My second impression of the Zenitar 16mm 2.8 Fisheye

Very impressed now that this lens is dialed in. Even at f2.8, light fall off is much much better than my Tokina 19-35mm 3.5
Here are some sample pictures, they were taken with 800 speed film with the lens at 2.8

My Roomie Joe

Swing Dance at Rhythm and Motion dance studios SF

My first impression of the Zenitar 16mm 2.8 Fisheye?

This lens is Garbage. With the lens on the camera, the partial hood sat crooked by about 15 degrees. Even worse, everything past 3 feet was blurry, even when the focus was set to infinity. This is the first set of pictures I took, f2.8 1/4000 sec, focus set to infinity. Its pretty sad when even the clouds look out of focus!

The picture was still blurry at F8.0, and by F22 the picture looked reasonably sharp. A lens that needs to be stopped down to F22 isn't very useful. I read reviews raving about how "tack sharp" this lens was, so I thought this thing must be broken. So after wet sanding down the smallest screw driver I could find, I took it apart.

First thing I did was pull off the rubber grip from the focus ring. I loosened the three set screws that lock the focus ring to the focus mechanism (internal focus ring). I was able to get the "internal focus ring" to turn farther, and focus the lens closer to infinity. I focused as far as possible, reset the pointer on the focus ring to Infinity, and tightened the set screws. Apparently the focus ring was hitting a dead stop before the lens elements reached their full travel. This greatly improved the focus!! There was still improvements to be made though.

I noticed now when I focus to infinity the lens hood bottoms out on the focus ring. If I could fix this clearance issue, I could get even closer to infinity. Since the hood was crooked anyway, I took it off. The hood was held on with 3 tiny set screws. With the hood off, I could now focus the lens all the way to infinity (having loosened the focus ring again). I straightend out the hood, and screwed it back in place. Reinstalling the hood allowed the carriage to retract about 1/2mm more as seen in the picture below. The hood was straight now too. 1/2mm doesn't seem like much, but the carriage only moves about 1 1/2mm to cover its full range of focus ( 0.3m to Infinity).

More reviews

Russian made ZENITAR 2.8 16mm MF for Canon EOS

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Canon 50mm f/1.8

Canon 28mm f/1.8

Tamron 28-75 f/2.8

Sigma 20mm f/1.8


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