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Tilt shift lens for landscape photography
  
 
G-Four
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


My father was an amazing black and white photographer. He did all his work with a 4 x 6 field camera. I have considered trying to use his camera to shoot film but the idea of having to process and scan file does not appeal to me.

I am however very intrigued by the movements that can be made on a field camera which got me interested in tilt shift lenses for use with landscapes. I primarily shoot in manual mode and hand focus on a tripod. What peaks my interest in the tilt shift is increased depth of field, ability to correct bending object on a wide angle when the lens is angled down and the improved sharpness.

I am thinking about the TS-E 24mm II with the thought that I can use the shift feature to stitch wider shots together when I need to. Plus, I can still fit a filter holder on the front.

I currently have a 5D3 & 5D4, 1740L, 24-105L v1 and Rokinon 14mm that fits into the wider range that this would also fill. I know renting one is a good idea but hoping to find someone that can provide some direction.

Questions:
Is the 24mm a good choice for landscapes?

Is the increased depth of field going to matter that much since wide angle lenses already a large depth of field?

Will the sharpness will be a significant improvement over anything I currently have.

Other thoughts to consider?



Jul 17, 2017 at 03:05 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


The TS-E 24/3.5L II is an excellent lens for landscapes.

Tilt (nose down) shifts the plane of focus from vertical (i.e. parallel to the sensor) towards or to the horizontal plane, and is definitely useful when you have details in the foreground that you want to be in focus, as well as having infinity in focus. Using shift for making panos is great. I usually do this with the camera in vertical mode (i.e. portrait) and shift left/ right, and more-or-less preserve the 3:2 aspect ratio. You get to about 2:1 when shifting left/right in horizontal mode.

The TS-E 24/3.5L II will be noticeably sharper than your EF 17-40/4 L and EF 24-105/4 L IS.



Jul 17, 2017 at 03:37 PM
Abbott Schindl
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


It depends on what you're trying to capture with landscapes. I have a TS-E 24 (II) and find it too wide for must of my 5D4 general landscape captures, but it's very nice for more intimate landscapes. For larger fields, I prefer a longer lens; 100-400 (II) is what I find most useful, although I routinely use FLs of 11-400mm depending on what I'm trying to accomplish.

For me, the TS-E's more about controlling DoF than getting more DoF than my 11-24 and 14 f/2.8 can. It's about getting more DoF if I want it, and using a wider aperture to get the DoF I want (shorter exposures, no lens diffraction).

I know people who love the various TS-E's for landscapes. I'm thinking about a TS-E 90 to complement the '24.

Advice: If most of your captures are with ~24mm lens and you want lots of DoF, or to precisely control DoF without needing to stack multiple images, then the TS-E will be an improvement over your other lenses. You can also use the Shift feature to create 2-3 frame panos without having to move the camera.



Jul 17, 2017 at 03:40 PM
tuantran
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


You have both the 5D III and IV and don't own a 16-35mm f4 yet? I say buy that first before buying the 24mm TS/E as your landscape photography. I somehow reach for the 16-35mm much more than the 24. The 16-35 f4 will blow your 17-35mm away.

I used to hesitate using my old 16-35mm f2.8 but with the 16-35mm f4, it gives me new joy to use that range.



Jul 17, 2017 at 04:15 PM
dgdg
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


Depending on what you shoot, you may find the shift feature by itself frequently useful.
In landscape photography, the tilt usually requires a relatively flat foreground (ex salt flats, ice, lake) to be effective.



Jul 17, 2017 at 04:50 PM
notherenow
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


I had the 24 ii TS-E and loved it but it was more than I needed to have in a lens that wasn't used as much as it should have been as I also have the 17 TS-E and that is my all time favourite lens to date.

The 24 may be slightly better than the 17 optically and it is easier to fit filters to it but there is just something about the 17.

You can use the 17 on an APSC sensor for a similar angle of view or use it with a 1.4x extender. There are filter holders that can be fitted to the lens though 150mm filters can get expensive.



