Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
10-25-2013, 10:14 AM   #1
Senior Member




Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 273
Spiratone Sharpshooter 400mm $25 wow

I have been informed that this lens is crap so I have edited this thread to reflect that


Last edited by rwingsfan; 01-12-2014 at 11:08 PM.
10-25-2013, 11:16 AM   #2
Veteran Member
manntax's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2012
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,972
Not to put you down - but I think this lens has got some problems inside - perhaps hazing or early fungus. It has certain softness and sort of glowing around highlights - and for f11 this isn't good. Again - don't get me wrong - many others would have said the same thing - instead they politely decided to pass over

I guess if this lens was clean and sound - the performance would have been much much better .

If you want check that - see through it against some bright light and check for any hazing, fogginess or dirt inside. I guess disassembling and cleaning it although caries some risk - would definitely benefit it.

Or.. I am terribly wrong at judging these things from the shots provided - for which if that's the case - I do apologise

--manntax
10-25-2013, 12:04 PM   #3
Senior Member




Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 273
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by manntax Quote
Again - don't get me wrong - many others would have said the same thing - instead they politely decided to pass over


--manntax

First off let me thank you for your critique. I am new to this game and I know my photos suck. I do however have a issue with the above quote. I have problems when someone says something like this as it is quite a definitive assumption on your part. If others feel the same, let them say it, but don't take it upon yourself to speak for them. With that aside I really do appreciate you point of view. I did check the back glass/plexiglass? It is somewhat fogged and easy to take out. Not really sure the best way to clean it though. I did not see any fungus, but like I said I am new to this. I just felt for handholding in a stiff wind it was relatively sharp, nothing more.
10-25-2013, 12:19 PM   #4
Site Supporter
stevebrot's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Vancouver (USA)
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 26,233
QuoteOriginally posted by manntax Quote
It has certain softness and sort of glowing around highlights - and for f11 this isn't good.
That may be the way the lens performed when new. The Spiratone 400/8 was one of several "value" options for long glass back in the day and was modestly priced.

But! Having read the OP's last comment, I would be willing to bet that the back element he mentioned is at fault. I suspect that a close inspection will reveal the marks of vigorous cleaning (many, many fine scratches). I have seen that sort of thing before and it is bad on a front element and death on the rear.


Steve

10-25-2013, 12:24 PM   #5
Senior Member




Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 273
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
That may be the way the lens performed when new. The Spiratone 400/8 was one of several "value" options for long glass back in the day and was modestly priced.

But! Having read the OP's last comment, I would be willing to bet that the back element he mentioned is at fault. I suspect that a close inspection will reveal the marks of vigorous cleaning (many, many fine scratches). I have seen that sort of thing before and it is bad on a front element and death on the rear.


Steve
Any tips on how to improve it? I looked again and the front lens appears to be fine, but the rear is "slightly" clouded. I don't want to scratch it any more.
10-25-2013, 01:13 PM   #6
Veteran Member
manntax's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2012
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,972
QuoteOriginally posted by rwingsfan Quote
I have problems when someone says something like this as it is quite a definitive assumption on your part. If others feel the same, let them say it, but don't take it upon yourself to speak for them.
Yeah I guess shouldn't have done that - still kind a understand if that was the case because you seemed so darn enthusiastic about the results and I sort of was spoiling it for you - the intention was entirely honest and sincere though

QuoteOriginally posted by rwingsfan Quote
Any tips on how to improve it? I looked again and the front lens appears to be fine, but the rear is "slightly" clouded. I don't want to scratch it any more.
WIthout any details - for example a photo of how the lens looks inside - under the bright light, it will be hard to say whether it is the reason or not - but for sure *any* cloudiness on the glass - will cause a reduction in image quality.. Also from past experiences I remember when one of my 135 lenses had this sort of softness and also bokeh looked funny - it turned that the rear glass element was flipped - so when I put it back in the other way around the results were way way better.

Not saying like this is the case with your lens - but might be an idea to think or try in case you'd decide to clean it. Try to remove that rear glass, remember the side that is on the inside (bulbous or flat for example ) - and try to clean it with mild washing liquid and water. then use some alcohol to wipe clean - or breathe. If that was the reason for softness and glow - even with this kind of basic attempt you will see the difference.

Good luck !
-manntax
10-25-2013, 01:21 PM   #7
Senior Member




Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 273
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by manntax Quote
Yeah I guess shouldn't have done that - still kind a understand if that was the case because you seemed so darn enthusiastic about the results and I sort of was spoiling it for you - the intention was entirely honest and sincere though



WIthout any details - for example a photo of how the lens looks inside - under the bright light, it will be hard to say whether it is the reason or not - but for sure *any* cloudiness on the glass - will cause a reduction in image quality.. Also from past experiences I remember when one of my 135 lenses had this sort of softness and also bokeh looked funny - it turned that the rear glass element was flipped - so when I put it back in the other way around the results were way way better.

Not saying like this is the case with your lens - but might be an idea to think or try in case you'd decide to clean it. Try to remove that rear glass, remember the side that is on the inside (bulbous or flat for example ) - and try to clean it with mild washing liquid and water. then use some alcohol to wipe clean - or breathe. If that was the reason for softness and glow - even with this kind of basic attempt you will see the difference.

