Yesterday, when I mentioned that I thought this lens was a bit soft, it was on the assumption that I'd been shooting at f/8.0, when I'd actually still had the lens set to f/3.5. There are two rings on this lens that you need to adjust to set the aperture, a standard click-stop ring that's marked with the apertures (f/3.5, f/4.0, f/5.6 and so on) and another that simply says 'lock' and 'unlock', each with an arrow pointing in opposite directions. What I hadn't realised is that after setting the click-stop aperture you need to turn the other dial in the 'lock' direction until it stops, at which point the aperture is closed down to the one that you've set.
Anyway, to test whether the lens was sharper at f/8.0 (which I'm sure it will be) I went down to the sea-front this afternoon to take a few shots, but the light wasn't right and I didn't manage to take anything all that interesting. So here's another one from yesterday. What I like about this one is the way the unnatural distortions seem confined to the top-right and bottom edge of the image, i.e. the remainder of the pier looks relatively normal. I did get some instructions with the lens, but they're in Russian, so it's a bit trial-and-error at the moment ;-)
Update: A couple of people have asked about the original of this shot so I've put up a (Levels and Curves adjusted) version that i) hasn't been stretched to fill the frame with the LensFix plugin, ii) hasn't had the colours/saturation enhanced, and iii) hasn't been sharpened. You can see it here:
2.05pm on 17/2/05|
Peleng 8mm f/3.5 Fisheye