tested the tilt mostly with landscapes but not the shift much so far. It seems that it is losing a bit of detail with the maximum shift in your shots..so I will have to check for that with mine too.

OT question..how do you put the blue background in your other post?

BTW, the 24 TS-E is 1300$ at B&H and the Harthblei is 499$. this makes is affordable for many and the Canon lens is outragely expensive. Not too many people can justife the 1300$ cost of the Canon but I expect a 1300$ lens to perform as such.

I think if the Harthblei did not have the super rotator mecanism, it would not have so much appeal over the Canon 24mm, but the price tag + the super-rotator featuer makes is a worthy lens I think.

ike K wrote:

Despite some planning I managed to post this review in the wrong
forum, its in the 1D/5D forum. notice the review is in 4 parts to
fit under the character limitations:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1032&message=17612257

It is a thorough description of this lens tilt and shift movements
and lots of pictures comparing it to Canon 24 TSE and other Canon
zooms.

Finally an evaluation of the lens performance when fully shifted Vs
the Canon TSE

Sorry to send everyone to the other forum for the read. Come back
and post here.
Mike K

-- hide signature --
OP Mike K Veteran Member • Posts: 5,525
Re: Tilt/Shift lens Review: Hartblei 35 Super Rotator

Daniella wrote:

what do you mean by this?

"Kind of odd, but usually the tilt axis is not very sensitive, I
doubt if one could tell 80 from 100 degrees with the modest 8
degrees tilt max."

does the Canon TS-E have more than 8 degree of tilt? what is it for
the canon?

Also your lens at 10 mm shifted looks quite bad. Mine did not look
that soft and the most problem I have seen with the lens shifted
was the chromatic aberation. it did seems a tad softer shifted but
your exemple is quite bad. I can,t remember much at what aperture
I did my test but I used mostly F8 to F11 that day. i don't have
anotation with my XT so can,t take notes with the shots by voice.

OT question..how do you put the blue background in your other post?

One often tilts to keep the ground plane in focus, but there are often object slightly above that plane, so 10 degrees off of plum may not be noticeable. Similar to your test shot MG_4123s in your Hartblei album, there are enough items out of plane that 10 degrees rotation of the tilt plane may not be noticed.

The Canon 24 TS-E has 8 degrees of tilt available. 7 and 8 are in red, meaning that with full frame this amount of tilt may strike the image circle edge with some image degradation. In the same vein with the Canon 24 shift markings of 8-11mm are in red indicating that image degradation can occur with FF coverage (depends upon f stop).

You are using a 1.6x crop body and I a 1.3x crop body, so I will run into the edge of the image circle before you will. Thus on my camera f/16 was needed for 10mm shift, but it looks sharp at that condition. I really had to pixel peep in order to see any CA, but it could barely be detected in the edges of the branches against the white clouds at full shift. It was not detectable at 0 or 5 mm shift. It could be here that the smaller pixel pitch of the XT sensor (41 um sq) Vs the larger pixel pitch of the 1DmkII (57 um sq) is causing this added CA for you, it certainly will create diffraction at an larger f stop. Maybe we need to swap lenses?

OT, Dunno what you are referring to blue background? which post?
Mike K

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Daniella Forum Pro • Posts: 53,000
Re: Tilt/Shift lens Review: Hartblei 35 Super Rotator

I am lost..now it's white. I was refering to the background color in your message but it is was not only in your message but in all message at dpreview.com. Instead of seing the background white with black text, I was seing the background light blue with black text. so in your images I could see this obviously because your image background has a white border..now it's back to white..so not sure what's going on

it is probably my browser.

Mike K wrote:

Daniella wrote:

what do you mean by this?

"Kind of odd, but usually the tilt axis is not very sensitive, I
doubt if one could tell 80 from 100 degrees with the modest 8
degrees tilt max."

does the Canon TS-E have more than 8 degree of tilt? what is it for
the canon?

Also your lens at 10 mm shifted looks quite bad. Mine did not look
that soft and the most problem I have seen with the lens shifted
was the chromatic aberation. it did seems a tad softer shifted but
your exemple is quite bad. I can,t remember much at what aperture
I did my test but I used mostly F8 to F11 that day. i don't have
anotation with my XT so can,t take notes with the shots by voice.

OT question..how do you put the blue background in your other post?

