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Thread: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

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    SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    While the Hasselblad X1D delay isn't a big surprise, I wanted to share the rare experience. I was about to buy the non-LS 150mm. Then the BR got announced. Amazingly, I'll be receiving it by the end of this week.

    Once again, Steve at CI exceeded my expectation. Thank you!

    I expect this to be my most used focal length and am looking forward to learning this lens.

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    It's an amazing lens, just a tad oversized. 😂

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    I had a similar experience from Digital Transitions with the blue ring 40-80. Even though Phase said they wouldn't be shipping for a few more weeks when they announced them and I was willing to wait rather than get the older non-blue ring version, I got mine right away, a month before I expected it.
    E.J. Peiker
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Just got mine. Will test it in detail against the 150/2.8 and 150BR/3.5 next week.

    Two quick snapshots to show the full size.

    EDIT: Now they are correct

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    Last edited by Christopher; 28th September 2016 at 06:46.
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher View Post
    Just got mine. Will test it in detail against the 150/2.8 and 150BR/3.5 next week.

    Two quick snapshots to show the full size.

    Hm here on the iPhone they had the right orientation.....
    Excellent, look forward to your comparison. I'm quite happy with the 150/2.8 without LS. Although I'd like to have the LS, it looks as if the new lens is too heavy to use handheld which is a shame. Wish they just slapped a leaf shutter onto the old 2.8 design.

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Eeek! It looks huge.

    However, I'm prepared to deal with the size since I'm a sucker for great image quality.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    *wow*---enter another big lens from Phase Schneider. No doubt in my mind it will be an excellent performer. Not too sure I want to add another "big lens" to replace my 150LS (just adding the blue rubber band now ) The 150 2.8 D was great, but I really enjoy having the leaf shutter with strobes. Only downsides I see on this new 150LS variant is size/weight and slightly slower LS flash sync at 1/1000th compared to the 1/1600th with the 150LS 3.5.

    Size/weight might not make too much difference for me since I try to put the XF on a tripod or stand most of the time. I'll have to try it at Pigs/CI in the Southwest and see.....

    ken

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    Senior Member Steve Hendrix's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Yes, it is expensive, and yes, it is large and heavy (3.5 pounds). But size/weight/cost are throwing you off, you may have wandered into the wrong arena.

    A lot of times I conduct quick little tests on products. These are not the painstakingly prepared, detailed tests that we often publish, the only objective is to inform me so I can advise my clients accurately.

    Last week, I stepped outside our door to compare 150mm lenses for a client who will mainly use it for landscape.

    It's not a great test, or a perfect test, but it told me what I wanted to know to some degree, which is how the new 150/2.8 LS compares to the other leaf shutter options at that focal length.

    * Schneider 150mm/2.8 LS Blue Line Lens
    * Schneider 150mm/3.5 LS Blue Line Lens
    * Schneider 75mm-150mm LS Blue Line Zoom Lens (@150mm)

    I did not test the Phase One 150mm/2.8 AF Lens, as it was not a candidate for this client, but while I prefer it to the Schneider 150mm/3.5 Leaf Shutter, the reasons are: price, speed, better control of CA at wide aperture. Otherwise, I find them optically fairly equivalent.

    The results to my eye show that the Schneider 150mm/2.8 Lens outperforms the other lenses, in fact, at f/2.8, the Schneider 150mm/2.8 outperforms the other lenses at f/11.

    So, like I said, not a perfect, exhaustive test, but based on what I saw, the Schneider 150mm/2.8 may have the potential to be another comparatively elite optic in the same way the Schneider 35mm/3.5 LS that was launched last year is. A new bar may have been set.

    raw files are available via the DropBox link below. The jpg shows the entire scene, note the red outline and arrows that will guide you to the most informed elements of the scene for resolution inspection.

    https://www.dropbox.com/sh/5100qg1g0...u-k2gmnPa?dl=0


    Steve Hendrix/CI

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Steve, your tests are great, ant the data is easy to follow and very useful. Your blog entries have been informative to me several times, including on the purchase I am currently making with you guys. Just wanted to say great work and thank you for all the effort. It makes a difference.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    I hate you, Steve.

    Soooo, what kind of deal can we work out for my Phase Schneider 150mm 3.5 LS for the new Schneider 150mm LS 2.8?

    I'll even include two blue rubber bands....


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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Hendrix View Post
    Yes, it is expensive, and yes, it is large and heavy (3.5 pounds). But size/weight/cost are throwing you off, you may have wandered into the wrong arena.
    That's a weird statement. It rings true if all you shoot is landscape. But 150mm is a portrait lens as well, and Phase even says so in their description.

