Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
12-25-2013, 08:46 PM   #1
Veteran Member
DavidSKAF3's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Tompkins County, NY
Photos: Albums
Posts: 542
The Bokeh Champs

Here's another question which will likely result in a broad mix of replies.

What would you say are either the top, or perhaps how would you say, "most well-regarded" lenses for Bokeh?

Is a more expensive lens generally expected to have more appealing Bokeh?

Are there any surprising cheap lenses, Bokeh-wise?

Thanks to all!

12-25-2013, 09:02 PM   #2
Site Supporter
rbefly's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Denver, Colorado
Photos: Albums
Posts: 2,030
Now We're Narrowing It down!

Hello David,
Now you've narrowed the qualifications down to an area that I can relate to, although you'll still get lots of varying replies. Here's mine;
Vivitar Series 1 90mm f/2.5 VMC Macro. aka "The Bokina".
Bokeh to die for. Google it and see for yourself.
JMO, YMMV,
Ron
12-25-2013, 09:17 PM   #3
Pentaxian
jeffshaddix's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Posts: 1,371
Volna-9 50/2.8 macro - gaussian background bokeh that's quite rare, and not too expensive, though harder to use (M42).
12-25-2013, 09:49 PM   #4
Veteran Member
DavidSKAF3's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Tompkins County, NY
Photos: Albums
Posts: 542
Original Poster
Fascinating! I guess these unique lenses can turn up just about anywhere?

12-25-2013, 09:56 PM   #5
Veteran Member
sterretje's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Roodepoort, South Africa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,534
I can't say if it's the champ but I love the bokeh results of the Vivitar 55/2.8 macro.
12-25-2013, 10:08 PM   #6
Veteran Member
DavidSKAF3's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Tompkins County, NY
Photos: Albums
Posts: 542
Original Poster
A pattern of "champs" or maybe even one specific champ might emerge from the various replies. I expect it's a matter of taste by and large.

Vivitar has come up twice.

Interestingly, and I could not say how or why, but I've always had the impression that Vivitar makes cheap, second-rate camera accessories and whatnot. And so I ignore Vivitar items when I am scrolling through lists of lenses for sale. And I do the same with Promaster and Quantaray. And both Sears and JC Penny, too!

Hmmm. Guess there is something big I don't know here?

Last edited by DavidSKAF3; 12-26-2013 at 06:06 AM.
12-25-2013, 10:15 PM   #7
Pentaxian
Miguel's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Near Seattle
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,726
QuoteOriginally posted by davids8560 Quote
A pattern of "champs" or maybe even one specific champ might emerge from the various replies. I expect it's a matter of taste by and large.

Vivitar has come up twice.

Interestingly, and I could not say how or why, but I've always had the impression that Vivitar makes cheap, second-rate camera accessories and whatnot. And I ignore Vivitar items. And I do the same with Promaster and Quantary and Sears and JC Penny, too!

Hmmm. Guess there is something big I don't know here...
Vivitar is cheapo now, buuuut then the brand was quite a game changer in the photo biz. Do some online homework to learn more.

M
12-25-2013, 10:27 PM   #8
Veteran Member
scratchpaddy's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 2,360
Pretty sure most of the replies are going to be listing old lenses, with the exception of some Limiteds.

My own favorite is the Helios 40 (85mm f/1.5), which is unfortunately not cheap anymore. It's technically a pretty awful lens at wide apertures, but the bokeh has some major swirl to it.

My second favorite is the FA 50 f/1.4. It's so wonderfully smooth at f/2. I've never handled the earliest 8-element Takumar version of this lens, but I've read that it's even better. I do have the 50 f/1.2, though, and I actually like the bokeh of the f/1.4's better.

12-25-2013, 10:40 PM   #9
Veteran Member
scratchpaddy's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 2,360
Oh, ask @pinholecam about his Takumar 100 f/2. None of us will ever get hold of that lens, but we can dream...

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/122-lens-clubs/31601-takumar-club-post242...ml#post2428634
12-25-2013, 11:21 PM   #10
Site Supporter
stevebrot's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Vancouver (USA)
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 27,457
QuoteOriginally posted by davids8560 Quote
Are there any surprising cheap lenses, Bokeh-wise?
Helios 44 (choose your version) 58/2

Generally inexpensive. If the price hurts, you are paying too much. I think I paid $15 USD for my Helios 44M.

