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How good is the old M35/2?
Posted By: wlachan, 05-24-2011, 01:57 AM

Well actually this is not a question. I just acquired this lens which reminds me the nice handling of good old lenses that I used to love. To satisfy my curiosity, I decided to compare it to some modern designs. The candidates include our awesome FA31 LIMITED and the big fat ugly Canon EF-S 17-55/2.8. I have divided the tests into 4 areas. To make the comparison easier, only the Canon 40D was used. Its LV at 10X allows manual focus at great precision, which is quite impossible through the viewfinder. All shots were taken on tripod with MLU and 2s timer. All with hoods but no filter. RAW were converted by LR2.7 The red dot on the thumbnails represents the focus.

To ease the boring nature of these tests, I decided to go out and shoot something real. I forgo the popular test chart, newspaper or wall tests as I reckoned these are not flat field lenses. Also, 2D targets are difficult to test properly. Hope this works for your guys. So let start.

First is bokeh, which everyone is talking (alright maybe not ). Some might not care, but always fun to compare. I did my best to nail the focus as accurate as I could, but proved to be difficult with the Pentax primes wide open, and backfocus is quite evidence with the FA31 samples. However, this should have little impact on bokeh. The full size jpegs can be downloaded at Index of /wlachan/35mmtests/bokeh.


Next is the overall sharpness at f8 which is what scenery photographers care the most.
Index of /wlachan/35mmtests/sharpness


Then the closeup shots at less than 1 metre.
Index of /wlachan/35mmtests/closeup


And finally the flare torture test. Note that the different in contrast could be due to the difference in exposures as the ambient light kept changing, and I was on full manual.
Index of /wlachan/35mmtests/flare


So this is it. I have not studied the pictures in details so I will refrain from commenting on them. You guys will be the judges, and have fun. Feel free to share your observations, even if I may not reply to every post.
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12-13-2014, 02:29 PM   #2
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Join Date: Aug 2009
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Are the files still available somewhere?
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