To Tilt or not to Tilt

KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
edited August 2013 in Nikon DSLR cameras
Hi,

With as many landscape pictures I do my usual go-to is of course the 14-24mm. The 24-70mm and the 50mm are close 2nd and 3rd. I do find it annoying though that to get that exact line I am looking for I sometimes have to correct in PS, and then I caught onto the Tilt-Shift lenses:) I played around with a few pictures in PS, but of course this should really be done "originally", and never having been one to go down on eqipment, I am ready go acquire a "Perspective Control Lens".

I can get some good prices on the Nikon ones, and wonder if I should go for the 24mm or the 45mm? The main subject will be wide landscapes, and I will be using it on my D800. The obvious answer is "get the 24mm", but I still would like to hear y'all's opinion...

Any examples?
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Comments

  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    edited August 2013
    I also have D800; For landscapes, I use a 16 -35 f 4 or the 24 -120 f 4 both normally stopped down to ~ f8

    Most of the time I can keep the camera level, shoot on the wide side, then crop

    if I need a "big sky" I will tilt up, then correct any converging verticals in LR 4
    never felt the need for a tilt shift but then I don't do any professional architectural stuff
    Post edited by sevencrossing on
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    It is a really really good price, and I agree if I had to pay normal price, I probably wouldn't get one, but I still feel that these kinds of images are best captured and not manipulated into...

    Another reason I really want to go this route is I need more matching the plane of focus like what the eye sees. I know it is difficult to explain in words, but even stopped down to f/8 or lower, I feel something is missing in the BIG landscape shoots we have here in Greenland. I easily have 15-20 miles of visibility, and as I understand it, and have seen on various sites, the tilt lens can actually match that. Tilt should give me the control of the focus without the dependency on the Aperture.

    And... I'll take a look at Phase One when I return home.
  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    edited August 2013
    I am a firm believer in tilt/shift lenses. And IMO the Nikon 24mm f/3.5 PC is an excellent lens. Here are a couple shots and the Exif data is available.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/fantinesfotos/9481602160/sizes/h/in/set-72157634735928111/

    and

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/fantinesfotos/7987122767/sizes/h/in/set-72157631519930021/

    The first is use of shift, the second tilt. My suggestion is to look carefully at all the 24mm - 35mm tilt shift lenses and decide what you want. If you are not familiar with the use of a view camera I would not recommend purchasing a tilt/shift lens. I would first learn the use before any decision is made. Oh, a very typical architectural shot from Milwaukee:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/fantinesfotos/7182102649/in/set-72157630185531140

    If any more questions need be answered, let us know.

    The real lust after is probably the Schneider PC TS Super-Angulon 50mm f/2.8 Lens (For Nikon) with independent tilt/shift axes. . But, very expensive, too long for my use, I have a 90mm f/8 Super Angulon for a 4" x 5" Calumet view camera and it is phenomenal.
    Post edited by Msmoto on
    Msmoto, mod
  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    edited August 2013
    . .....Tilt should give me the control of the focus without the dependency on the
    Aperture.....



    I am not sure if you are trying to increase or decrease dof


    Large format cameras with a "standard" lens of ~ 150mm had a fairly shallow dof, but this could be increased with a "view or technical camera by tilting BOTH the lens and the back so the focal plane , the lens axis and the plane of required focus all met . This will also be true, to some extent with a medium format camera such as a Leaf

    People seem to use tilt lens on fx and Dx cameras to decrease dof
    There may be little need to increase dof with a 16mm wide angle lens, a D800 at f11 as the dof is APROXIMATLY 2 feet to infinity

    Post edited by sevencrossing on
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    It''s funny you (Msmoto) should mention that... When my dad first set out to teach me about photography many many moons ago, he actually used a Bellows tube for his Nikon F2. It wasn't until you just mentioned view cameras that I remembered that:)

    I won't proclaim to understand most, but I have a good idea...
  • TaoTeJaredTaoTeJared Posts: 1,306Member
    Does anyone have a 45or 85mm tilt shift that has any examples posted? I'm on the opposite side of Killerbob wanting a tilt shift (for closer subjects or stitch a longer length for wider) but am having a hard time deciding as well.

