So I tested a few lenses in the past 2 months.
Among with the testing, I did my daily work with the Canon FD 100 F4 macro - as usual. But with that I could only get to 1:2 magnification. The extension ring was unusable due to heavy vignetting and super bad flares (as mentioned above).
With only 1:2 my 35mm negatives were just around 2800x1900px in size. That’s not enough for me so I decided to finally buy a e-mount lens.
I thought: “I would spend the same amount of money (or even a bit less) for a proper flatbed scanner, but a lens would save me lots of time and will be suited for my normal digital photography as well. - A good investment”.
There were four lenses I wanted to try:
- Native Sony 90 f/2.8 Macro _______________________________ aprox. 1100€
- Native Sony 50 f/2.8 Macro _______________________________ aprox. 500€
- Sigma 105 f/2.8 Macro + Sony LA-EA4 A- to E-Mount adaptor ____ aprox. 600€
- Sigma 70 f/2.8 Macro (as recommended by @Clemens) ________ aprox. 500€
…, but then there came the Corona lock-down and all the camera stores closed…
I don’t like buying stuff on the internet just to test it and then send it back if I don’t like it.
So what I did was reading a lot of tests and reviews. Also, I made myself a list of features I need in a lens.
- After a short time I found that the 90mm from Sony is just way too expensive.
- The second thought was: “There’s no guarantee that the LA-EA4 adaptor doesn’t produce flares just like the extension ring does.”
- The decision between the Sony 50mm and the Sigma 70mm was pretty easy since I found a sigma used in the online store of a german camera store (I’m German) for 429€.
But I think the Sony 50mm would be just as good of a choice after all!
The lens arrived yesterday, so I tried it last night.
TLDR - It’s just perfect!
SUPERSUPER sharp - just like @Clemens stated. Stopped down a bit there’s no vignetting at all and the focus-by-wire system is a charm after getting used to. I refocused the Canon FD 100 every couple of shots just because I wasn’t sure if it didn’t slip out of focus simply because of gravitation.
The downside of the Sigma 70mm f/2.8 Macro Art is that I had to change my scanning setup by a bit, because you have to get really really close compared to the Canon FD lens. Maybe a repro stand will make life easier! But after quite a bit of leveling around my solution with my tripod works just fine.
Look for yourself:
Something else is worth mentioning:
The lens is pretty big compared with the Canon FD 100 f/4 Macro, but it’s small compared with the Sony FE 90mm f/2.8 Macro. It also has no image stabilisation - but I don’t need that anyways…
Here’s a size comparison:
Left to Right:
Canon FD 100mm f/4 Macro __ Sigma 70mm f/2.8 Macro Art __Sony FE 28-70 Kit Lens
I rescanned some of my good older negatives for the extra resolution.
Here are the rescans of two photos from the original post:
Overall I hope this thread and my thoughts will help somebody who has similar problems!
Thanks to everyone that has helped me!