One often tilts to keep the ground plane in focus, but there are
often object slightly above that plane, so 10 degrees off of plum
may not be noticeable. Similar to your test shot MG_4123s in your
Hartblei album, there are enough items out of plane that 10 degrees
rotation of the tilt plane may not be noticed.
The Canon 24 TS-E has 8 degrees of tilt available. 7 and 8 are in
red, meaning that with full frame this amount of tilt may strike
the image circle edge with some image degradation. In the same
vein with the Canon 24 shift markings of 8-11mm are in red
indicating that image degradation can occur with FF coverage
(depends upon f stop).
You are using a 1.6x crop body and I a 1.3x crop body, so I will
run into the edge of the image circle before you will. Thus on my
camera f/16 was needed for 10mm shift, but it looks sharp at that
condition. I really had to pixel peep in order to see any CA, but
it could barely be detected in the edges of the branches against
the white clouds at full shift. It was not detectable at 0 or 5 mm
shift. It could be here that the smaller pixel pitch of the XT
sensor (41 um sq) Vs the larger pixel pitch of the 1DmkII (57 um
sq) is causing this added CA for you, it certainly will create
diffraction at an larger f stop. Maybe we need to swap lenses?

OT, Dunno what you are referring to blue background? which post?
Mike K

-- hide signature --
OP Mike K Veteran Member • Posts: 5,525
Canon TSE with 1.4x TC

Based upon a couple of requests and my own interest I did one last test:

Canon 24L TS-E with 1.4X Canon TC (34mm total) Vs Hartblei 35 SR. The rain stopped this morning and this afternoon it started to clear up. Set up on the deck again, same scene focusing on the bare tree.

The Canon went first, f8 became f11 with the TC 1/640 sec ISO 200. I kind of randomly picked the 5mm right shifted shots to compare. The Hartblei was at f16 based upon my previous testing, 1/320 ISO 200 and also the 5mm right shifted image. 100% crops from the center of the image after shifting.

the sharpness is very close, sometime I prefer the Canon/Canon, while sometimes the Hartblei seems to hold a slight edge. Whoa, but look at the color! The Hartblei is very red, the sky looks like sunset while the Canon is an icy blue. I think reality isa bit closer to the Canon, but not that blue. I just checked the Thumbs (these were shot in RAW and boosted during conversion) and they still have the reb/blue trend, but not anywhere near as strong. Thus much of the color difference is the 2/3 EV difference in exposure upon conversion. The Hartblei got a lot redder while the Canon got slightly bluer. However if you go back over all of the comparative shots the red/Hartblei tendency is always there. umm, interesting. Its supposed to rain some more tonight, now I know how Seattle folks feel.
Mike K

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Daniella Forum Pro • Posts: 53,000
Re: Canon TSE with 1.4x TC

they look very similar. I usualy shoot in RAW so that color cast of the lens is not really a problem here. I find the Canon however to be too cold and something in between those 2 lenses would be just right.

Mike K wrote:

Based upon a couple of requests and my own interest I did one last
test:
Canon 24L TS-E with 1.4X Canon TC (34mm total) Vs Hartblei 35 SR.
The rain stopped this morning and this afternoon it started to
clear up. Set up on the deck again, same scene focusing on the
bare tree.
The Canon went first, f8 became f11 with the TC 1/640 sec ISO 200.
I kind of randomly picked the 5mm right shifted shots to compare.
The Hartblei was at f16 based upon my previous testing, 1/320 ISO
200 and also the 5mm right shifted image. 100% crops from the
center of the image after shifting.

the sharpness is very close, sometime I prefer the Canon/Canon,
while sometimes the Hartblei seems to hold a slight edge. Whoa,
but look at the color! The Hartblei is very red, the sky looks like
sunset while the Canon is an icy blue. I think reality isa bit
closer to the Canon, but not that blue. I just checked the Thumbs
(these were shot in RAW and boosted during conversion) and they
still have the reb/blue trend, but not anywhere near as strong.
Thus much of the color difference is the 2/3 EV difference in
exposure upon conversion. The Hartblei got a lot redder while the
Canon got slightly bluer. However if you go back over all of the
comparative shots the red/Hartblei tendency is always there. umm,
interesting. Its supposed to rain some more tonight, now I know
how Seattle folks feel.
Mike K

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Peter White Veteran Member • Posts: 3,704
A minor quibble

B&H sells the TS-E lenses for $1100. not $1300.
And they have them as grey market for $1069.

-- hide signature --

Peter White

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Canon EOS 5D
OP Mike K Veteran Member • Posts: 5,525
Re: Canon TSE with 1.4x TC

Daniella wrote:

they look very similar. I usualy shoot in RAW so that color cast
of the lens is not really a problem here. I find the Canon however
to be too cold and something in between those 2 lenses would be
just right.