Jul 17, 2017 at 05:15 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


@Abbott Schindl makes a good point about the EF 16-35/4L IS. At 24mm, this zoom is very much on par for IQ, with the EF 24-70/2.8L II and unshifted TS-E 24/3.5L II (all three lag slightly behiund the Zeiss 25/2 ZE). At 16mm/17mm, the 16-35/4L IS is actually a bit better than the unshifted TE-E 17/4L and Zeiss 18/3.5 ZE. Unless I want to use tilt or shift for plane of focus/perspective control, I'll often use the 16-35/4L IS. I'm also more likely to make a panorama using left/right rotation (about the entrance pupil) using the 16-35/4L IS on a simple pano head, than a shift-pano with the TS-E 24/3.5L II, unless it's already in use.

Here's some links about tilt-shift tech (same as the large format camera, except there's only one tilt axis and one shift axis for a "TS" lens, in comparison with the typical two tilt-axes and two shift-axes on most LF cameras (sometimes with both sets of movements on both the front and back "standards").

The thread link below contains a wide variety of links about tilt-shift, as well as many excellent photos.

Tilt shift for landscapes, essential?
http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1393526/0#13252324

Also, just to wrap this up, here's some threads on panoramas, with both rotation and shift.

TS-E Lens Vs. Pano Bracket
- [parallax vs perspective distortion] http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1430280/
- http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1408081/1#13375054
- [shift pano simple distortion vs rotation pano complex distortion]
http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1408081/0#13373246
http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1408081/0#13373334

P.S. I was in the dentist chair when I wrote my first reply.



Jul 17, 2017 at 05:16 PM
dtolios
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


jcolwell wrote:
P.S. I was in the dentist chair when I wrote my first reply.




put your phone down, Sir, PLEASE, we are in the middle of something here!



Jul 17, 2017 at 06:28 PM
RobDickinson
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


I find tilt of limited use, it's also tricky to get right, actually easier on my Sony body with focus peeking..

Most of the time I prefer focus stacking



Jul 17, 2017 at 06:32 PM
rdeloe
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


Tilt is tricky... but not that tricky. I just got back from a week of shooting in Europe where I used tilt and shift a lot, separately and together, all hand-held. What made it workable and took a lot of the trial-and-error out of the equation was a simple, free app on my phone that allows me to plug in the focal length of the lens and the distance to the hinge point (even a rough guess is good). It then calculates the appropriate amount of tilt in degrees, which puts you in the ballpark quickly.

After a while you might not need an app like this, especially if you only use one lens. But I'm tilting with 21mm, 24mm, 28mm, 50mm and 100mm lenses on APS-C, so I haven't yet memorized all the calculations! (OK, let's be honest, that's never happening...). I'm on Android and the app is called "Tilt Calculator Free". There are other ones, and I'm sure some nice ones for iPhone users.

For what it's worth, in none of these shooting situations would focus stacking have worked because of movement in the subjects, and me hand-holding the camera.

RobDickinson wrote:
I find tilt of limited use, it's also tricky to get right, actually easier on my Sony body with focus peeking..

Most of the time I prefer focus stacking





Jul 17, 2017 at 07:46 PM
 

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RobDickinson
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


Yep it's good to have both options available


Jul 17, 2017 at 08:13 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


I most frequently use tilt with normal and telephoto lenses, for macro (bellows), small product photos, and for oblique groundscapes, for example.


Jul 17, 2017 at 08:47 PM
R.H. Johnson
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


the FD t/s 35mm f2.8 SSc is an excellent small compact and lite lens. sharp as a tack too. it is well worth your time investigating that lens.


Jul 18, 2017 at 01:07 AM
RustyBug
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


+1 for the 24L TS-E II

It has independent movements ... might not seem like much at the moment, but it is nice to have.

The thing I found most significant regarding the use of tilt is the distance you are from your nearest plane. Depending on how close / far you are from it will be a factor in determining if you desire a lot of tilt, or just a smidgen. Most folks over-tilt ... especially with the wide angles, where a little tilt goes a long way.

One thing to note when evaluating tilt glass ... it has a larger image circle, so comparing it to a lens with a smaller image circle isn't quite apples to apples. But, rest assured, the 24L TS-E makes a fine 24mm lens even without T&S.



Jul 18, 2017 at 01:46 AM
Rajan Parrikar
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


The TS24L II is an exceptional lens, an important tool in landscape photography. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. (Usually these are the people here who have never used a Tilt-Shift lens. They have never used Zeiss lenses either but still have a bunch of bold opinions on them.)

