All posts in cabril

Sigma 10-20mm f3.5 EX DC on a Sony A7

Sigma 10-20mm f3.5 EX DC on a Sony A7

Posted by / 2nd March 2018 / Categories: cabril, camera and lens / 0 Comments

When I was looking at cashing in my trusty Pentax dslr cameras and buying one of these new fangled Sony A7 things I spent some time searching the interweb for a usable ultra/super wide angle lens. I already had a Sigma 10-20mm (on a PK mount) but didn’t know if this crop sensor lens would be any good. After much ebay activity, frustration, crushing disappointment and a small amount of attempted fraud (not on my part I hasten to add) I sold nearly all of my equipment apart from the Sigma. So I ponied up for the appropriate adapter (in this case the Fotodiox PK to NEX with aperture control!) and carefully shoved it onto the front of my (nearly) brand new Sony.

The first few shots were terrible. Huge vignetting, smeary corners, terrible contrast and a small feeling of self loathing for selling my perfectly functional Pentax.

But after some extremely accurate, scientifically based guessing I found some okay images in amongst the ruins…

 

As you can see, stopped down the corners have some smearing but focus is pretty good from foreground to the horizon. The colours tend to be washed out and contrast is low in difficult light. Wide open the colours and contrast are better.

I think the sweet spot as far as focal length goes is between 14 and 17mm. The vignetting gets horrible beyond those points and below 14mm the distortion looks like you’re slipping into a time vortex.

 

 

Here’s a before and after lightroom. This is at 15mm at f22 to get the best sunstars available on this lens. There is always some cropping to be done but in these middle focal lengths it is pretty sharp and easy to remove.

 

 

Overall I think the results are okay. The downsides are lack of specific aperture control (the Fotodiox is well made in my opinion but the aperture ring has no clicks or marks so it’s a bit of guess for anything that isn’t wide open or closed up). Focus to infinity seems fine but the corners do get a bit more smeary than on the Pentax (they were never crystal).

In conclusion: I love the Sony A7 for many reasons, mostly when using it with lightweight, vintage lenses (such as the Asahi Pentax 28mm/f2.8 and the 50mm/f1.7) which I will get into in a later post. I think I will keep hold of the Sigma until I can afford to try something smaller and lighter (see Phillip Reeves’s blog for lots of great ideas). Also: less lens weight in your bag means more room for chocolate muffins, especially good in emergency ‘hangry’ situations…

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When life gives you lemons…

When life gives you lemons…

Posted by / 15th May 2016 / Categories: cabril, nature / -

 

There are a thousand articles out there in the great wide web-world about ‘what to do when you lose inspiration with your photography’. How do you find your photo-mojo? Where can you find the source of that elusive element that helps you click that button?

Most of these articles will include the phrase ‘look in your own backyard’. This could lead you through the kitchen, past the utility area, out of your back door and into an introspective journey into the motivational attributes of your daily search for the perfect capture of light, life and the very soul of photographical representations of the World around you.

Or (alternatively) you could see a nice lemon.

I haven’t lost my inspiration but I have just looked in my own backyard. The spring crazed wisteria is pushing out tiny leaves like crazy, last years lemons are ready for picking, slicing and soaking in their gin and tonic bath and this years are coming on nicely.

 

Also the freaky spider (featured image at top) that lives in the middle of the lemon tree has decided to opt for ‘new lemon green’ as this years ‘regalia de rigeur’.

Not only has it changed colour to suit the new crop but seems to have developed ‘lemony’ dimples to make it even more difficult to spot.

Nature is pretty weird and inspirational…

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The colour of spring

The colour of spring

Posted by / 21st February 2016 / Categories: cabril, nature / -

After an easy start to the winter the garden was briefly conned into thinking that it might be time to wake up from its slumberous state. Then storm Imogen (a formidable beast) rattled through bringing an onslaught of precipitation based pestilence followed by some beautiful cold, clear days. At the moment most of the intrepid blooms are still hanging in there. Personally; I’m going inside to put on my thermal pants and some kind of woolly hat device…

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