screw mount Fish Eye Takumar 1:4 / 17 lens

Discussion in 'Pentax' started by tripanfal, May 20, 2009.

  1. I'm looking for this lens for a new project I'm going to do. I will be using it on a film body. Does anyone have any other suggestions on an comparable lens if I strike out on the Takumar? I'm not willing to spend more than 150.00 and need a fisheye. I don't need AF, and truthfully don't want it for this project.
  2. Christopher,
    I doubt that you will be able to find the Takumar 17mm f4 fisheye for 150$ USD. It is a rare lens. It is highly sought after. I think you are looking at 300 $ USD minimum. Do a complete search on ebay. See if there were any recent sales. The check out the prices to get a good idea at what you are looking at.
    An option may be looking into a fisheye attachment. Spiratone made such an attachment. I saw one on sale on Ebay last week.
    Good luck.
  3. -- "I'm not willing to spend more than 150.00 and need a fisheye."
    There is a Zenitar 16mm F2.8 fisheye that is also available as M42 screwmount.
    That should fit your budget (certainly if you get it from ebay). I have some images from the zenitar on fullframe in my portfolio.
  4. Michael is right, this lens has always sold for $225 or more (one sold yesterday for $229 and one a few days ago for $293). But if you only want the lens for this one project and then have no further interest in it, you could buy one at a fair price and then resell it once you are done. if you get it for under $250.00 you should be able to come close to break even.
    The other optionis the Spiratone model as well. Like this: Ebay
    Or you could consider something like this although I don't know what the quality is like: Ebay
  5. Actually, the various fisheye options from Spiratone are often sought after and can draw pretty hefty prices, considering.
    Here's my assessment - the "classic" T-mount Spiratone 7mm f/5.6 Fisheye is a very indifferent performer. It has to be stopped down considerably to even approximate a sharp image. I've bought two of them and the vendor took the first one back because it was so fuzzy -- turned out to be its nature, not a "bad" lens, when I got another. Stopped down, it's tolerable and might meet your one-project need.
    I suspect that the experience with the 7mm lens was why Spiratone later only offered a Spiratone Fish-eye lens 0.15X adapter. Although not a prefect solution, this one screws into the filter ring on any number of lenses. However, and this is important, do NOT buy one that does not have an adapter ring for it. They are impossible to find and very expensive to have made. Kenko and Samigon sold very similar 0.15 adapters that appear to me to be slightly superior to the Spiratone, but it might just be sample differences.
    I should add that flare is always a problem with any fisheye lens.
    Here are two images from the Spiratone and the Samigon adapter:
  6. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    Christopher, About 6 years ago I purchased a Russian or Ukaranian screwmount/ convertable to Nikon mount lens. It is a 15mm or 16mm lens (my mind is a tad fuzzy about the details) and the name was in Russian something like Benbo (I'll check it tonight). Anyway it is a great lens, I actually converted it to K-mount. The lens is very sharp even at f2.8, a tad heavy.
    It's likely no match for Takumar, but I have been very pleased with the lens, as infrequently as I use it.
  7. Spiratone made a 12mm fisheye:
    Every article I find on the web says this is an f/8-f/16 lens, but the one I bought recently goes down to f/5.6. $160 in worn but still very usable condition. It's also a fixed-focus design, since DOF is immense for such wide lenses. Not very fishy on a crop DSLR, but should be fine with film.
  8. Fisheye lenses are always expensive. My guess is that a Takumar fisheye will be about as close as one can get to a low-priced, quality lens. I don't know about these other models, so I'd have to defer to the other guys. Overall, though, a Pentax Takumar would be a good investment. It should last a long time and work well.
    You get into fisheye, you're probably going to need to shell out some bucks.
  9. Hmmm. It seems that you guys are correct on the pricing from E-bay. I swear I saw some completed listings for under 200.00 but must have been mistaken. Thanks for the Spiratone and Zenitar info, I'll look into it. I actually have a wide angle screw on filter/lens thing that gives me a fish eye effect, but the setup is HUGE. I need one smallish lens. I'm sure I'm going to bite the bullet and get a Takumar the more I think about it. I have a genuine Pentax screw mount/K mount adapter I'll use to mount it, and a bunch of other Takumars, on the new full frame digital body that will come out hopefully before I die. I'm 38 :)
    As for lens flare, my project is to be shot indoors, no flash, low light. Low light is another reason a need a faster lens. I'll probably be using a pushed 400 speed film. Since lens flare will not be an issue, a scratched Takumar would probably be fine. Maybe I'll find one with fungus/scratches :)
    Thanks again
  10. Under those conditions, don't be afraid to pump up the ISOs. A noisy picture is for most of us better than NO picture.
    (spoken as a veteran of high-speed film, where one hardly ever asked about "grain")
  11. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    The lens I have is spelled in Russian bevomo (the 'v' is upside down).
    Also check this site:
    They have a couple of other Russian fisheye in K and screw mount for under $200.
  12. My Spiratone 7/5.6 (in Haminex brand from Europe) isn't as soft as JDM's. But I did have to do some filing on the mount adapter to screw it in enough to focus properly. It may be a generic problem that many are focused past infinity...
  13. Doug, Looks like that will be the winner. I looked at some photos from the lens and they look great. My project will be black and white and this lens looks like it will fit the bill. I'm going to check E-bay for a couple weeks and then probably pull the trigger at if I have no luck. Thanks for the link!
  14. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    I like Russian lenses generally, I certainly like the price on their lenses. I find they are often quite sharp optics however I cannot speak to the lenses on the site. The coatings on Russian lenses tend not to be up to par with other lenses (we are spolied as Pentax useres, eh?) so you should be mindful of where the sun is when you are shooting especially with a lens that wide.
  15. There are a few other M42 fisheyes that might be less sought after than the Takumars: e.g., the Sigma Fish Eye Ultra-Wideangle 12mm f/8.0-16.0
  16. My Spiratone 7/5.6 (in Haminex brand from Europe) isn't as soft as JDM's. But I did have to do some filing on the mount adapter to screw it in enough to focus properly. It may be a generic problem that many are focused past infinity...​
    This got me to thinking. Earlier on I found or at least suspected that the early Spiratone lenses that were supplied in particular mounts seem to have used a T-mount like adapter that was also an M42x0.75 screw like the T-mounts, but slightly different in thickness. So I dug out some of these on other lenses, and yes, the pictures are better when used with the non-standard, thinner adapter. Still not very sharp, but I will try something like filing down later to see how it works out.

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