How many different interchangeable lenses do you have?

Started 4 months ago | Polls
fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: Heavy lens use

I think it's also the first picture I see as evidence the world isn't flat. hehehe. Really, it also makes me wonder about the obsession with rectilinear lenses, in addition to make me wonder again about the needs of having "no field curvature". We are like minecraft people wanting everything to be circles, but opposite of that. Everything is spherical, but we want to squarify everything.

petrochemist Veteran Member • Posts: 3,093
Re: Heavy lens use

ProfHankD wrote:

fferreres wrote:

Is the outermost a french press?

That's the one everybody misidentifies... often as being a NSFW device.

Not quite everyone - I have a Kaidon 360 which is much the same. I was thinking you can't get much wider than that

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MOD Tom Caldwell Forum Pro • Posts: 42,983
LWA? Lens weightlifters anonymous

I can’t go anywhere near you CK - you are the heavyweight master- but I do have the Canon 400/2.8 (MkI - the heavy one)  Which weighs 5.5Kg - my anxiety level rises considerably every time I lift it on or off the tripod - I have a heavy duty neck strap attached to it just in case I drop it.

Of course it is now used as an adapted lens and among others and out of sheer cussed curiosity I have also tried it twice with a GM series tiny body and it effortlessly glides into AF.  How long the battery might last I have not tested.

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Tom Caldwell

ProfHankD
OP ProfHankD Veteran Member • Posts: 7,987
Birds Eye lenses
2

petrochemist wrote:

ProfHankD wrote:

fferreres wrote:

Is the outermost a french press?

That's the one everybody misidentifies... often as being a NSFW device.

Not quite everyone - I have a Kaidon 360 which is much the same. I was thinking you can't get much wider than that

The Kaidon 360 does avoid the glass tube, but is a lot more fragile.

Honestly, the Spiratone is the best built, smartest design, and was historically first. The main plus being that in it, the mirror position is adjustable through a pretty large range of distances. However, IQ is challenged by the need of all of these to focus on the mirror (i.e., you need depth of field to cover the mirror depth, which is hard to do because it's close up) and, in the Spiratone and Egg, you get flare from the glass cylinder. My first homemade ones used a very similar construction except the glass cylinder was instead thin plastic from a soda bottle and the mirror was a "1/2-chrome" DecorLite lightbulb, which is a surprisingly accurate spherical mirror -- it worked great.

The later version was something I created for my cameras as computing systems course way back in 2015:

It's a simple 3D-printed frame (Thingiverse Thing 1188289 ) using a "Holiday Glass Ornament" filled with sand to help stabilize the device. You do block a few degrees with the printed clear support, but that's not the big problem: the big issue is that the reflective surface is not of optical quality, but is rather distorted. That was actually a feature for the course project, which had my students implement the calibrated transformation into a cylindrical projection inside the PowerShot ELPH115IS camera using CHDK. Here's what the calibration target looked like as seen by the camera:

Their software had to find the dots (including the red one) and use those coordinates to create a mapping table. The mapping was then implemented using Bresenham's algorithm to interpolate without using any multiplies or divides... because those Canons are just a dual-core 80MHz ARM inside and the frame buffer is awkwardly 12-bits per pixel with the wrong endianness (a downside of Canon reusing much of the same guts for decades).

I think I still have at least a couple of these birds-eye stands, but not with the ornaments intact. One in my lab got broken at some point such that one day I found it was cracked with a little pile of leaked sand around it.

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Bosun Higgs Regular Member • Posts: 101
Re: Birds Eye lenses

Back in the late 90's when Prof. Helmut Dersch released his Panorama Tools there was an explosion of people creating full spherical VR panoramas for the first time. Reflector attachments such as the Bird's Eye were used by some, but for most real world sphericals, stitching from rotated full circle fisheye lens frames was prefered because of quality and resolution.

But there was one group of people who really embraced the "Bird's Eye" reflector method - those wanting to create macro spherical panoramas. If I recall correctly, the highly polished balls from pinball machines were found to be the most versatile reflectors for this application.

I saw one macro panorama created using this method that was taken with the ball inside a running shoe, giving a 360 degree ant's-eye view of the whole interior, very surreal at the time.

I remember the excitement of making nodal point rotation mounts from scratch to be able to take sphericals back then (on film). Now, you can buy ready made kits complete with lens, and nearly every real estate website has 360 VRs.

fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: Birds Eye lenses

Wow, that's so creative. Cool. I think I got off to the wrong career (economics)

fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: Birds Eye lenses

Bosun Higgs wrote:

Back in the late 90's when Prof. Helmut Dersch released his Panorama Tools there was an explosion of people creating full spherical VR panoramas for the first time. Reflector attachments such as the Bird's Eye were used by some, but for most real world sphericals, stitching from rotated full circle fisheye lens frames was prefered because of quality and resolution.

