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Your favourite “bang for the buck” lenses

Ben730

Active member
I've never tried lenses meant for full frame on a GFX, except for some shift lenses. I've always been after a large image circle that allows movements, so options like your Sigma didn't make it on my camera. I'm glad it works for you. Sometimes the vignetting is mechanical and can't be corrected with an LCC, but it sounds like it's just strong light falloff in this case.
No, it's also a very little bit vignetting at infinity. Only at infinity.
But I don't use this lens at infinity. It's for people, it's to use wide open.
 

rdeloe

Well-known member
Have had good luck with Caltar II 75mm f6.8. Surprisingly capable.
Over at the Large Format Photography forum, some thought your Caltar lens was a Rodenstock. Apparently Calumet sourced their "Caltar" lenses from various makers.
 

daz7

Active member
Whoa! Those APO Rodagon N 105mm f/4 lenses are extremely expensive. Even the ones pulled out of line scanning setups in Asian factories are selling for close to $3,000 USD. Wow. I'm glad you could get your Sinaron working. I wonder if there's a housing out there that would work for the lens cells. With Schneider-Kreuznach I was able to do a lot of swapping among housings.
I think that you may be able to put it into a copal 1 shutter with a bit of shimming and an adapter for one of the elements. One of the elements I think is of Copal 1 size while the other of Copal 0 size or close to it.
It may be technically possible I think as spacing between the cells seems to be quite normal (at least by looking at the DB board mount in which my specimen came). I have not taken it apart - If I had a spare one I could experiment more but having just one i would rather not touch it as it works great with the Sinar Auto-shutter on a Sinar P2 and with a Sinar M too.
Maybe it would even work without much fiddling or even straight up in a Rodie'senlarger housing - I do not know, but I would not be surprised.
The lens is super sharp, works great for tabletop and repro, image circle is around 120mm for f8-f11 but is rather weak for infinity and large scales.
For scales from 1:2 to 1:5 it matches rodenstock and schneider's macro 120mm in my opinion, for scales 1:5-1:10 is really great and from 1:10 to infinity becomes gradually worse and worse, being beaten by most of the good taking lenses.
It feaquently pops up on ebay in Sinar's DB mount for $200-300, so if you are patient, you can buy it quite cheap.
I have bought mine practically unused, still in a maker's box for $350.

The other nice lens for small repro ratios is a Sinaron 80mm f4 and something tells me that it could be also an Apo Rodagon N in their 80mm flavour - it behaves really nicely and was one of the most expensive Sinaron digital lenses when new (in eary 2000s), at around 3000 euro, even more expensive (by aound 500 euros) that 90mm that got later renamed to a HR. Now it also retails at around $300 which is well under its real value and potential.

BTW i think that the sizing of 105mm matches the figures published by qioptic - I will double check it later on today.
The MTF graph looks nice and seems to confirm how the lens behaves in real life:
mtf 105mm.png
 
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diggles

Well-known member
That's a difficult question to narrow down to one lens. I'd award this to a whole system: Pentax 645. In my opinion, these lenses are absolutely undervalued, all are (to my taste, opinions may vary) really sharp across the frame at "landscape apertures" of f8 - f11.
Pentax 645 A 35mm: go-to wideangle lens for landscape.
Pentax 645 A 75mm: tiny, lightweight, pleasing colors and bokeh wide open.
Pentax 645 A 120mm macro: fantastic macro lens.
Pentax 645 A 150mm: small, lightweight tele option.

All of them can be shifted on the GFX100s, and while the image quality somewhat suffers, the results are for me really usable. Even though I love my Hasselblad V glass, I found myself taking the Pentax 645 lenses more often due to their lighter weight without the shutter.
Agreed on the Pentax 645 lenses. Currently, I have the Pentax 645 A 75mm and 120mm macro. The 75mm has no noticeable distortion and provides ample shift on the GFX to make it an excellent lens for architectural photography. It is not quite as sharp as some of the new lenses, but it's performance is definitely on a professional level. The 120mm macro is so much fun to use.
 

Paul Spinnler

Well-known member
Agreed on the Pentax 645 lenses. Currently, I have the Pentax 645 A 75mm and 120mm macro. The 75mm has no noticeable distortion and provides ample shift on the GFX to make it an excellent lens for architectural photography. It is not quite as sharp as some of the new lenses, but it's performance is definitely on a professional level. The 120mm macro is so much fun to use.
How are you adapting it on the R (that's how you use it?)?
 

