Lens Reviews

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Christopher Dack  |  Sep 23, 2011  |  First Published: Aug 01, 2011  |  2 comments

Every lens maker offers standard types of lenses: wide angle, normal, and telephoto zooms plus several primes in popular focal lengths. Although highly useful, these lenses alone do not represent the breadth of offerings available. Hidden away within the lineups of many lens makers are specialty models which, even if they aren’t suitable for one’s purposes at any given time, are fascinating not only for their unique qualities but also because they might someday be the perfect tool for a specific shooting situation.

Dan Havlik  |  May 03, 2019  |  0 comments

What's the ultimate lens for street photography? What's the worst lens? Could the 24-70mm F/2.8 be both good and bad for shooting street? All these questions (and more) are answered in the below video from photographer Pierre T. Lambert.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 20, 2019  |  0 comments

Laowa’s newly introduced 100mm macro lens offers 2:1 reproduction ratio and a fast f/2.8 aperture. The specifications for this manual focus lens are impressive—but does it deliver, and does it deserve its $449 price tag? We put a sample (in Nikon mount) through the paces and made a couple interesting discoveries.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 19, 2014  |  0 comments

If a visitor from another planet arrived on Earth and asked to see the perfect specimen of what a digital camera and lens should look like, this combination might be the best choice. In terms of design and construction, fit and feel, the Leica M with 50mm APO Summicron is nearly perfect.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 25, 2014  |  0 comments

Beauty is as beauty does. A Leica M with a 50mm APO Summicron attached is the iconic archetype of modern digital cameras with retro design. Using it is a prodigious experience comparable to, let’s say, playing a concert Steinway grand piano, or maybe setting the hands on a Patek Philippe timepiece. I’m only guessing here, ‘cause I’ve done neither. But I did use a Leica M and 50mm APO Summicron for a week. Did they perform? Read on…

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 10, 2016  |  0 comments

The big news about the Leica M-D (Typ 262) is what it doesn’t have. It does not have autofocus. It does not provide through-the-lens viewing. And it’s not compatible with any zoom lens. 

Joe Farace  |  Dec 01, 2009  |  0 comments

In my heart I know that few readers can afford these kinds of expensive lenses, but there are always those who can and for the rest of us, it’s something to dream about.

Roger W. Hicks  |  Oct 01, 2005  |  0 comments

What do you want from a 75mm f/2 lens? Whatever it is, the new APO-Summicron-M Aspheric almost certainly delivers it--except, it must be said, low cost. Perfection, or as close as modern lens design can come to it, doesn't come cheap.

For reportage, it is superb: fast, compact, and convenient. Of course, you don't normally need or expect ultimate...

Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz  |  Nov 01, 2008  |  0 comments

If you own and use an M-series Leica, a Zeiss Ikon, or a bayonet-mount Voigtländer Bessa, Leica’s 16-18-21mm Tri-Elmar is so staggeringly desirable that it is almost easier to list the reasons for not buying one than to list its advantages—though these are easy enough to list, too. It is compact, sweet handling, sharp, contrasty, rangefinder-coupled, unbelievably convenient, and...

Joe Farace  |  Mar 14, 2017  |  0 comments

The late Mr. Newton was certainly onto something. I believe the overwhelming desire of most portrait photographers is to please the client, with seduction, amusement, and entertainment far from their minds. Let me submit this idea: shoot what the client says they want and then shoot something challenging their assumptions. Most wedding clients tend to be traditional but even introducing black and white or infrared images can increase sales and show clients you’re thinking outside the veil.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 27, 2019  |  0 comments

In the late 1980s Canon introduced a 135mm f/2.8 autofocus lens that featured selectable softfocus. In addition to delivering dreamy out-of-focus images on demand, it’s also tack-sharp and extrapolates up to the equivalent of a 216mm f/2.8 when used on a crop-frame Canon.

Joe Farace  |  Dec 03, 2014  |  0 comments

Tamron is a pioneer in all-in-one, do-everything lenses. Their new 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di PZD lens is designed for Canon, Nikon and Sony shooters and I tested the Canon EF version using an EOS 5D Mark I and an EOS 50D, which changes the lens’ angle-of-view to that of a 45-480mm lens.

George Schaub  |  Aug 15, 2014  |  0 comments

Being in general a wide to moderate tele-zoom kind of guy, I have found myself occasionally frustrated by lacking a long zoom or tele prime when shooting in the great outdoors. There are some scenes and places that cry out for a longer focal length, and it’s not from laziness but more accessibility that creates the need.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  May 25, 2014  |  0 comments

Misprint? No. The latest “all-in-one” zoom lens from Tamron ranges from 16mm to 300mm, the equivalent of 24mm to 450mm on my Nikon D300s (with APS-C size sensor). Add Vibration Compensation (VC), excellent Macro focusing and PZD Piezo Drive for quiet and blazing-fast autofocus and you’ve got “Lensational.”

George Schaub  |  Dec 26, 2014  |  0 comments

The adage, “To get a fresh point of view in your photography, try a new lens,” was never truer than when applied to so-called fisheyes. I do not presume to know how a fish sees, but that’s irrelevant because lenses of this ilk get their moniker from the bulbous convexity of the front element, not from any inspection of the image going to the piscine brain.

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