Discussion in 'Macro' started by glen_h, Sep 6, 2018.

  1. I was trying to find a forum for discussions of lenses, but this is the closest I found.

    I found out today about something called LensBall, or maybe LensSphere.

    I am not at all recommending it, I don't have one, and only saw pictures of it,
    but it seemed interesting enough to discuss.

    It looks like an optical quality, or at least much better than ordinary,
    glass sphere.

    LensSphere™ Hand-Polished Photography Crystal Lens

    Reminds me of the story about the Leeuwenhoek microscopes.
    In the early days of microscopes, it was hard to make the small, short focal
    length, lenses needed. It turns out that a small glass sphere, at least for
    the time, made a fine lens. Leeuwenhoek would make and sell such spheres,
    with the suggestion that they were hard to make.

    It seems, though, that they are easy to make: Heat a glass rod in a flame
    until it softens, and pull into a fine thread. Then heat the end of the thread
    in a flame, and it will form a very nice small sphere.

    Anyway, it seems that there are some fun things that can be done
    photographing through larger spheres, as shown on the above web

    I don't know anything more that the web site, which seems to have found
    me though some list that I accidentally signed up for.
  2. paul ron

    paul ron NYC

    i once has a few glass balls, decorative, that was just so much fun to look through. friends at parties enjoyed them as they drank more wine.

    one friend, a street preformer, loved jugeling them. his act rolled tye balls over his neck n arns doing all sorts of tricks with them.

    maybe these balls are just left over from the early 70s?
  3. The description has a polishing step that I don't think is usual for ordinary glass balls.

    Maybe not optical quality, but I think they are advertising them for photographic use.
    Well, maybe closer to photographic toys, but not just for rolling on the floor.
  4. I can see some interesting things that could be done with these but the effect is largely that of a fisheye . . . Still, I may spring for one of these to use for weddings.

    I wonder why the larger ball is the "Pro" model?
  5. paul ron

    paul ron NYC

    pro means bigger, better, more expensive.

    they are beautiful though and will look great on the coffee table. youll be surprised what a great conversation piece to entertain all your friends n family.

    you can always see the future with them.... just look closely into the crystal ball.
  6. paul ron

    paul ron NYC

    from the reviews, they are using it as is for photos n they love it.

    price is right and prime!
    ed_farmer likes this.
  7. Vincent Peri

    Vincent Peri Metairie, LA

  8. paul ron

    paul ron NYC

    thanks for that. i love edmunds for all the tech articles they offer. it was once my source for grinding optics for my telescope habbit.
  9. Edmunds used to have a showroom about two miles from where I grew up in NJ. It's been closed for several years but I loved browsing through there as a child, teen and even as an adult. They had military surplus supplies, educational kits and toys and a "high tech" slide/music show that ran on repeat all day long. They even had a periscope installed in ceiling. Now I forget if it was from an American or a Japanese sub.
    paul ron likes this.
  10. Google "Crystal Ball Images". This might be the same as a Lens Ball. There are lots of articles written on the subject.

    I am in a photo study group and one of our assignments last year was crystal ball photos. Usually the crystal Ball reverses the subject matter. However, if you use the crystal ball as a "macro" lens where it touches the subject, the subject is not reversed. if you decide to buy a crystal ball, I suggest getting one with a clear prism stand as opposed to a wood stand. The clear prism stand can be incorporated into the image.

    7 Tips for Doing Crystal Ball Refraction Photography

    How To Shoot Amazing Crystal Ball Photography | Equipment & Tips

    7 Cool Ideas for Crystal Ball Photography - The Photo Argus
  11. I've been utilizing a lensball in an unusual way: incorporating them into pictures displayed as parallel view stereograms. I don't own a stereoscopic camera. I take two images with the camera moved slightly horizontally between the shots.
    Lensballs can be purchased relatively inexpensively via Amazon. I use one that is 80mm in diameter and sells for $17.00
    Here are some shots utilizing an 80mm lensball.
    Glenn McCreery likes this.
  12. F 10 Crysatal ball.jpg The lens ball is a fun photographic toy/tool. I've seen very artistic photographs made with them. The price is right, and the applications are endless!
  13. BTW, I love the stereograms!:D
    billangel likes this.
  14. Thanks.
    I've thought of contributing stereograms to the topics in the "No Words" forum, but it's unclear how much interest others might have in viewing stereoscopic images at photo.net.
    In any case, here is a link to an Album at Flickr that contains the parallel view stereoscopic images that I've created: Parallel View Stereoscopic Images
  15. Thanks for that link. It'll take me a while to work through it.:)

    I've been stereo 'nut' since my childhood Viewmaster.
  16. I don't know that I have been a real stereo nut, but I have been sort-of interested
    in it for a long time.

    I never had a Viewmaster, though have used them at friends or in stores.

    When I was young, my father had a book on stereo photography,
    (maybe from the 1950's or early 1960's) which described some cameras,
    stereo adapters for other cameras, and a Viewmaster camera.

    The Viemaster camera made two images of the right size, near the top
    and bottom of a 35mm film, and there was a punch to punch them out and
    empty reels to put them into. Never had one of those, though I did see one
    on eBay some time ago.

    I got a Stereo Realist a few years ago, but the film advance isn't right, so it overlaps
    the images. (The sprocket wheel is too stiff, so slows down the film.)

    I have a Stereo Argus that I mentioned some time ago. That is interesting in that
    it puts the two images on two halves of a 35mm full frame. You then get ordinary
    prints made, which have the two images in the two halves.

    I also have a Lytro, which is supposed to be able to make stereo pairs,
    but I didn't figure out how to do that, yet.


    I might have it not quite centered in the scanner,so it isn't so easy to get the view right.
  17. I was never bold enough to try making my own stereo Viewmaster discs, but I have collected all the 'archaeological' views I can find.

    That Argus 3D has been on my list to get since I saw your earlier mention.
  18. Or you could just simulate one by using Microsoft ICE.
    Glenn McCreery likes this.

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