CV lens choice ...
I have a Bessa r3a with a 40mm nokton and 21mm color skopar that I use for either opportunistic snapping or the occasional landscape type shot if I'm going somehwere that I might struggle to take my MF and tripod along to.
I've volunteered my services to do the pictures at my brother's wedding in May. the 21mm CS is just too wide for the formal type pics I'll be doing, so I doubt I'll be using that (much). The 40mm will be fine for group type shots, but experience tells me that it is a little wide for shots of the happy couple, or head and shoulders type portrait.
So ... I've thinking on getting a longer focal length lens. I'm toying between 50mm skopar or Nokton and 75mm heliar at the moment. If I were to stick with the 50mm, I've then to chose between the Nokton and the Skopar ... I suppose the nokton would be good for indoor/ low light shots, but I can have that covered with the 40mm nokton.
What are people's experiences of these lenses? How do they perform in use? thanks in advance
PS - I'll be using a couple of MF cameras too, so I suppose the r3a will be used for more grab-type shots and the indoor bit.
Last edited by Leon; 01-15-2007 at 06:54 AM. Click to view previous post history.
Reason: as post script
The actual performance of these lens has been discussed at length - as regards choice of lens for weddings, this varies from person to person. At the 3 weddings (all of friends) I have covered within living memory, I used 2 35 mm bodies, one with a 24 mm and a flash, the other with an 85 mm f2 without a flash for candids (and with a 70 to 210 zoom in my bag, which I did not use). In your case, I think I would be careful not to weigh myself down with too much gear (why 2 MF cameras, for example?). If you do use the 2 cameras, 1 35 mm extra will be as much as you can handle, and the 40 mm Nkoton you already have would be a good lens for candids. Remember, in high-pressure situations, the more cameras and lenses you take with you, the greater the chance of having the wrong camera/lens in your hand at any given time!
I can't advise you on either of the 50's from personal experience, only from the same information you can find yourself on the web.
The 75 Heliar is one of my favorite lenses, very sharp, excellent contrast, and very good bokeh. That appears to be a consensus among other users as well. I've shot fast and slow film, chromes, and color and B&W negatives with it. One of the first things I happened to do with it was some astrophotography wide open, which is very demanding, with pinpoint light sources. The 75 is one of the best lenses I've ever used in that application, holding pinpoint star images out to the very corners of the frame at f:2.5. If you decide to go with that focal length, you won't be disappointed with the Heliar (unless perhaps you've been using a 75 Summicron ).
Another vote for the CV 75mm Heliar it's become a favorite of mine.
Everything is analog - even digital :D
I think the 75 will be a perfect complement to the 40. Now, maybe you want to leave the wider angle (i.e. group) shots for your MF camera, but if you do want to have that ability with the R3A then I'm thinking the 21 might be too wide. If you're restricted to smaller spaces indoors, it may be a godsend, but otherwise you might want to see about a 28. 28/40/75(or 90) is a really good three lens combination -- though of course you'd need an auxiliary finder for the Bessa for the 28.
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thanks everyone - I think the 75 heliar it will be then. I was sort fo swaying in that direction anyway.
David. I'm aware the technical abilites of the lenses have been discussed, I think was asking for a users perspective, if you catch my drift. I'm only taking one " serious" mf camera along, but my brother wants some holga shots too, so when I say 2 mf cameras ... i really mean one and a halga
A bit late, but I would like to offer my experience.
I have the a 21/35/50/ and the 90 APO Lanthar
I use the 21 and 35 mostly now and the 50 somtimes, the 90 almost never. Its nice to have if I ever need it but I find that even when the 90 could work I prefer getting closer and using my 35
What Im getting at is that if I had to do it all over again I would have chose a 35/75 kit with a Ultrawide thrown in, either the 21 or 15.
Ive read great things about all the CV lenses, and I can personally attest to the 21 and 90.
I have the 75/2.5 & it's an excellent lens. However, don't be fooled into thinking that you're getting any extra speed with htis lens. It's been tested a couple of time & it's closer to f/2.8 than it is to f/2.5. Any other manufacturer would have called it a 75/2.8.
Originally Posted by Leon
I'm a bit late as well, but I confer with the choice of the 75mm, it's an excellent lens.
I did something similar at my brother in law's wedding a few years ago except that I left the formal shots to a professional. I found a slightly longer lens to be much better for grab shots. Although people expect to be photographed at weddings, I found you got better shots if they weren't so aware of you sticking a camera in their faces. I used Neopan 400 and produced a set of reportage style, slightly gritty images. It was completely different to all the other formal and digital rubbish that others produced for them -- they seemed pleased with the results which was the main thing!