Good luck !
-manntax

Heh no problem. I know the intent was good, just one of those pet peeves of mine. I was bit thrilled by the general sharpness after cropping though. I have had problems with much nicer lenses when it comes to sharp focus. I guess I was surprised that my horrible 57 year old eyes could get it this good
10-25-2013, 01:26 PM   #8
Veteran Member
manntax's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2012
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,972
QuoteOriginally posted by rwingsfan Quote
Heh no problem. I know the intent was good, just one of those pet peeves of mine. I was bit thrilled by the general sharpness after cropping though. I have had problems with much nicer lenses when it comes to sharp focus. I guess I was surprised that my horrible 57 year old eyes could get it this good
Well - I am all for old weird lenses ( have myself a pail of them ) - but I simple knew that this one can do better - and no surprises there after you've mention that rear element. I bet when you clean it this lens will deliver !! --manntax

10-25-2013, 01:43 PM   #9
Senior Member




Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 273
Original Poster
well I took the rear element apart, easy as pie, but bad news I am afraid. The very last glass has what almost looks like fingerprints along with some other cloudy area. Anyway the very middle is clear, but the sides has areas that do not seem to clean up. Does not look like fine scratches, but more like fingerprints, guess it's still worth the $25 I gave for it
10-25-2013, 02:06 PM   #10
Senior Member




Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 273
Original Poster
Ok I cleaned everything up best I could. It is very windy today making hand holding a challenge. Do you note any change? I could not capture the same things as the light is different. The tree is a crop from about 70 feet I suppose and the man walking is a half block across our park. Yeah I know they suck, but best I could do at the time

Last edited by rwingsfan; 01-12-2014 at 11:08 PM.
10-25-2013, 02:08 PM   #11
Senior Member




Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 273
Original Poster
Another note. The first pictures *may* have been shot wide open as this time I could clearly see when stopping down with the o-c ring
10-25-2013, 02:09 PM   #12
Veteran Member
manntax's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2012
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,972
QuoteOriginally posted by rwingsfan Quote
well I took the rear element apart, easy as pie, but bad news I am afraid. The very last glass has what almost looks like fingerprints along with some other cloudy area. Anyway the very middle is clear, but the sides has areas that do not seem to clean up. Does not look like fine scratches, but more like fingerprints, guess it's still worth the $25 I gave for it
Sure it is - as long as you still get a way to access and clean these rear elements - it might even become a more expensive lens. I guess that's a good job for those winter evenings coming up soon.. For cleaning glass I recommend lighter fluid and some soft tissue - with some practice you can manage to clean it nicely without leaving much trace . Please post some photos taken with it after you manage to clean. Also try to flip the very rear element and take shot before and after - that can make A LOT of difference.

Good luck!
10-25-2013, 02:51 PM   #13
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Perrineville, NJ
Posts: 1,364
It helps to shine a flashlight through a lens, when inspecting the internals. This works better than holding it up to the light because you can kind of move the flashlight around, concentrating the light at a certain angle, and allowing you to see portions of the glass elements against a dark background. Otherwise if you just hold it up to a light you will just see a flood of light and everything looks bright, but you can't see the haze or fungus well. Maybe you did this already.

You might also post some pictures of the rear element where you mentioned seeing some "fingerprints". This could be from lens elements separating where they are usually cemented (using a clear substance) together.

Sorry, I have to agree the lens seems to be rather lacking in contrast. I'm only saying this because the images could be better, either by cleaning the elements, or perhaps a better lens. I don't have this lens so I don't know its potential. Cheers!
10-25-2013, 02:58 PM   #14
Senior Member




Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 273
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Tanzer Quote
Sorry, I have to agree the lens seems to be rather lacking in contrast. I'm only saying this because the images could be better, either by cleaning the elements, or perhaps a better lens. I don't have this lens so I don't know its potential. Cheers!

Have to remember its not the camera, but the dummy holding it Tomorrow I am going to take it apart again and I'll try to photo what the area is. Too bad as the rest is clear as a bell. Regardless this newbie will still have fun with it.
10-25-2013, 03:01 PM   #15
Veteran Member
manntax's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2012
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,972
QuoteOriginally posted by rwingsfan Quote
Ok I cleaned everything up best I could. It is very windy today making hand holding a challenge. Do you note any change? I could not capture the same things as the light is different. The tree is a crop from about 70 feet I suppose and the man walking is a half block across our park. Yeah I know they suck, but best I could do at the time
To me especially bark shot looks better - quite good actually - the man it is hard to say if lens was focused properly - rather not I guess - or shaken a bit. Anyway I see a bit of improvement and I think also bokeh looks much more nicer - perhaps thanks to the lens being fully opened..

I would try to approach it again with proper solvent (alcohol ) and plenty of tissue (never reuse it for example - wiped once - then throw ). For $25 lens doesn't look bad at all - still if you can improve anything by cleaning it it's gonna be worth it imho.

cheers
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
k-mount, pentax lens, slr lens
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Spiratone Sharpshooter 400mm f6.3 ChopperCharles Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 14 03-26-2016 03:29 PM
Steve Jobs's last words: 'Oh wow. Oh wow. Oh wow' jogiba General Talk 3 02-24-2012 11:28 AM
K-5... Wow wow wow wow wow!! Hugely impressive. 65535 Pentax K-5 85 11-08-2010 08:45 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:05 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top