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Thread: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

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    Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    To round out my lens collection (I currently have the 35 and 80), I would like to be able to both get some reach as well as shoot "macro". I primarily do landscapes, no studio work and no portrait/street work with the Alpa

    So I just wanted to ask which lens others might choose between the S. APO Digitar 5.6/150mm N sb and the S. APO Digitar 5.6/180mm T sb. I will be buying a couple of extensions to use whichever I get for the "macro" work.

    I'd love to hear reasoning from both a subjective approach as well as an objective approach (e.g., sharper, better MTF, etc.). From my own research and understanding, both lenses are good performers at f8 - f 16, which is where I primarily shoot (f11.3 being the sweet spot). I lean a bit toward the 180 as I'll get more reach, but I'm not opposed to cropping the 150 images.

    Thanks for any and all input,
    Bob

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    i will go with a 120 macro digital...
    for 1/1 you need twice the focal lens os extension with all these lenses...

    what is the subject ?

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Thanks.
    As I said, it will be the 3rd lens in my kit. I don't necessarily need 1:1; that's why I put "macro" in quotes. I'll use extension tubes and just would like the ability to focus closer (with extension tubes) and have further reach than my 80 (without the extension tubes.

    The 120 just doesn't give me the reach increase, relative to the 80, that I want. So I was really wondering if anyone felt strongly that one lens 150 or 180) was a better lens quality wise.
    Thanks again,
    Bob

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Ultimately only you can decide what suits your shooting style with respect to 120/150/180mm lenses. I settled on the Schneider 150/5.6 short barrel for my Alpa and I've been extremely pleased with it. It's a super sharp lens and fitted my preferred lens range (35/47/90/150) with my P40+. For me, 120 lacked the extra reach I wanted for landscape and 180 was a step too far. The other consideration for me was that 150mm matched my 75-150mm zoom range for framing and was a familiar focal length for me to visualize without having to use the viewfinder. I also considered the 180mm and the consensus I got was that the 150 & 180mm Schneiders were pretty much on a par with each other.

    Be aware that on a technical camera using an optical finder (such as the Alpa finder) your composition frame is teeny, tiny and so it's a question of basic aiming at best and then composition clean up on the back display. I find that my iPhone viewfinder excels when I'm shooting at 90/150mm (assuming the reflective iPhone display is visible) - the optical finder works well at the wider end and when conditions make the reflectivity of the iPhone display a problem.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamWelland View Post
    with my P40+.
    Thanks Graham. Since I'm shooting a P45+, the focal length of a 150 on your back is pretty much right on with a 180 on mine!

    I am very glad to hear that they are both equally sharp. That was one of my major unknowns.

    And as I use ground glass (primarily because I use tilt most of the time), framing shouldn't be too much of an issue.

    Thanks very much for this; very helpful,
    Bob

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Does anyone have a thought on the Rodenstock 150mm digital as opposed to the Rodenstock 180mm digital, just in terms of image quality. They seem quite similar re specs and I'll go for the longer on an Arca Swisss RM3di if the quality is the same.

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    i have the 180, you should know that this lens is good full open, or 2 stops more... after this diffraction is a problem with it... i use it with a bellow on the back if the RM3D.


    The 150 :
    Filter Size - 49mm
    Weight - 250g in Copal 0 shutter

    The 180 :
    Filter Size - 67mm
    Weight - 410g in Copal 1 shutter

    by the way, if i remember right, schneider one's are smaller !

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by archivue View Post
    i have the 180, you should know that this lens is good full open, or 2 stops more... after this diffraction is a problem with it... i use it with a bellow on the back if the RM3D.


    The 150 :
    Filter Size - 49mm
    Weight - 250g in Copal 0 shutter

    The 180 :
    Filter Size - 67mm
    Weight - 410g in Copal 1 shutter

    by the way, if i remember right, schneider one's are smaller !
    Thanks. That's almost double the weight! Not a backpacking lens, but f11 works fine for me.
    Appreciate the information. It all helps,
    Bob

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    Senior Member danlindberg's Avatar
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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    I wonder how good the schneider 80/4 would be with extension tubes for close range?
    Does anyone know?
    Alpa FPS MAX TC | Alpagon 32Hr | Helvetar 75 | Schneider 120N | Leaf Aptus II 5 Leaf Credo 60 | www.danlindberg.com

