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Wide angle Lenses with focal lengths shorter than 14mm.

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  #1  
Old 22nd August 2008
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New lens help

I'm going to be in the market for something very wide probably after Christmas if things go according to plan.
I was looking at the 7-14mm but have been thinking about the 8mm fish eye.I think the weight factor and also the wider field of view may be better.The only thing is I feel the 7-14 may be more flexable not being fixed focal length.
Also the 8mm is about half the price of the 7-14.

Has anyone used both of these lens??

All comments welcome.
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  #2  
Old 22nd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

Yes, I own the 7-14 and have used the 8mm. I find the 7-14 one of the best lenses I have ever used - once you get used to its characteristics at fully wide! The 8mm, however, for me was just a "gimmic". It's a fish-eye, with all the extreme distortions that brings. Yes, it's fun, but I couldn't see me using it much after I had played with it for a while. Of course, it will suit other peoples preferences, just not mine!
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Old 22nd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

I think the key thing is that they do very different things and aren't really directly comparable.

Before I got my 7-14, I used an 8mm Peleng, which I sold to help finance the 7-14. I like shooting architecture and the fisheye distortion can make for some very interesting shots, if not over-used. It can be more problematic for landscape, as, although programs like PTLens will de-fish images very quickly, it isn't the same.

The 7-14 is a lovely lens in all respects, but as StephenL says, needs some practice to get the best out of it. I have been leaving it out of my bag on the grounds of weight (780g!), but have recently realised I keep missing shots that would suited to it as a result. Something else will have to come out instead. I can tell I'm not using it enough as one my Flickr friends keeps offering to buy it! The big advantage is the flexibility of the zoom - helps keep your feet out of the frame when shooting slightly downwards...

I have also been considering the ZD 8mm as I do like the FE effect, but can't really justify the investment. Maybe after I get an E3...

The big advantage of the Peleng is the price - currently around £200. The disadvantages are manual focus (not that big a disadvantage, as the DoF, even wide open, is enormous) and stop-down metering. They are built like a tank, but things like lens coatings can be a bit variable, and CA can be an issue in high contrast situations.
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Old 22nd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

Andy, As I'm sure you are aware they are completely differnt beasts, the 7-14 being rectilinear and the 8mm a fisheye.
I've got the 7-14mm and a wonderful lens it is too. I'm very much still learning to use it creatively, but enjoying the experience.
It's distortions are very well controlled, so its works well for pictures of buildings and suchlike provided you make sure it's plumb vertical.
An 8mm fisheye on the other hand revels in it's non rectilinear distortions.

As other folks have mentioned on this forum in the past, have a word with Kerso; my 7-14 came from him at a very good price.
That would leave you some cash left over to have a try with a "Peleng " 8mm.

It's a purely manual lens which you need to use via a convertor, but with such a lens, precise focussing is much less of an issue.
I don't know your feelings on e-bay, but there's currently a seller in Eire flogging them for under £200 new.
It's probably not as sharp as a ZD lens, but I guess one can't expect it at the price. It's also rumoured that quality control can be a bit of an issue, though mine's ok.
There's a flickr.com group devoted to it, so it's worth a search there to see what sort of images you can generate,but do bear in mind the x2 factor rather than the x1.6 from many of the images posted there.
It would have the advantage of also fitting a film camera if you can track down an OM mount one. The other possibility is to pick one up direct from the factory in the Ukraine, or there's a guy in Czech that sells them sometimes.
Both lenses flare like mad if you are not careful where the sun is; I've actually modified a lens hood to fit my Peleng.
I'm sure either will give you hours of fun, but it depends on your primary use as to which suits you best.

(there's some fairly average sunsets posted in my flickr account, so if you search for peleng there, you can see a few where the distortion can be minimised)

(Hugh, look like you and I were typing at the same time, but you got in first)
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Last edited by peak4; 22nd August 2008 at 09:52 AM. Reason: read previous post
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Old 22nd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

Thanks for the quick replies.

Just wanted to get a feel for what people thought.

Probably be used mainly for arcitecture but also some landscape.
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  #6  
Old 22nd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

I've got it, but as a lens for architecture it doesn't work that well, since you only get "distorted" images that are hard to fix in ps.
I only use it for fun, and when I want to show the topography of some place or other.
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Old 22nd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

Andy,

For what it's worth, I considered both the Peleng and Zuiko 8mm. In the end I went for the Zuiko lens as I didn't have the benefit of somebody else's experience with the Peleng to listen to.

I have never been disappointed with the results, although one does have to plan a bit before using it.

I originally planned to buy, use, then sell the lens. However, it's so different and I liked it's distortion effect so much that I kept it, essentially as a toy. Be careful - they're addictive!!

Nick

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  #8  
Old 22nd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

If you're doing landscape and architecture then I'd definitely go for the 7 - 14mm lens. As everyone else has said, the 8mm is a fish eye lens and may be a bit too exotic for general picture taking. I think you'd get more use from the traditional wide angle lens for what you want to do.

I've got the 11 - 22mm lens and found it to be excellent for the price and avoids the barrel distortion of the 12 - 60mm lens at the widest point. Might also be worth a look perhaps?
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Old 22nd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Who's_E View Post
Andy,

For what it's worth, I considered both the Peleng and Zuiko 8mm. In the end I went for the Zuiko lens as I didn't have the benefit of somebody else's experience with the Peleng to listen to.

I have never been disappointed with the results, although one does have to plan a bit before using it.

I originally planned to buy, use, then sell the lens. However, it's so different and I liked it's distortion effect so much that I kept it, essentially as a toy. Be careful - they're addictive!!

Nick

Nick

Wow thats the bizz.Not only for what the lens can do but the picture,great colours.

Probably not quite what I want.I'll probably have to wait a few more months for the 7-14.
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  #10  
Old 22nd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

Is the 8mm fisheye a genuine 180 degree lens, such that you can stitch 3 images together for a 'bubble' or immersive image?

Jim
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Old 23rd August 2008
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Re: New lens help

I was just browsing this thread and it got me thinking how much I'd actually like this 7-14 being discussed... until I checked out the price of it!!
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