Monday, November 26, 2018

Digital Moments, Yashica ML 28mm F2.8

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Olympus E-P5, Yashica ML 28mm F2.8

Digital Moments, Yashica ML 28mm F2.8

'Image samples with the manual focus Yashica ML 28mm F2.8 legacy lens mounted on the Olympus E-P5'

An excellent lens by any standards, the Yashica ML 28mm F2.8 lens is part of the Yashica ML series, pro-line multicoated lenses developed and produced by Yashica (Kyocera) to bridge between their consumer grade DSB line and the state-of-the-art Zeiss T* within the Contax/Yashica system.

These lenses were made in Japan, at the same factory where the legendary Zeiss Contax T* lenses were made. Finished with a different coating, images rendition are slightly less contrasty, but colors and contrast are great. While not of Zeiss standards, these lenses do have their moments with acknowledgment of being of high quality.

Olympus E-P5, Yashica ML 28mm F2.8

The ML 28mm F2.8 is of 7 elements in 6 groups construction with 6 aperture blades and a minimum focusing distance of 0.3 meters, and as part of the ML series, these lenses share a common bayonet mount with the Contax RTS and Yashica FX-1 series cameras. Though not of all metal, the rings are plastic, the built quality of the lens is very good, with functions are all smooth and snappy.

A trait common to all these genres of manual focus legacy lenses is, of course, the cost factor which is definitely low priced when compared to equivalent lenses designed for current digital cameras. This cost is not much more even when you add a lens adapter to the total. The next best thing is that changing a camera body, all you need is to change the lens adapter to fit the lens to the new body, and you know perfectly well that this can be done for just a few dollars more.

On a 2x cropped-sensor digital camera body, for example, the E-P5 which is my normal digital camera, the lens is equivalent to a 56mm focal length lens, while on ASP-C sensor cameras with 1.5x crop-sensor, it will be a 42mm equivalent. The 40-55mm focal length range is the common standards for prime lenses of the 35mm film SLR cameras era.


For Sale: Contax/Yashica SLR / ML Lenses

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Monday, November 19, 2018

On A Bright Sunny Day, Nokia Asha 300

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Nokia Asha 300

On A Bright Sunny Day, Nokia Asha 300

'Mobile Photography - A look back at the past for archived images worth presenting'

As I mentioned in my earlier post, I was quite disappointed with the early images from the consumer-grade smartphone and I am quite reluctant to use the camera further, for a while at least. Having said that, and for the need of another camera to keep up with my Mobile Photography posts, I went for a dig back and managed to salvage a stack of images captured with the Nokia Asha 300 feature phone which I was using quite a while back.

Nokia Asha 300
I took the time to dig up the phone as well, dusted it off, hooked it up to the battery charger and all seems to work fine.

The stack of images includes this set of views taken on an outstation trip to a huge oil and gas fabrication facility. It was a very bright and sunny day and we were looking across the ground from the 7th-floor rooftop of the administration building.

The view across the sub-segmented fabrication yards from that elevation was breathtaking, and the images (after a few post-processing tweaks) are just as scintillating.

Later in the evening, the golden hour was another joyous moment as I enjoyed the sunset from the hotel balcony looking over to the cove and the island across the bay which becomes a perfect stage for the setting. Looks like the Nokia Asha 300 is just as capable in capturing the essence of the scene as well.

What is most interesting to me is the fixed focus F2.4 5MP camera on the Nokia Asha 300 is very capable of doing a very good job with images in bright daylight situations. For images otherwise, the cable connectivity of the phone is an easy path for connectivity and uploads to post-processing apps, an idea to look forward to.

Together with the interest in the analog and film cameras, and now a bit with the digital past (maybe only momentarily), it should be fun to see how things play out and add to the strength of this blog.


Shop Now: Film Camera Sale by ImagingPixel

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Monday, November 12, 2018

Take Your Pick, Olympus XA4 Macro

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Olympus XA4 Macro

Take Your Pick, Olympus XA4 Macro

'Analog Diary - Last leg of a mini-series post with images from the Olympus XA4 at the Ramadan Bazaar'

I am on the last leg of a mini-series with images from the Olympus XA4 at the Ramadan Bazaar, a series which took off with Squaring the 28mm, All Set and ReadyThe Ladies Are All Smiles, and finally, this post. Though captured on a street-smart 28mm F3.5 lens of the Olympus XA4 on a single roll of negative film during a single outing, the images were squared off to the 1:1 aspect ratio from their original 3:2 via the desktop image post-processor.

Olympus XA4 Macro
The square format, or images in 1:1 aspect ratio, is a beautiful format to work with. It works well when you are trying to simplify the composition when eliminating superfluous elements or empty spaces. The composition itself can do away with the much-vaunted one-third rule, placing the subject in the center of a square frame, for example, or close to the edge, works just as well.

For a rather laid back novice street photographer like me, who is still timid to the idea of being right there, in the middle of it all, a 28mm focal length lens tends to draw in a lot more of the previously mentioned superfluous elements into the picture. Cropping the image to the 1:1 ratio means that you can cut away a third of the original, which can give you a better framing option.

As a street photographer's camera go by, the capsule style Olympus XA4 35mm film camera might be just the right choice for you. The camera is fitted with a 28mm F3.5 super sharp focal length lens and is highly recommended for landscapes, people at work, at play, or for when and where you can get in right into their midst.

Olympus XA4 Macro

The camera reverts the focus distance back to the optimum 3 meters when you close and re-opens the capsule cover, sets the AE system on automatically, and you are ready to shoot in the instant you slide back the capsule cover.


For Sale: Olympus 35mm Compact Cameras

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Monday, November 5, 2018

Digital Moments, Canon FD 50mm F1.8

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Olympus E-P5, Canon FD 50mm F1.8

Digital Moments, Canon FD 50mm F1.8

'Image samples with the manual focus Canon FD 50mm F1.8 legacy lens mounted on the Olympus E-P5'

My first post on digital images captured with the Canon FD 50mm F1.8 was titled Digital Moments, Tagging On RawTherapee 5.4 as it was more about the RAW image processor rather than the lens itself. Let's hope that this post will give more justice to the lens itself.

The Canon FD 50mm F1.8, first introduced in 1971, the lens was the smallest, lightest, and cheapest of Canon's 50mm primes. The first version sports chrome filter threads and silver breech-lock ring. The model was replaced in 1983 by a version with black plastic filter threads. The 'New FD' range, where the breech lock mount was replaced with an internal locking device, was introduced in 1978, and this series is commonly recognized as the 'FDn' lenses.

Olympus E-P5, Canon FDn 50mm F1.8

The update saw the minimum aperture of the lens lowered from ƒ/16 to ƒ/22, reduction in the number of aperture blades from 6 to 5, and with more plastic components incorporated, a decrease in weight from 255g to 170g. Mounting the lens with the new lock mechanism is much easier, and can be done using only one hand.

Except for the 50mm F1.8, all other lenses in the 'FDn' series were given the S.S.C. (Super Spectra Coating) treatment. Image quality, as can be seen from these images, may not auger much if you are thinking about this lens as the top prime of your collection.


For Sale: Canon FD Manual Focus Lenses

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