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TTartisans 50/1.4: ridiculously impressed


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Received yesterday and tried out today, this lens has far exceeded my expectations, even after reading a number of very positive reviews on the www.  Out of the box, the build quality is more than decent, the aperture and focus rings work well and the focus tab is perfectly positioned.  I was surprised to find the lens well calibrated even at f1.4 so didn't have to use the included tiny screwdriver to make any dreaded micro-adjustments (not the case with my 7artisans 75mm/1.25 which needed a huge amount of adjustment before it focused correctly using the rangefinder).

And on to image quality - from a first few snaps I could see it was nice and sharp especially in the centre, but it was when I compared it with my Zeiss Planar on a tripod mounted still life scene that I couldn't believe what I was seeing.

The Planar already has a reputation for being a very sharp and contrasty lens (perhaps too much for some people?), and I was surprised to see the TTartisans lens can keep up, or even surpass it.  I'm getting details out of it at f2.8-4 that the Planar doesn't match until f5.6.  I thought the Zeiss would be better closer to the edge of the frame; nope, it's not.  What the Chinese lens does have though is f1.4, which tones down the sharpness just enough to perhaps make it a slightly better portrait lens than the Planar.

Other than that, it's interesting to see that although both are nominally 50mm lenses, mine do not appear to be an identical focal length - the TTartisans is just a tad longer, with a narrower field of view.  Doesn't bother me in the slightest, in fact I possibly prefer it.  There's also a noticeable difference in colour, with the Zeiss images having a slightly warmer tint - which I also prefer.

I've definitely noticed more CAs on the TTartisans lens - with bits of purple around high contrast edges but nothing dreadful that can't be handled in post processing.  And I've yet to see how the two lenses would compare in conditions when flare would be an issue - I would hope the Zeiss with its super coatings should do much better here.  The Planar is definitely more compact too, which can often come in useful.

All in all, I was thinking I'd be using the Zeiss most of the time and the TTartisans on occasions when its special characteristics and faster aperture would be particularly useful; I'm rethinking that currently - I suspect the Zeiss may not be my first choice 50mm as often as I thought.

If you've been wondering whether to push the button on this lens, my initial impression is that I wish I'd done that sooner.  It really is surprisingly good.

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10 hours ago, Jon Schick said:

Received yesterday and tried out today, this lens has far exceeded my expectations, even after reading a number of very positive reviews on the www.  Out of the box, the build quality is more than decent, the aperture and focus rings work well and the focus tab is perfectly positioned.  I was surprised to find the lens well calibrated even at f1.4 so didn't have to use the included tiny screwdriver to make any dreaded micro-adjustments (not the case with my 7artisans 75mm/1.25 which needed a huge amount of adjustment before it focused correctly using the rangefinder).

Fully agree, it is a great lens. However you would seem to have been lucky as far as calibration is concerned as mine took quite a lot of fiddly adjustment. Well worth it in the end.

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vor 6 Stunden schrieb overexposed:

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Not that difficult to find...

If I remember right these were all at f/1.4

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On 6/26/2022 at 12:56 AM, BastianK said:

Not that difficult to find...

If I remember right these were all at f/1.4

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Love the first pic!

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On 6/25/2022 at 2:06 PM, Jon Schick said:

Received yesterday and tried out today, this lens has far exceeded my expectations, even after reading a number of very positive reviews on the www.  Out of the box, the build quality is more than decent, the aperture and focus rings work well and the focus tab is perfectly positioned.  I was surprised to find the lens well calibrated even at f1.4 so didn't have to use the included tiny screwdriver to make any dreaded micro-adjustments (not the case with my 7artisans 75mm/1.25 which needed a huge amount of adjustment before it focused correctly using the rangefinder).

And on to image quality - from a first few snaps I could see it was nice and sharp especially in the centre, but it was when I compared it with my Zeiss Planar on a tripod mounted still life scene that I couldn't believe what I was seeing.

