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09-22-2013, 07:34 AM   #1
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Best Fisheyes - IQ

Hi all

So it's time I expanded my bag to include a fisheye... so far my emphasis in lense choices have always revolved around the best size vs speed tradeoff.... a big plus if it accepts filters, but understandable if fisheyes cant accept

I have nailed down the following, note AF is not important to me... neither is "A" setting:

1. zenit 16mm (not so fishy on aps-c)
2. rokinon/samyang 8mm
3. sigma 10mm
4. pentax 10-17

appreciate your comments/expereicnes and if ive missed out on any!

09-22-2013, 07:47 AM   #2
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The 10-17 is the only one in that list that zooms, a big plus.

You can go to the fisheye thread and compare images there.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/lens-clubs/33549-fisheye-fever-club-flaun...ye-photos.html
09-22-2013, 08:58 AM   #3
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I have the zenitar in M42 mount as the bottom of my M42 kit, and the Samyang (pro optic In my case) 8mm for my K mount kit.

Both are very good, obviously the 16mm zenitar is not too fishy on APS-C by it still gives great results. Colors are very good.

Samyang has an excellent coating. Not too much flare considering it is impossible to keep the sun out of the frame
09-22-2013, 09:20 AM - 1 Like   #4
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Morning,

The BIG question is Zoom and projection. The focal length parameter really does not tell you much, in that they are all 180 degrees corner to corner.
  • Zoom or No Zoom - pretty self explanatory. Zoom does help framing the image, and also placement along with the amount of "bend" in the image.
  • Projection - This comes down to the "fishiness" of the image. Yes, it can be bound in a lot of math, however it boils down to the type of projection that is used (or the "how") in pulling in the additional amount of scene from the corners and edges. This also determines the amount of "push back" the scene has at the center. As you pull in view from the edges, the view at the center tends to be "pushed back" into the background, with the foreground of the image taking on additional importance in anchoring the scene. For extreme close ups, its also affects the center also, in terms of how the center of the image is handled - think of the image of a dogs nose, or for that - your nose, prominently displayed front and center in the image. Fisheyes are fun, and they distort differently in different situations - a lot for the good - and sometimes for the not so good (as your girlfriend, wife, daughter goes running from the room - yelling "you made me look FAT").
The best thing to do is to look at images from the various lenses and see how it handles the various situations. Its what appeals to you.

I have the 10-17 and like it a lot for the versatility, as I can "dial in" the amount of whatever (bend, fishiness, etc.) that I may want to have.



09-22-2013, 10:27 AM   #5
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I have the DA10-17. It's the only fisheye I own so I can't personally compare it to anything else but I can vouch for the excellent IQ on both my K10D and K5. There are lots of threads around the forum with loads of examples. It's a lens that's almost always in my bag and a couple of friends have bought the Tokina version for their Nikons after seeing my results with the lens. While the distortion is always present to some degree, you can use the lens in ways where it isn't too obvious. People don't appear too distorted at all unless you get very close (center) and at the edges. I'll also mention that people can look distorted on the edges with a wide rectilinear lens also. I kind of prefer the DA 10-17 for inside group shots over the DA15. If you take a little extra time getting your position and framing right, you can get excellent results.
09-22-2013, 11:01 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
You can go to the fisheye thread and compare images there.

Fisheye Fever Club -- Flaunt your fisheye photos!
1+

Look carefully at the photos there. A few random comments:
  • You will note that the Pentax 10-17 is prone to very pronounced purple fringing. This a characteristic of fisheyes, but the 10-17 seems to be somewhat worse.
  • A stand-out lens in the fisheye club is the Sigma 15mm (just my opinion)
  • I own the Zenitar 16/2.8 and am quite fond of the lens. It is equally fishy on FF (35mm) and APS-C, but the crop factor tends to calm the curves. I have taken some very fishy photos with the Zen on both formats. Much depends on camera angle, perspective, and choice of subjects.
  • I also own the Samyang 8/3.5. It is very wide, but the 8mm focal length makes viewfinder focus (even with split image screens) almost impossible. The general rule of thumb is to zone focus at 5' @ f/8 to provide acceptable focus from 12.5" to infinity. It is quite fishy, but in a different way than most fisheyes due to its near-stereographic projection which reduces stretching at the margins.
  • The Samyang has "A" contacts allowing all exposure modes on Pentax dSLRs. The Zenitar has the standard K-mount and is limited to M mode.
  • Both the Samyang and the Zenitar are more flare resistant than one would expect an both have excellent contrast.
  • The Zenitar is very compact. The Samyang, somewhat less so, though still not huge.
Both the Samyang and the Zenitar are very capable optics, though not so much so wide open. I have found the Zenitar to be more useful for a wider range of subjects due to its longer focal length.

Zenitar examples (both 35mm film and APS-C) HERE.

Samyang examples (not as many, but all APS-C) HERE.

And for a most unusual series of self-portraits with the Zenitar, you should definitely look at forum member Rense's "Single in September" series, all of which were taken with the Zenitar.


Steve

BTW...both my Zenitar and Samyang required adjustment to the focus ring for distance calibration. Not hard, but a pain to have to do.

Last edited by stevebrot; 09-22-2013 at 11:32 AM.
09-22-2013, 11:15 AM   #7
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Speed in a fisheye is not so important. The FL is so short that the DOF is big at any aperture unless you are very very close to your subject. The 10-17 focuses very very close, I think the Sigma has less magnification. As for speed for light gathering, again not so important because you can handhold a FE at incredibly low shutter speeds. My main reason for shooting the 10-17 is that the 17 isn't so fishy, so if I want that, I can have it. Conversely, the 10mm end is very fishy, so again, I have everything in between.
09-22-2013, 12:34 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kozlok Quote
because you can handhold a FE at incredibly low shutter speeds.
The Pentax SR helps in this regard, but I know from experience that camera motion can still degrade the image even at short focal lengths. I can expand a little to say that rotational camera motion is particularly problematic at short focal lengths and wide FOV. Even so, with SR and good technique, any lens on the OP's list should be hand-holdable at 1/8s to 1/10s.


Steve

09-22-2013, 05:17 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by chickenandavocado Quote
Hi all

So it's time I expanded my bag to include a fisheye... so far my emphasis in lense choices have always revolved around the best size vs speed tradeoff.... a big plus if it accepts filters, but understandable if fisheyes cant accept

I have nailed down the following, note AF is not important to me... neither is "A" setting:

1. zenit 16mm (not so fishy on aps-c)
2. rokinon/samyang 8mm
3. sigma 10mm
4. pentax 10-17

appreciate your comments/expereicnes and if ive missed out on any!
There's been many a thread on this. I started off with the Pentax, then got the Samyang, which I prefer.
09-22-2013, 07:29 PM   #10
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I don't know how useful filters will be, but for that purpose, the fisheyes meant for film use offer some choices. The Zenitar has a rear-mount filter. On APS-C, a 67mm filter will fit on the front, over the small lens shades. A plastic one is easier to shove on. Then you can screw a filter into that. It won't vignette on APS-C.
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