I wouldn't get it just for stitching wider shots. Its main utility to me is the use of the Tilt feature to control depth of field (both to increase and decrease dof). The Shift function is very handy for perspective control.

The other great TS lens from Canon is the 90mm f/2.8. But it is long in the tooth and some of us are eagerly awaiting an upgrade from Canon.




Jul 18, 2017 at 03:55 AM
rdeloe
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


+1 on the FD 35/2.8 t/s lens. Like all of them in this vintage you have to decide if you want rise/fall with tilt (very useful in a lot of landscape work), or rise/fall with swing (very useful if you like architecture). It's all manual so unlike the later Canon EOS t/s lenses there's no ribbon cable to worry about. You just unscrew four screws, put it in the desired position, and screw it together again. This isn't something you'll want to do in the field, or often -- so the trick is to pick the orientation you use the most.

R.H. Johnson wrote:
the FD t/s 35mm f2.8 SSc is an excellent small compact and lite lens. sharp as a tack too. it is well worth your time investigating that lens.





Jul 18, 2017 at 01:24 PM
G-Four
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


Abbott Schindl wrote:
It depends on what you're trying to capture with landscapes. I have a TS-E 24 (II) and find it too wide for must of my 5D4 general landscape captures, but it's very nice for more intimate landscapes..


One of my concerns is that 24mm would not be wide enough.

---------------------------------------------

tuantran wrote:
You have both the 5D III and IV and don't own a 16-35mm f4 yet? I say buy that first before buying the 24mm TS/E as your landscape photography. I somehow reach for the 16-35mm much more than the 24. The 16-35 f4 will blow your 17-35mm away.

I used to hesitate using my old 16-35mm f2.8 but with the 16-35mm f4, it gives me new joy to use that range.


I don't think i knew about 16-35 f4. I may look at this lens to replace my 17-40mm f4

---------------------------------------------

jcolwell wrote:
@Abbott Schindl@ makes a good point about the EF 16-35/4L IS. At 24mm, this zoom is very much on par for IQ, with the EF 24-70/2.8L II and unshifted TS-E 24/3.5L II (all three lag slightly behiund the Zeiss 25/2 ZE). At 16mm/17mm, the 16-35/4L IS is actually a bit better than the unshifted TE-E 17/4L and Zeiss 18/3.5 ZE. Unless I want to use tilt or shift for plane of focus/perspective control, I'll often use the 16-35/4L IS. I'm also more likely to make a panorama using left/right rotation (about the entrance pupil) using the 16-35/4L IS on a
...Show more

Thanks for all the great links. I had not been able to find much on tilt shift on FM.

---------------------------------------------

Rajan Parrikar wrote:
I wouldn't get it just for stitching wider shots. Its main utility to me is the use of the Tilt feature to control depth of field (both to increase and decrease dof). The Shift function is very handy for perspective control.



I am looking at the lens primarily for depth of field mostly from the perspective of the entire image being sharp. Also correcting perspective when the lens is pointed down. I thought the shift feature for panos could be helpful when i wanted something wider than 24mm.



Jul 18, 2017 at 01:45 PM
Abbott Schindl
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


One of my concerns is that 24mm would not be wide enough..

If that's the case, you might consider either the 16-35 f/4L or 11-24 f/4L, both of which are excellent. The 11-24 should be able to satisfy any FoV need I can think of short of 360.

---------------------------------------------


I don't think i knew about 16-35 f4. I may look at this lens to replace my 17-40mm f4.


I made the fairly easy decision to do that replacement and am very glad I did. The 16-35 f/4L's superior to the 17-40 in every way, other than not reaching to 40mm.

---------------------------------------------



Jul 18, 2017 at 04:12 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


Abbott Schindl wrote:
...I made the fairly easy decision to do that replacement and am very glad I did. The 16-35 f/4L's superior to the 17-40 in every way, other than not reaching to 40mm.


For most purposes, it's better than the 16-35/2.8L and 16-35/2.8L II, too.



Jul 18, 2017 at 04:40 PM
G-Four
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Tilt shift lens for landscape photography


For those that have this lens which function do you use most perspective control, DOF or do you typically use both? I am primary thinking about DOF and still wonder if there is a significant increase when tilt is applied for DOF compared to a standard lens.


Jul 18, 2017 at 08:07 PM
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