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Modern Zuiko 1.8/75mm v classic Biotar 1.5/75mm
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:41 pm    Post subject: Modern Zuiko 1.8/75mm v classic Biotar 1.5/75mm Reply with quote

Here's the comparison of these two lenses. The results are not Earth shuttering, still very interesting IMHO.

http://www.cscmagazine.es/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=87:luminosos-75mm-iolympus-o-biotar&catid=4:objetivos&Itemid=5


PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that is a nice test, thanks for it. it is nice to see that biotar has character and zuiko has everything other - sharpness, less CA etc. but I would rather take that biotar Cool


PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It pains me to say it, but I would take Zuiko hands down. In this comparison the only thing Biotar has going for it is historic value.


PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

what sensor size does the zuiko cover? micro 4/3, i suppose?


PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, m4/3. Presumably it would cover APS-C too (I attached a couple of my 4/3 and m4/3 lenses to NEX, they've almost covered, with longer lenses giving complete coverage with some light fall off in the extreme corners), but they would be unusable due to geometric distortion correction built-in.


PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ok, I'll take the Biotar, then Smile

No, seriously, i would have expected less difference (not incredibly less, considering the biotar is 70 years older) under some aspects.

Also, it would have been a more fair comparison shooting a portrait of a beautiful young lady, instead of cracks in a wall. that's what (i suppose) both lenses are designed to do best.


PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aanything wrote:

No, seriously, i would have expected less difference (not incredibly less, considering the biotar is 70 years older) under some aspects.

Also, it would have been a more fair comparison shooting a portrait of a beautiful young lady, instead of cracks in a wall. that's what (i suppose) both lenses are designed to do best.


Yeah, that's pretty much my feeling as well. Also, they've shot both lenses wide open, which IMHO is not fair either since Biotar is faster, but I expected less difference at f5.6.


PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aanything wrote:
Also, it would have been a more fair comparison shooting a portrait of a beautiful young lady, instead of cracks in a wall. that's what (i suppose) both lenses are designed to do best.
I think the biotar would win - the zuiko is simply too sharp wide open:)


PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

berraneck wrote:
Aanything wrote:
Also, it would have been a more fair comparison shooting a portrait of a beautiful young lady, instead of cracks in a wall. that's what (i suppose) both lenses are designed to do best.
I think the biotar would win - the zuiko is simply too sharp wide open:)


You better wheel out a middle-aged woman for that Smile.


PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fermy wrote:
berraneck wrote:
Aanything wrote:
Also, it would have been a more fair comparison shooting a portrait of a beautiful young lady, instead of cracks in a wall. that's what (i suppose) both lenses are designed to do best.
I think the biotar would win - the zuiko is simply too sharp wide open:)


You better wheel out a middle-aged woman for that Smile.


Laughing


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 2:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fermy wrote:
berraneck wrote:
Aanything wrote:
Also, it would have been a more fair comparison shooting a portrait of a beautiful young lady, instead of cracks in a wall. that's what (i suppose) both lenses are designed to do best.
I think the biotar would win - the zuiko is simply too sharp wide open:)


You better wheel out a middle-aged woman for that Smile.
well, sometimes true;) Laughing


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 2:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There sure has been a lot of progress in optics!


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do this with the Zuiko then... Wink



For some sharpness is everything, for them the Zuiko will be the better lens...


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 7:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kds315* wrote:
Do this with the Zuiko then... Wink
...
For some sharpness is everything, for them the Zuiko will be the better lens...


Klaus, this is a beautiful shot. Btw, I just noticed the original thread with your Biotar images, there are more stunners there. However, there is no way of knowing how it would look with Zuiko. People argue they can easily add glow with filters and PP. Whether it is so or not and how well the glow can be replicated is IMHO an interesting topic itself, however, this is not the direction I want to take the present discussion...

More to the point, isn't this a generic problem with any lens testing? It is not straightforward to envision how the pictures would look like based on test charts. However, when based on similar resolution comparison it is concluded that 1956 Summicron is better than 1973 Jupiter-8 http://forum.mflenses.com/helios-103-vs-jupiter-8-vs-vs-old-collapsible-summicron-t53684.html people are generally happy. It is only when something as iconic as 75mm Biotar is questioned, artistic arguments are brought into play. It's not as if J-8 is a coke bottle that nobody likes, many stunning images were made and will be made with it.


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 7:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aanything wrote:
ok, I'll take the Biotar, then Smile

No, seriously, i would have expected less difference (not incredibly less, considering the biotar is 70 years older) under some aspects.

Also, it would have been a more fair comparison shooting a portrait of a beautiful young lady, instead of cracks in a wall. that's what (i suppose) both lenses are designed to do best.


