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f/0.75 and be there

Discussion in 'Macro, Flowers, Insects, and Greenery' started by nfoto, May 11, 2005.

  1. nfoto

    nfoto Guest

    For my flower and close-up shooting, I've modified the old adage by substituting f/0.75 or f/0.8 for f/8. With these lenses, there is no way of changing the aperture, distance cannot be changed, so all that remains is in the literally sense to focus on the image itself. Not the worst thing to do.

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  2. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005

    What lens is this? f/0.75?? Talk about your basic shallow DOF. 8)

    Cool shot.
  3. I still have yet to move on from seeing a subject versus seeing an image. Beautiful shot.
  4. nfoto

    nfoto Guest

    Mostly surplus lenses, orginally made for medical imaging and X-ray photography. Can be had quite cheap but the days of $10 lenses are gone, too many people know about them by now.

    I use Rodenstock lenses (TV-Heligon or XR-Heligon, ranging from 42 mm and 50 mm f/0.75 to 125 mm f/1.25), Oude Delft Rayxar 50 m mf/0.75, Nikkor 85 mm f/1.0, MATI 86 mm f/1.2, and Kowa 55 mm f/0.8. Some given to me for free, other purchased on flea-markets or ebay. Together they must weigh nearly 25kg, so by necessity I just carry a (small) selection in a small, well-padded metal case.

    Many of them have been CPU-modified so they can be used on all Nikons.
  5. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005

    Thanks for the detailed reply. I guess this is what I would call pushing the boundaries of photography (or is it more of a return to the basics?).

    Considering your level of expertise and experience, I can understand why you would want to experiment in areas like this. I on the other hand, am still trying to figure out how to take decent shots with the best and latest technology available.

    Thanks for showing us what is still out there to be discovered.
  6. Bjorn, there you go again. I intentionally did not look at your Heligon pics for quite a while, because everytime I did I wanted one of these monsters. This zero DOF effect is simply thrilling.
    I have seen these lenses at ebay at times but never screwed up to buy one.
    There was an Australian guy over at DPR (Regit Young) who used the same lenses and produced similar quality stuff. I have not heard of him for months, though.
  7. Nice one !!! Looks very abstract... that's what's great with digital: one can CREATE and not only SHOOT !

    BTW, i saw a nice Rodenstock APO-Rodagon 150mm. f/4 that i would like to put on my bellow, but they were asking CHF 600.- (US $490.-) for it :x ... so it'll be for another time :wink: !
  8. regit


    Jan 31, 2005
    Been doing mostly film lately and I'm not quite sure where I can post my stuff?!?!? Not as creative as Bjorn's, here're some taken today with a XR-Heligon 77/1.1 on Tri-X 400 (and hence the obvious lost of color :) .

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    View attachment 8623
    View attachment 8624
  9. Bjorn do you use a focusing rail when you use those lenses?
  10. nfoto

    nfoto Guest

    No. The image goes in and out of focus on its own, so just the slightest movement will bring it out of focus. DOF is 0.1 mm or so :) 

    These lenses are always used hand-held, on the other hand, I sometimes get shutter speeds above 1/8000 sec so have to add a ND filter to the lens in order to get a shot.
  11. Bjorn,

    Beautiful abstract image. I'm ver interested to experiment on shallow DOF photography too. Could you please give more details about how and where to get those lenses CPU modified. Thanks in advance.

  12. Regit,

    Long time not hearing from you. Glad you're back. Nice pictures. Bjorn and you just give a push to go out right now to try shallow DOF photography. How are you and your lady?
  13. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Regit :

    You scoundrel ! Why, you can post your shots here for all of us to see.

    It's been far too long since I've had the pleasure of seeing your work, not to mention reading your comments about the shooting. They've been sorely missed.

    John P.
  14. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Hey there Regit,

    Long time no seeeeeeeee.

    who cares what you shoot with.

    Great stuff as usual.. Like the third one alot.

    sorry to steal your thread here for a hello to Regit, but know you don't mind. I love your googly eyed flower :>)))))

    Both of you please come around more often and share the world through your lenses...and your great knowledge with us.
  15. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Bjørn :

    As ever, a true treat to see your work with a lens that I may never find...

    OTOH, you've inspired me on a number of other "unusual" lenses, including the Nikkor-O "CRT", and I've not once regretted buying a lens that you've extolled.

    Now, to find this 0.75 f/stop lens, and then for me to have the skill to refit/chip it, well, that may be another matter. 8)

    And BTW, on a related note, thanks so much for the work you do on your site. I consider it to be one of the best written and most informative sites available; one that I refer to on a regular basis. That's offered as a sincere and honest compliment, knowing that you received a lot of very unfair e-mails after your D2X review. Thanks for your efforts.

    John P.
  17. nfoto

    nfoto Guest

    These lenses can be found any place where hospitals upgrade their X-ray equipment, at e-Bay, surplus medical stores, etc. etc. you name it. In other words, not really hard to find if you snoop around a litlle off the main road.

    This particular lens has a story to go with it. Some months ago I visited a friend of mine in Bergen, west Norway, and showed him some of my Heligons. He then remembered that he had himself an acquitance who worked at the X-ray department of the local hospital, and during our conversation he got a little excited about asking this guy whether he had access to any such lens. Soon thereafter he called him and was told "sure, plenty, just come over and have a look". We knocked on the guy's door in 5 minutes flat, and were shown a floor-to-ceiling bookshelf filled to the brim with surplus X-ray lenses. He had so many he said we could just pick some samples for free, which we did promptly. That night we returned with a bag full of X-ray goodies, amongst them four absolutely perfect 50 mm f/0.75 lenses. Most of the 42/50 mm lenses I've used so far have had severe element separation due to radioactive contamination, but these lenses were pristine and pure joy to behold.

    As to the CPU-modification, that's not really so difficult. I mostly mount a 52 mm male-thread adapter (Cokin) on the rear of the lens by means of 3 flat-headed screws, and add a K2 adapter plus possibly a K4 (or a 52 mm filter with the glass removed) to get the spacing right. Usually there is plenty of room here to drill the needed mounting holes in the K2 bayonet, and fit the CPU print from a 45/2.8 AI-P Nikkor. However ,with the emergence of D2X (and D2H), I consider this practice no longer necessary unless I want to use the lens on a D70 or suchlike body.
  18. A great thank for the infos Bjorn. Now I know they are from X-ray equipment, I will ask my brother-in-law which works for a hospital if he can find some for me. Best regards.
  19. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    Bjorn and Regit,

    I have to second what Gale said. You guys offer a glimpse into a totally different world than most of us see (and shoot in).

    More, please. :wink:
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