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by danlindberg View Post
    I wonder how good the schneider 80/4 would be with extension tubes for close range?
    Does anyone know?
    Once I get this all settled out I'll let you know. I'm thinking the 6.5 might be best...
    Lovely images on your website BTW.
    Bob

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    Senior Member danlindberg's Avatar
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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Thanks Bob! (on both accounts)
    Alpa FPS MAX TC | Alpagon 32Hr | Helvetar 75 | Schneider 120N | Leaf Aptus II 5 Leaf Credo 60 | www.danlindberg.com

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    The Schneider 150mm SB is a tremendous lens. I can shift mine 15mm on my Alpa STC and can see no difference in sharpness from center to edge. That really is a tremendous achievement from Schneider. An outstanding lens that you really should consider.

    Victor

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by vjbelle View Post
    I can shift mine 15mm on my Alpa STC and can see no difference in sharpness from center to edge.
    Victor
    Hi Victor,
    Which back are you using? That would make a difference in the amount of shift available.

    Also, on the Alpa page, the image circle is stated at 110, but on the lens information (second page of the PDF, at the top left) it says the "Diagonal" is 80mm. For the 180, the informational PDF says the image circle is 120, which is the same as it says on the web page.

    Also, the web page doesn't say what the weight of the 150 is; my guess is that it's about 2/3s the weight of the 180...

    Perhaps Thierry can give us the real info....

    Thanks again for the info about sharpness. Please let me know which back you're using and if the 15mm shift is with the back in portrait or landscape orientation; that would also make a difference I think.

    Best,
    Bob

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Bob,

    My back is an IQ180. The lens and required extension barrel weigh 1.98 lbs which is fairly light. I was in landscape orientation when applying the 15mm shift. I would not consider the 180 because of its limited movements with my back - in fact with almost any back! The 150mm may be one of the most outstanding lenses that I own.

    Victor

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by vjbelle View Post
    Bob,

    I would not consider the 180 because of its limited movements with my back - in fact with almost any back!
    Victor
    Hi Victor,
    You lost me; why would the 180 have limited movements? It looks like its image circle is about the same as the 150...


    Thanks,
    Bob

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    For some reason I thought you were referring to the Rody 180. I re-read your original post..... my mistake.

    Victor

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by vjbelle View Post
    For some reason I thought you were referring to the Rody 180. I re-read your original post..... my mistake.

    Victor
    Phew. That would have sealed the deal for the 150!
    thanks

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    I would also think that you could/should expect the same performance from the 180 and longer Schneider Digitar lenses. I do a lot of architectural detail shooting (windows, doors, etc) and the 150 just seems to fit my needs. Its also my first pick for landscape and for that reason I would opt for the 210 if I needed a longer lens.

    Victor

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Well, you were asking about the image quality of the Schneider 150/5.6 ... here's an example from the weekend. It actually suffers from heat haze in some places but you'll get the idea:

    The overall scene (compression kills this):



    100% Details from the above:







    Not sharp at all.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Ouch!
    How do I staunch the bleeding?

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Nice Graham!
    I can see they changed the menu in the Needle Restaurant. Good to know.
    ;-)

    Dave

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Very nice!

    The Rodenstock 180 APO Sironar has a listed image circle of 150mm. Surely lots of scope for movements and stitching here.

    Rob

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by dchew View Post
    Nice Graham!
    I can see they changed the menu in the Needle Restaurant. Good to know.
    ;-)

    Dave
    Yes, I noticed that the soup was off on Saturday.

    Btw, it does make you wonder what the IQ180 or Aptus II 12 could squeeze out of these optics under the right conditions. I'm still frequently in awe of what even my P40+ can eek out of the Alpa system.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    If you're committed to the 645DF/Mamiya platform, I'd probably recommend the 75-150mm D. My copy is exceptional throughout the entire focal range. I also own the "legendary" 300mm f/2.8, which would certainly satisfy in terms of sharpness and contrast. . . but it's so heavy.
    --
    Gabe

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    Re: Which Lens Would You Choose and Why?

    Gabe

    With the 75-150, are you using this lens mostly on a tripod or doing a fair bit of hand held work.

    If you are doing hand held work, what would your advice be on shutter settings to avoid camera shake from the focal plane shutter?

    I have a DF but my longest lens is the 80mm LS lens and I am weighing up what my next lens purchase should be.

    Thanks in advance.


    Mal

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