    Please stay on topic with Killerbob's questions... but I will be watching with interest though!
    D800, D300, D50(ir converted), FujiX100, Canon G11, Olympus TG2. Nikon lenses - 24mm 2.8, 35mm 1.8, (5 in all)50mm, 60mm, 85mm 1.8, 105vr, 105 f2.5, 180mm 2.8, 70-200vr1, 24-120vr f4. Tokina 12-24mm, 16-28mm, 28-70mm (angenieux design), 300mm f2.8. Sigma 15mm fisheye. Voigtlander R2 (olive) & R2a, Voigt 35mm 2.5, Zeiss 50mm f/2, Leica 90mm f/4. I know I missed something...
  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    edited August 2013
    I have seem msmoto use this lens personally, and I must say it does produce outstanding images. Having said that, these types of lenses do require a full understanding of how to properly setup them up, in order to get the shot. They are tricky to use but once mastered they are awesome. In time, I just might add one to my gear. Yet for now, the 14-24 2.8 and 24 1.4G have served me perfectly...and why wouldn't they :P

    If the deal is really good killerbob, go for it...would enjoy reading your feedback, in addition to your images.

    Cheers...
    Post edited by Golf007sd on
    D4 & D7000 | Nikon Holy Trinity Set + 105 2.8 Mico + 200 F2 VR II | 300 2.8G VR II, 10.5 Fish-eye, 24 & 50 1.4G, 35 & 85 1.8G, 18-200 3.5-5.6 VR I SB-400 & 700 | TC 1.4E III, 1.7 & 2.0E III, 1.7 | Sigma 35 & 50 1.4 DG HSM | RRS Ballhead & Tripods Gear | Gitzo Monopod | Lowepro Gear | HDR via Promote Control System |
  • kenadamskenadams Posts: 222Member
    Just a suggestion... the new Samyang 24mm T/S seems to be pretty good, at least optically, and it goes for half of what the Nikkor costs... might be worth looking into.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,004Member
    Not so sure about that Samyang. Most reviews I saw said it was soft outside of the center, not even close to the Nikkor.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    That's what I read as well. The Nikon is a bit soft in the corners, where in my opinion that is OK, and the Samyang is soft in the centre, where is absolutely is not OK. And, the price offer I have brings the Nikon 24mm down in the price range.
  • Vipmediastar_JZVipmediastar_JZ Posts: 1,708Member
    Maybe this may not answer your question. I haven't upgraded to the newest Lightroom but I see that you can do better adjustments for such event.

    As for a lens I'm getting better results with the sigma 35mm 1.4 as far as composition goes. I did a shoot by the lake today. I looked at the bubble level on tripod and it was off. I adjusted via a hot shoe plastic level bubble and confirmed with live view. The picture horizons and verticals where acceptable.

  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    edited August 2013
    One of the critical uses of tilt shift is in product photography in the studio and in large advertising shots. While it is possible to correct in post, this takes an image and distorts it in order to make ti look not distorted.

    No one wants their bottle of Coût Elevé shampoo to not look perfect. And, if product shots are desired, a PC lens from 50mm up to 135mm may be what is best. As always, one must determine the final use of the camera and then determine the equipment required.

    In a shot I did in the 1960's we had a full house full of furniture and appliances out on a lawn in an ad for a large financial institution. The setup used the ability to control the amount of perspective distortion in camera to produce a very nice shot. I think this was a Sinar 4" x 5" view camera with Schneider optics...maybe a 90mm Super Angulon.

    Another option is to use a wide lens, e.g., a 14-24mm or 16-35mm Nikkor, and keep the camera back perfectly vertical. One then crops out the lower portion to make an apparent image with 'shift'. Or, in some cases, use the shift of the lens to correct some of the distortion, then correct the final amount in post.

