GESO -- Kalimar 500mm f8.0 Mirror Telephoto Test

P. J. Alling webstertwentysix at
Sun Oct 4 21:37:02 EDT 2009

All told I took 12 photos of the egrets with the 500mm.  Maybe three 
more wouldn't be bad if I processed them, thought the only one that's 
sharp of an egret in the air is of it's Arse end.

Graydon wrote:
> On Sun, Oct 04, 2009 at 08:44:37PM -0400, P. J. Alling scripsit:
>> Just a few quick shots with El Cheepo Kalimar 500mm mirror lens.
> [snip]
> Those are some spiffy egret pictures.
>> My conclusion.  This isn't a bad little lens.  Based on my test shots,
>> when I do everything right, I wouldn't be embarrassed to show 8x10 and
>> maybe larger prints from images made with it.  It does have the
>> typical  donut shaped out of focus highlights, but they're not
>> objectionable if  you're careful using it..  It's very lightweight,
>> lighter than the F  70-210 and not a lot larger.  Unlike most of the
>> cast off photo gear  people seem to think I can give a good home to
>> it's actually useful.
> My experience trying to do bird photography with mirror lenses is that a
> tripod is really important; the depth-of-field is so damn thin that
> inhaling can move the focus point off the bird, never mind any slight
> front-to-back motion.
> I'm impressed if that was all you took; I rarely get better than 1 in 5
> acceptably in focus with the 800mm Rokinon.  (It's damn sharp when in
> focus; I'm just not so good at manual focus.)
> -- Graydon
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