Dil Roberts Photography


Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Adapters for EF to E and m4/3 Mount Cameras


Adapters for EF to E and m4/3 Mount Cameras

(Plus some more ramblings)


The reason for my purchase of the Sony Alpha Axx cameras when they first came out was to have an FF sensor (a very good sensor) in a small and light package. Since my first purchase I must admit that GAS got the better of me and now I have a few of these little marvels. Each has it's own use and I use certain lenses on certain cameras. The A7r is a marvel but it is LOUD and has a few problems, but the images it turns out are simply superb. I know now that the A7rII will be purchased at some point down the road, but not at it's present price point. Just too expensive. The A7s is the best for low light but I have no intention of purchasing the A7sII. The A7II has IBIS and I use all my older manual lenses on it. It doesn't help everyone I know, but it does help me get sharper images. One other Sony I did acquire however was the RX1. I got it at a great price and couldn't pass it up. That fixed 35 f2 lens is from my favourite lens produces, Zeiss, and it shows. If ever you get a chance to try one out, try it. You'll be amazed at the files. It's not fast and the battery capacity is a joke but I just carry more batteries. It's not like they're big and heavy. The Rx1rII is out there now and it does everything better and faster, but lets face it, I'm not made of money so that camera will stay with Sony. I'm quite happy with the files from my original RX1.


Like I mentioned above, one camera I will purchase will be the A7rII. Reason being the (and the actual topic of this post) is the possibility to use adapters for my Canon lenses. The price as of this post is around €3500 with no sign of going down. Not good news but then again why should they reduce the price. It has no competition on the market right now and I think it'll stay like that for some time. Anybody with a spare €3500 out there? Having sold off the big heavy Canon f2.8 zoom lenses and some others I really didn't use in earnest I still have some nice Canon glass. The 135 f2 and the 200 f2.8 come to mind as well as the 24-105 zoom which is quite good. I really don't want to sell these and it would be possible to use them on the A7rii. The A7ii is also a good choice so an adapter had to be purchased.

Looking at the online prices I has a heart attack when I saw what Metabones wanted for their Speed Booster adapters. Picking myself off the floor I decided to try another route first. I just selected a Commlite adapter for around €75 and ordered it. I wanted something small to go with the adapter and after reading some good things about the Canon EF 40 f2.8 STM I purchased that too. Not expensive at all and the image sharpness looks good. I still have to test the lens properly but I do believe I received a good copy. If this proved to be a workable solution then nothing would stop me from testing the other top quality Canon lenses. One drawback when using the Canon lenses is that the system gets bigger which defeats the object of purchasing the Sony cameras in the first place. I have no intention of buying any of Sony's newer lenses like the 70-200 f4 or any of the G series lenses. That's what I wanted to get away from in the first place. I intended to use these with smaller lighter manual focus primes which I have been doing and it works well. Lets just wait and see where this takes me.


 Commlite EF - E mount Adapter

As you can see the adapter doesn't add a lot to the system


I decided to experiment firstly with my A7 so that I could compare the difference in AF speed between it and the A7ii. Does it AF on the A7? Yes, but ever so slowly. For my type of photography speed isn't essential so it's a workable solution but I'm not adverse to a little more speed. I tried it on the A7ii and the increase in speed is noticeable. Don't let any marketing department con you into thinking that the difference is like night and day, because it isn't. When I have the time I'll post another one of these posts with the results my Canon lenses gives me on the Sony cameras.

That is not the end of the story however, as I kept hearing about the success of the Metabones adapters (currently at version IV). What I find excellent is the continuation of Firmware updates being supplied by Metabones. Fuji are doing the same thing with their equipment. Come to think of it, the Fuji updates are so extensive it's like buying a new camera. I know what I'm talking about because I possess most of them. I'm not sure if camera manufacturers realise the importance of firmware updates. It keeps customers and gathers new ones because word gets around. It shows they give a damn about their customers. My belief is, they should all do it. Olympus and Panasonic are starting to do the same thing because they've realised the significance of keeping your customers interested and loyal.


[SIDENOTE 1: Just look at what Fuji have done with the X-E2. They've just brought out v4 firmware release. My X-E2 is really just like a new camera. It's faster and more responsive, had new functions added and old ones changed for the better. There was no need to do anything for image quality because that's been fine from the start. A good example of how to do things right.]

Fujifilm X-E2

The Fujifilm X-E2. Given a new lease of life with the new v4 firmware update.

Where Canon and Nikon fit into all of this I don't know, I'm not certain they know what they're doing. Half hearted attempts at joining this growing market isn't going to work. I think their latest attempts shows this. The new DSLRs from both manufacturers hasn't got me interested at all. But then again I left that sector a couple of years ago and have no intention of returning to it. Although I have no large lenses from Nikon, I have to be grateful to Canon as they do have some great glass that I own and I can now use those on my Sony (and m4/3) cameras.

I think all camera manufacturers can thank companies like Metabones for bringing out such adapters (although all kinds of manufacturers are bringing more adapters onto the market). Everybody wins. I believe I have become a real mirrorless fan (I think it just crept up on me) because everything about the system weighs a lot less than their DSLR counterparts, not to mention the size and weight of the lenses. My back would like to thank all those companies for bringing out the mirrorless systems; especially Olympus and Panasonic who pioneered these small mirrorless cameras. Last summer I took a 3 week holiday in south of France and I had something like 4 cameras with me (I wanted to test a couple of them) and I could carry them all around with me, all day long. In fact, I did. Not a problem at all at the end of the day as I still had some energy left in the evenings to something else. Can you imagine doing that with DSLRs plus lenses. I can't.

I digress again, as usual so back we go to adapters. Some of you may know that I'm something of a M4/3 fan and I have a few Olympus and Panasonic cameras. Well...I was on the Metabones website the other day and I realised they have adapters for the M4/3 system too. This is really bad news for my wallet. Since I was ordering I might as well get the E-mount adapter too so that ended up in my basket too. I didn't order the Speed Booster adapter because it's out of my price range but I did order the Smart Adapters. I'm now the proud owner of two Metabones adapters, one for the E-Mount and the other for the M4/3 system. I must say the standard Smart Adapter is still quite expensive, but still cheaper than buying new lenses, especially the new Sony G series.

Olympus E-M1 with the Metabones adapter and Canon 85 f1.8

As you can see, the adapter isn't big at all.

[SIDENOTE 2: I keep wondering somehow if Sony didn't wait until they saw the Alpha series cameras take off before introducing the G series lenses at increased prices.]

Having said that, Olympus and Panasonic have just brought out the 300 f4 prime lens and Panasonic the 100-400 f4.0-6.3 and they're not cheap. Personally I would go for the Panasonic because it gives me a little more for my money. I could do more with the 100-400mm than with the 300mm prime. But then again, I'm not a birder.  If every manufacturer does this I'll be prices out of the market. People will be hesitating before making purchases at these prices especially under these economic climate. I personally have to save for every piece of equipment I buy and I think that goes for most people.

[SIDENOTE 3: After the debacle (just my opinion) with the new Olympus Pen-F camera, I'm certain they'll re-think their pricing strategy for their equipment. After comparing the specs for the new Pen-F and the E-M5ii, the E-M5ii comes up tops. The Pen-F just isn't worth it at the present price point.]

If you want more information on adapters for the E-mount system just click on the following link: http://www.briansmith.com/gear/sony-lens-adapters/. There's going to be a second post with some images using the adapters.

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I'm an enthusiastic photographer who likes to tinker with manual lenses on most camera formats.


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