Nikkor-Q 135/2.8 vs 135/3.5

mike3996

Hall of Famer
Location
Finland
The first vintage Nikkor I bought for Df was the Nikkor-Q.C 135mm f/2.8. With its four elements its design is what @BrianS calls a "unique formula". Not necessarily a Sonnar but it's not a double-Gauss either.

Fast forward to this year and I was buying the Nikkor 135mm f/3.5 because of its famed Sonnar qualities.

Yesterday I took the two lenses and made side-by-side comparisons.

The results are amazingly close to each other.


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mike3996

Hall of Famer
Location
Finland
This is not a fair match because the focusing distance differs and therefore the bokeh will not be as smooth.

Focusing these long lenses wide open proves to be tricky. My first reaction was to blame Nikon for the difficulty but what do I know about my hit rate with a Leica? I never shot action with long fast lenses with my M either.

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rayvonn

Hall of Famer
It’s often said there’s little to no difference between the F2.8/3.5 variants, but wide open, the difference is there from what I can see.
 

mike3996

Hall of Famer
Location
Finland
It’s often said there’s little to no difference between the F2.8/3.5 variants, but wide open, the difference is there from what I can see.
I can't see much of a difference outside the half-stop difference in DOF. The f/2.8 also does a less colorful bokeh ball, and I would reckon is sharper wide open than the f/3.5.

I should conduct one or two head-to-head comparisons and try to tickle out the differences.
 

Biro

Hall of Famer
Location
Jersey Shore
Real Name
Steve
I can't see much of a difference outside the half-stop difference in DOF. The f/2.8 also does a less colorful bokeh ball, and I would reckon is sharper wide open than the f/3.5.

I should conduct one or two head-to-head comparisons and try to tickle out the differences.
Exactly right. The half stop difference in DOF is about the only noticeable difference I've been able to see. Do you enjoy using one more than the other?
 

mike3996

Hall of Famer
Location
Finland
Exactly right. The half stop difference in DOF is about the only noticeable difference I've been able to see. Do you enjoy using one more than the other?
It is early to tell if one is a definite winner over the other. f/3.5 is nice and light to carry but flares ah so easily. f/2.8 has no flaw as far as I can tell but it's a bit on the bulky side. The builtin hood is a nice thing too.
 

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