aftermarket lenses : LUSENET : Canon FD : One Thread

anyone familiar with aftermarker fd lenses, Imade, Phoenix? any suggestions on good ones? or all they not worth the sacrifice of a genuine canon??

-- giselle (, February 26, 2001


Aftermarket lenses I've used and liked:

Tamron SP 90/f:2.5 or 2.8 Macro--as good as anything made by anyone.

Tamron SP 35-105/f:2.8 (Constant Aperture)--the only zoom I own these days. Sharp as a tack with nice contrast, but some barrel distortion at the wide end, so I wouldn't use it for architecture, but it's perfect for parties, events, and such. Not cheap, but becoming more reasonable since Tamron replaced it with a 28-105.

Sigma 24/f:2.8--I haven't compared it side-by-side with the Canon 24/2.8, but in its class it's always had the reputation of being one of Sigma's best lenses, and was never plagued by the build-quality problems that came with the heavier zooms and long teles. I have tested it on the same roll under the same conditions as the FD 20/2.8, and--sacrelige of sacreliges--the Sigma is sharper.

Aftermarket lens that are okay in my experience but not great:

Sigma 75-300/f:4.5-5.6 APO. Kind of low contrast, but I got some decent photos out of it for a long time before I could afford some better lenses.

Soligor C/D 500/f:8 Macro mirror--Suffers from the usual problems of mirror lenses (bad bokeh, some reflective loss and reduction in contrast due to the inefficiency of the mirror), but pretty sharp, super light weight, extremely compact, close focusing, and takes a 77mm filter as well as rear-mounted filters. "C/D" was Soligor's "pro" line in the 1970s, but it's name hasn't maintained any kind of reputation, so this can be a great lens to have at very low cost. Requires a T-mount.

Aftermarket lens I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy:

Tokina 17mm/f:3.5 (the old one. I don't know about the current one). Soft at any aperture (at least mine was).

To watch for in the future:

Cosina/Voigtlander has announced that two of their popular rangefinder lenses are coming out in manual focus SLR mounts: 75mm and 125mm Macro.

-- David Goldfarb (, February 27, 2001.

The old Vivitar 70-210 Series 1 had a very good reputation. Later versions of this lens, not as great.

I would stay away from any of the odder named ones (Phoenix, Albinar, etc.) Most that I have seen have very big problems with flare. Not dots of light, but a VERY serious loss of contrast.

-- Terry Carraway (, February 27, 2001.

thanks for all your help! I'll be sure to follow your advice!!!

-- giselle (, February 28, 2001.

I had a Tokina 300mm f/2.8 Apo several years ago. Used it for the toughest lens test of all, astrophotography. The lens was excellent with no problems. I highly recommend it to all.

-- Jack Szymanski (, July 17, 2001.


You mentioned that you wouldn't wish the old version of the tokina 17mm f/3.5 on you worse enemy. How do determine the old version from the new version?

To address the original posters question...I only have experience with 2 aftermarket lenses: the tokina 24 f/2.8 and tokina 80-200 f/2.8 both for Canon FD and both are fabulous.

thanks, brian

-- brian jackson (, January 09, 2002.

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