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05-27-2012, 07:28 PM   #1
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New Lenses - OK new to me anyway...

Got a couple of lenses in a day or two ago, thought I'd brag a little.

300mm Lentar M42 f5.6

SMC Pentax A 50mm f2

The Lentar was the one I wanted, I have several 50mm lenses already but the 50mm A seems to do pretty well.

Opened the box and found out the rear element of the Lentar was messed up, I thought it was fungus, but fortunately I was wrong. Easy to open up and check, rear barrel screws off by hand, rear element flange screws off, retainer cap screwed off by hand and I found out instead of two cemented lenses, it's two with a spacer between them, somebody's fingerprint smudge on the inside of the rear one from a botched cleaning job. Had it cleaned and reassembled in under 10 minutes and it seems to get pretty good pictures.

Focusing is fairly slow and smooth, very close to the same as my Vivitar 200mm, so it won't take a lot of getting used to. Seems to be well made and the surprise is it's about half the weight of the 200.

I'll have to play with it for a few days to really see what it will do, but here are a couple of shots from both.

One of the first things I saw when I left this morning was this hawk. I hadn't taken more than 6 or 7 shots with the lens yet, just tinkering with it, so getting something this good right off the bat was nice to see. This was taken at either f8 or f11, I think f11, the f8 shots were m0ostly 750-1000 shutter speed I'm pretty sure.

A Summer Tanager on a wire a few minutes later, shutter speed 1000 so I think it was f8..

The 50mm A series f2 got these. I think so far it's getting pretty close to what my A series 50mm f1.4 will do.

Coreopsis, with binocular lens rig at infinity focus, which gives a wider field of view, I had it set on A so aperture and so forth would show in EXIF data. I don't normally shoot that way, I use the aperture ring because I'm more comfortable with it, but I wanted the settings in EXIF for the test shots. EXIF says f11 at 1/350

Damselfly f16 at 1/180 using flash

Here's a shot with the A series 1.4 for comparison, but this is probably not really fair, I had only used the f2 lens for an hour or so when I took that picture.

Also a damselfly, 1/180 and I think also f16 with flash

Overall, for 48 dollar bills and some change, I think I didn't do bad at all. Both are in excellent physical condition, had to do some cleaning on the Lentar, just a minor lens cleaning on the Pentax, and both seem to get good pictures. I'm pleased...

05-28-2012, 05:54 PM   #2
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I noticed a bit of a dirty spot when I looked at the Lentar today and took a closer look. It was fungus after all, it etched a fine haze into the rear element that I can only see if I turn it at certain angles. I tried and cannot clean it off. I have emailed the seller, nothing was said about fungus, and no picture of the rear of the lens, only one with the cap on, so I'm waiting now to see what happens.

I'm surprised it gets pictures as good as it does, but maybe this is why it won't quite match my Vivitar 200. I want to try and remove the lens again and get pictures of it, but so far all Ive gotten is pictures of the reflection from any kind of lighting I've tried. I've tried an LED flashlight, flash and a vintage light bar, maybe I need to try it outside with the macro rig...

This sucks, I really wanted this 300...

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