Looking for a Canon FD Wide or Super Wide Angle Lens

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by 3 Olives, Jan 9, 2011.

  1. 3 Olives

    3 Olives Member

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    I have a number of FD lens but I don't have a Wide or Super Wide Angle lens. I'm interested in buying one but prices are all over the map. Recommendations would be appreciated. Thanks!
     
  2. Markster

    Markster Member

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    28mm is a good size for wide. They come higher and lower in the focal length range, but 28 is (IMO) a nice balance between the wider angle and keeping the distortion down.

    I have a vivtar 28mm 1:2.8 with 45mm diameter that I'd highly recommend.

    Other than that, I haven't had too much experience.
     
  3. hpulley

    hpulley Member

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    I haven't bought FD in ages so I don't know the used prices but the 28mm is probably still the cheapest option if price is a consideration. The 24mm is the best one though.

    The 20mm f/2.8 is kind of soft especially wide open but I still like it a lot. Got lots of great shots with it when I really needed the ultra wide.

    The 24mm f/2 is a wonderful lens, so sharp even in 11x14" prints.

    The 28mm f/2 is alright but for some reason I don't use it that often, I usually go for either the 24mm f/2 or the 35mm f/2. The 35mm f/2 is another amazing lens, so sharp the detail just calls to be printed large.

    I long lusted for but never owned the FD 17mm f/4 but if the similar looking 17-40mm EF optics are anything to go by then I wasn't missing much. Stopped down my EF 17-40 does alright but wide open the corners are really squishy. The 20mm seems wide enough anyways most of the time but one day if I see one for cheap I may need to try the 17 f/4.
     
  4. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    If 28 mm is a length you like, I highly recommend the 28 mm f/2.0, based on my experience with it. The 2.8 is fine too, but I like as much low light performance as I can get. The lens is sharp even wide open. It surprised me when I made my first 8x12's shot with it wide open.
     
  5. hpulley

    hpulley Member

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    Yes, somehow the way Canon did it, the f/2 versions of the 24mm, 28mm and 35mm are all sharper than the f/2.8 versions so get the f/2s if you shoot available light. For landscapes stopped down on a tripod it doesn't matter.
     
  6. TimmyMac

    TimmyMac Subscriber

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    I'm interested in this too. Specifically, how do the Canon 24/2.8 and 24/2 compare to the Minolta 24/2.8? I'm debating dumping my Minolta system for a Canon FD one.
     
  7. Andrew K

    Andrew K Subscriber

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    Timmy Mac

    I've owned both systems, so feel I can make a fair comparison...which is stay with Minolta - you won't notice a difference..

    The only way you would notice any difference is if you bought a 24/1.4L - this is an impressive lens wide open, and fantastic stopped down. But it is a large lens..and still an expensive lens..

    I would generally agree with hpulley's appraisal of Canon's lenses - most of the f2 lenses were sharper than the f2.8's, although I found the 24/2.8 was every bit as sharp as the f2 version. I wasn't that impressed with any of the versions of the 28mm (f2,2.8 and 3.5) that I owned. And yes - the 35/2 is an outstanding lens - it was probably my standard lens for most applications..

    The Canon Ultrawides were all had their problems...

    The 20-35L was a fascinating design - you either got one that was sharp across the entire field of view, but vignetted terribly, or you got one that didin't vignette, but was very soft at the edges...

    I never really saw a sharp 17mm either - although the Old FD ones seemed sharper than the NFD ones..

    NFD 20mm? Again I never found them to be that sharp...

    If you want a really sharp Canon wide angle you can look at the 14mm/3.5L. Amazing lens - sharp, but so wide you can do a full length portrait of someone from 3ft away...

    Have fun with whatever lens you decide on

    Andrew

    PS - these opinions were formed based on lenses I owned, and/or got to test while I worked as a camera technician for Canon Australia in the 90's...I was lucky enough to use almost every FD lens Canon made :smile:
     
  8. white.elephant

    white.elephant Member

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    I agree about the 35 f2, and the 24 f/2, but I also agree that the 28mm isn't so good. At least, the copy I have doesn't compare at all with the 24 and the 35
     
  9. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    Very interesting. I love my 28 f/2 and never expected it to be so good. I just got it because I needed the speed, and I was pleasantly surprised.
     
  10. Andrew K

    Andrew K Subscriber

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    I think you were lucky with your lens. I used a couple, and one was better than the other.

    I can remember one photographer, who used to do a bit of unofficial promo work for Canon (he was one of the few white lenses in a pack where black lenses dominated). I can remember him "borrowing" 5 versions of the same lens, testing them - and then returning 4 of them......

    If you put his prints side by side from best to wrost, and compared any one print with the one next to it you were hard pressed to notice a difference. But compare #1 and #5 - it was like chalk and cheese....
     
  11. SMBooth

    SMBooth Member

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    Opps
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 10, 2011
  12. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    I have a FD 24 2.8 that takes great pictures.