Daniella,

Does your copy of the Hartblei yield redder images than your other lenses? Since these were comparative tests I have tried to minimally edit these pics, only sharpening a very modest and uniform amount. I would be interesting to find out if this were a trend. I know that some Sigma lenses have a tendency to yield warmer images.
Mike K

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Diane B Forum Pro • Posts: 20,700
Re: Tilt/Shift lens Review: Hartblei 35 Super Rotator

Mike K wrote:

Despite some planning I managed to post this review in the wrong
forum, its in the 1D/5D forum. notice the review is in 4 parts to
fit under the character limitations:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1032&message=17612257

It is a thorough description of this lens tilt and shift movements
and lots of pictures comparing it to Canon 24 TSE and other Canon
zooms.

Finally an evaluation of the lens performance when fully shifted Vs
the Canon TSE

Sorry to send everyone to the other forum for the read. Come back
and post here.
Mike K

Thanks Mike--I said this in anothre forum too.

Now--I'm wondering how much both you and Danielle are using this lens in real life shooting?

Diane
--
Diane B
http://www.pbase.com/picnic/galleries

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OP Mike K Veteran Member • Posts: 5,525
Re: Tilt/Shift lens Review: Hartblei 35 Super Rotator

Diane B wrote:

Now--I'm wondering how much both you and Danielle are using this
lens in real life shooting?

Diane

Folks with a T/S lens in their bag don't try use it for everything. Its like shooting largre format. many subjects are not going to benefit from the tilt or shift movements, and it is very much slower to use: careful tripod setup, difficult manual focusing, dial in the tilt angle or shift amount, recheck focus, manually stop down, check exposure, set shutter, shoot. so its out for anything where fast composition shots are needed. A few do use it creatively handheld; its a challenge. for example:
http://www.fredmiranda.com/TS-E90/

However, the results of tilt cannot be readily replicated in PS and shift is a big improvement over stitching or perspective corrections in PS as well. Its a specialty lens, like a superfast prime or super telephoto.
Mike K

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Daniella Forum Pro • Posts: 53,000
Re: A minor quibble

Peter White wrote:

B&H sells the TS-E lenses for $1100. not $1300.
And they have them as grey market for $1069.

yes I just saw this. still almost 3 times the price of the Hartblei and surely at 1100$ it is still out of my budget. 499$ was barely in my budget.

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Peter White

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Daniella Forum Pro • Posts: 53,000
Re: Canon TSE with 1.4x TC

Mike K wrote:

Daniella wrote:

they look very similar. I usualy shoot in RAW so that color cast
of the lens is not really a problem here. I find the Canon however
to be too cold and something in between those 2 lenses would be
just right.

Daniella,
Does your copy of the Hartblei yield redder images than your other
lenses?

I don't think so, but I maybe shot in different lighting condition than you:

http://www.pbase.com/zylen/tiltshift

looks fine to me..and the colors seems pleasing and maybe even a tad cold? maybe it is dependant on the lighting condition?:

Since these were comparative tests I have tried to

minimally edit these pics, only sharpening a very modest and
uniform amount. I would be interesting to find out if this were a
trend. I know that some Sigma lenses have a tendency to yield
warmer images.

yes my sigma 100-300 F4 had a very strong reddish color cast..same thing with my 70-300 apo, but that one does not seem to have it.

I have yet to try the lens in a sunny day. still raining today. it'S been bad weather here for about a month and half, raining almost each day. when it was sunny it was not convenient for me to go, so no occasion yet. maybe this weekend. they finaly predict sunny weather this weekend.

Mike K

-- hide signature --
Daniella Forum Pro • Posts: 53,000
Re: Tilt/Shift lens Review: Hartblei 35 Super Rotator

Diane B wrote:

Mike K wrote:

Despite some planning I managed to post this review in the wrong
forum, its in the 1D/5D forum. notice the review is in 4 parts to
fit under the character limitations:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1032&message=17612257

It is a thorough description of this lens tilt and shift movements
and lots of pictures comparing it to Canon 24 TSE and other Canon
zooms.

Finally an evaluation of the lens performance when fully shifted Vs
the Canon TSE

Sorry to send everyone to the other forum for the read. Come back
and post here.
Mike K

Thanks Mike--I said this in anothre forum too.

Now--I'm wondering how much both you and Danielle are using this
lens in real life shooting?

I will be using it a lot but not on my regular photography. I will use it during my trips for landscapes and architecture.

