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randapex

105mm VR. Comments on Bokeh

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I recently had a chance to shoot the new 105VR. Just a single dive so, I'm not ready to comment in depth. But I did find a couple of things of interest, (Well, at least I found it so :D ) and was looking for any feedback you all might have.

Firstly, the sharpness is definitely better than the old 105. But it's the OOF area that has me intrigued. It's quite different in it's rendering. I'd like to understand what people feel is happening that's as I've no clue why it looks so different...

post-299-1170786644_thumb.jpg

Edited by randapex

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I recently had a chance to shoot the new 105VR. Just a single dive so, I'm not ready to comment in depth. But I did find a couple of things of interest, (Well, at least I found it so :D ) and was looking for any feedback you all might have.

Firstly, the sharpness is definitely better than the old 105. But it's the OOF area that has me intrigued. It's quite different in it's rendering. I'd like to understand what people feel is happening that's as I've no clue why it looks so different...

 

Great photo! Must have taken a lot of time to get, was the AF-S a great help? Lovely and sharp too.

 

Bugger.

 

I now have to go shopping

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Here is a extract from my review of the lens:

http://wetpixel.com/i.php/full/nikon-105mm-vr-review/

 

The purpose of the 9 bladed aperture diaphragm is to improve the smoothness of the bokeh. Don’t worry if that sentences makes no sense – I’ll explain. Bokeh (is an Anglicised Japanese word) that describes the aesthetic qualities of out-of-focus areas in an image – or the smoothness of the blur. Simply, the more circular the shape of the aperture (and less hexagonal) the smoother and thus more pleasing the out of focus areas of the picture will appear. Macro photography is characterised by shallow depth of field and lots of out of focus areas, which is why all this effort has been put into the aperture. So does this make a noticeable difference underwater? Yes. In fact before I read anything about the aperture of this new lens I had commented to several people that the lens produced much smoother backgrounds than the old one.

 

Alex

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Thanks Alex. Now I remember your thoughts. Guess my real question, not asked well initially, is: Do you find the rendering of the OOF tail pleasing? The effect seems very different. Almost like it was a Photoshop trick of some sort. It certainly opens up to me a whole new area of shooting experiments. I keep looking at it and getting the feeling there is something really cool to be done with the effect, but not sure what...

 

Hi Scuba_SI. If you're referring to the focus mode, I don't use AF-S but only AF-C. The AF-S seems too picky for me. Plus I'd rather get an OOF shot here and there than let the camera decide it's not in focus, causing much cursing and gnashing of teeth.

 

Rand

Edited by randapex

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Thanks Alex. Now I remember your thoughts. Guess my real question, not asked well initially, is: Do you find the rendering of the OOF tail pleasing? The effect seems very different. Almost like it was a Photoshop trick of some sort. It certainly opens up to me a whole new area of shooting experiments. I keep looking at it and getting the feeling there is something really cool to be done with the effect, but not sure what...

 

Hi Scuba_SI. If you're referring to the focus mode, I don't use AF-S but only AF-C. The AF-S seems too picky for me. Plus I'd rather get an OOF shot here and there than let the camera decide it's not in focus, causing much cursing and gnashing of teeth.

 

Rand

 

Sorry Rand, I have a debilitating case on Man-Flu.. I didn't specify my question properly, i meant the AF-S in the lens. Those little Damsels are very jumpy and hard to shoot! I haven't dared to try one of these lenses in a shop as i know it will result in a large bill!

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Sorry Rand, I have a debilitating case on Man-Flu.. I didn't specify my question properly, i meant the AF-S in the lens. Those little Damsels are very jumpy and hard to shoot! I haven't dared to try one of these lenses in a shop as i know it will result in a large bill!

 

Ok, now I get it. LOL! My technical side is a bit lacking anyway. If I'd shot more with the lens, then I'd be more inclined to make a statement on that aspect. Only one dive didn't give me that much experience. But I will say the focus was fast enough to where it wasn't an issue that I noticed.

 

Rand

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Do you have any similar shots taken with the older lens to compare to?

 

I think an additional factor for this photo is just the way the light is hitting/falling off the tail...

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Do you have any similar shots taken with the older lens to compare to?

 

I think an additional factor for this photo is just the way the light is hitting/falling off the tail...

 

Closest I can come with the older 105mm:

post-299-1170808819_thumb.jpg

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I find the tail of the chromis distracting because it is a small detail that is strongly saturated and therefore distracts the eye.

 

The bokeh of the new 105mm is best exploited to smooth relatively solid backgrounds.

 

I think that in the example you have chosen the tail would look distracting on either lens.

 

Here is an example of the bokeh of the new 105mm that I find very pleasing. This is shot with a dioptre too.

 

post-713-1170834566_thumb.jpg

 

Alex

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I find the tail of the chromis distracting because it is a small detail that is strongly saturated and therefore distracts the eye.

 

The bokeh of the new 105mm is best exploited to smooth relatively solid backgrounds.

 

I think that in the example you have chosen the tail would look distracting on either lens.

 

Here is an example of the bokeh of the new 105mm that I find very pleasing. This is shot with a dioptre too.

 

post-713-1170834566_thumb.jpg

 

Alex

 

Thanks Alex, that's what I was thinking on it as well. Not all that impressed with the way the tail is displayed. Didn't want to lead the discussion off with my negative opinion on it. But I think you're on to something with that photo. Port Hardy has some of the best negative space you could ask for. I'll look forward to shooting it there later this year. And I must use the slower shutter speeds and get away from that BB.

Edited by randapex

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I find that the 105VR OOF area to be smoother, call it blurrier, than the 105AFd. It's not that the DOF is any different, it's just that the truly OOF areas seem blurrier, whereas the old lens had more of a "spotty" or "clumpy" look to the truly OOF areas.

 

The difference isn't great, but I like the newer bokeh. I actually find I spend less time Photoshop adjusting the bokeh of the new lens.

 

Try taking some flower shots with both lenses fairly wide open in good light and you can see the subtle differences.

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