Mirror Lens vs Normal Lens

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by EhJsNe, Mar 16, 2009.

  1. EhJsNe

    EhJsNe TPF Noob!

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    Which one is better all around. Ill be using it mainly to shoot birds and possibly do some macro with it. (Minimum focus isnt the biggest concern of mine with the macro, since the one I plan on getting is a 500mm, the magnigication of the lens will compensate enough to make me happy. I can always crop it.

    The only thing im aware of the difference is that the aperture on the mirror is fixed at f/8 and the normal lens is max f/5.6 or 4 with a minimm of f/22. (well that and the mirror is about 6 or 7 inches, and the normal is about 2 feet!)

    Both are manual focus (cheaper, and since Im left handed---- Its a lot easier focusing with your dominent hand....but the many times Ive missed a shot because I couldnt react fast enough...but my focus was good!) and are fairly cheap. (mirror is 50, normal is 80)
     
  2. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Reflex/mirror lenses are not the best thing to use.
    They are cheaper. Normally used for Astronomy.

    With the fixed aperture you will have problems under less than optimal lighting.

    Take a look at this comparision review also ...
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I wouldn't bother with those cheap mirror lenses.
     
  4. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    One of the mirrored elements in a mirror lens is in front of the main collector. This makes for a wonderful compact package for such a long focal length. Unfortunately, this same design makes for very distracting "doughnut" shaped highlights that are pretty darn distracting and some issues with image quality.

    A long time ago, there was one mirror lens from of the major brands (canon, nikkor, pentax.. can't remember) that had good image quality. I know very little about it except that it wasn't all that popular either.
     
  5. MikeBcos

    MikeBcos TPF Noob!

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    I did once, many years ago, I ran one film through the camera with the lens on then threw the lens away. Image quality is horrendous.
     
  6. djacobox372

    djacobox372 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Mirror lenses are 1/4 the price for a reason... image quality is lost due to having to bounce the light between mirrors, and you have the ugly donut bokeh problem shown here:

    [​IMG]
     
  7. flea77

    flea77 TPF Noob!

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    Mirror lenses have their uses, and are wonderfully fun toys. If you are shooting astronomy (moon etc) they are pretty nice. Shooting wildlife is hit and miss, especially with the bokeh. I bought one for fun because they are so cheap, and it is a great toy. Just like 8mm fisheyes, there are one or two shots that really work with this type lens, but the majority look bad.

    Allan
     
  8. AlexColeman

    AlexColeman TPF Noob!

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    Don't waste money or space, save till you can get a real telephoto.
     
  9. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    You would be better served getting a Phoenix 500mm telephoto Lens for a hundred bucks NEW off Ebay than any mirror lens, the Phoenix glass ain't spectacular but it is far better than a mirror. Mirror lenses only produce acceptable results when the subject is close and big enough to fill the frame, even then it is not spectacular.

    Additionally, to the best of my knowledge mirror lenses are not macro capable at all.
     

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