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TAIR-3 300mm - an impressive performance
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi tinybynature,

1. yes, the pistol grip trigger still stops down the aperture (supposed that you did not remove the inner lever).

2. you can stick an smd microswitch to the inner level by double-sided glue tape and connect it to the wired remote trigger.

I have also glued second microswitch (of standard size) to the right side of the grip to simulate half-press of the trigger. I push it by a small movement of my left thumb up (I am a left shoulder sniper). The combo:

Although the modified grip is quite convenient, I only rarely use it because the whole combo is too heavy to carry.


PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Michal,

Thank you very much for the great explanation!! Based on your modification, are you only using the trigger for the aperture?

I notice you have the Tair 3 - S. Was this part of the Zenit FS-12 kit?

Do you have the MC (multi-coated) version? If not, have you seen any reviews regarding the difference between the two versions?

Do you know if the lenses produced in the early 1990's were of any lesser quality than those made in the 80's, like your FS-12 kit?

There is someone locally that has the Zenit XPS (FS-12-3) up for sale. It has the multi-coated version of the Tair 3-S and I am trying to figure out if it is worth paying for that model, or go with one of the older more available models.

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

First of all - I am sorry for the typo:
... stick an smd microswitch to the inner level ...

should be
... stick an smd microswitch to the inner lever ...

I have this smd microswitch glued to the inner lever and connected to the "full-press" pin of the camera remote control connector. When I pull the pistol grip trigger, the inner lever moves up. The pin at the inner lever mechanically closes the aperture (this works the same way as the original setup). Then, the button of the inner smd microswitch is pressed by further lever movement, and the microswitch triggers the shutter. I have adjusted the microswitch elevation by several layers of the glue tape, so that it triggers the shutter just after the aperture is closed. The outer microswitch (the green one at the picture) is connected to the "half-press" pin of the camera remote control connector.

So, the "picture taking procedure" looks like this:
1. switch on the "half-press" microswitch (thumb slightly moves up)
2. check the focus in viewfinder (e.g. green focus confirmation dot like in my Minolta or Sony)
3. pull the pistol grip trigger, which:
3a. closes the aperture (mechanically)
3b. triggers the shutter (by the inner "full-press" microswitch)

As for my lens version - frankly, I have absolutely no idea whether it is MC or single coated version. I have bought it without camera and without any paperwork. Just the metal case, grip, lens, filters and screewdriver. The grip is signed "FOTOSNAIPER 12", the lens is "TAIR-3S 4.5/300", serial number 8725783. For the money I have payed, I like the lens. It is pretty good even fully open. Unfortunately I cannot compare it to anything else, as it is my only long telephoto lens.


PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lloydy wrote:
It still works, here's a couple of pictures from the test, one is a 100% crop. Both have been lightened slightly but otherwise untouched and shot at ISO 200 - 1/500s and probably f8, I shot JPEG for the test. On a tripod as well.

the eye contact & feather detail on the blackbird is just fantastic! decided to look for one, note that weight is about twice that of the modern sigma 170 - 500 AF which I use as my main long reach lens

PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 7:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

here's a pic of Canon 500d + tair lens


PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm late to this thread, but I had to comment. And I'll admit, I just scanned most of the posts, so I hope I'm not repeating something that was already mentioned.

Very impressive photos I'm seeing. The lens seems to have exceptionally well-controlled CA. Based on my own experience with 300mm teles, I think that a large reason for this is because it is an f/4.5 and not an f/4. I believe this is why Nikon did not make a MF 300mm f/4, but made a f/4.5 instead. Canon, on the other hand, decided to push things, and produced a 300/4. The result was a lens that exhibited a large amount of CA. DAMHIK.

So, was the Tair marketed as an APO? Because it sure looks like one.

I"m curious also. If one were going for a "photosniper" outfit, other than price, is there an advantage to the Tair over a Novoflex 400mm (I don't think Novoflex made a 300mm sniper lens)? In other words, would you say that the Tair is optically superior to Novoflex telephotos?