Lens test - Biotar 58mm,f2

I ordered an adapter that allows me to use lenses for my old German Exakta cameras on my Canon EOS 30D. Below? The first five shots I took with the new adapter. I stepped out on the front porch and took a few shots - just to see.

The lens I used for the first test is a Carl Zeiss, Jena, Biotar 58mm, F2. The camera was set on Manual, the ISO was set at 125, the lens was preset at f8, the Infinity mark on the lens was set over the f8 mark - meaning, according to the focusing scale, everything from 4.5 meters to infinity should be in focus - and the shutter speed for the first shot was set at 125th of a second. The focusing ring wasn't touched, at all, during the test.

ISO 125, f8, 1/125th, Infinity set to hyperfocal distance.

ISO 125, f8, 1/250th, Infinity set to hyperfocal distance.
(camera shake?)

ISO 125, f8, 1/250th, Infinity set at hyperfocal distance.
(camera shake, too?)

ISO 125, f8, 1/250th, Infinity set at hyperfocal distance.
(anxious to see this and two above from a tripod)

ISO 125, f8, 1/125th, Infinity set at hyperfocal distance.

Although the Biotar is a serviceable lens, it is not the sharpest knife in the drawer. The Tessar, by CZJ, and the Lithagon by Enna Werk, Munchen, are, in my estimation, much better lenses. The handicap for this test is that the shots were handheld. The second third and fourth shots are victims of that handheldness. I am going to re-shoot this lens, along with others, this weekend. I will use a tripod for the subsequent test - just so that I can get an honest look through the lens and also test for Infinity focus. The one big problem with using lenses from one camera system on another camera system (usually with an adapter of some sort) is that it is oftentimes impossible to get good focus at Infinity.

Anther factor to consider is that this 58mm lens, on a Canon 30D or any APS-C sized sensor camera, is equivalent to a 92.8mm lens on a 35mm film camera. So handheld at slower ISO speeds might not be a good answer for this lens. Again - this test needs to be repeated from a tripod.

It's going to be fun learning how to shoot these lenses with a digital camera.



PattiKen said...

These are recent pictures? What struck me was the absence of snow. Is it springtime in Chicago?

Life with Kaishon said...

So interesting. I have always wondered about those adaptors.

Tara R. said...

Don't you just love getting to play with new toys, or old toys you thought you couldn't play with again. I'm looking forward to living vicariously through your new/old lenses.

Bama Cheryl said...

The houses you photographed looked like they were in our neighborhood. How did you get here???!!!

Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

hmm. Very interesting. I wonder how those lenses communicate with the camera, since they are not for digital cameras? I thought the adapters would have to be specific to the lens, not the camera? But apparently I am wrong. This is really interesting. Maybe I'll have to look into this... not because I have any old lenses, but because I see them on ebay all the time for a pittance and would love to buy them for my own camera, except that they are for film cameras. GREAT now I've got one MORE thing on my wish list! ha ha