Whisp3r

Active member
How are you adapting it on the R (that's how you use it?)?
Not sure if this is what you're referring to since I don't use a tech cam, but Arca Shop in Stuttgart sells a part called 'R-line Objectivplatte - Pentax 645 bayonett'. You'll find it on their product page, subcategory 'Kameras - R-line zubehöhr - Objectivplatten R-line'.
 

rdeloe

Well-known member
Not telling what lenses are best bang for the buck as I'm still looking for one or two and I don't want the price to go up as a result of this thread ;)

Cheers,
Duff
You're not wrong!

Paul and other people banging away at how nice the SK APO Digitar 35 XL is and poof, the three reasonably priced copies available all get snapped up within a few days. I have one. ;)
 
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daz7

Active member
You're not wrong!

Paul and other people banging away at how nice the SK APO Digitar 35 XL is and poof, the three reasonably priced copies available all get snapped up within a few days. I have one. ;)
maybe they were selling or bought their copies at a peak and now would love to get their money back ;)
 

tenmangu81

Well-known member
Agreed on the Pentax 645 lenses. Currently, I have the Pentax 645 A 75mm and 120mm macro. The 75mm has no noticeable distortion and provides ample shift on the GFX to make it an excellent lens for architectural photography. It is not quite as sharp as some of the new lenses, but it's performance is definitely on a professional level. The 120mm macro is so much fun to use.
I guess there are some rings to adapt them on a HB X body. They look very affordable (the Mamiya, too) and very good quality. I am looking for a 100/120 macro...
 

rdeloe

Well-known member
I also have several of the old Pentax 645 A lenses that perform well on the GFX 100s. My favorites are the 35, 75, and 150. The 150 is the least expensive at approx $100, but it is sharp and works well.
Those three lenses are my standard recommendation for a reasonably priced way to get into basic camera movements using a tilt-shift adapter.
 

scho

Well-known member
Those three lenses are my standard recommendation for a reasonably priced way to get into basic camera movements using a tilt-shift adapter.
Yes, I also use them on the Cambo Actus when I need movements.
 

John Leathwick

Well-known member
What a great thread, Rob - I missed its arrival because I was out shooting until late yesterday...

I can second what Rob says about the Fujinon EX's. As my blog describes, I'm a big fan of the
Mamiya RZ's on my Universalis/GFX 50SII, but their downside is their weight, particularly when
you're somewhat sidelined with a back injury awaiting treatment. I already had Schnieder
Apo Componons in 60mm and 90mm, but the coverage of the 60mm is meagre, and I find
the 90mm a little too long. At Rob's suggestion, I went with a 75mm and once I had seen what
it delivers, added a 105mm. While they don't match the SKAC's for macro, I'm finding their
infinity performance to be very close behind my RZ's. Based on my assessment, both the
EX's have wider coverage than the SKAC's. And I can carry a couple of these that are about
cotton reel size and that together weigh only a little more than my RZ board - my back sure
appreciates that!

Here are a couple that I took yesterday - this one shows very well why Rob should not have
sold his EZ 75mm - a left right portrait flat stitch in the Otira Gorge at Arthurs Pass National
Park. A dark and gloomy place that was the muse of an early NZ impressionist artist by the
name of Petrus van der Velden. This was a quick dive down off the road with rain in the
offing...
Otira Gorge I.jpg

This is also with the 75, but on a more distant subject and with 12.5mm of shift left and
right, subsequently cropped to 16:9 - slight tilt to accommodate the foreground.
Hogsback Ridge Craigieburn.jpg

And to back up Rob's assessment of the EX 105, here is one straight out of lightroom of
an old holiday cottage in the Arthurs Pass Village. Zoomed in, I can count the nails
holding on that wall cladding.
ArthursPass-2448.jpg

Finally, I'd like to throw in a real wild-card. This is another image shot in the Otira
Gorge, but with an Arsat 30mm fisheye that had been sitting for ever so long at our
local camera store, and that I bought for the princely sum of $275. It's a weighty beast,
and was designed for 6x6, but it can be tamed on the GFX-Universalis, as long as I
level it up carefully. Here I used as much fall as I could until its hood started to appear
in the image. I've manually stretched out the lower corners to something that
approximates a de-fished image. With a subject involving straight lines, I shift to
shoot images that I can combine into a 6x6 equivalent, and then use the adaptive
wide angle correction filter in PS, which defishes things remarkably well. With this
approach I can shoot a cropped final image that gives equivalent to a 15mm field of view.
The corners aren't as sharp as the centre, but the centre resolution is excellent,
and with all those pixels to play with, it's hard to find something similar that will
do the same. I'm planning to do a writeup of it on my blog idc with more examples
and details of the settings that I use for defishing.
Otira Gorge II.jpg

John
 
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