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Thread: mirror lens

  1. #1

    Default mirror lens

    does anyone know if there is a short focal length mirror lens available in the market that can fit nikon?

    i very much love the 'ring effect' on reflections for portraiture.

    appreciate all inputs.

  2. #2
    Senior Member giantcanopy's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    The Nikon 500mm mirror lens is about 14+ cm in length. Short enough ?

    Ryan

  3. #3
    Senior Member zac08's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    Mirror lens IIRC, are at a minimum of 500mm in focal length.

    Don't think you can get any shorter than that due to the design.
    Michael Lim
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    Senior Member zac08's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    Quote Originally Posted by giantcanopy View Post
    The Nikon 500mm mirror lens is about 14+ cm in length. Short enough ?

    Ryan
    She's looking at shorter focal lengths for portraiture use.... unless you're gonna be placing the model about 30 to 50m off....
    Michael Lim
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  5. #5
    Senior Member giantcanopy's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    Quote Originally Posted by zac08 View Post
    She's looking at shorter focal lengths for portraiture use.... unless you're gonna be placing the model about 30 to 50m off....
    Opps misread. u r rite.

    The nikkor mirror lenses are telephotos .. ( and probably true for other 3rd party ones )

  6. #6

    Default Re: mirror lens

    I have not seen mirror lenses shorter than 500mm
    I have one Nikkor 500 F8 mirror lens but seldom use it.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    Shorter focal length and fixed aperture (at around F8)..?

    probably not likely to produce any desired OOF highlights..

    anyway, mirror lens has a market for telephoto application because it is a much cheaper alternative to the conventional lens, hence there could be demand in spite of its limitations.

    For shorter focal length, the price advantage may not be as significant, and given it's limitations ( donut OOF highlights + fixed aperature ) making it unsuitable for general use, there is probably very little demand..

  8. #8
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    I used to have a Sigma mirror lens 400mm f5.6 during the film days, but have not come across anymore mirror lens in 400mm or shorter focal length nowadays.

    anyway, think you need a tripod to shoot with this lens, shooting it with handheld, you need to get a nice soft lighting at f8 with 1/500s with lowest ISO is rather impossible.

    hope this help.
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  9. #9

    Default Re: mirror lens

    hmmm...ok.
    thanks for all inputs.

    i'll write to nikon and ask them produce one 85mm f1.2 mirror.

  10. #10
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    Quote Originally Posted by jeanie View Post
    hmmm...ok.
    thanks for all inputs.

    i'll write to nikon and ask them produce one 85mm f1.2 mirror.
    well, if have, maybe the diameter of lens will be very big, can't see you standing behind the lens...... and it thin alike a paper
    Last edited by catchlights; 12th March 2009 at 10:33 AM.
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  11. #11
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    Quote Originally Posted by Limsgp View Post
    Shorter focal length and fixed aperture (at around F8)..?

    probably not likely to produce any desired OOF highlights..

    anyway, mirror lens has a market for telephoto application because it is a much cheaper alternative to the conventional lens, hence there could be demand in spite of its limitations.

    For shorter focal length, the price advantage may not be as significant, and given it's limitations ( donut OOF highlights + fixed aperature ) making it unsuitable for general use, there is probably very little demand..
    shooting full length portrait with 500mm mirror lens on a FX, background will be totally out of focus, unless the subject is standing next to a wall.

    the characteristic of the mirror lens are having rings effect of the out of focus highlights in the background, this is what jeanie looking for, and shorter focal length mirror means she don't need to stand far far away and using a loudhailer to direct her model.
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  12. #12
    Moderator ortega's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    there is always the walkie talkie option

  13. #13

    Default Re: mirror lens

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    shooting full length portrait with 500mm mirror lens on a FX, background will be totally out of focus, unless the subject is standing next to a wall.

    the characteristic of the mirror lens are having rings effect of the out of focus highlights in the background, this is what jeanie looking for, and shorter focal length mirror means she don't need to stand far far away and using a loudhailer to direct her model.
    you know me best dear....

  14. #14
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    Let's look at this issue in the context of the TS's requirement.

    She's looking for short focal length mirror lens. If the lens is, say, 50mm and at F8, will the background be totally OOF? Well it depends on how far is the background, but it may not be far enough to produce the OOF "donut" highlights as so desired. The point that I mentioned is specific to TS's case, not for general mirror lens of 500mm, in which case what you say is true.

