Images > People, Portraits, Street, PJ & Cityscapes

At dusk with the 35/2.8 PC

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Df, 35/2.8 PC (late version), all shots @f/8 with little to massive shift (beyond recommended limits).
The lens is, optically speaking, better than the 28/3.5 : less CA, better color, lesser distortion, and nice sunstars to boot. But the longer FL makes it impractical for cityscapes, where 28 seems ideal.

second batch. One more remark : on a comparative test with the Zeiss 35/2 ZF2 or the Sigma A 35/1.4, the latter two are significantly better (saturation, sharpness, microcontrast). But, given its age and its extra features, the 35/2.8 PC remains worth considering. I had not used it for years, maybe because 1° 35mm is not my favourite FL, and 2° the Zeiss is unsurpassed in handling backlighting or night shots.

You have preserved the near-dark look of dusk very well in this series.  You make a good advertisement for the lens, despite its shortcomings.  The last shot has a lovely sky.

I also love the last one.  The sky, the atmosphere, the light...everything fits nicely together.

Thanks Keith. On the "Casual Photophile", you'll see another review by a 35mm FL enthusiast, that's why he is even more positive about this lens. Here :

Other than the reviewer, I generally do not use tripods, even when "shifting". A waste of time. Minimal corrections in PP if need be (and none in this particular case). Holding the camera horizontally while cranking the lens up or downwards is not difficult, even without visual cues: the screw action is smooth. You can also check verticals near the left and right edge of the viewfinder.

As far as dusk is concerned, my most used control on a camera is exposure compensation. I want the jpegs to look right. Since I'm in manual mode when using the PC lenses, I do not even use Exp Comp, but underexpose the shots, typically by -2/3 before sunset, and -1 to -1 1/3 after, down to -2 for dark scenes at night (exceptionally -3, depending on how much of the whole field is lit). Corrections in PP rarely exceed 1/2 stop, just to homogenize the results. By "underexposing" (i.e. exposing for the bright lights), I make sure that highlights keep their colors. The Df has no annoying color noise patterns in the dark parts (at least if remaining at or below 12800), and since I do not push the dark parts (skies, shadows) because they are not supposed to be of interest, luminance noise is not enhanced either.


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