When not awful is a high compliment: Sony FE 24-240mm f/3.5-6.3 OSS

Update: Everything said below is true… but I sold it. Went for another brand SLR and a Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 instead.

What are you looking to get out of your next lens?

Me? I wanted a superzoom. Why? After a few times carrying around two camera bodies with two zooms to cover near anything that came my way that got old really quickly.

What to do? Superzoom! One huge problem. From everything I have read superzooms are usually awful or mediocre at best optically… and big and heavy… …and typically expensive. That is not a good combination. But I really wanted some of that one lens does all action. Continue reading “When not awful is a high compliment: Sony FE 24-240mm f/3.5-6.3 OSS”

Voigtlander APO-Lanthar 65mm f/2: Loved the lens, but was displaced by another before the review was done

What a name. What a lens.

This lens was a weird find. Had not heard of it online. Had not seen any press releases. Had not seen any reviews. Never heard of it. This was found by the power of the local camera shop. It sat there under glass staring at me every time I stopped through until one day I threw it on my camera. This happened. Continue reading “Voigtlander APO-Lanthar 65mm f/2: Loved the lens, but was displaced by another before the review was done”

This Old Camera: Voigtlander Bessa R2

If you want a Leica and you have the disposable income required to inhabit Leica town my advice is to get a Leica.

If you want a Leica and have full-blown metered red dot fever, but do not have the disposable income required currently do not buy anything else because you will eventually sell it, potentially at a loss, in order to finance a Leica. If you do not mind the maligned aesthetics of the internally metered M5 that is an option. An older body like an M3 may do the trick for you. Not bad at all with a Leicameter atop. Pricey for the vintage, but waaay less than an M6. And, unlike non-Leicas, it will hold it’s value or even appreciate when you do flip it for an M6 or the like.

There are technically other options also if you wish to consider them. Zeiss, Leitz/Minolta collab, so on and so forth are all fine cameras. But some of those can get pricey quickly as well. They may be right up your alley if you have a bit of a contrarian bent. But if you are determined to get a Leica they may get flipped later as well.

Continue reading “This Old Camera: Voigtlander Bessa R2”

Versatility in lens form: Venus Laowa 15mm f/4 1:1 @laowa_lens

This one line from their website says a lot.

World’s Widest 1:1 Macro Lens.

Was impressed by that alone and the macro samples from a favorable PetaPixal preview and review.

Was impressed further by the built-in shift mechanism. A simple 3 position up/center/down setup unlocked by a lever instead of many positions like some others, but this does not prove to be an issue at all in actual use. This is one of my favorite features of this lens. Continue reading “Versatility in lens form: Venus Laowa 15mm f/4 1:1 @laowa_lens”