Friday, 8 March 2013

Affordable Quality Glass

February 20th

From Helsinki 2013

Linnunlaulu, Helsinki, Finland, Nikon D90, Nikkor AI 24 mm, 15 s, f/8, ISO200

"Affordable" and "quality" is a rare combination in photography. Cameras and lenses are precision instruments and as such things cannot be cheap. However, good glass lasts decades, so the second hand camera market is very much alive. Some of the used lenses are excellent and cheap.

From Twilight Exposure

My personal photographical precious is Nikkor AI 24 mm f/2.8. The AI-S version of this lens is still manufactured. So what good is a lens that doesn't autofocus and doesn't even meter on some Nikon bodies? Plenty. The lens is small, though heavy for it's size. The optical quality is excellent and the old-style manual focus is good for night photography. One can set the aperture to f/8 and focus to the infinity and the picture will be sharp. The modern AF-S lenses focus beyond the infinity so focusing them in very low light is not easy.

An old lens I bought from ebay at 100 euros (postage included) in some way performs better than the modern AF-S lens which costs twenty times as much.

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