    Jeff
     
  13. blockend

    blockend Member

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    Mine too. With medium speed B&W film it renders that classical 35mm gallery look. I also have two 28mm FDs but the 24mm is almost always used for preference. It and the 50mm f1.4 are my favourite Canon lenses.
    Sigma made a nice 28mm f1.8 apo that runs the 24 closest for sharpness and tone.
     
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  15. Pumalite

    Pumalite Subscriber

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    I have the 24mm f2.8 and 24mm f/2; the same; I have the 28mm f/2.8 and the 28mm f/2. All required for different situations; that's all.
     
  16. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    I have the 35mm f2, 28mm f2, 24mm f2 and 20mm f2.8 FDs and I find them all to be good performers, but reading through this thread it makes me wonder how much variation there can be between different lenses of the same focal length and aperture and if my 24mm f2 is giving the same performance as yours, and how valid these comparisons are after about twenty five years since they were manufactured
     
  17. Whiteymorange

    Whiteymorange Member

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    I have a 17mm Tamron and love it.

    Just sayin'

    Whitey
     
  18. Les Sarile

    Les Sarile Member

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    I have the Canon 17mm f4 that is great. No noticeable vignetting, sharp with good color contrast. I have not noticed flare or chromatic aberration in any of the pics I have shot with this lens so the coating must be excellent. As a point of comparison, I used the 16-35 f2.8 L for my EOS extensively for over 8 years and this FD lens has not left me wanting.
     
  19. darinwc

    darinwc Subscriber

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    I have the 28mm f2.8, 24mm f2.8, 24mm f2, and 17mm f4.

    The 28mm is good but I much prefer the 24mm focal length.

    The 24mm f2.8 is wonderfully sharp and is not lacking anything other than speed over the f2.

    The 17mm f4 I'm not impressed with but lenses this wide take skill to use properly. Hostly I just havent picked up the knak of shooting that wide yet. So my opinion is biased.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 10, 2011
  20. frobozz

    frobozz Subscriber

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    The 24/2.8 was my "normal" lens for years - I absolutely love everything about it. (The 24/1.4 is even better, if you can find one that's affordable!)

    The 20 and 17 are OK if you need an angle that wide. I've found the 17 to be a little vignette-y plus there's that awfully dim max aperture (4 ?!)

    The 14 is spectacular, though you have to work pretty hard to find something to shoot that isn't made grotesque by its effects. "rectlinear" sounds so much better than "barrel distortion" but in fact the things it does to subject matter at the edges are just weird... whereas I find the barrel distortion of the wider-view 15 lens easier to make look natural.

    The 15 and 8 take really nice pictures, if you can find subjects that work with them.

    Duncan
     
  21. Rol_Lei Nut

    Rol_Lei Nut Member

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    Just reading through this thread for curiosity (very little experience with Canon FD lenses).

    But in general, nothing should be wrong with a 25 year old lens, unless it's picked up haze, fungus or has been physically damaged (or are Canon lenses so delicate that they wear out so quckly.. :whistling: )

    General observation on wides: if you have and use a 50mm, a 28mm is a classic first wide.
    I prefer a 35mm as a normal, so my wides are 24mm or 19/20/21mm.

    A cheap but very good ultrawide is the Vivitar/Tokina 17mm (usually much better than the equivalent Tamron, but apparently with lots of sample variation, with the Vivitar branded ones doing better), but I'd only consider that after one of the focal lengths mentioned above.
     
  22. darinwc

    darinwc Subscriber

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    Seems to me that Canon FD lenses are cheap enough that you dont have to compromise by buying a off-brand lens.
     
  23. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    The point I was trying to make about comparing lenses in general and particularly twenty five year old lenses is that we don't know how each example would compare with the other ones initially on test when they were manufactured , and after twenty five years of being kept and used in different manners in different parts of the World probably by several different owners my FD 24mm f2 optic might give very different results to another example of the same lens that somebody else has thousands of miles away in in a very different climate.
     
  24. Rol_Lei Nut

    Rol_Lei Nut Member

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    The point I was trying to make was that a well-built lens normally shouldn't suffer after 25 years of (non-destructive) use in any part of the world.

    As I previously mentioned, with the very many brands I've used, time has little effect on lens performance, unless affected by haze, fungus or physically damaged or worn out (rare).
     
  25. hpulley

    hpulley Member

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    Old lenses or new lenses there is sample variation for sure. That's one reason not to trust many review websites as most only test 1 copy.
     
  26. Les Sarile

    Les Sarile Member

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    No doubt there is no accounting for previous ownership and that's why getting a money back guarantee is more important particularly with lenses.

    However, all manufacturer's superwides - from 24mm on, get even more expensive as they get wider. Even the orphaned lens mounts are that way as well. Of course the ones that can be adopted for newer bodies are even more so.