    I argue that a 3.5 pound lens on an XF is not for the faint of heart to use handheld. Do you think we've wandered into the wrong arena if we shoot people handheld sometimes?

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    Senior Member Steve Hendrix's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Quote Originally Posted by DrakeJ View Post
    That's a weird statement. It rings true if all you shoot is landscape. But 150mm is a portrait lens as well, and Phase even says so in their description.

    I argue that a 3.5 pound lens on an XF is not for the faint of heart to use handheld. Do you think we've wandered into the wrong arena if we shoot people handheld sometimes?

    Sorry if that came across weird.

    I was simply trying to say that if size/weight/cost are important factors for someone, then this system may not be the most appropriate option. I was struggling with an analogy, but that was really all I was saying, so it would apply really to anyone, it wouldn't matter what you were shooting. But to your point, for handheld, the statement is even more relevant. We're saying the same thing, you just stated it with more clarity.


    Steve Hendrix/CI
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    I do plan on hand holding the XF + this 150mm lots. I will post my experience after shooting with it for a bit.

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    I'll be really interested to hear first-hand impressions about handholding this beast. Looking at the specs, it looks like it weighs more than the 240mm Blue Ring, which I have and which is very challenging to hand hold for any length of time. The 150mm, however, looks to be significantly shorter (and fatter) which might affect the balance and stability when handholding.

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    It's late over here but I can post a picture of both lenses tomorrow.

    I haven't use it much yet, but handholding works. All three lenses 35/150/240 have a similar feeling in terms of weight. I do a lot of hiking and often carry the XF in my hand so far mostly with 55/80/150;3.5 - sometimes with the 35 - the 240 and 150 are certainly on the heavy side.


    More Infos once i had more time with the lens.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chipcarterdc View Post
    I'll be really interested to hear first-hand impressions about handholding this beast. Looking at the specs, it looks like it weighs more than the 240mm Blue Ring, which I have and which is very challenging to hand hold for any length of time. The 150mm, however, looks to be significantly shorter (and fatter) which might affect the balance and stability when handholding.

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Here we go:

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Just a short update. I hoped to test them outside, but it's raining crazy here..

    So my first impressions inside. (I'm sorry for all the alcohol in the picture... but I needed stuff to fill the corners )

    I will upload the raw files in the furture but on this connection the JPGs alone took forever...

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    150LS 3.5 @ 3.5
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    A second crop showing how great this lens is. To clean up the corner f11 is needed with the other two. (They look ok, until one looks at the new 150 2.8 LS)

    so f11 vs f5.6

    150LS 3.5 @ 11
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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Ok, I hate you too, Christopher.

    How does the new 150mm 2.8 LS feel hand-held? I know this is totally subjective, but balance with a big lens is a consideration---and that's with the XF, not a lightweight platform either.

    I've gotten away with some great shots handheld with other Phase SK large lenses---the 40-80LS and 240LS. I also feel that the AF performance of the XF helps tremendously in this regard. I'm usually on a tripod, but don't think I'd want to do extended handheld shooting with these big lenses.

    Ken

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Quote Originally Posted by kdphotography View Post
    Ok, I hate you too, Christopher.

    How does the new 150mm 2.8 LS feel hand-held? I know this is totally subjective, but balance with a big lens is a consideration---and that's with the XF, not a lightweight platform either.

    Ken
    Honeslty, I can't say so far. I had it for 3 days and only did some minor testing. It feels great, but big. I have to say the 240 feels better handheld. I will report back after I collected further impressions.

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher View Post
    Honeslty, I can't say so far. I had it for 3 days and only did some minor testing. It feels great, but big. I have to say the 240 feels better handheld. I will report back after I collected further impressions.
    Christopher,

    Any further impressions to share?

    Thanks,
    Mike

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    Senior Member DougDolde's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    It's a bottomless money pit trying to keep up with minuscule improvements. No thanks

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Quote Originally Posted by DougDolde View Post
    It's a bottomless money pit trying to keep up with minuscule improvements. No thanks
    Save up until Phase releases the Platinum Ring Lenses above the Blue Ring Lenses. Those will be REALLY good, and the FUD that you can't take a worthwhile photograph without them will overwhelm you.

    I just had two teeth extracted yesterday, and I am debating whether it is more important to me to upgrade from an IQ 180 to an IQ3 100 or replace the two teeth with implants.

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    Senior Member DougDolde's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Quote Originally Posted by hcubell View Post
    Save up until Phase releases the Platinum Ring Lenses above the Blue Ring Lenses. Those will be REALLY good, and the FUD that you can't take a worthwhile photograph without them will overwhelm you.

