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Super Tele lenses for digital medium format recommendation

In support of the M645 film format Mamiya made a 500mm f/4.5 APO telelens that is quite useful wide open but it is a brute. It is a white lens along with its 300mm f/2.8 APO and 200mm f/2.8 APO cousins. Good manual focus lenses that sometimes are reasonably priced.
I have never seen a 500mm f4.5 APO come up for sale, no idea of a ball park figure of cost! The 300mm f2.8 APO has gone up a lot in price since I bought mine.

john
 

AlexB

New member
Does anyone here have experience using the Pentax 645 600mm f/5.6 lens with a 1.4x extender? I use a GFX 50R and I'm looking for any pointers in regards to what image quality to expect from such a setup, whether it's worth it or if i should just bite the bullet and go for a different system.
 
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D&A

Well-known member
The short answer is (as noted by a number of us that own and use the Pentax 645 600mm f5.6 lens) is that its hard enough to both stabilize and get an adequately sharp shot (due to explanations in the various posts above) with the lens alone, never mind the 1.4x attached to it. In an ideal world where the entire lens and camera system (this lens and the 645D/Z body) was free of the various of factors that make getting an acceptably sharp shot possible, I believe the optics of the lens itself is good enough to get a fairly decent adequately sharp shot with the 1.4x attached, but achieving that will be even more elusive than the already difficulty of using the lens alone without the 1.4x. Personally I would go another route if you need such reach and that would imply another system. Just my own personal thoughts.

Dave (D&A)
 
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Geoff

Active member
Using the Rollei lenses, gave up all thought of 1.4tx on any tele due to stability issues. Also gave up the 300 f4 Schneider (superb, but too big and heavy) for an older 250 f5.6 Zeiss which was smaller, lighter, cheaper, and just as sharp at f8. Was up at the races, shooting cars w a monopod and the 250mm one morning, turned around, and there was Andretti standing right next to me.. talk about wrong setup at the moment. Backed off about 8’ and still got something. Can one advocate for flexibility?
16243308-334E-4E6E-B8EF-AD7AD704A13B.jpeg
 

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tsjanik

Well-known member
Does anyone here have experience using the Pentax 645 600mm f/5.6 lens with a 1.4x extender? I use a GFX 50R and I'm looking for any pointers in regards to what image quality to expect from such a setup, whether it's worth it or if i should just bite the bullet and go for a different system.
I've used it with 645D, 645Z, and now a 50R. The shot I posted earlier shows the lens with the 1.4X attached. It is a very good combo; preferable to cropping a shot without the extender. I don't use the lens often because of its size and weight and the aforementioned vibration issues; I am more likely to use the Pentax 645 400mm FA lens with its AF and light weight, unless I really need the extra reach. I agree with Jack and Bill: there are better system choices for long telephoto, but if you like MF, it does the job and, as Will noted, it looks cool. Attached is an old shot using the 1.4x on a 645D.
Tom_IGP1299-1 copy.jpg
 
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AlexB

New member
Thanks for sharing, tsjanik.

I'm quite sure I won't be going for the Pentax 600mm lens. Other then the vibration issue that needs to be dealt with, it probably won't be easy to get rid of (at least domestically) once my project is over.

My current plan is to get a ~800mm solution from Canon with an adapter. The 400mm f/2.8L IS looks surprisingly good with the 2x III extender from what I've seen online. Regardless of what I end up with I'll have a look and see what the quality is like for the full sensor. If doesn't satisfy me, I'll use the 35mm crop mode and stitch a couple shots.

Thanks again for all your inputs, much appreciated.
 

Ai_Print

Active member
I use long tele lenses for ski action and compressed landscapes and one of the issues with the latter is depth of field if there is are foreground elements. As much as I would love to get a 350 SA for my Hasselblad system, I am not sure if that kind of ROI works out on the balance sheet for me as I mostly use the V system for black and white film and the regular and very affordable CF 350mm 5.6 works great for that, even with the 1.4XE converter.

So when I tried the combo of the 350mm 5.6 CF + 1.4XE on my Flexbody with the CFVII 50C, I was pleasantly surprised at how good the files looked after a simple movement of the purple fringing adjustment in post. Not only was it plenty sharp but the control over DOF in a long compressed landscape was simply amazing. I can't do that with my Nikon Z7II on super long glass, I would have to focus stack and I am not into that much post, I am a get it right in camera kind of guy.

For most tele work, I will choose the right tool for the job in the Z7II + 500mm+ glass. But for compressed landscapes, it's the Hasseblad 350 / Flexbody / CFVII 50C hands down.

Here is a CA torture test with the Hassy CF 350 + 1.4XE, quite a bit of rear tilt:

CF350+1.4.jpg
 
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