A few notes about variants:
  • All share the same optical formula, derived directly from the pre-WWII Zeiss Biotar
  • Helios 44-n are all screw mount with pre-set apertures, some early version are M39 rather than M42, high blade count with circular aperture
  • Helios 44M and Helios 44M-n All M42 with automatic aperture. All but 44M require minor surgery to convert to manual aperture to allow for adapted use.
  • Helios 44K-4 K-mount (sole exception to the dirt cheap rule due to demand)
  • Many (most?) show "swirly" bokeh
One of my favs from my copy:




Steve
12-25-2013, 11:27 PM   #11
Site Supporter
stevebrot's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Vancouver (USA)
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 27,457
QuoteOriginally posted by scratchpaddy Quote
My own favorite is the Helios 40 (85mm f/1.5), which is unfortunately not cheap anymore.
Well, if you are going to mention the Helios 40, it is good to throw in the Jupiter-9 85/2. It too used to be fairly cheap, but demand has driven prices up, though much less than the Helios 40.

My personal fav from my copy:




Steve
12-26-2013, 12:26 AM   #12
Veteran Member
DavidSKAF3's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Tompkins County, NY
Photos: Albums
Posts: 542
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Well, if you are going to mention the Helios 40, it is good to throw in the Jupiter-9 85/2. It too used to be fairly cheap, but demand has driven prices up, though much less than the Helios 40.

My personal fav from my copy:




Steve
Thanks for that thorough write-up about Helios lenses.

Hope this isn't a silly question, but are the samples originally film exposures?

Last edited by DavidSKAF3; 12-26-2013 at 06:10 AM.
12-26-2013, 12:28 AM   #13
Veteran Member
Gareth's Avatar

Join Date: May 2010
Location: South Wales, UK
Posts: 730
I've owned nearly all the lenses mentioned!

Another great bokeh lens is the Super Takumar 55mm f1.8
A few I've taken with it:
Flickr Search: Pentax 55mm m42

Also, the Helios is a great lens but at the wrong angle can give swirl bokeh which is cool but can be extreme and not pleasent
Again 2 examples from my images taken with it, one showing normal bokeh, the other is swirl:
Flickr Search: Helios
12-26-2013, 12:50 AM   #14
Pentaxian
Heie's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 960
I'd say the DA* 55 f/1.4 and the FA 77 f/1.8 are the two 'Bokeh Champs' of the current Pentax line-up. For zooms it would be the DA* 60-250 f/4 in my opinion (I never liked the DA* 50-135, but many will claim that one for the zoom title).

-Heie
12-26-2013, 01:26 AM   #15
Pentaxian
Miguel's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Near Seattle
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,726
QuoteOriginally posted by davids8560 Quote
Is a more expensive lens generally expected to have more appealing Bokeh?
Hate to give squishy answers, but "sometimes" seems about right here. As with the excellent examples above, I favor the bokeh of older lenses. But some can be pricey.
The Helios is a bargain, and I kinda regret selling mine years ago. Fortunately they are around in good condition. Here's a shot from mine.

Tulips



My favorite bokeh lens is the Mamiya/Sekor 60mm f2.8 preset M42. (Tomioka is the same thing.) These are hard to find. When I was younger a cranky guy who owned an amazing old-style camera repair place that seemed like it was co-occupied by Dr. Emmett Brown, dug this one up for me from some mysterious cavern. These are from the *DS years ago.

Purple Heather



Dahlia



Finally, to the opposite cost spectrum, the Voigtlander SL 125mm is quite special all the way around.

Purple Violet



M
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!
bokeh, k-mount, lenses, pentax lens, slr lens
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Did the Zeiss Lens the Russians copied have a Swirly Bokeh? geekette Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 4 04-18-2012 11:46 PM
Bruins stanley cup champs gokenin General Talk 28 06-18-2011 10:12 PM
Misc 100mm f/2.8 Macro WR Bokeh Bokeh Bokeh! iocchelli Post Your Photos! 3 03-20-2011 02:22 AM
Bokina versus Bokeh Monster, which bokeh you prefer? Pentaxor Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 3 04-21-2010 01:50 AM
RS-X Windsurfing world champs mingdie Post Your Photos! 4 01-12-2008 11:53 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:10 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.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