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06-08-2008, 04:35 PM   #211
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Very nice shot, Scott. Bokeh is just wonderful there.

06-08-2008, 04:41 PM   #212
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QuoteOriginally posted by thePiRaTE!! Quote
The 125? Very nice. I've become a bokeh convert. I used to read MTF data and practically ignore user images when researching lenses as photographer quality and PP skew the field, but there are some qualities you just can't fix... magic bokeh being primary among them to me.

That spider is hideous though (pics fine ) ... one good thing about living in Canada is the bugs never get big enough to alarm me, they freeze to death long before that as winter rolls around. Except for June bugs... but they're rare in my parts.
You spoke my mind. Bokeh really opens up the realm of SLR photography. It is something to be appreciated by only a few.

Having soft images is a sin ... the comment I have been getting these days in other fora where I post images with bokeh

p.s. the spider is in fact quite small. I was very very close to it You can see the tiny wild flower it was resting upon.
06-19-2008, 03:18 PM   #213
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VLBA (Voigtlander 180 LBA post)

I had some time to put the Voigtlander 180/4.0 through its paces last evening.

For me, this lens is all about high-resolution telephoto, so down to business:


User Photo Gallery - Machines and Vehicles

This is a somewhat tight crop -- I'm amazed by what you can get away with with a high-res sensor, a good lens, and shake reduction.

Handling:

-- Very compact! Without the hood, only a bit bigger than a Pentax M135/3.5 and equally discreet.

-- Focus is a little stiffer than the M135/3.5; but not objectionably stiff as reported by others.

-- Lens hood is a thing of beauty and not so large that it's difficult to carry. Nonetheless, I intend to keep the collectible bits in the box and use a collapsible rubber hood and a generic lens cap (this works very well with the VL125)

Focus issues and sharpness:

-- Like the VL125, optimum focus for distant objects is just a hair before the infinity stop; however, once the focus is dialed in the lens is sharp at its widest setting, with no obvious increase in sharpness in the plane of focus when stopped down:

f/6.7, 1000x1000 pixel crop

link to 100% crop
User Photo Gallery - Miscellaneous

Another fun Voigtlander lens.

At first I thought that a call from the credit card company asking about lens purchases was the sign of LBA. Now I realize that the true sign of LBA is when the credit card company stops calling!

Last edited by troyz; 07-15-2008 at 06:15 PM. Reason: gallery cleanup
06-22-2008, 02:33 PM   #214
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Fuchsia

From my wife's hanging baskets - using the VL 125...


Cheers


Last edited by tlfaust; 06-22-2008 at 05:42 PM. Reason: healing !!!
06-22-2008, 02:57 PM   #215
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QuoteOriginally posted by tlfaust Quote
From my wife's hanging baskets - using the VL 125...


Cheers
Two words: Sensor Cleaning!
06-22-2008, 05:46 PM   #216
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> Two words: Sensor Cleaning!

Wow - no kidding! Thanks very much... this led to two things...
Cleaning the !#$%^&& sensor -and- adding a healing touch to the the photo.
Thanks again for the CC !
Regards
06-23-2008, 05:07 AM   #217
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Never mind the sensor dust, but look at the creamy bokeh and the sharpness of the in focus areas. Thats a fine lens!

06-23-2008, 05:02 PM   #218
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@ Troyz - I'd be curious to see the full image you're cropping from, I feel you might be able to get a bit sharper yet after finding infinity with the 180 - its very sharp.

@ tlfaust - vibrant color there, woah! Hard to beat the VL125 for bokeh too.

@ everybody - Nokton @ f1.4. It is officially my favorite lens.

06-23-2008, 07:38 PM   #219
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Thanks

QuoteOriginally posted by selar Quote
Never mind the sensor dust, but look at the creamy bokeh and the sharpness of the in focus areas. Thats a fine lens!
QuoteOriginally posted by thePiRaTE!! Quote

@ tlfaust - vibrant color there, woah! Hard to beat the VL125 for bokeh too.
Kelly and Selar - thank you for the comments - I really love this lens

QuoteOriginally posted by thePiRaTE!! Quote
@ everybody - Nokton @ f1.4. It is officially my favorite lens.
Kelly - You had mentioned awhile back that you were going to let the Zeiss Planar, the Nokton and the 31LTD (?) fight it out for a spot in your bag. Can I assume the Nokton came out on top?