I was one of them. We used that features extensively and had a web plugin to show car interiors. I owned a start up company, we had at the time the best catalog with over 200 vehicles in Argentina. Then an huge economic crisis completely collapsed car sales (financial crisis mean suddenly there was NO credit whasoever to buy cars for anyone, so market went from 600,000 cars sold per year to 40,000 per year).

But there was one group of people who really embraced the "Bird's Eye" reflector method - those wanting to create macro spherical panoramas. If I recall correctly, the highly polished balls from pinball machines were found to be the most versatile reflectors for this application.

I did not know about this method. Only the one where you take two pics using a regular fisheye. We used a Coolpix camera which was quite nice at the time (this was 1999 or 2000).

I saw one macro panorama created using this method that was taken with the ball inside a running shoe, giving a 360 degree ant's-eye view of the whole interior, very surreal at the time.

I remember the excitement of making nodal point rotation mounts from scratch to be able to take sphericals back then (on film). Now, you can buy ready made kits complete with lens, and nearly every real estate website has 360 VRs.

ProfHankD
OP ProfHankD Veteran Member • Posts: 7,987
Re: Birds Eye lenses

fferreres wrote:

Bosun Higgs wrote:

Back in the late 90's when Prof. Helmut Dersch released his Panorama Tools there was an explosion of people creating full spherical VR panoramas for the first time.

Actually, most of the credit for popularizing the idea belongs to IPIX -- which was an "evil" company in that they charged per-image fees and aggressively protected lens transformations that many of us believed should never have been patentable. Helmut's software, first released in 1998, was a beautifully done open source project, which got into trouble because it allowed people to work around IPIX. Suffice to say that now IPIX is gone and Panorama Tools is the core of many wildly used tools.

We used Helmut's math for things like the 360-degree interactive pan+zoom live video we showed at IEEE/ACM Supercomputing 1999, which had an autonomous wheeled vehicle capture back-to-back 185-degree image pairs from tethered Nikon 950s....

... We used a Coolpix camera which was quite nice at the time (this was 1999 or 2000).

Probably the Nikon 950 and FC-E8 fisheye converter -- that's what I used. In fact, I still have one tethered and mounted on the ceiling of my supercomputer machine room.

I saw one macro panorama created using this method that was taken with the ball inside a running shoe, giving a 360 degree ant's-eye view of the whole interior, very surreal at the time.

Just tried it with a modern $3 USB endoscope camera. Not great....

I remember the excitement of making nodal point rotation mounts from scratch to be able to take sphericals back then (on film). Now, you can buy ready made kits complete with lens, and nearly every real estate website has 360 VRs.

Can't really do spherical stitch using film. There were a lot of alternatives. For example, there were various cylindrical pan cameras that used geared rotating slit exposure systems....

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MOD Tom Caldwell Forum Pro • Posts: 42,983
Re: A couple of things, then Frankenlenses

ProfHankD wrote:

Tom Caldwell wrote:

ProfHankD wrote:

petrochemist wrote:

I'm surprised you allow multiple examples of the same lens if you're after users numbers. They would count to my mind if the duplicates have bee modified in some way (elements removed or flipped) but I'd say that makes them a different lens, with more than just sample variation in their behaviour.

The idea behind that was that if you have and use multiple copies of the same lens model, there must be a reason. It could be sample variation, or it could simply be that one is the "sacrificial beater" and another is the "formal dress lens" -- i.e., one copy you'd take to a beach party and the other you use only for studio work. Anyway, if you have and use more than one, they must seem different to you in some way....

Another reason. I sometimes have bought a lens that I was disappointed in but could be made better. I like it so re-buy one to get a pristine example.

Spare parts/backup copy is perfectly reasonable.

... about Canon LTM lenses ... What causes this?

Coatings used on internal surfaces were often quite soft, and the Canon LTM lenses apparently used a coating that fungus found particularly inviting -- a really bad combo.

... I once bought a job lot of eight train wreck Helios 44 lenses so that I could practice “repairing” them. ... I have half wondered, in my wicked sort of way, that I should obtain a H-44 with pristine glass and fit it the glass into one of my grunge bodies which was otherwise in great working condition although “ugly look”. ... Has anyone else fitted perfect glass into a working-well but battered looking lens body?