The Planar already has a reputation for being a very sharp and contrasty lens (perhaps too much for some people?), and I was surprised to see the TTartisans lens can keep up, or even surpass it.  I'm getting details out of it at f2.8-4 that the Planar doesn't match until f5.6.  I thought the Zeiss would be better closer to the edge of the frame; nope, it's not.  What the Chinese lens does have though is f1.4, which tones down the sharpness just enough to perhaps make it a slightly better portrait lens than the Planar.

Other than that, it's interesting to see that although both are nominally 50mm lenses, mine do not appear to be an identical focal length - the TTartisans is just a tad longer, with a narrower field of view.  Doesn't bother me in the slightest, in fact I possibly prefer it.  There's also a noticeable difference in colour, with the Zeiss images having a slightly warmer tint - which I also prefer.

I've definitely noticed more CAs on the TTartisans lens - with bits of purple around high contrast edges but nothing dreadful that can't be handled in post processing.  And I've yet to see how the two lenses would compare in conditions when flare would be an issue - I would hope the Zeiss with its super coatings should do much better here.  The Planar is definitely more compact too, which can often come in useful.

All in all, I was thinking I'd be using the Zeiss most of the time and the TTartisans on occasions when its special characteristics and faster aperture would be particularly useful; I'm rethinking that currently - I suspect the Zeiss may not be my first choice 50mm as often as I thought.

If you've been wondering whether to push the button on this lens, my initial impression is that I wish I'd done that sooner.  It really is surprisingly good.

Does your lens focus at infinity at the hard stop?  Or go past infinity like pretty much every 7A/TTA lens I've tried?  Mine are/were accurate via the RF, but go past infinity at the hard stop which I could not stand...

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13 hours ago, Huss said:

Does your lens focus at infinity at the hard stop?  Or go past infinity like pretty much every 7A/TTA lens I've tried?  Mine are/were accurate via the RF, but go past infinity at the hard stop which I could not stand...

And is the lens well-calibrated both at infinity and at 0.7m?

That was the problem with the one I tried - well-calibrated for 2m > infinity, but increasingly "wrong" from 2m > 0.7m. Could not get it to work at both ends at the same time.

In the end, decided I'm into photography to take pictures, not play "Junior Lens Mechanic." ;)

But I agree the MTF in the center at f/1.4 (when calibrated) is pretty darn amazing.

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14 hours ago, Huss said:

Does your lens focus at infinity at the hard stop?  Or go past infinity like pretty much every 7A/TTA lens I've tried?  Mine are/were accurate via the RF, but go past infinity at the hard stop which I could not stand...

Mine incredibly goes to infinity and beyond 😀.  My early impressions also are that it is optimised for closer images/portraits and not at its best at infinity.

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  • 1 month later...
On 6/26/2022 at 11:25 AM, overexposed said:

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i've only shot with this lens twice on the m246. so far i've been really impressed with the IQ.

i use an EVF (my eyesight is just too poor to use the OVF - no calibration problem for me 😅) it's quite a sharp lens, which makes it really easy to tell on the EVF when the subject is in focus - even wide open!

 

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Posted (edited)

Reminds me of the tiny 50f1.5 Nokton II in the way it renders…A bit sharper wide open.. but honestly who cares about sharpness…It’s more than sharp enough..  I would rather the Nokton for the size (and comes calibrated). 

 

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Edited by Cthulhu
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On 8/17/2022 at 9:35 PM, Cthulhu said:

I would rather the Nokton for the size (and comes calibrated)

the TTA is def a large beast for a M camera, and i cant imagine using it for an extended period without a handgrip.

from an ergonomic standpoint i can def see the benefit of the CV setup, but the price to performance of the TTA is decent - i paid AUD350 (around USD250) incl shipping for a used copy with a hood

i reckon the TTA is def worth considering for someone who doesn't primarily shoot with a 50mm (but still want reasonable performance), as a everyday lens, it's on the large side

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On 8/17/2022 at 9:35 PM, Cthulhu said:

Reminds me of the tiny 50f1.5 Nokton II in the way it renders…A bit sharper wide open.. but honestly who cares about sharpness…It’s more than sharp enough..  I would rather the Nokton for the size (and comes calibrated). 

 

 

Lovely photo!

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