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  1. #21

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    Best FD lenes for a Canon AE-1

    I'll take a chance here and actually suggest a non Canon zoom. Look for a Tamron 80-200 f2.8 SP LD. Ive used one for years, it was my main lens back when I hauled a couple of T90s around race tracks shooting motor sports. Tack sharp, fast, and very well built. It's an Adaptall lens so you'll need a Canon mount for it too. Another great zoom is the aforementioned Canon 35-105. I have both the older two touch 3.5 version and the newer one touch 3.5-4.5 version. The two touch is generally considered the better lens but I really have a hard time seeing any difference in the final prints. The one touch is considerably lighter and smaller plus faster to use. Your choice on wether or not you need the faster lens or not., both are fantastic. Whatever you do don't buy a Canon 100-300 f5.6 zoom. Horrid slow piece of junk.
    Last edited by EdColorado; 09-01-2013 at 07:40 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    Various Canons and Nikons. A Mamiya and a Bronica. A couple Brownies, and a Couple of Argus' (Argi?)

  2. #22

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    that 50mm you have is more than enough... i do like my 50mm 1.4, and it's all i use... before you go crazy an buy a set of lenses for an fd camera, try out medium format if you have the chance... just some advice someone would have told me. but seriously when you begin you want all the options you can have, but i see now the less options you have, the more you 'shoot' the more you 'shoot' the better you get with what you have.

  3. #23

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    The F1.4 50mm is a great lens, but like most wide aperture glass, soft at maximum aperture. Close it a stop and it really starts to perform. People say I haven't paid £$x000 not to shoot at maximum aperture, which is a mistake IMO. Better to think of 1.4 as an emergency and keep F2 as your standby and the you'll have an unbeatable lens for the price. Unless you like soft photographs of course.

  4. #24
    Markster's Avatar
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    50mm by itself is a good lense, but I wouldn't say great. By this I mean the quality of the lense can be great, but the usefulness limited. I started with a 50mm f/1.8 -- your basic cheap-o FDn that's worth all of $10 these days. It worked great then, and works great now...

    ... but if I could only have ONE lense fixed to my camera, a good wide angle 28mm or 35mm would be most useful (considering all situations I use cameras for, indoors and out).

    I have my 50mm/1.8, and I have my 28mm/2.8, just in case, but I find I mostly use my 35-75mm zoom and my 75-200mm zooms 90% of the time. To me it's not the zoom that's useful so much as the ability to frame my subjects properly when I need to. That's where zoom is most useful: composition.

    My rambling 2 cents' worth.
    -Markster

    Canon AE-1P 35mm | 50mm/f1.8 FDn | 28mm/2.8 FD | 70-200mm/f4-5 FD | 35-70mm/F2.8-3.5 Sigma FD

  5. #25
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    I would just upgrade the FD50mm f1.8 for an FD 50mm f1.4 which is not only faster and quicker to focus because of it's brighter focusing screen image and shallower depth of field, but also it's multi coated(that none of the 1.8 versions are), it produces better definition and colours than the 1.8 lens. I write from experience because I've owned both of these lenses for about thirty years and I only keep the 1.8 one as a back up.
    Ben

  6. #26
    Kyle M.'s Avatar
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    On my Canon AE-1 Program I use mainly my 50mm f1.4, the only other canon brand fd lense I own is a 100-300 f5.6. As far as off brand lenses I have a Phoenix/Samyang 18-28 f4.0-4.5 and a Rokinon 35-200 f3.8-5.3 with 1:3 macro. I only bought the 100-300 because it was $10 at a garage sale and practically new in the box, I inherited the Rokinon and Samyang from my grandmother. Personally I'm impressed with all three zooms even though two of them are fairly cheap knock off's and none of them are very fast, the 18-28 is surprisingly sharp for a lens that goes for all of about $20 nowadays, and the 35-200 ain't bad either. I can't say either way on the 100-300 as I've yet to even use it.
    Yashica-Mat, Yashinon 80mm F=3.5
    Gossen Luna Pro F

  7. #27

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    Well, I've got a couple, all FDn. The 24/2 is supposed to be the sharpest among the 24's, the 35/2 is great for everyday use, my 50/1.8 is cheap and light, the 85/1.2L is amazing (but heavy), the 85/1.8 is also lovely. Got the 100/4 macro and 200/2.8 as well but don't use them much. The FDn 35-105/3.5 is great, the only letdown is the minimum focusing distance of 1.5 m (macro mode lets you get closer, but only at 35 mm). FD gear is cheap considering what you get. I'd love a 80-200L zoom but we'll see when I stumble across one.

    Since you got a 24 and 50 now, I'd suggest you look at the 85/1.8. I've heard good things about the 100 and 135 lenses too.

  8. #28

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    I used manual Canon F1's years ago, there was a feeling at the time that the breechlock FD lenses were better made and more solid than the then recently introduced FD lenses without the outer breechlock ring, which seemed a bit "plasticky" by comparison at the time.
    Also if you're interests are landscape and architecture, then there's little point in spending extra moeny on fast lenses. Put it towards a solid tripod instead.

  9. #29
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    The two FD lenses to avoid received wisdom says are the 100-200 zoom and the 100-300 zoom, although I admit I have never owned either of them.
    Last edited by benjiboy; 09-09-2013 at 09:59 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    Ben

  10. #30
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rolleiman View Post
    I used manual Canon F1's years ago, there was a feeling at the time that the breechlock FD lenses were better made and more solid than the then recently introduced FD lenses without the outer breechlock ring, which seemed a bit "plasticky" by comparison at the time.
    Also if you're interests are landscape and architecture, then there's little point in spending extra moeny on fast lenses. Put it towards a solid tripod instead.
    Canon switched to polymer lens barrels, for the new FD range because they thought it was a better material and to save on weight, because a bag full of breech lock metal lenses weigh nearly twice as much as the polymer ones, and I've been using several of the new type for about thirty years and never had the slightest problem with any of them.
    Ben

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