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The best Sharp Lenses....


Well-Known Member
Good day all,
...ask if exist a list of the most sharpest lens ever made for 35mm (better if old), will like to try many to make a good list for the SD14,
can have different performance for crop factor?

and already exist a way where anybody around world can test is own lens in the same identical way, and of course with the same identical instrument/tester...?
example: like print a "drawing/pattern test" on a A4 and from 1,2,3 meters in the same light (like sun or...), make tests and post photos (here the problem will be the different printers performance).
Any other Idea?


Well-Known Member
I don't know if they are the sharpest of all time...but I have a few MF lenses that I love and use...

Tamron Adaptall
90mm Macro
70-150mm Macro

50mm f1.2
35mm Tilt-shift
55mm Macro

Zeiss ZF for Nikon
85mm f1.4
35mm f2

58mm f1.4 Nokton

Hope this helps you out a little....I use the SD14 converted to Nikon-F for MF lenses....


Well-Known Member
Tony, I'm curious about the 3 last lenses you elencate (both Zeiss & Voighander), can you please post 3 photo samples?


Well-Known Member
Give me a few days...and I will take some new pictures of them...everything so far is just around the house...have not gotten out much since summer started...

Tony C.


Well-Known Member
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These are my sharpest lenses I have:

Carl Zeiss 28mm f2.8 Planar T*
Nikon 35mm f1.4 AIS
Canon FL 55mm f1.2
Carl Zeiss 85mm f1.4 Planar T*
Carl Zeiss Jena 180mm f2.8 "Olympic" Sonnar
Nikon Micro Nikkor 200mm f4 IF AIS
Tamron SP 300mm f2.8 LD IF (60B)

I have many more but they are the sharpest.


Well-Known Member
Thanks a lot DSG,
I like to ask you, please, tell me how that Canon FL 55mm fit on the SD14, can you show me a photo of the conversion of the lens (I imagine)?

Thanks Bustoner :)


Well-Known Member
Hi Bustoner. The registration distance of the Canon FL/FD mount is 42mm, 2mm less than Sigma SA, so to allow the lens to reach infinity focus on the SD14 I had to turn down the rear boss (the bit the mounting plate screws onto) by 2mm on a lathe. This brings the rear element 2mm closer to the SD14's sensor. Then I fitted an SA mounting plate to it, plus a shim from a Sigma lens, and job was a goodun.
Here are some pics of the conversion (after machining):






And one on the camera:



Well-Known Member
Thanks for the conversion photos... very good work!

I'm trying that type of conversion on a Konica Hexanon 50mm f1.4, think not possible... the back element is just at limit, and the registration distance is 40.7mm (need to trim 3.3mm) ...checking if I will touch the IR filter.

...a really good lens :)


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Dont have any MTF figures for the 50/1.4 but the Hexanon 50mm f2 might be even better as it scores an impressive 4.5 MTF.
You also need to make sure which Konica Bayonet mount it is...Konica AR is 40.7 but Konica F is 40.5...3.3mm difference is bad enough but 3.5mm is even worse!
Best of luck though as I considered getting one a while back but chickened out because of the large registration distance diiference.


Has anyone used new Tamron 60mm f2 macro, both for macro and portrait? How does it compare with Canon 60mm f2.8 Macro and Sigma 50mm f2.8 DG EX macro lenses?

From Tamron website (
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) the new 60mm f2 Tamron macro looks impressive (priced @ $495). Presently only canon EF mount available.


Active Member
The nicest low cost lens that I have found is the Industar 61 l/z
I paid $90 for mine on Ebay. It was still new in the box so I paid a little extra for it.




Active Member
This was taken with a Helios 44-2 made in 1981. It has less contrast than my other lenses but it's the sharpest overall. It's sharper than any of the Pentax lenses that I have. I don't mind the low contrast since it can be increased with processing.



Active Member
M42 Good options

I have a small set of really cool lenses for use with the SD15

- Fujinon EBC 50mm F=1.4: This lens shows superb resolution and sharpness. Truly awesome

- Fujinon EBC 135mm F=3.5: Also a cracker. Not 2.8 but razor sharp

- Pentax SMC 85mm f=1.9: Very compact and excellent even wide open

- Tamron Adaptall 90mm F=2.5 SP: The best macro you can have in M42. Nothing beats it. Heavy.

- Tamron Adaptall 28mm F=2.5 BBAR: Good and well priced "normal" for 1.6 crop cameras. Much better than Pancolars and Pentacon 29/2.8

- Pentax SMC Takumar 28mm F=3.5: Maybe the best 28mm but F3.5

- Tamron Adaptall 24mm F=2.8: Good option for a "38mm". It's difficult to have something better unless you pay much much more.

- Chinon-Tomioka 35mm F=2.8: Good inexpensive lens. Reasonably sharp.

- Mamiya-Sekor 21mm F4: This is a very rare lens and a decent performer at F4. Excellent at F8. Expensive even well used at ebay, something around $400


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Actually, its more accurate to say its one of the best macro lenses you can get with a native M42 mount. Its contrast in pretty low however and its not really that sharp.
The Nikon Micro Nikkor 55mm f2.8 Ai-S and Micro Nikkor 200mm f4 ED IF Ai-S are both far, far better macro lenses and you can use them as M42 mount lenses via the Roxsen Nikon lens to M42 camera adapter plus an M42-SA adapter.



Active Member
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Yes, that was what I meant. But mine has good contrast and it's very, very sharp. I also have three other macros, a Micro Nikkor 50/3.5, a Canon Compact Macro 50/2.5 for EOS and a Sigma 70/2.8 EX DG. The Tamron is a tough match for any of those ones.

If you wanna play with non-M42 , try a Summicron 50/2.5 in Leica screw mount and a M39 to M42 adapter. It rocks ! Or even a Cosina-Voigtlander Skopar 50/2.5 in LTM. Of course the mentioned lenses won't allow infinity focus and they will work like having an extention tube.

I also forgot to mention the venerable soviet Industar-61 L/Z , It's a 50mm F2.8 with a very close focus capability, about 30cm. It can be extremely sharp (if you had luck and got a decent one).

Thanks for the comment !


Active Member
I recently purchased a Russian Tair 11A. 135mm, f/2.8. Very sharp, and the 20 blades of the iris makes for some great bokeh and conversation.