Weather and light were unusually spectacular the entire day, during which most of my little friends were content to perch high in the canopy and torture me with their calls. Still, it was a good opportunity to further investigate the characteristics of the Telyt, with and without extender; and the SL2 in both jpg and dng.
First conclusion is that it is utterly useless to shoot any critter under canopy with this camera. The result is consistently a fuzzy mess.
An observation is that in good light the bare lens suffers from a similar issue I encountered with it on a couple of the a7xx bodies: internal flare caused by reflection off the sensor. I’m not alone, as this phenomenon was documented some years back by a photographer with a scientific background. As with my experience with the Sony, his issues occurred in all kinds of light. With the SL2, no issue has so far been noted under overcast or cloudy skies. Nor does it occur with either teleconverter in any kind of light, although I did notice a shard of internal flare on a previous outing.
The SL2’s metering on spot was all over the map with the lens as well. In one instance, cutting EV by the full three stops had no visible effect. Too, adapted via the R-M and M-L stacked, there’s mechanical vignetting. It appears that on the SL2, default deployment of the lens in good light must be with the APO 1.4X, not what I envisioned, especially since this particular copy is at its best on either teleconverter when stopped down a stop.
Teleconverter performance was what drove me to try the bare lens on a few m43 bodies in the past, where there were no optical anomalies, but on which image quality was left lacking. It worked okay on the TL2 and CL, but neither has suitable ergonomics for the lens.
Poking around to see if there’s a more recent APS-C that might work turned up two options: the R7 and the X-T5. The R7 was quickly ruled out for one of the same reasons I ditched it in the first place: Canon has made it clear that their RF bodies will be crippled in some way for third-party glass. The Fuji? Well, it’s intriguing, but also prohibitively expensive for a camera that would serve as a one-trick pony.
All this led to my coming out of the field today with a sort of defeated feeling, same as when I left Cairns realizing my time would have been better spent shooting landscapes rather than chasing non-existent critters in heat shimmer. The good thing is that all it’ll take is a quick lens change and a different venue to make that familiar feeling subside.