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12-23-2017, 04:33 AM - 1 Like   #1
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The Problem with Modern Optics

It's a relief - I found this place.

http://yannickkhong.com/blog/2016/2/23/the-problem-with-modern-optics

and then

The Lens Intention Diagram ? YANNICK KHONG

Now I know my love for the M50/1.7 K28/3.5 etc etc etc. and understand, I believe, why.

I pixel-peeped and have bought the other new lens after the other and COULD see the pixels - I wanted to be in line.
Prints perfectly sharp etc .... however I had lost something - for sure. Hard to explain.

There are many words lost on how I could not explain it .

But let us call it RENDERING!!! (You might have a better world for it?) The self-explained NATURALISM.
With the multi-glas digital lenses there are something lost.

CD vs vinyl?

I'm happy I kept those most beloved lenses that I started to buy in the beginning of the seventies.


Last edited by Gutta Perka; 12-23-2017 at 05:57 AM.
12-23-2017, 05:05 AM - 2 Likes   #2
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psychic moment ***I feel a video with a loudmouth bald obese person coming to this thread soon***
12-23-2017, 05:31 AM   #3
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There is no magic, or at least machine magic..
Most predigital lens were constantly tested and measured by the manufacturers chief engineer/designer of the optical formula of X lens, and usually there was almost none tolerance to variations to that formula..Nowdays, robots correct optical flaws but there is hardly any human intervention at the process. But robots are not perfect, so they are programmed to pass or fail within "acceptable tolerances" so some lens might be produced not as good as we expect..Reason to now have microaf adjustment and the I have a bad copy of this lens statement..
Also vintage lens were mostly made out of ground glass, now a lot of elements are resin plastic, which is great to combat fungus and moisture but kind of lose some contrast..
The SMC M 50 1.7 is a great example of the second link you posted..You lose some corner sharpness, but I still do not find any other lens with that kind of what you might call 3D pop..Indeed it is a masterpiece of lens..
12-23-2017, 05:53 AM - 2 Likes   #4
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Old, already discussed to death and mostly proven wrong.

First link doesn't exist, BTW.

12-23-2017, 05:58 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by LensBeginner Quote
Old, already discussed to death and mostly proven wrong.

First link doesn't exist, BTW.
Sorry - thanks - just fixed!

---------- Post added 12-23-17 at 02:18 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by LensBeginner Quote
Old, already discussed to death and mostly proven wrong.

......
Direct me!

Pixel-peepers dreams are now manufactured - they can not sell if not every pixel is there - however......however....

When I honestly compare some of my new digital-super-hot-hot-$$$-lenses to some of the older ones I often see the loss in body, rendering and richness.
That's because I know how some of my old keepers can perform. I have lived together with them for a long time.

However, one must defend ones investments, and a 2000$ lens can not in any aspect be worse than an old 100$ lens.

However...
...it's also a matter of taste and believe.
12-23-2017, 06:24 AM   #6
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No need to get esoteric or lyrical about it. But yes, there is something to be said for simplicity in optical design, or an as-complex-as-necessary-but-as-simple-as-possible approach. Which does not just refer to excessive element count but also overuse of speciality glass or non-glass elements. And yes, what often benefits from these principles are optical qualities like microcontrast, colour saturation, flare resistance (much to do with coatings, too), depth rendering, "richness" of bokeh, etc.

However, as far as I can tell, Pentax designers remain committed to these qualities to this day, while cautiously integrating modern ideas into their designs. They certainly have resisted the temptation to go completely the Sigma "Art" Series way, which would be a surefire way of compromising those qualities, IMO. Ultimately, what kind of lenses we will get in the future - lenses for measurebaters or photographers - will depend on the demand we create and on our choices as consumers, I guess.
12-23-2017, 06:28 AM - 1 Like   #7
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The biggest problem with top end optical design is that it leads to really big, expensive lenses. Making blanket statements about the lenses though is not possible. Some are sharp but don't have great out of focus rendering, others are special in many different ways.
12-23-2017, 06:28 AM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Gutta Perka Quote
Direct me!
Whats Your take - PentaxForums.com

New glass - old glass. Which lenses should Pentax revisit? - Page 2 - PentaxForums.com

Lens element count and the end of 3D pop - PentaxForums.com

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/10-pentax-slr-lens-discussion/315566-sim...gn-better.html

and I believe many more.

As far as old lenses are concerned, I'm a fan so no issues on my part ;-)

12-23-2017, 06:40 AM   #9
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Nostalgia's not what it used to be! 😜

You're right, it's all a matter of perception. I have numerous old lenses (back to 1950s Takumars), including M and A50/1.7s, K50/1.2 and A50/1.4, and not one of them generates the resolution, pop and rendering of the 20-40 Limited, which is why I hardly ever use them. I use the A50/1.4 if I need max light for video to keep the ISO down, but that's pretty much it.
12-23-2017, 06:44 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Madaboutpix Quote
They certainly have resisted the temptation to go completely the Sigma "Art" Series way, which would be a surefire way of compromising those qualities, IMO. Ultimately, what kind of lenses we will get in the future - lenses for measurebaters or photographers - will depend on the demand we create and on our choices as consumers, I guess.
I feel like I need to defend Sigma Art lens I believe that people sometimes totally ignore the part of name Art while judging that line. I own Sigma 35mm Art, and sometimes I get images I believe I would not get with any other lens. Unfortunately I get amazing results still mostly by accident, not by skills with that lens. I was the moment when I decided to sell it, but no. Difficult lens, but truly artistic.
12-23-2017, 06:57 AM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by D1N0 Quote
***I feel a video with a loudmouth bald obese person coming to this thread soon***
At least that rules me out then, having a full head hair means I've only got one two out of three.
12-23-2017, 06:58 AM   #12
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Taste, taste, taste - opinion, opinion, opinion.

Let's agree that some feel offended others agree. So far there is no COMPLETE science in this matter.

Also - The Holy Trinity - the three FF Limiteds - are not made for digital and "just" FA:s.

I have a feeling that we really just have started to see - but do not really understand the whole story.

Alea iacta est!
12-23-2017, 07:05 AM - 1 Like   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
others are special in many different ways
You must mean my "Ladies", who in themselves to me... can be a real handful of "harem management" at times.
12-23-2017, 07:09 AM - 2 Likes   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Gutta Perka Quote
I have a feeling that we really just have started to see - but do not really understand the whole story.
I believe that I've played long enough with old glass to come into conclusion that not all old glass is good, there are some issues which may be drawback or advantage, depends on what the photographer wants to achieve. Like poor coating, for example. Or soft corners.
As a result of LBA, which is in control now , I keep only few manual lenses, and already have a clue why I keep each of them. It's mostly portrait lenses. They are not so cruel to skin like modern glass. I like the combination of softness and sharpness of vintage glass. Works great to shoot older people. Plus, some of them produce great old looking vintage b&w images. Of course, it's always photoshop, but it's not the same, imo.
12-23-2017, 07:30 AM   #15
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Standing out in a crowded marketplace is always difficult, and lenses that have character can make a difference there - and as has been said, I think Pentax still builds in character as part of the package. You might not want it of journalism or wildlife or product photography, and sometimes it's just a question of 'taste' as Pentax used to call it - they have generally gone for smooth transitions rather than contrast (back in the day, Nikon lenses had a reputation for sharpness that was really just about being more contrasty). Then, of course there are the FA ltds with designed in 'imperfections' that give amazing rendering and 3-D pop. Yes - there's so much more to lens design than test charts - but we live in an age where what can't be measured doesn't matter, so we get what we get. Different times had different priorities, so it's lucky we can still scanange those rich rescuces.
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