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Newly Acquired 24mm f/2 AI-S. Outstanding! (with images)

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by TMR Design, Aug 18, 2008.

  1. This is a followup to another thread I recently started.

    I picked up a mint condition 24mm f/2 AI-S and went out shooting this afternoon to give it a workout.

    I am very impressed and happy as a clam. This thing rocks. I know this will sound funny to some people but my keeper rate (sharpness and focus) was 100%. My kit, as it stands now, doesn't give me that with my AF lenses.

    I'm blown away. Color, saturation, IQ, sharpness, detail... all excellent.

    This is a sampling of the images I just shot out at a local marina and park. Most were shot at f/5.6 or f/8 which is where the sweet spot seems to be and I just couldn't be happier.

    I've included some 100% crops on some of the images. These have a small amount of in-camera sharpening in the Standard picture control setting but no additional sharpening or post processing other than some quick crops.















  2. Robert

    I'd be happy too. Really sharp images. Just wondering how old and how common that lens is. Also where's Anna??:biggrin:


  3. Hey Ted,

    I believe my copy is about 25 years old or so and so very minty. It looks like it was never used.

    More Anna is on the way and this lens, although a beautiful walkaround, was purchased for my full length portraiture in the studio.

    I expect to be shooting Anna (and a friend) with this lens on Thursday of this week. Images will follow shortly after.
  4. Well these images look outstanding! To say the least I expected them to look so. The older lenses despite not having ED glass and some of the newer coatings can and does render images that will rival modern glass. I also am in full agreement with you in regards to Manual Focus. Here you have complete control of the lens and it's aperture. This slowing down if you will of the photographic process I think brings more benefits than not. Certainly if you weren't shooting action what is the urgency? Spending that extra moment or so looking through the viewfinder can all to often render a shot from being so so to wonderful.
  5. Thank you Tony. You're absolutely correct. The other thing I'm noticing in my shooting is that even though I am more thoughtful about composition I'm not being slowed down by manually focusing. I used to be...big time... but I see that changing and my ability to acquire focus and shoot is getting so much better. I got some shots today of gulls in flight and I was still able to grab the shots and have them in focus. The whole process makes you think about where you are on the focus ring and where you want to be, whereas when you first start manually focusing I think we all just kind of turn the ring, sometimes in the wrong direction, and hope for the best.

    Now I rarely turn the ring in the wrong direction and I'm able to get where i want or pre-plan where I want it and set up my shots more carefully. All in all, I love manual focus. I wouldn't dispense with AF altogether but I love the creative freedom that MF offers and in the studio I can't see doing it any other way.
  6. Nice shots Robert!

    My 24 f/2 AIS is a bit soft at 2.0 and gets much better by f/4. For me, f/2 seems to be for focusing only.

    It's on the shelf and does not get a lot of use these days, maybe I should take it out for a stroll one day...

    Warm regards,
  7. Hi Bill,

    I would agree that this lens is a bit soft at f/2. For the kind of shooting I'll be doing, either as a general walkaround lens or in the studio f/2 doesn't even come in to play. At f/2.8 things begin to tighten up and by f/4 it's beautiful.

    I typically don't shoot at 24mm in low light and my requirements for many lenses, especially those used for portraiture is that it be sharp from f/4 to f/11. Larger or smaller than that doesn't concern me. That's why this lens is so perfect for my needs and why I'm ecstatic about its performance.

    I think you should get that sucker off the shelf and take it for a spin. :cool: 
  8. Nikkor AIS

    Nikkor AIS

    Jun 5, 2008
    Great Capture's Robert, Did you pick up a hood to go with the lens?

  9. I don't see MF as a liability. Certainly the old time masters, Duncan, Bresson, Capra, to name a few didn't find it a problem either. They "mastered" the focus and aperture rings. In those days you learned and knew which direction to twist the focus ring, you knew exactly by "feel" what aperture you were set at and they some how always found the "decisive moment" to shoot. I am not saying that AF isn't an improvement and for some type of shooting real boon such as in fast action sports, birds in flight and jumpy children but I think we agree save anything else MF serves us well. There will be those with "eye" problems. But thanks to focusing screens such as the Katz Eye which you were kind enough to demonstrate to me would solve the problem with my 60 year old eyes.
    For me slowing down and doing MF yielded me a significantly higher rate of keepers on yesterday's shoot than any other time in the recent past.
  10. Nuteshack

    Nuteshack Guest

  11. Great work on the shots and crops. The crops really help showcase this lens. Well done!
  12. mood


    Jun 27, 2007
    So Fla
    very nice Robert
    I had one also and loved the look it gave

    alas, the manual metering and focusing with my old D80 were too much and I sold it

    now that I have metering and a larger viewfinder, I intend to get some older gems once again
  13. That they do Mood! To bad Nikon doesn't produce lenses like that anymore. They should take a cue from Zeiss and bring out stuff like that today!
  14. Very nice captures. Remember to update your signature to include this gem.
  15. Thank you Scott. I was amazed when I was zooming in on the back of the camera. The sharpness was noticeable even in the small thumbnails but I've learned from past experience that everything looks good on the D300 LCD. Once I saw it at 100% and beyond I knew this thing was razor sharp.

    Hey Frank,

    Now that you can meter you should definitely look into getting some of this older glass again. Speaking of metering, other than the usual adjustments you would normally make when the camera's metering system would get confused, I found that matrix metering works beautifully with the older glass. Not only was I getting keepers in terms of sharpness but metering was spot on.

    I didn't adjust exposure on any of the shots posted. Quite a piece of glass!
  16. Thanks Brian.

    The sig has been updated.
  17. Hi Gregory,

    Thank you very much.

    I didn't get a hood yet. I haven't found the original recommended hood anywhere but the alternate HN-3 is available, so I'll grab one of those.
  18. F1A1


    Apr 17, 2011
    It's an old post, i know, but are the images still somewhere available?
    Really like to see samples with this lens.
  19. leaf


    Aug 6, 2008
    I would like to see some images too, thanks!
  20. The 28 2.8 AIS I owned was ultra sharp. The thing was as sharp as my 24-70 AFS!
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