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05-16-2011, 12:01 AM   #1
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Fisheye: Soviet or Lensbaby?

Hi there!

I'm looking into getting an affordable fisheye lens, and I'm not sure whether to get the 12mm fisheye optic for my Lensbaby Composer or the 16mm Zenitar.

I'm quite sure the Zenitar would give the better IQ, but the Lensbaby has the wider field of view of course. Also, when getting the Lensbaby optic I would not have to carry another heavy lense around...

Does anybody here have some experience with these optics, especially on an APS-C sensor? Are there any other affordable fisheye optics I could look into?

05-16-2011, 12:05 AM   #2
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Samyang has an 8mm fisheye. There's also the Peleng (Belomo) 8mm fisheye.
05-16-2011, 04:16 AM   #3
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The Zenitar seems to be a nice lens but it's designed for full-frame so on APS-C you'll lose the edges of the image which give pretty much the whole fisheye effect. The lensbaby looks to me like a fancy peephole. i guess you've seen the gallery on their website. Also, the lensbaby has a field of view of 160 degrees.
I don't know much about the Peleng, but the Samyang has 180 degree field of view with really nice results. You can get it from an ebay store in Poland at about double the price of the lensbaby.
05-16-2011, 05:47 AM   #4
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If it's the price, for a good fisheye it's difficult to beat the samyang (or the peleng...although the samyang is reported to have better IQ). Try to find one used...
The lensbabies are a hell of a lot of fun...finally tried them after being curious about them for some time (but they still are a couple of hundred bucks that ain't spare change for me so i haven't bought one yet).

05-17-2011, 12:55 PM   #5
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I have a Rokinon 8mm that I got from Amazon for $260 on sale and I think it's great. MF but it does have A contacts. I think it may be the same as the Samyang. Fun lens!
05-17-2011, 10:57 PM   #6
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Yes, the Rokinon is made by Samyang. I recommend that lens too. A great fisheye lens.
05-18-2011, 07:52 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the input! Thanks to you I looked a bit closer at the Samyang, it really seems to be a nice lens for a decent price - and quite a bit above some previous Samyang products I looked at...

I'm still wavering though. The reason for me picking the Zenitar and Lensbaby was that they are even cheaper than the Samyang. I'm not really sure I will use the fisheye effect all that often, so I approached the list from the bottom end. On the other hand, getting a really interesting lens for a few bucks more might be better than getting a really cheap one that is disappointing. Well let's see, I'm currently watching some used Zenitars on the bay, maybe if I get one for a really good price I can buy the Samyang later if I find I need more fisheye.

QuoteOriginally posted by Coeurdechene Quote
If it's the price, for a good fisheye it's difficult to beat the samyang (or the peleng...although the samyang is reported to have better IQ). Try to find one used...
The lensbabies are a hell of a lot of fun...finally tried them after being curious about them for some time (but they still are a couple of hundred bucks that ain't spare change for me so i haven't bought one yet).
Wise decision to stay away from the Lensbabies, not only are they great fun, there are also quite a number of different optics and other accessories to tempt you once you got started. ;-)
05-18-2011, 08:41 AM   #8
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I'll also recommend the 8mm Samyang, I have the Rokinon branded one, it is an amazing lens for the price.

I still want to pickup a Zenitar though, not as a fisheye, but as an ultra wide angle, since they aren't very fishy on a APS-C.

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