panorama software,virtual tour software
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Joined: 2009-10-26
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2009-10-26
#1

Bower 8mm lens

Does anybody have any experience with this lens?

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/635178-REG/Bower_SLY358C_SLY_835C_8mm_f_3_5.html

Also sold on Ebay under the brand name Rokinon for $299.

The price looks great. The limited amount of information about using it for 360 x 180 panoramas suggests that you need at least two more shots than using a Sigma 8mm lens.
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Joined: 2002-11-23
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2009-10-26
#2
Basically the lens is of high quality and sold under many different names such Samyang, Falcon, Bower, Rokinon, Polar, Vivitar among others. All really "Samyang" made in Korea.

It is a Full Frame fisheye much like a Nikkor 10.5mm or Sigma 10mm. Not Circular like the Sigma 8mm. In fact the lens is really more accuratly are 9mm fisheye than an 8mm.

None the less, it is a great piece of glass at an affordable price. Just understand it is 100% manual (no auto-focus). Not that this is a major set back but it does explain the lower pricing somewhat.

On a APS-C/DX small sensor DSLR you will need 6+1 or 6+2 images to cover the full 360x180 sphere.

It should be fully compatible with Panoweaver stitching software and it also is suitable for sun shield/hood "shaving" should you wish to fit it to a Full Size EF/FX sensor DLSR (reducing the shots to 3+1).

I have one about to be delivered and I'm sure to report further on it when it arrives.

Regards, Smooth
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2009-10-27
#3
OK, today my "Falcon" branded Samyang arrived from Poland (via ebay).

I quickly (and I mean quickly) attached the lens to my older Canon 10D 6.3mp DSLR camera and placed it on a Nodal Ninja 5 panohead (found the NPP) and raced out and shot this panorama before the wife pinched the Jag to go to an appointment.

I shot this pano at f/11.0, 3 brackets -3ev, -1ev, +1ev, 6 shots -15 degrees and 1 shot +70 degrees.

http://smooth360.com/2009/falcon_fisheye/

No editing has been done other than processing the RAW files, Stitching/Fusing and cloning out the tripod.

Just remember it is 100% manual focus and manual aperture. There are no electrical contacts between the lens and camera and thus no camera feedback.

I would have no hesitation recommended this lens at all. It would have to be the best value fisheye on the market at this stage.

Just for interest sake, I paid $295.00 USD delivered.

Regards, Smooth
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2009-10-27
#4


As you can see from the Owners Manual the "Falcon" is really just a re-badged Samyang (Made in Korea).

Regards, Smooth
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2009-10-27
#5
Wow, thank you very much for the information and the very timely response. You are truly an asset to this forum.