+1


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Attila wrote:
Aanything wrote:
ok, I'll take the Biotar, then Smile

No, seriously, i would have expected less difference (not incredibly less, considering the biotar is 70 years older) under some aspects.

Also, it would have been a more fair comparison shooting a portrait of a beautiful young lady, instead of cracks in a wall. that's what (i suppose) both lenses are designed to do best.


+1


I doubt whether lens designers have any notion of what subject matter their products will be used for, except in the old days (the 1920s and earlier) when there were 'portrait' lenses, which were used with 8x10 view cameras; there were also 'commercial' lenses intended to be used for non-portrait work. These lenses were designed to fall off rapidly away from the center, which gave a pleasing portrait. They also reduced the need for retouching. Since the ascendancy of the 35mm camera, lenses of about 80-180mm are considered good for 'portrait' work, but the lenses are not designed to have the same sort of falloff as these old ones from the late 19th and early 20 century, used on view cameras. Note the falloff in the portraits of Carol Lombard and Clara Bow, below. These effects were not done with lens attachments: the lenses were designed to be like this. Note that these lenses were not just 'blurry'; they were very sharp in the central area.





Commercial Ektar:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Kodak-Commercial-Ektar-8-1-2-F-6-3-in-a-No-3-Acme-Synchro-shutter-/140838283248?pt=Camera_Lenses&hash=item20ca9da7f0

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Kodak-Commercial-Ektar-14-inch-F-6-3-in-No-5-Universal-Sycnro-Shutter-Flange-/130786234275?pt=Camera_Lenses&hash=item1e73778fa3


Last edited by Oreste on Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:22 pm; edited 10 times in total


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Beautiful example, thanks! I love so much this style shoots!


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One more note about Biotar 75mm f1.5 it is super sharp at every aperture, if I do a test I can make any lens to winner what I want ...


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems to me they have skewed these results to favour the Zuiko. It's marketing, 'hey, this new Zuiko beats the legendary Biotar' just to sell more Zuikos.

I've seen many super sharp RAW samples from the Biotar, so I'm just ignoring these test results, they seem bogus.

Also, what importance is corner performance is a portrait lens? The corners are where you'll have background and are concerned with bokeh not sharpness.


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Attila wrote:
One more note about Biotar 75mm f1.5 it is super sharp at every aperture, if I do a test I can make any lens to winner what I want ...


Sure thing. So you think their test is rigged or let's say their Biotar copy is not representative of true Biotar performance?


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

iangreenhalgh1 wrote:
Seems to me they have skewed these results to favour the Zuiko. It's marketing, 'hey, this new Zuiko beats the legendary Biotar' just to sell more Zuikos.



This is just simple paranoia. Maybe 100 people in the world would care how Zuiko compares with Biotar. Maybe a couple of thousands would know/remember what Biotar is. If this was about marketing, they would show Zuiko trouncing Canon EF 1.2/85 L or Contax Planar.


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fermy wrote:
iangreenhalgh1 wrote:
Seems to me they have skewed these results to favour the Zuiko. It's marketing, 'hey, this new Zuiko beats the legendary Biotar' just to sell more Zuikos.



This is just simple paranoia. Maybe 100 people in the world would care how Zuiko compares with Biotar. Maybe a couple of thousands would know/remember what Biotar is. If this was about marketing, they would show Zuiko trouncing Canon EF 1.2/85 L or Contax Planar.


Precisely, and there is no way this old lens can compare to the modern one.


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just saying, I think they made the Biotar look less good than it is. Paranoia is not one of my failings.


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

iangreenhalgh1 wrote:
Just saying, I think they made the Biotar look less good than it is. Paranoia is not one of my failings.


I doubt that very much. People have some romantic notion that pre-war lenses were good. They were adequate, but no more, and the fastest lenses were actually not that good. The latest lenses from the major manufacturers are light-years ahead of those old lenses. The new 50mm Summicron APO-ASPH is astounding (and very expensive, even for a Leica lens).

You can read about it here:

http://www.overgaard.dk/leica-50mm-APO-Summicron-M-ASPH-f-20.html

There has been steady improvement in optical design over the years, without doubt. Sometimes, though, a major effort is needed to improve upon a classic lens. It took Leica 45 years to improve upon the 50mm Summilux-M of 1962.

Read the story here:

http://www.kenrockwell.com/leica/50mm-f14.htm

But this Biotar is not such a lens.


Last edited by Oreste on Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:55 pm; edited 5 times in total


PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fermy wrote:
Attila wrote:
One more note about Biotar 75mm f1.5 it is super sharp at every aperture, if I do a test I can make any lens to winner what I want ...


Sure thing. So you think their test is rigged or let's say their Biotar copy is not representative of true Biotar performance?


yes, I think.