Lenses that swirl

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by guissimo, Feb 28, 2009.

  1. guissimo

    guissimo Member

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    Lenses that swirl

    I saw two shots taken with a Summitar 50mm f2 lens that show a swirly background (though not as extreme as some LF lenses).
    Are there other 35mm format lenses that swirl (obviously, under certain circumstances) and that can be found at a reasonable price. To me a reasonable price will be less than $200 U.S?

    I'm particularly interested in an LTM lens. If no such lenses exist, are there SLR lenses that have this property?
    I'm aware there are LF lenses that swirl, but at the moment I don't have any interest in hauling around my 4x5 Cambo to take an occasional swirly shot.


    These are the Summitar shots I'm talking about:

    Flickr user:tetsuya miyoshi

    [​IMG]

    Flickr user:Marc-A
    [​IMG]


    Thanks.
     
  2. mudman

    mudman Member

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    The summar F2 does this as well
    not the best example but
    [​IMG]
     
  3. OP
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    guissimo

    guissimo Member

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    mudman,

    Thanks for the info.
    It seems it might take a while to find one of those lenses in decent condition.
    I found some nice examples taken with the summar that show the effect I want.

    Flickr user:CarloBambino
    [​IMG]

    Flickr user:Nobu35
    [​IMG]
     
  4. mferrarini

    mferrarini Member

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    Whoa there! Dizzying effects. Good thing I was sitting down when I viewed these examples.
     
  5. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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  6. manfromh

    manfromh Member

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    not ltm, but m42, but a Helios-44 (58mm f2) has some swirl. They are very very cheap also.
    EDIT: they come in m39 also, but with a longer working distance so you cant use it on a RF.
     

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  7. OP
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    guissimo

    guissimo Member

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    @mferrarini,
    Yeah, the effect can be a bit overwhelming. I do like the effect for an occasional portrait or flower shot.

    @Ole,
    Thanks for the info. I'll look for examples with the background as you suggested to see how swirlies compare to the summar & summarit.

    @manfromh,
    Nice shot. Swirl and low contrast. That's exactly what I want. I'll check that lens too. Thanks for the info.
     
  8. OP
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    guissimo

    guissimo Member

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    Some nice examples showing the swirl effect.

    Helios-44 58/2
    Flicker user: terrosa
    [​IMG]

    Flicker user:william eleven
    [​IMG]
     
  9. kavandje

    kavandje Member

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  10. matti

    matti Member

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    So, what is swirl in optical terms? Astigmatism? Coma?
    /matti
     
  11. Prest_400

    Prest_400 Member

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    Also never heard of it. I came to this topic being curious, just What the heck is swirl?
    It look like coma for me...
     
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    guissimo

    guissimo Member

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    I don't know the exact details of what causes the swirl. From what I've read, it seems vignetting is responsible for the swirlies.

    This guy explains the effect:
    Scroll down to "Shape of the blur patch"

    http://toothwalker.org/optics/bokeh.html

    There is an old thread about the effect at the LF forum.
    That Elusive Swirly Bokeh

    -gm
     
  13. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Sometimes it's astigmatism, sometimes it's coma, sometimes it's a combination of many factirs - like the Petzvals with a combination of field curvature and mechanical vignetting (in addition to coma, sperical aberration and chromatic aberration and a healthy dose of astigmatism).
     
  14. matti

    matti Member

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    Now you sound like my optician when she tells me it is going to be expensive!

    /matti
     
  15. Chazzy

    Chazzy Member

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    Thanks for the warning: that's the last thing I want in a lens.
     
  16. walter23

    walter23 Member

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    Yeah, that swirly stuff can be really distracting and in a lot of cases its nothing but detrimental to the image. I have to admit I have a petzval, but it only cost me $15 so I feel okay about it :wink:

    I also have a Helios 44M, but it cost me about $25 and I've seen that in a lot of cases you can avoid the swirl by carefully chosing your background and composition.
     
  17. elekm

    elekm Member

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    One lens design that will give you this is the Tessar type (4 elements in three groups).

    That includes the Tessar, Xenar and a number of other lenses. This effect is most pronounced when shooting wide open to about f/5.6 at close to medium distances (generally a maximum of 15 feet or so), as I recall.
     
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    guissimo

    guissimo Member

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    O.K, so a Tessar type LTM lens would be the Elmar 50mm F3.5 and its copies like the FED 50mm f:3.5 suggested earlier.

    elekm, thanks for the info.

    By the way, I just found a Summitar at a decent price, so I'll try to get one of the cheaper lenses mentioned on this thread to compare the swirlies. I'll keep the one that has the most pronounced effect. Hopefully, it would be the Fed :wink:

    Thanks all for your suggestions.