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Lens focus The place to talk about your camera's glassware.

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  #1  
Old 28th February 2008
Sam M
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Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

I know there's a number of posts about the OM 4/3 adaptors, but I wondered what results people are getting with old 35mm lenses? Focusing I guess is a major issue? (No camera iris or focus control.)

I've read that you should not shoot wide open or closed, but otherwise I would imagine the resolution should be pretty good.

Looking to buy an adaptor from 'Enjoyyourcamera.com', 30 EUR, unless anyone's had bad experiences with it...

Sam M
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  #2  
Old 28th February 2008
j.baker j.baker is offline
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

I have two 3rd party 4/3rd to OM adapters.

One is on a Clubman 28mm F2.8 Macro 1:5 lens and the other is on a Tokina SD 28-70mm F3.5-4.5 lens.

The adapters work very well.

In Swindon there is a small camera shop (Gilberts I think). They sell new and old lenses. I picked up both for about 25.

The stock 14-42mm lens is much better than old OM lenses, but the macro lens is rather good. In my gallery there is a picture of apple. This was taken using the Tokina.

If you have the lenses, why not play.
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  #3  
Old 28th February 2008
Sam M
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

Is the DSLR kit lens really better than good (ie. Olympus) 35mm primes?

Sam
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  #4  
Old 28th February 2008
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

Hi there.
I use the 2 kit lenses and the 11-22 with my E400. I have also tried 3 different Hexanons, a Nikon lens, a Vivitar, a Takumar plus some other cheapies (Pentacon etc)

I have to report that the modern Zuiko zooms are indeed better wide open than most of the above lenses. I think this also applies to OM legacy lenses.

However there is little to chose between new and old if you stop down to f5.6 f8 and beyond.

You may well need a split image screen (Katzeye for example) in order to focus accurately.

The advantages of legacy lenses? They feel well made compared with modern plastic lenses and you can get a good low light lens (f1.8 f2 etc) for peanuts. An E400 with a compact Tamron has a nice retro look and feel, a bit like a digital OM perhaps...

I have a web page with basic test chart shots from many of my legacy lenses which might be of interest..

http://www.snaar.co.uk/lenses/index.html

Hope this helps :-)

Pete H
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Old 28th February 2008
j.baker j.baker is offline
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

If your camera supports live view, you can zoom in using the dial. This is really useful when using old lenses.

BTW, I was reading an older E3 review recently and the review mentioned about using the dial to adjust the live view from 7-10x. I just tried this on my E-510 V1.3m firmware and it works.

I have tried two of the cheaper split focus screen on my E510, and they are not bad for the pice, but I have switched back. The Oly focus screen is clearer, and is generally better. I have not used the Katzeye screen due to cost.

I also found that the camera AF and live view focus was different to the split screen. It was small but noticable.

The split screen also made any astrophotography very hard.

Anyway, back to the thread.

The adapters work well, with limitations. The newer Oly glass/plastic lenses are very good (IMHO)
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  #6  
Old 28th February 2008
Xpres
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

I use a lot of 'legacy' lenses with my Olys and agree with the last two posters.
Apart from a bit of fun there are some great and outstanding quality lenses out there to be had for very little money. Fast glass is relatively cheap (although there are issues using them wide open - search and see and look at Saar for a start) and pretty well anything can be made to fit a 4/3 camera. Of course if you want very wide angle then your better of with the new lenses, or perhaps a 5x4 .
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  #7  
Old 28th February 2008
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam M View Post
Is the DSLR kit lens really better than good (ie. Olympus) 35mm primes?

Sam
That would depend on the prime. My copy of the OM Zuiko 350mm made my copy of the old 50-200 DZ look very mediocre. I sold the 50-200 and replaced it with the new SWD version but it's to early to tell if it will match the 350mm.

My copies of the OMZ 50mm f3.5 macro and the Tamron 90mm macro are also very good.

As an example of the 350mm the line of text below Dead Slow No Wake on the sign reads By Order Of Southampton Harbour Authority;

http://www.dmeredith.com/photo07/pages/7290033.htm
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  #8  
Old 28th February 2008
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

WOW - 350mm f2.8 - what a lens!! There's even one going now on eBay for a whopping £3,750.