Lots of folks in the former USSR play mix-n-match with old lens parts to make "Frankenlenses" -- that's a large part of why there are so many "fakes" out there. Unfortunately, we're not talking about carefully-calibrated optics aligned on an optical bench, but "hey, this looks pretty similar to that cracked element." Really beat-up metal parts can be made attractive by extreme polishing -- a trick I first recall seeing some Greek eBay seller doing en masse with M42 Pentax lenses about a decade ago, but since then I've more often seen it on various USSR reworks. The dead giveaways are the "rare zebra version" of lenses that never were zebras -- you simply throw the really beat-up black ring(s) on a lathe, then sand-off just enough finish to get through any nicks and scratches, and finally polish. The other hint this has been done is that the surfaces usually don't end-up perfectly flat, but have a slight curvature. This type of re-working is what makes really messed-up body parts passable as a "like new" collectible.

Personally, I don't really have a problem with salvaging parts from unit-non-functional lenses in these ways... until it comes to advertising them as rare versions in like-new condition. IMHO, they should be proudly described as "upcycled" old lens components in custom, hand re-worked, housings. Knowing how people are, I wouldn't even be surprised if that type of honest marketing of them would sell more at higher prices.

Agreed, but in my defence - these are all 1970’s Helios 44-2 lenses and for my purpose “the uglier the better”  It should be possible enough to get a (truly) pristine version of this common as muck lens and swap the glass without issues.  I am just the sort of person who does not like an effectively perfect lens (of its type) just to make “a grunge-lens statement” no matter how wickedly devilish the black humour.  On the other hand the 1978 version I just dragged out as an example is working fine with excellent smooth focus action, good aperture action (a bit loose, maybe could do with a little lubrication resistance?).  The oily aperture blades cleaned up well but some very slight traces of oil have re-appeared.  Externally the body is scratched and has a paint smear from some earlier life (looks a bit ugly).  But there are  no dents and the filter ring looks used but is intact.  The glass in this one is not too bad - others I have are much worse.  So if I find the time and inclination I might best swap lenses with one of my other “rescues” and leave this particular one as a “character” lens

My own Frankenlens is a Komura 150 made for Bronica S and adapted back to M4/3, I can also use it on any mount that will adapt to EF.  But it involves a focusing element and a series of adapters.  Takes quite good images but it is a bit of a lump.  I bought the lens for a project that failed and not wishing to have another lens that I could not use I then went to the trouble of adapting it to my (owned) camera bodies.

As a result I can now adapt another Bronica S lens should the notion overcome my common sense - which is unlikely.

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Tom Caldwell

fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: Birds Eye lenses

ProfHankD wrote:

fferreres wrote:

Bosun Higgs wrote:

Back in the late 90's when Prof. Helmut Dersch released his Panorama Tools there was an explosion of people creating full spherical VR panoramas for the first time.

Actually, most of the credit for popularizing the idea belongs to IPIX -- which was an "evil" company in that they charged per-image fees and aggressively protected lens transformations that many of us believed should never have been patentable. Helmut's software, first released in 1998, was a beautifully done open source project, which got into trouble because it allowed people to work around IPIX. Suffice to say that now IPIX is gone and Panorama Tools is the core of many wildly used tools.

It was so ahead of its time. I remember things weren't actually so complicated, and IPIX wasn't even a better product.

We used Helmut's math for things like the 360-degree interactive pan+zoom live video we showed at IEEE/ACM Supercomputing 1999, which had an autonomous wheeled vehicle capture back-to-back 185-degree image pairs from tethered Nikon 950s....

The Coolpix 950 was really awesome. it had this titling body that allowed us to make gorgeous photography of all the cars we tested. It was so much fun, and I also learned a lot of things running a start up. I think I took it too seriously that we couldn't continue to wait 4 years for the car market to recover.

We had even developed very advanced management tools that i had coded directly with PHP. This was 2000/2001 and I already used LAMP stack (I started with PHP version 1 to give some idea, and the first version of MySQL way before it was acquired by Oracle).

We used ImageMagik, and a group of photographers used a web interface to upload images, that would be corrected, cropped, resized and enhanced and stored automatically into different fit sizes. This was so because in addition to a huge car catalog that had all models for the past 10 years, we covered all the major car racing events. people loved it, the photographer was in the racetrack and could upload things very quickly in a batch or one by one, annotate comments, and it'd immediately turn into gorgeous libraries. It was a "cloud" photo management system. The thumbnails resided within the MySQL instance (later cluster) on a single Linux 1U which was at average 10% capacity., peak hoovering 50%. I had become an expert in how to optimize MySQL, and served 120,000 unique visitors per month. The image database was not huge, maybe about 50,000 images.