Regards
06-23-2008, 11:45 PM   #220
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QuoteOriginally posted by tlfaust Quote
...
Kelly - You had mentioned awhile back that you were going to let the Zeiss Planar, the Nokton and the 31LTD (?) fight it out for a spot in your bag. Can I assume the Nokton came out on top?

Regards

Well, thats a whole story now... For a while, I was certain a lenses ability to focus more closely gave me more interesting possibilities with it. The Makro Planar does 1:2, while the Nokton only 1:5.75. I figured it was a no brainer the Makro would take my 50 spot (excepting the price). Close-focus does increase options, but something I learned from the 58mm Nokton was that bokeh is something hard to measure, is subjective in its desirability regardless of any MTF scoring or close-focus ability, and speed gives one more options in this regard. Dial-a-bokeh style.

I had ordered the 50/2 Makro Planar in ZK and waited with typical enthusiasm. The wrong lens was shipped to the shop, the 50/2 Planar in M came. The irony is that in waiting for the Makro to come in, I was putting the Nokton through its paces, to really see what it could do and had a total opinion shift on it. I knew it was sharp stopped down. I knew it had nice bokeh, but I didn't realise that at f1.4-2.0 at closer to its minimum focus distance, the in-focus area took on a 'glow'. It diffuses its subject wide open and single handedly gave me a couple shots I am very thankful to have captured. I didn't bother to reorder the Makro Planar. I knew I had my 50. Furthermore, I also realised sharpness didn't really matter (unless you rely on it specifically to get the point of an image across) note my shot above - soft, but does it matter?

What I did do was order the 58 a big brother, the Planar T*85/1.4. My sweet spot drifted from close-focus ability to speed in the blink of a shutter. I hear the Planar 85 'suffers' from a diffusion of sharpness at close ranges while being wide open as well - sounded too good to be true, another lens with magik built in? I hope so, it supposed to arrive this week

The 31 meanwhile is a permanent member of the bag. To me, this lens is the sweet spot of field of view and detail retention for wider scenes and infinity shots, very reliable and versatile lens. Perhaps my best 'tool'.
06-24-2008, 12:00 AM   #221
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Went out to shoot some macros w/ the VL125 over the weekend, pity it's raining for most of the day Ended up w/ two rain drop shots here (sorry for the sig tag, should be 2008 instead of 2006 ...):



06-24-2008, 01:18 AM   #222
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Ah Frank you finally got one huh, congratulations! Make sure you try it out as a tele too, its great for everything in fact I hardly ever do macro with mine but its still one of my most used lenses Good shots they do pop, the frist one more so for me maybe its the blue background
06-24-2008, 01:25 AM   #223
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Thanks I'll definitely try some mid to tele shots w/ it when time comes.
06-24-2008, 10:23 PM   #224
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QuoteOriginally posted by thePiRaTE!! Quote
@ Troyz - I'd be curious to see the full image you're cropping from, I feel you might be able to get a bit sharper yet after finding infinity with the 180 - its very sharp.

@ tlfaust - vibrant color there, woah! Hard to beat the VL125 for bokeh too.

@ everybody - Nokton @ f1.4. It is officially my favorite lens.

I really like how the background recedes from the subject in this one. . .

About the distance test: I don't think I should attach a full-res uncompressed image (for aesthetic and practical reasons);
however here's a link to a 50% scaled JPEG
User Photo Gallery - Miscellaneous

and here are two cropped 200%-scaled uncompressed PNGs
User Photo Gallery - Miscellaneous

User Photo Gallery - Miscellaneous

I suspect lack of apparent sharpness is due to diffuse shadows and lack of subject contrast rather than focus error.
In the second crop, the edge of the dormer in the lower right corner is quite sharp; the edges of shadows cast on the dormer less so.

The crops are from TIFF images produced by Pentax Photo Lab (default settings). DNG->TIFF conversion in dcraw (-v -T -w -b 0.7)
produced an image that was slightly sharper in places but had a bit more color aliasing.
06-25-2008, 12:01 AM   #225
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Yeah, you're right Troy - the full image looks good.

Thanks for the comment as well

While I'm thinking of Voigtlanders, I keep wondering what they have up thier sleeve for us next. They made a limited edition 35mm f1.0 a while ago for rangefinders. That would be nice.
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