Here's the link
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  #9  
Old 28th February 2008
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by snaarman View Post
Hi there.
I use the 2 kit lenses and the 11-22 with my E400. I have also tried 3 different Hexanons, a Nikon lens, a Vivitar, a Takumar plus some other cheapies (Pentacon etc)

I have to report that the modern Zuiko zooms are indeed better wide open than most of the above lenses. I think this also applies to OM legacy lenses.

However there is little to chose between new and old if you stop down to f5.6 f8 and beyond.

You may well need a split image screen (Katzeye for example) in order to focus accurately.

The advantages of legacy lenses? They feel well made compared with modern plastic lenses and you can get a good low light lens (f1.8 f2 etc) for peanuts. An E400 with a compact Tamron has a nice retro look and feel, a bit like a digital OM perhaps...

I have a web page with basic test chart shots from many of my legacy lenses which might be of interest..

http://www.snaar.co.uk/lenses/index.html

Hope this helps :-) Pete H
What inspiring stuff Peter - some marvellous work on your site and very informative as well.
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  #10  
Old 28th February 2008
Hiding_Pup
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

I'm a big fan of Russian M42 lenses, my favourite being the classic Jupiter 9 85mm f2. Fixed lenses are tiny for what they do, and it's amazingly liberating to work with a 170mm f2 equivalent that costs less than £60. Focus is a pain (less so for those who those who grew up with manual focus film cameras), but good eyesight and a bit of practice pay off eventually:

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Old 28th February 2008
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

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Originally Posted by E-1 fan View Post
What inspiring stuff Peter - some marvellous work on your site and very informative as well.
Thanks for that :-)

I like to contribute to the world of 4/3 where I can by sharing my experiences. What does freak me out is stumbling across links to my lens pages being shared between folks I've never met on forums I rarely visit

On the whole "using your legacy lenses" thing: I am currently calculating which minmal lens set to take on holiday. I just want to take 2 lenses.

Maybe the 11-22 Zuiko and my little Tamron 35-70. That's it. No more. The thing is (and this takes some getting used to) the 11-22 wide angle is so much bigger and heavier than the Tamron(!) It always used to be the other way round.

Alternative lens pair is the 14-42 and the Tamron 35-70. Aaah, now we are talking light and compact - but I would miss those really wide angles.

Decisions!

P
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  #12  
Old 28th February 2008
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiding_Pup View Post
I'm a big fan of Russian M42 lenses, my favourite being the classic Jupiter 9 85mm f2. Fixed lenses are tiny for what they do, and it's amazingly liberating to work with a 170mm f2 equivalent that costs less than 60. Focus is a pain (less so for those who those who grew up with manual focus film cameras), but good eyesight and a bit of practice pay off eventually:
Hi there..

Actually I am holding a Jupiter9 85/2 in my hands right now. Its hidden secret is the 16 (or more) blade diaphragm!! This one doesn't seem to have coated optics and when I tried it on the e400 it seemed very soft wide open.. Rather like the Pentacon 50mm lenses, it is very sharp if you stop it down enough..

P
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  #13  
Old 28th February 2008
Hiding_Pup
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

I suppose it's a bit soft, but that's never really bothered me. And it gives a nice glowy feel when converted to black and white (which is what these lenses optimised for). Don't know whether my copy is multicoated, probably is as it's a relatively new one - but it's sharp enough for me. The biggest problem for me is focusing exactly on the spot I want - the f2 aperture doesn't leave much margin for error. 100% crop: of the above:

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  #14  
Old 28th February 2008
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

Agreed, I don't mind a little bit of soft wide open, as long as you know its there and as long as it goes away when you stop down one or two stops..

(BTW - My secret weapon is the Nikon Series E 100mm f2.8. I can and do use that one wide open without regrets...)

As for focus, I swapped my screen for a Katzeye (expensive but excellent) and that helps me focus lenses wider than f4. To use the split image and microprism you need to have the eyepiece diopter set exactly right for your eyes IMHO...

Excellent bird picture by the way :-)

P
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  #15  
Old 29th February 2008
Sam M
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Re: Any experience of OM lenses on DSLRs?

Very inspiring stuff! I think I've got some old Nikon lenses as well. Must get a mount, dust them off and have a go too.

Is the focal length equivalent on the 4/3 system? Or does an old 28mm legacy lens give you same as a 14mm on a 4/3 DSLR?

Sam
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