Homemade fisheye

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by mike_gammill, Jul 3, 2010.

  1. I thought of this after viewing the fisheye composite. I once saw plans for taking a lens cap and drilling a hole in the center so that a door viewer (the scope that let's you see who's at the door) can be installed. This can then be attached to a normal lens to give a circular fisheye view. While it would likely not be as sharp as even the cheapest fisheye attachment, it might be fun.
  2. SCL


    Yeah - I did that in the early 1970s. The real problem was that the image circle was really small.
  3. Mike, I tried the door viewer on a video camera with the intention of making an all-sky camera, but as you say lens sharpness was a hugh problem. With so much to see (depending on subject matter), there appears to be no escape from an expensive fisheye if image quality is important.
    The Peleng 8mm was highly rated by some from astronomy newsgroups; relatively inexpensive too:
  4. I have the Peleng in Canon EF mount. Nice little lens; sharp, good colors and contrast, but very prone to flare around the edges. It's totally manual (no electronics at all), with separate aperture and aperture lock rings. Here's an example. As you can see, the circle is slightly cut off at the top; I don't know if that's normal, as this is the only copy I've used.
  5. I actually got so far as to buy a door viewing whatsis at the hardware store, but never carried it through to get the desired fisheye lens. Still, I have somehow felt that this was a lack in my life, a spiritual and physical emptiness that needed filling.
    Here are some thumbnails of my saga to date. I borrowed a Nikon 8mm lens in Egypt. I got a Spiratone 7mm fisheye. I got a Berolina 12mm lens. I bought a couple of 0.15X adapters and used them on a Canon EF 35mm lens on a 5D and a 20D. I don't have as many fisheyes as I do 500mm mirror lenses, but I'm still working on it. The Berolina 12mm was also sold by Spiratone, as was the Samigon 0.15X in close to the same form, so clearly my fisheye saga and my Spiratone saga are intertwined.
  6. "a spiritual and physical emptiness that needed filling."
    I prefer to think of it as an insatiable curiosity to broaden ones knowledge base, and playing with hardware is often the cheapest way to self-educate.
  7. First time I've seen mention of the Spiratone fish eye adapter. I have one I inherited from a late friend. It isn't in the greatest of shape, looks like it has been taken apart and not put together correctly as the adjustments don't all work or line up.
    I have a question re this lens - Do I assume correctly the settings near the bottom refer to the size of the lens it might be fitted to? 200-135-100-, down to 30. If so, was there a suggested "best" size of lens that it should be fitted to? Any other tips on using it? I have a Canon Rebel XSi, so the crop sensor sort of messes up the use of the lens.
    It's a neat lens, came with a domed lens cap and a leatherette case. But no instructions!
  8. I took a .42 thread on wide angle lens adapter that came from a camera show or shop junk box somewhere in the distant past. I mounted it on a 28mm SLR lens. Result was 12mm fisheye effect actually quite sharp for what it is.
  9. I started to answer the question of how to use the Spiratone Fish Eye Auxiliary lens, but realized that it was going to be a long slog (another of those "how the elevator works" discussions), so I posted a new discussion at the Classic Manual Cameras forum about these auxiliary lenses and how I think they work (link).
  10. Here's the bargain basement attempt ... motivated by this discussion.
    $ 10 Home Depot / Lowes door peephole viewer, the larger one that’s about 2 in. long x 1.25 in. dia.
    Handheld in front of a Canon D10 (that camera has a lens that zooms internally behind the porthole, so there is no motion and a nice flat to flat surface exists for the viewer to butt up against).
    I let the camera autofocus and set autoexposure.
    The shortcomings are – not entire circular view when zoomed out.
    Hard to hold it centered.
    Inside of viewer barrel is shiny brass, hence the distracting bright annular area. The vehicle shot show the amount of flare/glare bouncing around in there.
    Renders flash useless as viewer intrudes in flashes’ line of sight.
    But for $ 10 on the 4th of July … not a half-bad toy, which I think I will revisit. Maybe I’ll make a quickie Velcro holder, etc. and set on a zoom length that allows for the entire circle to be visible. It is possible, with some care to open the viewer and line the barrel with some black flock paper.
    The photos below are as captured, no cropping.
  11. Very cool, Jim! now let's see some skateboard videos. :)
  12. Very nice. Much better than I expected. The nearest Lowe's is only about a 20 minute drive so I may have to get one. Or possibly the hardware store where my oldest son works may have one.
  13. Wow, I don't think the original article got shots that good.
    Flare, of course, is just one of the charms of most any fisheye lens.
  14. No one recalls the fisheye thingy sold by Spiratone that was really a silver Legg's egg held in front of your lens and "focused" by pushing the silver "cup" forward/backward (held in alignment by a clear tube it traveled in)? It wasn't so great since the center of every pic. was your lens/camera.
  15. Jim, that's better than it has any right to be. Great concept, thanks for sharing.
  16. I've done something like that, but instead borrowed an SLR with a 28mm wide angle lens... in front of which, I taped the front of a 100mm Ektar lens, backwards. The resulting images are fuzzy around the edges (slightly) but exaggerate the effect of the 28mm very well. Not recommended for rangefinders or the like, as it changes the focus, but cheap and easy nonetheless.

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