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Archive 2011 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions
  
 
Jman13
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p.1 #1 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


So I got a very good price (about 50% under the general 'going rate') on a near mint Canon FD 135mm f/2. The lens has flawless glass, flawless aperture blades, perfect focus and only a few very small, very minor scuffs on the retractable hood. It looks practically brand new. I also got it complete with original box, all original packing materials, caps, manual, unused warranty card and even the original silica gel! My FD->m4/3 adapter came today, but I only had a chance to take a few shots.

First impressions: This is a very good lens. It's pretty sharp wide open (not critically sharp, but still very good), with very nice bokeh. The only downside optically that I can see so far is that like many fast older lenses, it is prone to a bit of purple fringing on high contrast areas and a fair amount of longitudinal CA, depending on the subject. Overall, though, these are pretty minor, and to get good resolution wide open on the extremely dense GH2 sensor, means that I bet on full frame this thing would be absolutely amazing (if you could hack it apart to adapt it). Anyway, I'm using it as a fast longish telephoto, and I think it will perform quite well for that. It's built well, but is rather lightweight for the length/aperture. It handles really well on my GH bodies. I think I'll like this a lot.

Quick shot of my daughter, wide open:







And some shots of the lens on my GH2 (hood retracted on all of these):





















May 20, 2011 at 12:29 AM
Jman13
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p.1 #2 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


I got a chance to stretch its legs a bit today. Here are a few more. Definitely a good lens, though harder to focus than most of my other alt lenses just because of how little is in focus wide open at this focal length...just takes a little longer to make sure I've got focus nailed (though the GH2 is pretty easy in that depar tment) These are all wide open:







The bokeh's a little nervous in this one because it was shot through a steel fence with bars every 2.5 inches.













May 21, 2011 at 02:11 AM
Micky Bill
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p.1 #3 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


Nice, I'd like one of those for my Sony Nex


May 21, 2011 at 02:17 AM
Jman13
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p.1 #4 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


Yeah, it's a good deal. It's not a flawless lens, but it's quite good, and I'm very pleased how it performs on such a high density sensor.


May 21, 2011 at 02:16 PM
joeyu629
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p.1 #5 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


I've always been amazed at how "older" lenses aren't as horrible as one may think they would be...this one just dropped my jaw a little further down.


May 22, 2011 at 08:43 AM
alexandre
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p.1 #6 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


Really really nice.


May 22, 2011 at 02:15 PM
AhamB
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p.1 #7 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


joeyu629 wrote:
I've always been amazed at how "older" lenses aren't as horrible as one may think they would be...


I see you are new to this forum.

@Jordan: The lens seems to do fine on your GH2. MUCH better than the Soligor 135/2 that I tried.



May 22, 2011 at 02:41 PM
Bifurcator
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p.1 #8 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


joeyu629 wrote:
I've always been amazed at how "older" lenses aren't as horrible as one may think they would be...this one just dropped my jaw a little further down.



Hehe, I'm like just the opposite. I'm like, always amazed how much most newer lenses suck compared to what was offered back during the peak of film.

I see samples of new consumer to mid-level lenses where people are singing their praises (on some sites - not here so much) and just kinda go: Really? <sigh>

:P



May 23, 2011 at 05:40 AM
Lleuallen
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p.1 #9 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


Newbe here.

I picked up the same lens to use on my GH2. Mostly for close focus wide open shots of flowers. Like long lenses and wide apertures for bokeh.

I shot a flower in a relatively low contrast light and I got terrible longitudinal chromatic aberrations. Very pronounced green/red which can not be removed except by manual methods (desat layer and and painting to remove saturation from green and red fringing). This is not good.

Are there different versions of this lens? Any with more control of aberrations? My serial number is 27676. Do I just have a bad copy?

Larry





  DMC-GH2    1/400s    160 ISO    0.0 EV  




May 30, 2011 at 05:37 PM
 

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AhamB
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p.1 #10 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


Larry, your link isn't valid. Is this the correct address? http://dpreview.com/galleries/9137691954/photos/1152245 It says: Sorry, the photo you are looking for is private.
The owner of this photo has requested to keep this photo private.



May 30, 2011 at 05:46 PM
Lleuallen
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p.1 #11 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


I think I fixed the link.

Larry



May 30, 2011 at 08:19 PM
Jman13
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p.1 #12 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


Larry, you can see in my inital post, I said the following:

"The only downside optically that I can see so far is that like many fast older lenses, it is prone to a bit of purple fringing on high contrast areas and a fair amount of longitudinal CA, depending on the subject."

The PF can be dealt with in post relatively easily. The LoCA obviously can't, but I find it only is an issue in certain situations. With what I shoot, I generally only see it in very busy background situations, where there's a bit of green ringing on the highlights.

It is not a perfect lens, that is for sure. I've also noticed while resolution is pretty darn good in the 5 to 10 or 12 foot range, it falls off at further distances, and right at MFD. Still, for the price I paid, it's a good lens with good subject separation and nice color. Bokeh can be very good in some instances and not so great on more distant subjects, but a lot of fast lenses have that issue (The Rokinon 85 for instance, has amazing bokeh at portrait distances but horrendous ringing on distant subjects shooting wide open (plus more LoCA than the FD 135/2 at a distance...I shot with both on my GH2 yesterday).



May 31, 2011 at 10:35 AM
Bifurcator
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p.1 #13 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


More images! More, more more...




May 31, 2011 at 01:16 PM
AhamB
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p.1 #14 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


If you want a lens with comparable FL and aperture that doesn't have this CA, the closest thing you can get is the Voigtländer 125/2.5 (far more expensive than the FD 135/2).


May 31, 2011 at 01:38 PM
Lleuallen
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p.1 #15 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


Thanks for the info. I guess I'll just have to live with it.

Larry



May 31, 2011 at 02:34 PM
Jman13
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p.1 #16 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


For more images, see my "GH2 Shoots Golf" thread in the alt forum, or my "Memorial Tournament" thread in the Sports Corner Forum. (the one in the Sports Corner is a subset of the ones in my GH2 shoots... thread, with some of the weaker images weeded out)


May 31, 2011 at 11:19 PM
Gyrine
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p.1 #17 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


I notice you are all shooting wide open. Is there no way to control aperture?


Jun 23, 2011 at 03:53 AM
crazeazn
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p.1 #18 · Canon FD 135mm f/2 - First Impressions


isnt this design similar to the newer 135L ? and the FD 135L that preceded it? lovely photos!


Jun 23, 2011 at 04:37 AM





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