Weight: 23.1 oz. (656g)
Length: 4.04 in. (102.5mm)
Filter Diameter: 52mm
Min. Focus: 1.15 feet (.351 meters)
Max. Magnification: 1:1 (life size)
Horizontal FOV: 23.2 degrees
Horizontal FOV on Digital:
Min. Aperture: f32
Optical Construction: 6 elements in 6 groups, multicoated.
Just goes to show you the little surprises life can send your way.
Following a little bartering, a little horse trading I now have a Lester A. Dine 105mm f2.8 from an old man I help out at times with house repairs – I say old man because that’s the way in which he refers to himself and prefers to be addressed.
He gifted it to me. His way of compensating me when I have refused compensation over time. I accepted it knowing that – he’s happy and I’m happy.
Dine lenses have what may be referred to as a legendary reputation and worth a little money, not thousands, but three or four hundred.
This one is pristine, not a scratch anywhere, flawless mechanically, the glass is crystal clear, and also has the original equally pristine box and assorted papers.
Very sharp, since it’s a telephoto there’s a long rotation related to the focus ring but it’s smooth and dials in, it’s a Nikon mount and somewhere in my gear I believe I have an adapter that will allow me to mount it to the Pentax also.
One thing with a macro and manual – you need to be dead on with focus, and probably won’t nail it every time.
For me at least this is a tripod lens – you often hear of handheld shots with telephoto lenses, I’ve seen claims related to big distance lenses, even mirror lenses….maybe so, but my thoughts are why encumber a good lens unnecessarily and I don’t really think of hand holding as a bragging point – what’s important is the best shot possible.
If you acquire one of a different mount than your camera I’d suggest going with an adapter that has a tripod mount like the one Fotasy offers, sturdy and inexpensive – basically just a hollow metal tube and all you need.
I avoid any adapter that has a glass element, unless it’s really high end the glass will degrade overall image quality.
Funny thing is a couple of years ago I saw a copy of this lens for $100 at a yard sale, the only other one I’ve ever encountered.
It was in good shape and I thought it a good deal, but $100 is $100 and I didn’t have that kind of “disposable income” anyway.
I’m both satisfied with the bokeh it produces and thankful it isn’t yet another lens being touted as “the king of bokeh”.
Dine’s have a cult following kind of like Takumars, but I don’t believe there are nearly as many of the Dines floating around as there are Taks.
This is a “dental lens” designed with dentistry in mind, that alone hints at being sharp – but it is also a lens made by Kino and the same lens branded as the Vivitar Series 1 and Kiron were also sold.
As I understand it they are identical in performance, optically, and build quality – of course that may depend on which copy a person owns and whose telling the story.
Some say it may be the best macro lens ever produced, and while I won’t go so far as to say the same I will say I think you would be hard pressed to find a better one without paying multiples more.
Factor in that probably less than one percent of images don’t undergo some measure of post processing and spending huge amounts of money for a lens that isn’t going to take you much farther than a Dine the logic becomes somewhat questionable to my way of thinking.
Being a manual lens might be a turn off for some, but manuals where I hang the great majority of the time so not a problem – it’s also “heavy” in comparison to today’s plastic “lighter is better” lenses, but I like the feel of solid construction.
Bottomline is I’ve got a Dine—-how good is that!
I’ve seen several references to using a remote in addition to a tripod when doing macro with this lens – remotes are nice but unless you have a heavy hand I don’t believe a remote is absolutely essential.
I happened to look at a remote not long ago – ten dollars for a hot shoe adapter and ninety for a control that connected via a wire to the adapter, both made in China and looked and felt like it, mama rezinate didn’t raise no fools and I work too hard for a hundred dollars to spend it in such a manner.
But when I do some macro with this lens sans a remote I’ll post a couple of examples and let the viewer be the judge……promise not to say I handheld it or the photos were taken while on a horse going full gallop and slinging arrows …..nea’ese ma’hahkeso
Since the initial writing of this and while waiting for an opportunity to spend some daylight hours outside with this lens as I’ve been busy working and haven’t really had the time to the next best thing was to shoot a couple of indoor macros.
No special lighting and no tweaking as it was meant to be a “test”.
Now the dedicated pixel peeper might immediately assume this lens produced the distortion in GW’s head, which it did not – they are the result of the bill being crumpled in my pocket, not laying flat, and no desire on my part to iron it.
What’s interesting to me is when looking at a bill a person is impressed with how precise everything looks – blow it up a little and you can see blotches and such in the printing.
Another impression is that money after having passed through who knows how many hands becomes a little dirty, stains and discoloration you might not notice if not magnified.
As luck would have it I fell into a Sony Remote Commander.
I’ve used remotes previously, the wired or cabled kind kind that connect to the camera, and while they do serve a purpose depending on situations I’ve pretty much ignored them.
The argument has always been using a remote to compensate for camera shake, some even saying the mere activation of the shutter produces sufficient shake to affect a photo.
Other than older film cameras I don’t think enough movement/vibration results from activating a shutter to produce a noticeable effect when mounted on a tripod, which in theory at least is when a remote would be employed.
What’s being missed here is that if that’s the case it really doesn’t matter how the shutter is activated, unless as I’ve said a person is heavy handed.
Since acquiring this remote and testing it my opinion hasn’t changed.
It works very well from either in front of the camera or behind it, has it’s uses, and since all remotes are limited in range it isn’t as though I’d be sitting the camera up and concealing myself some distance away for up close wildlife shots.
I could have but didn’t use it for the above shots employing a tripod.
To say I’m pleased with this lens is something of an understatement, I suspect as I become more familiar with it my appreciation will only increase.
As I understand it some cameras can be accessed including all functions via cellphones – I can see where that could be a good thing at times but my preference is always to encumber myself with the least amount of tech gadgets.
Different strokes, and a person ought to go with what they believe best serves them.
So here’s a couple of photos taken with the Dine minus any special lighting and a few shots of the Dine itself, you might want to give some thought to acquiring one.