I want the lens especialy for getting foreground and background in focus. 35mm is fine for me because usualy I still want to keep the mountains far away at a decent size in the frame. so that lens actualy fit the situation perfectly. I just want everything in focus and good chance to get that with this lens.

it if very convenient for doing panorama so I will use it a lot for that. no nodal point shift

my boyfriend likes architecture so we'll use it to get straight lines in architecture shots. the 10-22mm needs to be right at horizon level or things are distorded on top of buildings. the shift here will help.

Diane
--
Diane B
http://www.pbase.com/picnic/galleries

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Daniella Forum Pro • Posts: 53,000
very good article!

I enjoyed that article and link a lot. should be awesome with a 1Ds in vertical use to get a very high res image.

his photo here really show why I don,t want to go too wide for landcapes. with a 90mm TS it is probably even better as the mountain in the back is really present in the scene. I think 35mm for me will be just a good balance with a 1.6x crop factor.

his pano here is awesome..everything you want in a panorama shot..good composition and the scenery feels real because the mountain is not a tiny dot in the frame.

Mike K wrote:

Diane B wrote:

Now--I'm wondering how much both you and Danielle are using this
lens in real life shooting?

Diane

Folks with a T/S lens in their bag don't try use it for everything.
Its like shooting largre format. many subjects are not going to
benefit from the tilt or shift movements, and it is very much
slower to use: careful tripod setup, difficult manual focusing,
dial in the tilt angle or shift amount, recheck focus, manually
stop down, check exposure, set shutter, shoot. so its out for
anything where fast composition shots are needed. A few do use it
creatively handheld; its a challenge. for example:
http://www.fredmiranda.com/TS-E90/

However, the results of tilt cannot be readily replicated in PS and
shift is a big improvement over stitching or perspective
corrections in PS as well. Its a specialty lens, like a superfast
prime or super telephoto.
Mike K

-- hide signature --
Peter_Birch
Peter_Birch Regular Member • Posts: 251
Dianne - Real Life

Hi Dianne,

Although I have not got this lens, from my other posts on T&S you know I have the Canon TS-E24mm. I use this lens a LOT when just walking around. Partly because it costs so much I have to get my money's worth but mainly because it is a good 24mm prime. Being in the centre of the circle it is not bothered by Vignetting nor corner softness. Most of my images are of landscapes and townscapes (my new word - not streetscapes which to me tends to be more street life) I found that when taking a lot of those shots with the 24-105, I used the 24 end mostly. Now I have the added benefit, if required in a landscape I can use tilt for DOF or for both I now use shift a lot to get the feeling of scale. i.e. Recently walking along a cliff path. To my right was the cliff to the left the ocean. By using shift up (former) and shift down (latter) it gave the same perspective that I was actually seeing and what was most impressive at the time. So it is not only buildings I use shift-up for, trees and cliff structures etc.. all benefit.

Cheers Peter
--
He had a photographic memory that was never developed.

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Diane B Forum Pro • Posts: 20,700
Late.....

Peter_Birch wrote:

Hi Dianne,

Although I have not got this lens, from my other posts on T&S you
know I have the Canon TS-E24mm. I use this lens a LOT when just
walking around. Partly because it costs so much I have to get my
money's worth but mainly because it is a good 24mm prime. Being in
the centre of the circle it is not bothered by Vignetting nor
corner softness. Most of my images are of landscapes and townscapes
(my new word - not streetscapes which to me tends to be more street
life) I found that when taking a lot of those shots with the
24-105, I used the 24 end mostly. Now I have the added benefit, if
required in a landscape I can use tilt for DOF or for both I now
use shift a lot to get the feeling of scale. i.e. Recently walking
along a cliff path. To my right was the cliff to the left the
ocean. By using shift up (former) and shift down (latter) it gave
the same perspective that I was actually seeing and what was most
impressive at the time. So it is not only buildings I use shift-up
for, trees and cliff structures etc.. all benefit.

in replying to this thread but I've just been reviewing all the T/S threads (yours and Mike's mostly) because one of these is still high on my list (the only thing on my list actually LOL). I've added my name for rental of a 24 t/s as soon as one is available--the only one they have is a 24. I've been considering which would serve my purposes best--a 24 or 45, but you mention 'landscapes and townscapes' and this is very similar to much of my shooting, so I'm thinking that a 24 might be just the right one. I also noticed that Dave/DS used a 2x converter on his--I'm wondering if you have tried either converter (I have a Canon 1.4x). http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1029&message=17922413

Diane
--
Diane B
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