Because the server was hosted in a data center in the US and we were literally 9000 miles away, having never seen it, we had an admin that was next to brilliant. He created a test instance locally, and simulated the hardware to test remote upgrade of the kernel by some tools that could inject directly to a live kernel (can't remember the name). Only once we had to completely reinstall as a mayor kernel upgrade was needed and usertools. He set it up so the system backed up itself, created a second image, compiled submodules, then would make a huge lot of upgrades, including upgrading and changing grub via script, select the new instance, and come alive, with a mode to go back to the old instance without the remote person having to know anything if things went bad. When that happened out U1 server had had 700 days of uptime without a single reboot but was always instantly patched if a vulnerability was found (via kernel injection). I really loved Slackware's simplicity and being straightforward.

We also had a system, which only much much later become used by others, now even Apple, in which each ticket (quote request) would automatically generate an email address specific to that quote, so the person requesting the quote could directly interact with our sales agencies by responding to the email, everything was tracked and driven by the same database instead of savings sendmail SMT files, etc. So it afforded privacy while enabling direct communication, in addition to enabling us make sure the sales person where communicating in a timely manner.

We really did a huge number of cool stuff we only later realized was ahead of their time and and for us it felt almost trivial. I think we were in the wrong place at the wrong time.

... We used a Coolpix camera which was quite nice at the time (this was 1999 or 2000).

Probably the Nikon 950 and FC-E8 fisheye converter -- that's what I used. In fact, I still have one tethered and mounted on the ceiling of my supercomputer machine room.

That! I remember I bought the camera after researching it in DPReview actually, and bought it on a trip to the USA, along with the fish eye. We also had another adapter, I can't recall if it was for wide angle.

I loved the camera. I was very suprised to see the image quality was way ahead of all the other pocket cameras. It literally made great photos albeit lower res than we have now.

I saw one macro panorama created using this method that was taken with the ball inside a running shoe, giving a 360 degree ant's-eye view of the whole interior, very surreal at the time.

Just tried it with a modern $3 USB endoscope camera. Not great....

I remember the excitement of making nodal point rotation mounts from scratch to be able to take sphericals back then (on film). Now, you can buy ready made kits complete with lens, and nearly every real estate website has 360 VRs.

Can't really do spherical stitch using film. There were a lot of alternatives. For example, there were various cylindrical pan cameras that used geared rotating slit exposure systems....

Bosun Higgs Regular Member • Posts: 101
Re: Birds Eye lenses

ProfHankD wrote:

Can't really do spherical stitch using film.

I've done many hundreds of full sphericals using film. In terms of stitching, I cannot see the difference between a fisheye image scannned from film and one taken digitally.

ProfHankD
OP ProfHankD Veteran Member • Posts: 7,987
Re: Birds Eye lenses

Bosun Higgs wrote:

ProfHankD wrote:

Can't really do spherical stitch using film.

I've done many hundreds of full sphericals using film. In terms of stitching, I cannot see the difference between a fisheye image scannned from film and one taken digitally.

So, you're digitally stitching scans to make a digital model of a spherical projection. That is NOT what I'd call creating a spherical image using film!

I've actually used purely photochemical darkroom methods to stitch images to make a wider view more than a few times, and it's nearly impossible to make anything approximating a spherical image (literally, a correctly-proportioned image on a physical sphere). Cylindrical projections are relatively easy to create with a scanning-slit camera, but even just stitching two rectilinear images in the analog domain is a pain... primarily because things get stretched off axis, so just aligning a pair of images at the edges actually ends up creating a composite image that has scene content slightly stretched in the middle. You can correct for that by curving the paper/negative when printing, but then enlarger DoF becomes a significant issue. The reason it's so hard to make a true spherical image using film is that the film/paper needs to curve in two dimensions, but bending a flat negative/paper can only curve in one dimension.

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bp_reid Regular Member • Posts: 155
Re: How many different interchangeable lenses do you have?
1

Let’s see;

10 in Canon EF

3 in EF-M

10 in FD

1 Olympus OM

2 Pentax M

10 Tamron adaptalls

2 in Exackta

4 Yashica MLs

22 Contax Zeiss

That after getting rid of about a dozen in the last month. Still a long way to go…

petrochemist Veteran Member • Posts: 3,093
Re: How many different interchangeable lenses do you have?

bp_reid wrote:

2 Pentax M

Pentax haven't made a M mount, do you mean M series (PK mount) or Pentax screw mount 'M42'?

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Belgarchi Senior Member • Posts: 2,407
Re: How many different interchangeable lenses do you have?

... And the worse of it is that - in my opinion - it is not possible to know and use optimally more than, say, 25 lenses,,,

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Tango 55 Contributing Member • Posts: 668
Coolpix 950 and 990

Probably the Nikon 950 and FC-E8 fisheye converter -- that's what I used. In fact, I still have one tethered and mounted on the ceiling of my supercomputer machine room.

