Lens I bought that should be very sharp is very soft. Why?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by alan_kovarik, Dec 29, 2017.

  1. Have you checked the diopter adjustment on your D3300? It's moot for your kit lens because it's an AF lens, but for a manual focus lens, it will matter. It's just one more thing to check, but it's likely that you'll have to return the lens.
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2017
  2. Not the issue here because:
    And herein I believe lies the problem. I find it quite hard to manually focus using a magnified live view image simply because every time I touch the focus ring, the image dances on the LCD screen and it is quite impossible to tell if one has nailed focus. A short focus throw makes this even harder.

    Have you tried focusing via the viewfinder (and yield the advice above about the diopter)? Not sure the D3300 has that feature - but if it does, have you tried focusing via the "green dot" focus confirmation?
  3. FWIW, for some lenses the green dot can beat my eyes every time. For others, not so much.
    Where was the lens focused on the ruler? I mean intended, not where it ended up.
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2017
  4. maybe you are inside minimum distance, this is not a 1:1 lense what I remember
  5. Yes, it is 1:1 lens. I am was not inside minimum focusing distance. BTW, all the images are 100% crops.
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2017
  6. Try shining a flashlight through the lens to see if there could be inside dust or mildew. It does seem to be quite a bit soft. Were shots made on a tripod and focused through LV?
  7. None of the MF 55mms go to 1:1-the closest any will get is 1:2.

    Still, though, the photo of the ruler shows that you are well within the focus range of the lens and there is definitely something wrong with it.
  8. If that's the best the lens will do at zoomed in LV manual focus, it's been messed with...or maybe a loose element...it's nearly 30 yrs old AND an early AF mechanism

    Sure, the image will get better as you stop down, but it's still shot.

    Return it ASAP.
  9. I totally agree with Mike. The 'bokeh' on that ruler image looks doubled up, and it definitely shouldn't.

    Send the lens back. It's a dud!
  10. Alan, here is a quick sample I shot this evening using that same lens. First image is the whole frame, the second image is a crop and represents about 2% of the frame's coverage. Shot at F3.5, on tripod, with led lighting, shutter speed about 1/2sec at ISO100 (on tripod, obviously). I focused manually using live view zoomed all the way in. Granted, it is black writing in a white background which "enhances" apparent sharpness, but you will note this lens should be sharp as a razor blade when used properly and all things are OK with the unit.
    Images follow-

  11. Zoomed in view of that frame:
  12. The idea you can get gravy with an included brush is truly amazing....:cool:

    It looks a bit better, but I think I'd still send it back and get a 60mm f2 tamron macro. Mine @ f4 it's so sharp, you could cleanly cut a squishy tomato.

    It's also my favourite lens for focus-stacking on my D7200.

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