    I just had two teeth extracted yesterday, and I am debating whether it is more important to me to upgrade from an IQ 180 to an IQ3 100 or replace the two teeth with implants.
    Last time I checked it was $26,000 PLUS my IQ180 to get the IQ3 100. Again, no thanks.

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    The lens handls well. However, I have only used it for a couple of hand held shots. I needed a 150 which is sharp corner to corner as soon as possible and here it is a dream. Much better then the 150/3,5. It's a dream to be able to shoot a panorama ad f4 or even 2,5 and not having to use a 50% overlap.

    In terms of quality I have only seen some otus come to that level.

    It is heavy and expensive, but it is certainly one of the best lenses out there.

    I will report back after more use hand held, but that might take some time. Quite busy here.

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    A lot of discussion about the weight of this lens plus the XF. But what about that combo PLUS the new V-Grip? That'll be what, 57lbs.? :-)
    Last edited by Mgreer316; 5th October 2016 at 15:44.
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    Senior Member aztwang's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    OK rented this lens this weekend. It is a beast but handles beautiful, using the smooth base of the lens as great spot for left hand rest/steady mount.
    I have found that the AF seems to hunt noticeably more than the 150 3.5 and AF speed is not as quick as the 3.5.
    Im going to run it thru it's paces again tomorrow and see if this still holds true.

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    It's definitely quite a beast. After shooting with it for a bit, the 120mm seems portable! I noticed the AF not as quick as the 150mm f/3.5 as well. However, the extra speed and closer minimum focus distance are important to me. It's the perfect 150mm for me.

    Quote Originally Posted by aztwang View Post
    OK rented this lens this weekend. It is a beast but handles beautiful, using the smooth base of the lens as great spot for left hand rest/steady mount.
    I have found that the AF seems to hunt noticeably more than the 150 3.5 and AF speed is not as quick as the 3.5.
    Im going to run it thru it's paces again tomorrow and see if this still holds true.

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    Senior Member aztwang's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikec View Post
    It's definitely quite a beast. After shooting with it for a bit, the 120mm seems portable! I noticed the AF not as quick as the 150mm f/3.5 as well. However, the extra speed and closer minimum focus distance are important to me. It's the perfect 150mm for me.
    Mike,
    The size of the 150 2.8 LS I is very manageable and fits my left hand like a glove. I prefer to handle the 150 2.8LS over the 110 2.8LS. I find
    others complaining about the size a bit confusing. I shoot a Nikon D810 with the "Chub", Nikon 200 f2 for 2 1/2 hours handheld and it's not a struggle.
    That set up is just shy of 10lbs and the XF/150 2.8LS is 6.7 lbs. So for me, it's a nice weight and balances the XF very nicely.
    Any problems with AF hunting to lock on?

    Don

    XF & 150mm 2.8 @ ISO100-f4-1/250th
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    I have decided not to pursue this lens. Even when testing the 150 3.5LS I found the autofocus to be subpar, if the 2.8LS is worse that's not really acceptable.

    The 150 2.8D is perfect (except for lack of LS), quick and accurate autofocus, low weight. It's sharpness is very impressive as well, I don't find it lacking at all.

    aztwang: As for handholding a Nikon D810 with the 200mm f/2 for 2 and a 1/2 hours without struggle, what on earth are you made of?

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    Senior Member aztwang's Avatar
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    Re: SK Blue Ring 150mm f/2.8 LS

    Quote Originally Posted by DrakeJ View Post
    I have decided not to pursue this lens. Even when testing the 150 3.5LS I found the autofocus to be subpar, if the 2.8LS is worse that's not really acceptable.

    The 150 2.8D is perfect (except for lack of LS), quick and accurate autofocus, low weight. It's sharpness is very impressive as well, I don't find it lacking at all.

    aztwang: As for handholding a Nikon D810 with the 200mm f/2 for 2 and a 1/2 hours without struggle, what on earth are you made of?
    HA HA. I've been doing it a long time never thought much of it. I shoot my 400 2.8 handheld as well. I find shooting sports on a monopod to be too restrictive and ditched the monopod about 6 years ago. I admit the 400 is a work out and at times I set it down between plays. Hell sometimes I do some curls with the 400 to tone the arms in between plays...LOL

    Back to the original subject. As far as the hunting goes, I was in a strong back lit situation thus the retest tomorrow. I dont want to sell it short, cuz honestly I want one as long as it checks out. The focus speed is just an
    observation, not a complaint. The files that I did shoot look good, but it was a client shoot and I couldnt take much time to do cpmparitive images.
    I'll be able to compare files tomorrow and have a better idea.

    Cheers


    Don
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