I wasn’t quite so lucky with the serial number this time, getting a 1991 sample. Those who know Soviet history will recall that the USSR collapsed in 1991 & as the rumours of this collapse circulated there was an understandable drop in the quality of output from state-subsidised optical plants like KMZ & its satellite plant LZOS. Still, whilst this particular sample may not be optically as good as some of the earlier, chromed samples, the build quality is still superb & the rings are some of the smoothest I have felt. Incidentally, this is the first pre-set aperture lens I have used; there are two aperture rings, one to set what aperture you want & a second to actually stop down. So you set the aperture you want with the first ring, focus wide open & then stop down with the second ring before taking the shot.
I need to invest in a better tripod, as both the cheapo ones I have now aren’t sturdy enough for my new camera, particularly in portrait mode (that’s why none of these photos are portrait!). Also need some sort of dedicated lighting for figure photography, but I’ll probably make that myself. Cut a hole in the bottom of an aluminium bowl, mount a bulb & attach silk across the top to diffuse the light or something. These photos were shot with old manual Pentax lenses from my 35mm SLRs, a 50mm 1.7 & a 100mm f4 macro. With the crop/zoom of the APS-C sized sensor in the K20D, those work out as 75mm & 150mm lenses respectively, which are great for figure photography – with the 100mm in particular though it feels a little weird taking such close up photos from several meters away! I should be collecting Alter’s 1/7 Fate T Harlaown Shin Sonic Form from the Post Office on Tuesday, which is the one I’ve been waiting for since the summer (originally meant to be released at the end of August I think, she only actually shipped at the end of November!). I’ll try to upload a few quick photos when she arrives, but hopefully I’ll have more time later on once I’ve gotten a better tripod & lighting to take some decent photos of all sorts of figures.