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Author Topic: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?  (Read 8445 times)

2jbourret

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Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« on: April 27, 2011, 02:34:56 PM »

Has any one spent enough time using the new Phase/Mamiya 35mm to give feedback or impressions of the lens?

Edge/corner sharpness of the older versions was always a minus, and CA was strong in the old MF versions.
Is this version substantially better, or is it just a re-packaging of the old optical design?

Doug Peterson

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2011, 03:25:05 PM »

Is this version substantially better, or is it just a re-packaging of the old optical design?

The base optical design is the same.

I also used to think that if a lens wasn't redesigned optically (meaning changing the number/shape/type of elements) it was necessarily a marketing trick and couldn't perform significantly better.

Real world experience, along with an extended conversation Steve Hendrix and I had with Ulrich E. from Schneider at the New York Expo has changed my mind about this.

By slight repositioning of the lens elements based on recalculating the lenses for digital sensors rather than film, improved lens coatings, and tightening manufacturing tolerances can make a significant difference in real-world performance especially in consistency (avoiding excessive sample variation) and Chromatic Abberation. Or not - it varies by the lens. The Phase One redo of the Hartblei 45mm TS, for instance, did not impress us.

So the question for me is no longer "was the lens redesigned" (shape/number/type elements) it is now exclusively "does it perform better in the real world"?

In that regard we've been pleased by the 35D. However the proof is always in the pudding and evaluating one yourself is almost always the best option. We have the 35mm D lens in rental and offer the full rental towards a purchase if you decide to buy one (100% within a week, 75% within 2 weeks etc). Best case you test the lens and find it worth the price and you've lost nothing in the rental. Worst case you find it's not a big enough difference for you then you've saved $1945 (the cost of the lens minus your one day rental).

You could also test it for free at a Phase One Dealer location or event. We have events in Denver and Phoenix coming up and of course there are multiple west coast phase one dealers.

Hopefully some new 35mm D owners can kick in their real world experience. Beyond saying we're generally pleased with the new 35mm D I hesitate to comment more specifically as our testing has not been the scientific/head-to-head testing (e.g. no direct comparisons to the Mamiya 35mm non D) we might normally do since the office has been exceptionally busy since the announcement of the IQ. I have noticed better corner sharpness and reduced CA, but one tough component here is the sample variation amongst the original 35mm non D lenses - in other words has my experience with the 35mm non D been with better or worse copies (never having tested several at once I can't be sure).

Doug Peterson (e-mail Me)
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mediumcool

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2011, 07:45:34 AM »

A discussion on this very topic at GetDPI.
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Doug Peterson

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2011, 09:36:58 AM »

After further real-world testing we have not invested in stocking large quantities of the Phase One 35mm D lens. While comparable to other medium format 35mm lenses we have tested it and found no evidence of significant improvement over good copies of the Mamiya 35mm lens.

We will continue to take orders for the lens, as the quality control on the production of the new lens makes it appealing compared to ensuring your copy of the Mamiya 35mm lens is a good one.

Since we're talking about testing 35mm lenses... Our testing of the Leica S2 35mm lens showed it to be the best medium format lens of this focal length by a safe margin (though not by a mile). Though it's critical when making comparisons to remember the difference between testing a 35mm lens with a cropped sensor versus full-frame sensor. The Phase & Mamiya 35mm lenses are both pretty darn good performing lenses with a cropped sensor, but on a full-frame sensor (P65+ / IQ160 / IQ180) the corner performance is only ok. Regarding the S2 35mm lens the (roughly) equivalent lens for a full frame digital back would be the 45mmD and this lens is a significantly better performer (both compared to the 35D and the 45 non-d).

We have some image samples with the 35mm D lens on a P65+ that potential CI customers are welcome to contact me for.

Doug Peterson (e-mail Me)
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Head of Technical Services, Capture Integration
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mediumcool

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2011, 09:52:49 AM »

Pretty much confirms this.
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wolfbellw.

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2011, 10:01:50 AM »

it's actually a shame that a sophisticated and expensives system
like mamiya/phase/leaf
hardly offers a decent medium wide angle lens,
no shift
and not a single leaf shutter wide angle.
(at least not for a cropped sensor if you want to call the 55' a wide angle)

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mediumcool

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2011, 10:49:39 AM »

it's actually a shame that a sophisticated and expensives system like mamiya/phase/leaf
hardly offers a decent medium wide angle lens, no shift and not a single leaf shutter wide angle.
(at least not for a cropped sensor if you want to call the 55' a wide angle)

I have an old Mamiya 50mm f4 shift lens that is very good stopped down a bit (f8 to f11 or so, with just a bit of easy-to-correct barrel distortion), and there also is the 28mm which can be very good (with sample variation I hear).

