Minolta Rokkor 58mm f/1.2. *Sigh* Closely followed by a long-gone Vivitar Series-1 135mm f/2.8 (as I recall: could be wrong about the ratio. Been a long time!)
Today: Fujinon 180mm f/5.6 (4x5) or Fujinon 420mm (8x10).
8x10 -- Schneider 300 f/5.6 Symmar (500/12 convertible). It's one of only two lenses I own for this format (the other being a 90 year old Wollensak triple convertible). It has just magnificent bokeh and sharpness, and great coverage for 8x10.
4x5 -- Tossup between the Schneider 210 f/5.6 APO Symmar and 90 f/5.6 Super Angulon XL. I'd vote for the 210 simply because it's more versatile (and portable).
Hasselblad 500 c/m -- The Zeiss 150 f/4 C T* Sonnar is my favorite -- it's just magnificent as a portrait lens, and I like the bokeh and focal length better for portraits than the 80. The 80 is a better walkaround lens, though, and if I had to take only lens with me it's what I'd choose.
35mm Canon -- the 70-200 f/4L. Magnificent. The TS-E 24 f/3.5L is pretty cool too, but it impresses me less now that I shoot LF.
MF: I agree with Mr. Callow, I adore the 50mm on my mamiya sixes. For medium format that is the clear winner, for me. It is just so sharp and distortionless.... and compact. I also like the 150 very much- don't believe what they tell ya. That is one helluva lens for landscape.
35mm format slr: Nikkor 105 f/1.8. My favorite small format slr lens by far. Wonderful bokeh. Awesome build. Affordably excellent.
LF: Schneider 150/265 convertible. Don't ask me about colour rendition though, I only use it for b&w. Very versatile, tack sharp, and ultracompact. Folds up easily into two of my LF cameras.
Lens I most covet: the Schneider 47 super A.
Last edited by keithwms; 07-06-2007 at 09:35 AM. Click to view previous post history.
Reason: added reasons!
For 35mm, my favorite lens is the Contax 85mm F1.4. Gorgeous bokeh, makes for a terrific portrait lens. It is also very versatile in use - I shot not only portraits with it but architectural details when I took it to Cambodia.
For large format, the Kodak 14" Commercial Ektar. Yes it is big, yes it is heavy, but it produces gorgeous bokeh also, very smooth transitions between focused and out of focus areas, and excellent contrast without being harsh.
For 35mm my Nikkor 105mm f2.8 AI lens I just love this lens, it was my 2nd lens and my most used lens until I got the Rollei.
For 6X6 my Rollei sl66 150mm F4 Sonnar lens, my most used lens. I just got a 250mm Sonnar but I had to send my Rollei in the shop before I could use it much so who knows , when I get the Rollei back I have to give that lens a good workout and see what happens.
For 4X5 my Fujinon 240mm F9 A lens, I love this lens on the Shen Hao I have a 300mm lens but I think that is a little too much for the Shen
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4x5: Schneider Super Symmar XL 80mm F4.5
35mm: Nikkor 24-120mm F3.5-5.6D AF-S VR Zoom Lens
For 35mm, it is a tie - 35mm f/2.0 Olympus Zuiko, or 85mm f/2.0 Olympus Zuiko - can you vote for a couple?
My 6x4.5 lenses are too new, but I lean toward the 55mm lens for my Mamiya 645.
I am afraid of offending any of my lenses for my Mamiya TLRs (6x6) but the 135mm is pretty special.
Give me more time to work on the seals on my Koni-Omegas, and I'll be able to decide about whether it is the 90mm, or the 58mm that is closest to my heart.
Just two lenses, any format . . . tough to choose when I have so many. After much consideration, I have decided that the 180mm f5.6 Nikkor-W is my best large format lens, though I can also use it on 6x7 with a rollfilm back. My next best lens is also one of the least expensive I have ever owned, a Nikon 50mm f2.0 AI (long barrel version), used only on 35mm.
It is really a coincidence that both lenses I mentioned are Nikon products. The look of each really is different, though there is sort of a family characteristic common to both, which is the overall colour rendition.
I know you only wanted to hear about two, though I need to mention an unexpected surprise. I have several old 6x9 folder cameras. One I rebuilt using various components, and ended up with a 105mm f4.5 lens in a Synchro Compur shutter. While only an AGFA Apotar three element lens, the results are simply amazing. Outstanding resolution, ultra smooth defocus areas when used wide open, and amazing micro contrast. Even more amazing was that all this was attainable for under $20.
A G Studio
Best 35mm - Zeiss Planar f2/45 (Contax G). Brilliantly sharp.
Best MF - Zeiss Planar f2.8/80 (Hasselblad). The cheapest of my Hasselblad lenses but has given the best results for sharpness.
Best LF - can't choose between Nikkor f5.6/150 and Schneider f8/90. Both are very impressive.
Hi my best lens is:
In 35mm Nikkor f 2 135mm DC lens very sharp full open and has defocus controll and I can make it to a SF lens to!
Bronica GS 1 50mm lens for it sharp and nice wide!
My sharpest lens in MF is on my Rolleiflex GX 6x6 the 80mm Planar!
4x5 the sharpes is the APO Symmar 210mm
for portraits is it the Universal Heliar very nice 3 D look
gets better on 8x10
8x10 all time fav is my 155 Grandagon sharp as a knife and 2. is my APO Ronar MC 360 mm sharp and small!