    I actually love to play with these things and will admit in extremely low light situations I have messed up with the tilt and focus initially as all PC lenses are manually focused.
    Post edited by Msmoto on
    Msmoto, mod
  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    I actually love to play with these things and will admit in extremely low light situations I have messed up with the tilt and focus initially as all PC lenses are manually focused.
    This is the main reason I have held off on these lenses. I love shooting at night, thus AF sure comes in handy, in addition to cutting down on setup time.
    D4 & D7000 | Nikon Holy Trinity Set + 105 2.8 Mico + 200 F2 VR II | 300 2.8G VR II, 10.5 Fish-eye, 24 & 50 1.4G, 35 & 85 1.8G, 18-200 3.5-5.6 VR I SB-400 & 700 | TC 1.4E III, 1.7 & 2.0E III, 1.7 | Sigma 35 & 50 1.4 DG HSM | RRS Ballhead & Tripods Gear | Gitzo Monopod | Lowepro Gear | HDR via Promote Control System |
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    Sure they are manual focus, but I guess you still have the guidance of the >o< AF lights int he viewfinder.
  • PickerelPickerel Posts: 154Member
    I have the 45mm f/2.8 and the D800. Haven't used it too often because my 50mm f/1.8D is very sharp and a pound lighter and I don't find much need for the PC lens while backpacking and without a tripod. That said, I still really like the lens and that I have sometimes carried it on the Appalachian Trail should say something.
    Appalachian Trail class of 2013, Georgia to Maine
    Continuing adventures at shepherdadventures.wordpress.com
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    I finally received the 24mm PC-E lens and it is, to say the least, awesome:)

    Of course I have a few questions, so as to get the most of this wonder:

    - When rotating the lens 90 degree clockwise (facing away from you), one of the adjustment knobs conflict with the D800 camera house. This effectively means that I can "only" rotate the lens about 75 degrees clockwise. I can however rotate it entirely 90 degrees counterclockwise.

    In his review Ken Rockwell also experienced this, and he suggested that "If you're a landscape photographer like me, be sure to send your 24mm PC in to Nikon service before you shoot to have the lens recombobulated by 90 degrees so you can get rise/fall and tilt at the same time. As shipped, you get swing, not tilt, with rise/fall."

    But is this entirely true? As I can rotate it counterclockwise 90 degrees, is that not the same as turning it 90 degrees clockwise, just upside down? And if so, then what's the problem, except the dials etc. being upside down? Anyone with this lens who can comment?

    - Everything is manual, focus, aperture, tilt and shifting, but I wonder why that is... The focus suggestion (single point focus) in the viewfinder works fine, and though all suggestions point towards setting focus and metering, THEN tilt/shifting, and then taking the picture, I ask why I can't do the focus and metering AFTER tilt/shifting?

    - Anyone with any SoftWare suggestion for stitching pictures together (not PhotoShop)?

    Thanks in advance!
  • AdeAde Posts: 1,071Member
    edited September 2013
    - Yes you can just rotate it the other way.

    - The meter will give you the wrong readings after tilt/shift, so you can't rely on it. In the digital world, though, it's easy to adjust the meter via the back LCD.

    - Focusing... that could be an entire subject on its own. When you tilt/shift, you are changing the focus plane. The question is, changing focus from what? So it's good to have an initial focus point with zero tilt/shift as a reference point. Then tilt/shift to change the focus plane. Then re-adjust focus as necessary.
    Post edited by Ade on
  • SquamishPhotoSquamishPhoto Posts: 608Member
    Does anyone have a 45or 85mm tilt shift that has any examples posted? I'm on the opposite side of Killerbob wanting a tilt shift (for closer subjects or stitch a longer length for wider) but am having a hard time deciding as well.