But to keep working with an unchanged  30+ year-old lens design is lazy IMO.
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2jbourret

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2011, 04:00:25 PM »



But to keep working with an unchanged  30+ year-old lens design is lazy IMO.
+1 to that. If Phase is going to put their name on a lens that is meant to suit the level of camera/back systems that they make, they should put the work into development and build quality, and put out a lens that is on par w/ their reputation and their customer's expectations. Why not a Schneider 35mm LS? I'd love to have a razor sharp 35 for landscape/arch use, as for me, the 28 is often just too wide. The alternative for the buyer looking for better value can be the used market, where many of the old copies will continue to be available.

mediumcool

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #9 on: May 07, 2011, 10:19:55 PM »

I have an elderly Mamiya 35mm N that is quite sharp in the centre but benefits mightily from Sharpness Falloff correction of around 100% in Capture One.

Also, I read online somewhere that the Pentax 35mm (for their 645 system) was sharper than equivalent Mamiya and Hasselblad lenses (particularly off-axis), but it still has that confounded moustache distortion.
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mediumcool

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #10 on: May 08, 2011, 04:26:45 AM »

Also, I read online somewhere that the Pentax 35mm (for their 645 system) was sharper than equivalent Mamiya and Hasselblad lenses (particularly off-axis), but it still has that confounded moustache distortion.

Googled and that review came up at the top!


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Lester

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #11 on: May 11, 2011, 11:18:48 PM »

Googled and that review came up at the top!




Do you know, if there is a adapter so that we could used the Pentax 645 lens on a Mamiya 645 body? Or they have the same spacing and it is a no go.
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mediumcool

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #12 on: May 12, 2011, 01:01:48 AM »

Do you know, if there is a adapter so that we could used the Pentax 645 lens on a Mamiya 645 body? Or they have the same spacing and it is a no go.

Mamiya 645 register is 63.3mm; Pentax 645 is 70.87mm. So there is a bit of wriggle room there. No automation of course. Have never been able to find an adapter online, though (I thought about doing the same thing).
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mcbroomf

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2011, 05:09:10 AM »

Mirex made a P645 to M645 adapter for me some time ago.  I contacted them to ask if this was possible so that I could use a P645 35mm FA on their M645 T/S adapter (for Canon).  They made me a prototype but ended up coming out with a P645 T/S adapter rather than what Marcus called an "inter adapter".  However he may be prepared to make another one.  Note that my proto uses a rather kludgy way of stopping down the aperture (a rubber band).   Marcus said that they could rework it (for a price) but I've never had it done.
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mediumcool

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2011, 05:52:11 AM »

What might have happened if Pentax had built a removable back 645? History may well have been different.

Always more impressed overall by Pentax lenses than Mamiya’s, though some Sekor glass is good to excellent.
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ondebanks

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2011, 11:01:52 AM »

Mirex made a P645 to M645 adapter for me some time ago.  I contacted them to ask if this was possible so that I could use a P645 35mm FA on their M645 T/S adapter (for Canon).  They made me a prototype but ended up coming out with a P645 T/S adapter rather than what Marcus called an "inter adapter".  However he may be prepared to make another one.  Note that my proto uses a rather kludgy way of stopping down the aperture (a rubber band).   Marcus said that they could rework it (for a price) but I've never had it done.

Mike, if I may ask, how much did Mirex charge you for that adapter?

Apart from the 35mm FA, the other P645 lens of interest to a Mamiya shooter like myself would be the 300mm f4 EDIF.

Ray
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mcbroomf

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #16 on: May 17, 2011, 01:55:29 PM »

Ray, I'll look through my emails and see if I can find out what I paid then send you a PM.  I also like the 75mm, sharps and contradsty.  I used it recently on a large pano with shift to correct verticals.
http://www.pbase.com/mike_broomfield/image/132957495
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ondebanks

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #17 on: May 18, 2011, 05:30:45 AM »

Thanks for the PM, Mike.

Lovely pano shot, BTW!
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tsjanik

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Re: Phase/Mamiya 35mm f/3.5 Digital lens feedback?
« Reply #18 on: May 19, 2011, 10:29:48 AM »

FWIW/FYI:  Despite the reputation of 35mm Pentax 645 FA, some (not all) 645D users have expressed some dissatisfaction and report better results with the older version of the lens.  Sample variation?

Tom
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