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10-27-2008, 05:18 AM   #1
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Lensbaby Alternative?

Has anyone come up with an alternative to a Lensbaby? I love that selective soft focus ti produces(i guess that's why I love my 50 1.4) I'm not sure if I would use it all that much besides playing around so I can't justify the cost. So I was wondering if anyone has tried anything similar and maybe cheaper?

Any ideas are really appreciated.
Thanks so much in advance!

Phil
Philip Carl Photography : NYC Photographer : Staten Island Photographer

10-27-2008, 01:42 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by pcfranchina Quote
Has anyone come up with an alternative to a Lensbaby? I love that selective soft focus ti produces(i guess that's why I love my 50 1.4) I'm not sure if I would use it all that much besides playing around so I can't justify the cost. So I was wondering if anyone has tried anything similar and maybe cheaper?
The original Lensbaby is still available for under $100, the version 2 for only $150. I rather doubt you'll find anything comparable for less.
10-27-2008, 06:49 PM   #3
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Lens Baby is actually clearing out the Original & 2.0 for new models. You can buy the 2.0 for about $80 new (old price was 149). Original is even less. Have to look around to find them.

I have always been a "sharp" shooter. Love the 31, 77, and A*200 macro.
Didn't think I would love the Baby so much. Was very wrong. Check out the Lens Baby thread in slr lenses!

They allow you to work with every part of a lens. You change aperture disks. These can be perfect circles for incredible bokeh. You can make your own aperture discs for rougher bokeh, or special effects. You can change the size of the sweet spot by varying aperture size. You can bend lens to the max for elongated blur - surrealistic effect. There are wide & tele attachments to change the focal length. So many experiments.
Lens Baby makes retailers offer a 30 day return if they aren't your cup of tea. Whats to lose? They are addictive. Never sold a more addictive lens in all my years of photo sales. Only thing close is fisheye lenses, and digital photography itself.

Thanks
barondla

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10-27-2008, 08:30 PM   #4
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Build a Tilt-Shift Camera Lens for Peanuts | CreativePro.com

10-28-2008, 07:07 AM   #5
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I even broke out the Cokin Filters from my old film SLR bag and went through there catalog..... Not sure if anyone even still uses that stuff.
10-28-2008, 08:11 AM   #6
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You can always fake it in PP....




....or you can use a Photoshop plug-in like Focal Point to get a similar effect.
05-25-2012, 11:26 PM   #7
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Well, I was excited at first, especially with the low introductory price. But then I looked at your homepage, at the sample photos. Dare I say this? They all look pretty crappy, with effects I can achieve with bad filters and sloppy PP. And such really awful resolution! Arghh!

I think the point of a LensBaby-type rig is that at least SOME part of the image look fairly sharp. I produce something like this by mounting a magnifier at an angle in front of a camera lens, using mounting brackets and clamps to hold the magnifier in place. I get controllable distortion and a zone of clarity wherever I want in the image. Frankly, putting that optic on a 1.1mpx P&S produces better images than I see on your homepage.

Maybe you've just posted low-res images to speed loading time. Maybe your Lynny actually produces better results. But I can't tell that from what I see. Good luck.
05-29-2012, 03:16 AM   #8
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When I saw "lens baby alternative" in the subject line I thought WOW somebody has found a proper tilt-shift arrangment for the Pentax system, not knowing it was an old thread.

Imagine my disappointment...



Well I admit it sounded "interesting" on the Kickstarter page ..... until I scrolled down and saw the sample photos.



My very first cellphone camera (640 x 480) with an appalingly small sensor and lens took better quality base images.
Then you have attachments to make the lens defects, CA etc (which in general we can't stand) look much much worse. Sorry, these results don't look very pleasing at all to me.

The idea with the selective focus is that there is actually 1 sharply focussed point on the image that the viewers eye is drawn to first. (The viewer sees the sharpest, brightest or biggest item in the frame first). With your samples I just don't know where to look - away from the screen.. mostly.


Sorry to be brutal , it's just my opinion.
I would say that Rio Rico (above) would have to be one of the most adventurous characters here when it comes to unusual lenses. If he is not willing to try it, I think you could count out most people here.

Still, there appear to be 12 willing backers at the moment so good luck to you and especially good luck with your other ambitions in professional photography.

05-29-2012, 03:35 AM   #9
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I use Pentacon Six lenses with tilt adapter on pentax slr/dslr.
Shift option is nikkor 28/3.5 non-ai, or pentax K28/3.5, or olympus 35/2.8 shift with leitax mount.

There is more option with a nex body - with a tilt adapter, any pentax lens can be tilt. Combine with K28/3.5 shift, you have tilt and shift.
Tilt application is not about faking an image to look as tilt. It's about focus plan/dof control.

Here pentax M 50/1.7 at f1.7:


Another extreme sample - pentax A50/1.2 at f1.2, iso 6400, 1/80s - virtually in the dark:
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