    Please stay on topic with Killerbob's questions... but I will be watching with interest though!
    These are all macro shots, some done with a 2x tele and several diopters and some are just lens and camera.
    image

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    Mike
    D3 • D750 • 14-24mm f2.8 • 35mm f1.4A • PC-E 45mm f2.8 • 50mm f1.8G • AF-D 85mm f1.4 • ZF.2 100mm f2 • 200mm f2 VR2
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,042Member
    I am thinking of getting the 24mm PC lens. Killerbob, how do you like yours?
  • paulrpaulr Posts: 1,176Member
    edited June 2015
    Simply the best if you could get one and of course your credit card could stand the cost.

    https://www.schneideroptics.com/ecommerce/CatalogItemDetail.aspx?CID=1822&IID=10247

    Post edited by paulr on
    Camera, Lens and Tripod and a few other Bits
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,042Member
    Simply the best if you could get one and of course your credit card could stand the cost.

    https://www.schneideroptics.com/ecommerce/CatalogItemDetail.aspx?CID=1822&IID=10247

    Yeah, I have been drooling over this for over a year now. My only complaint is that I am not sure if 28mm is wide enough. It will be fine for exterior shots I think, but I find even 24 not quite wide enough for some interiors. I heard a rumour the Schneider might come out with a 20, which I might find more useful.
  • Spy_BlackSpy_Black Posts: 79Member
    Killerbob, if you wanted to get deep focus in your landscape images, a PC lens in not what you needed. You need stacking software. This will allow you to shoot at your lens/camera combo's optimum aperture (typically 2-3 stops down from wide open) to get the maximum resolution your gear can give with EVERYTHING in complete focus. I use it regularly when shooting product shots. Below is an example. The the image on the left was the first of a series of images refocused until I reach the rear of the product, then they are all stitched together to create the image on the right. You can do the same thing with your landscape shots.

    image
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    @WestEndPhoto, I like the 24mm PC-E lens, but haven't used it as much as I should... It is a decent 24mm lens in itself, and then you have the tilt/shift functionality:)

    @Spy_Black, I will take a look at focus stacking when I get home from vacation. This is a it new to me, so perhaps a duh question, but what software is good?
  • paulrpaulr Posts: 1,176Member
    WestEndFoto When I was at the Photographic Show {Ex Focus} I went to the Schneider stand to look at the new lens 28PCTS, They were very reluctant to show me the lens, i explained I had the 90 version so the rep went to a SAFE and brought me the lens , The whole time two security guards stood next to me, Apparently this was the only 28mm version in Europe, Thats why I said if you could get One regardless of cost. I quizzed them on other future productions but no mention of a 20mm PC lens, It took them 5 years to perfect the 28mm version.
    Camera, Lens and Tripod and a few other Bits
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,042Member
    edited July 2015
    Killerbob, if you wanted to get deep focus in your landscape images, a PC lens in not what you needed. You need stacking software. This will allow you to shoot at your lens/camera combo's optimum aperture (typically 2-3 stops down from wide open) to get the maximum resolution your gear can give with EVERYTHING in complete focus. I use it regularly when shooting product shots. Below is an example. The the image on the left was the first of a series of images refocused until I reach the rear of the product, then they are all stitched together to create the image on the right. You can do the same thing with your landscape shots.

    image
    Spyblack, you have certainly demonstrated the utility of stacking software, but have you ever used a PC lens?

    To me software is what you use if you can't get it right in camera. Those images that you shot are often shot right in camera using a PC lens, such as the 45 or 85 mm PC lens. The architecture course that I will take this fall in the photography degree program that I am taking (for fun, I am a CFO in my day job) specifically requires the use of a PC lens and the commercial (product) photography course also requires the use of a PC lens. I watched a product shot session using a PC lens. It was sure an eye opener to what these lenses can do. The landscape course doesn't, but the instructor acknowledges the benefits of a PC lens.

    Also, remember the drawbacks of stacking software. Resolution is lost (though it is usually an acceptable loss). Also, there cannot be any movement in the frame, so its use for landscapes is limited to situation with no movement.

    Now at the end of the day, I may opt for stacking software, but it won't be because it is the superior solution, but because it is the cheaper solution. The superior solution is usually (but not always) a PC lens. Also, some people will opt for stacking software because they find a PC lens too difficult to use.
    Post edited by WestEndFoto on
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