    As for the 2nd part, What I'm saying is that the characteristic donuts that the TS is looking for is generally "undesirable", hence there may be little demand for it, althou in this case it is desired by the TS. If you desire for something that most pple do not desired, it is unlikely to be in the market generally.



    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    shooting full length portrait with 500mm mirror lens on a FX, background will be totally out of focus, unless the subject is standing next to a wall.

    the characteristic of the mirror lens are having rings effect of the out of focus highlights in the background, this is what jeanie looking for, and shorter focal length mirror means she don't need to stand far far away and using a loudhailer to direct her model.
    Last edited by Limsgp; 12th March 2009 at 11:14 AM.

  15. #15

    Default Re: mirror lens

    If you want a defocus effect around the subject (but no donut rings) try the 105 or 135 AF DC lenses. That should work very well on your D 3.

  16. #16
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    Quote Originally Posted by Limsgp View Post
    Let's look at this issue in the context of the TS's requirement.

    She's looking for short focal length mirror lens. If the lens is, say, 100mm and at F8, will the background be totally OOF? Well it depends on how far is the background, but it may not be far enough to produce the OOF "donut" highlights as so desired. The point that I mentioned is specific to TS's case, not for general mirror lens of 500mm, in which case what you say is true.

    As for the 2nd point, What I'm saying is that the characteristic donuts that the TS is looking for is generally "undesirable", hence there may be little demand for it, althou in this case it is desired by the TS. If you desire for something that most pple do not desired, it is unlikely to be in the market generally.
    AFAIK, no mirror lens shorter than 400mm, and the 400mm is at 5.6 fixed aperture, if any lens manufacture ever made mirror lens shorter than 400mm, the aperture is possible to be bigger than f5.6 too. anyway, the bokeh on FX and DX is totally different.

    the out of focus ring highlight is a by product of the mirror lens, a well received one, many portrait photographers get a mirror lens just because of this.

    nowadays we don't see much mirror lenses available, same as soft focus lenses, maybe because of many people think photoshop can replace anything.
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  17. #17

    Default Re: mirror lens

    Quote Originally Posted by eblim View Post
    If you want a defocus effect around the subject (but no donut rings) try the 105 or 135 AF DC lenses. That should work very well on your D 3.
    i have both the 105 and 135dc already.
    seriously, NONE of these lenses can produce the mirror effect.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    You mentioned that there is no mirror lens shorter than 400mm. That is probably a fact. As for whether it will be bigger than F5.6 for short focal length (for. e.g 50mm), it's difficult to say.. The construction of the mirror lens is such that there is always a "mirror" at the end opposite the front element. There is a limitation to how big the center hole can be, in the presence of the mirror. The maker may be forced to reduce the aperture to produce a workable design. However, this is just my baseless speculation..

    Anyway, what I mentioned in the first post is a "If" case. If there is a 50mm lens and aperture is F8, it may not produce the "desired" OOF effects. I guess that is still a valid comment.


    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    AFAIK, no mirror lens shorter than 400mm, and the 400mm is at 5.6 fixed aperture, if any lens manufacture ever made mirror lens shorter than 400mm, the aperture is possible to be bigger than f5.6 too. anyway, the bokeh on FX and DX is totally different.

    the out of focus ring highlight is a by product of the mirror lens, a well received one, many portrait photographers get a mirror lens just because of this.

    nowadays we don't see much mirror lenses available, same as soft focus lenses, maybe because of many people think photoshop can replace anything.
    Last edited by Limsgp; 12th March 2009 at 11:55 AM.

  19. #19
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    is two mirrors in the lens, not one.
    anyway, Nikon made a 1000mm mirror lens at f11, another mirror lens, 500mm at f8, both are discontinued, other makers are making 500mm, 600mm, 800mm or 1000mm, the only one 400mm mirror lens I came across is the sigma 400mm f5.6, and that is the shortest. the lens barrel is only about 4 inches long. "IF" there is any shorter mirror..... is gonne be like a pancake.
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  20. #20
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: mirror lens

    sorry, miss out Nikon have another mirror lens, 2000mm f11
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