The $ 99 eBay Lens

” You get what you pay for. And if you don’t pay very much, you don’t get very much. ”

These two trite statements have been knocked into a cocked hat for me with the purchase of a lens for $ 99 on eBay. One of the ubiquitous Chinese brands, this one is marked ” Discover ” – you’ll probably see it under different names – possibly from different importers. It’s manual focus, 25mm f:1.8, with no detents on the aperture ring. Mine’s in silver finish to match my Fujifilm X-T10 so that I look like a raw tourist with a 60’s film camera. It is a cultivated impression, as I wear tourist clothes as well*.

The car pictures are taken on a tripod, with an off-camera Fujifilm EF – X500 flash providing top exposure. Most are taken at from between 1 second and 4 seconds. The camera was left to find its own white balance but this was corrected slightly in Photoshop Elements 14 to warm it up.

I couldn’t be more delighted with the way it operates. It’s slow to manually focus and then stop down, but with tripod work there is no hurry. As yet. I have no lens hood for it but I’ll hunt one down shortly to cope with the light stars

Other purchasers of this lens have complained about the wildly inaccurate focusing scale that is engraved on the barrel. I just bypass this and focus with the peak assistance feature on the Fujifilm – so far so good. I am so pleased that the noticeable keystoning you get with an 18mm focal length is missing here. When you consider that the alternative new Fujifilm lens would have been about $ 600 it gets all the sweeter.

*Aw, to be honest, they aren’t special tourist clothes – they are just the old clothes that I have in the closet anyway. Tourists wear better stuff.

 

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