That! I remember I bought the camera after researching it in DPReview actually, and bought it on a trip to the USA, along with the fish eye. We also had another adapter, I can't recall if it was for wide angle.

I loved the camera. I was very suprised to see the image quality was way ahead of all the other pocket cameras. It literally made great photos albeit lower res than we have now.

After more then 20 years of shooting film, the Coolpix 990 was my first digital camera, purchased in 2001 (3.3 megapixels instead of the 2 megapixels in the 950). I love the thing for the consistently good pictures it took. The purchase of the 990 triggered my interest for  two Nikon DSLRs I never liked: the D50 and D90. But later I knew there was hope when I got the Olympus E-PL2, followed by many others…

https://www.flickr.com/photos/113111339@N03/albums

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ProfHankD
OP ProfHankD Veteran Member • Posts: 7,987
Dealing with optimal use of many lenses

Belgarchi wrote:

... And the worse of it is that - in my opinion - it is not possible to know and use optimally more than, say, 25 lenses,,,

I would have thought that too, but nope. It's easy to develop a feeling for many more lenses, as long as you do actually force yourself to cycle-through lenses regularly rather than just always shooting the same "default" choices.

The biggest problem is literally predicting what the photographic circumstances will be well enough to carry the right choices with you. Nobody carries 200 lenses with them for a day of photography, nor even as a pool to pick daily choices from during a longer trip. The other problem is staying organized so that you can quickly find both the lenses you want and the appropriate adapters. The only thing that's really awkward is that I often am slightly slowed down by forgetting which direction is which for the focus and aperture controls....

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Andy1712 Forum Member • Posts: 63
Re: A couple of things, then Frankenlenses

Speaking of Frankenlenses, I've just adapted a Taronar 50mm 1.8, it's a mid 1960's Rangefinder lens. What's very odd is that it seems to have two apertures?

The one closest to the front element has an aggressive 5 point star shape, while the 'rear' blades make for a square shape. Does anyone know whats going on with this thing?

I am still free lensing within an adapter socket, and it seems quite sharp but has very corny star bokeh in my first session with it. I can send a pic if necessary.

ProfHankD
OP ProfHankD Veteran Member • Posts: 7,987
Re: A couple of things, then Frankenlenses

Andy1712 wrote:

Speaking of Frankenlenses, I've just adapted a Taronar 50mm 1.8, it's a mid 1960's Rangefinder lens. What's very odd is that it seems to have two apertures?

The one closest to the front element has an aggressive 5 point star shape, while the 'rear' blades make for a square shape. Does anyone know whats going on with this thing?

A guess, but that sounds like one is the aperture iris and the other (the square one) is the shutter.

I am still free lensing within an adapter socket, and it seems quite sharp but has very corny star bokeh in my first session with it. I can send a pic if necessary.

Some USSR lenses did that too. The bokeh will look like the aperture.

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fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: Coolpix 950 and 990
1

Tango 55 wrote:

Probably the Nikon 950 and FC-E8 fisheye converter -- that's what I used. In fact, I still have one tethered and mounted on the ceiling of my supercomputer machine room.

That! I remember I bought the camera after researching it in DPReview actually, and bought it on a trip to the USA, along with the fish eye. We also had another adapter, I can't recall if it was for wide angle.

I loved the camera. I was very suprised to see the image quality was way ahead of all the other pocket cameras. It literally made great photos albeit lower res than we have now.

After more then 20 years of shooting film, the Coolpix 990 was my first digital camera, purchased in 2001 (3.3 megapixels instead of the 2 megapixels in the 950). I love the thing for the consistently good pictures it took. The purchase of the 990 triggered my interest for two Nikon DSLRs I never liked: the D50 and D90. But later I knew there was hope when I got the Olympus E-PL2, followed by many others…

https://www.flickr.com/photos/113111339@N03/albums

This is a very interesting story. I recall that after using the CoolPix, I could not stand any other digital camera, especially those cheap Sony compacts, which was what was widely available, much less tolerate any cell phone camera until maybe iPhone 6.

In between I only had the Coolpix, and was not content with just some extra megapixels. So I waited until 2005 and directly jumped to the Canon 5D which was everything I wanted and expected in terms of IQ, only limited by Dynamic Range in some cases.

I remember my thoughts where that I didn't want a picture that did a disservice to my memory :-). We also had to have fast turnaround when test driving cars, so we could not have used film, and given that we'd have had to scan the photos anyway for the 360 Inside view of the Cars, we never bothered with film.

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