I have a Tokina RMC 17mm f3.5 that is so sharp at f8 that it seriously challenges the best of my Canon FD lenses. I bought it from eBay, for less than 150$. The Canon FD 17mm f4 goes for twice that price, is a tad slower and couldn't possibly be any better than my Tokina.
What other great third party lenses for FD mount are to be had for nickels (compared to the brand ones)? I'd very much like to know.
I have the Vivitar Series 1 70-210 f3.5 zoom (the second version made by Tokina) and the Canon FD equivalent, and it certainly can give the FD a run for it's money for around half the price.
In the "third party manufacturers," the Tamron SP series, the Tokina ATX series, and the Vivitar S1 series, are probably the best known higher quality lens makers. There were some others, such as the Carl Zeiss lenses and the rare and very expensive Kilfitt, both of which are very good. The Tamron Adapt-A-Matic, Adaptall, and Adaptall-2 lens mounting systems meant that their lenses could be used on a wide range of older and new cameras. The fact that Tamron followed the thought of making a lens and selecting a lens mount to fit onto the back of the lens for use on many different cameras is not surprising. They were the ones who came up with the 42mm by 0.75mm thread "T-Mount" program back in the 1950s. Yes, that "T" in the name does stand for "Tamron" now, but originally it was "Taisei" or the Taisei Optical Manufacturing Industries back in the 1950s. Yes, that thread specification is close to the M-42 "Universal Thread Mount" (UTM) thread specification of 42mm by 1.0mm used by Contax, Pentax, Zenit, and many others, but it is not the same. Vivitar tried a similar interchangeable mount system with their "TX Mount" system, but it did not enjoy quite as much success. I believe that the Soligor people also made lenses that used the TX Mount system. Probably there are others.
While I have only one bespoke Canon lens for the Canon Pellix QL SLR camera here, there is a Canon FD Adaptall mount here also, so there is a collection of lenses that can go onto Pellix QL.
Enjoy, and Merry Christmas;
Ralph, Latte Land, Washington
And, if you have buckets of money that you don't need, there are the incredible Angenieux lenses for FD. Ebay always has a few. I got to use one once on loan and did not want to give it back.
Oh, those Angenieux are drool-worthy. I remember reading the reviews and the rare ads, wondering how I could come up with the price of a car for a pair of lenses.
I have a Sigma 28mm f1.8 APO that stands up to any comparison. I've also tested it on a DSLR at huge magnification and definition and contrast are superb once it's stopped down a little. The body coating is another matter. My lens is from the 'soft touch' era, early/mid 1990s and all three similar lenses are degrading into jelly. Sigma didn't want to know when I returned one last year and said they 'may' have been contaminated. Strange when I take great care of my lenses and all my others are in perfect condition. I appreciate they're long out of warranty but I wouldn't buy a new Sigma on principle.
A Kiron 28mm I owned was surprisingly good for a cheap lens.
Someone bought me a second hand mint Sigma 24mm f2.8 mini super wide 11 in C/FD fitting last Christmas, and although I already have the genuine Canon FD version the sigma can give it a run for it's money optically but the build quality isn't quite as good.
The Tamron S.P. 17mm f3.5 Adaptall 2 is a superb rectilinear ultra wide angle lens much better than anything Canon made at the time[ url]http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Tamron-SP-17mm-f3-5-wide-angle-prime-lens-Adaptall-2-Japan-151B-0001868-/180958791451?pt=UK_Lenses_Filters_Lenses&hash=item 2a21fc071b[/url]
I use a Sigma Filtermatic 16mm F/2.8 Fish-Eye on my New F-1 and i really love it. It's really sharp around 4-5.6. Never tried the FD 15mm but this sigma does pretty good. I used to have the same tokina on an A-1 but i wasn't really happy with that, bad copy maybe.
A few years ago i had the RMC Tokina 17mm 3.5. Didnt shoot extensively with it but the (in)famous Ken Rockwell thinks it's the cat's pajamas. Holds its own against the Nikkor equivalent, supposedly. I sold mine and recouped my investment. Kinda like borrowing it for a while and then getting my security deposit back.