A walk with a 50mm CCTV lens.

A morning walk with the camera, this time testing a 50mm f/1.4 CCTV lens adapted to fit a mirrorless camera.

So far this lens seems optically the best of the three CCTV lenses I am testing. But one of the main reasons for experimenting with these lenses is their strange optical behaviour around the edges of the frame and in the backgrounds of images so this lens is a bit of a disappointment so far. I wasn’t expecting a $41 CAD (including shipping and the adapter) lens to be this good.

A Periwinkle flower after some overnight rain with the lens wide open at f/1.4. The flower seems to be fairly sharp considering it’s close to the edge of the frame and the lens was wide open.

Blue flower photographed with a CCTV lens.

Old seed pods and new leaves. I had photographed these seed pods last winter and was surprised to find that they were still on the plant months later surrounded by new leaves. Again, the seed pod seems fairly sharp even though it’s away from the center of the frame.

Fresh growth and seed pods.

Cosmic Photo Challenge: Independent Lenses in Various States.

This is my contribution to the Cosmic Photo Challenge: A State of Independence.

My first thought was a selection of juvenile birds that were independent of the adults when the photos were taken. That idea was quickly followed by the fact that this is the Canada Day long weekend so I considered a Canada Day post.

Then I thought about an ongoing project, testing a variety of lenses on a modern mirrorless camera. Most of the lenses I have tested so far are (or were) made by independent lens makers. Companies that make lenses to fit other makers cameras.

Some of the lenses are in a bit of a state through heavy use or being designed to be almost disposable. Which is why I titled the post “Independent Lenses in Various States” as a rewording of the challenge.

To the lenses.

A Periwinkle flower photographed with a 35mm f/1.7 CCTV lens adapted to fit an Olympus mirrorless camera. Shot with the lens wide open at f/1.7.

This was the first CCTV lens I purchased and I found it interesting enough to purchase a couple more. They’re also known as C-mount lenses having a screw mount for attaching to CCTV cameras with the appropriate mount.

Some of these CCTV lens are very cheap. I wonder if they’re designed to be almost disposable, used where or when a lens could get damaged somehow. The lens was $38 CAD including shipping, the adapter to fit it to the camera and two extension tubes to go between the lens and the camera to allow it to focus on closer subjects.

A Single Blue Flower.

Ivy growing up a tree trunk with a 25mm f/1.4 CCTV lens. This is one of the lenses I ordered after experimenting with the 35mm CCTV lens used for the Periwinkle flower above.

Stopping the lens down from maximum aperture causes severe vignetting so this was shot with the lens wide open at f/1.4. Wide open the lens still vignettes a bit and as the image circle produced by the lens barely covers the sensor there’s some interesting swirling around the edges of the photo.

I have already had to repair the focusing mechanism on the lens after it first jammed and then stopped focussing on distant subjects. That probably explains why the lens cost $36 CAD including shipping and the adapter to fit it to the camera.

Swirling around the edges.

Last years seed pods and new leaves with a 50mm f/1.4 CCTV lens. Shot wide open at f/1.4. This was the other CCTV lens I ordered after experimenting with the 35mm CCTV lens.

Surprisingly good performance for $41 CAD including shipping and the adapter to fit it to the camera. So I’m finding it a bit disappointing so far.

Fresh growth and seed pods.

A Bracken frond taken with a Vivitar 35mm f/1.9 lens I purchased used in the 1970s. Shot wide open at f/1.9. At the time Vivitar were a U.S. brand who designed lenses that were then manufactured by various Japanese lens makers.

The same design was built with a variety of camera mounts allowing the lens to fit a wide range of camera bodies.

I have given this lens a hard life over the years and it now feels like it could fall apart each time I use it.

Bracken frond with an adapted lens from the 1970s.

Dandelion clocks (seed heads) with a “silvernose” Olympus OM Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 lens I purchased in 1976. As with the other shots this was taken with the lens wide open, in this case f/1.8.

I don’t know if it can be classed as an independent lens. It wasn’t designed for the camera being used and requires an adapter but both the lens and camera were made by Olympus.

The silvernose refers to a polished aluminium ring on the front of the lens and signifies that it is one of the early Olympus OM Zuiko lenses. This is another lens that has had a hard life. It has been dropped a few times and was once bounced along the gutter of Charing Cross Road while attached to my Olympus OM1 when it slipped from my shoulder as I ran for the last tube train of the night. A few years later it was being dried out in an oven after being submerged in Georgian Bay.

Dandelion seed heads.

CFFC: One Blue Flower

A second contribution to Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: 1 Item or the Number One and alao a contribution to Cee’s Flower of the Day Challenge.

Shortly after posting my contribution to Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: One Great Crested Grebe I went for a walk with the camera. I was testing a CCTV lens adapted to the camera and one of the things I photographed was this Periwinkle flower. I then added more blur to the already blurred background, a weak vignette and a Polaroid film type border.

A Single Blue Flower.