Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

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enricosavazzi
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Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by enricosavazzi »

I have written an in-depth review of the Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Super Macro (the Mark II version of this lens) because the reviews I found online do not answer several of my questions about this lens. The text is not final and the page is not yet linked to the rest of my web site, but can be seen at the following direct link:

http://savazzi.net/photography/mitakon_ ... ro_85.html
--ES

lothman
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by lothman »

=D> thanks for the review

Macro_Cosmos
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by Macro_Cosmos »

That's an incredibly detailed and in-depth review. I can resonate with the sentiment of "YouTube reviews of such lenses are usually a waste of time". I personally don't care much about production quality of videos, I want accurate and hopefully repeatable information.

jmc
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by jmc »

Nice review Enrico, thanks for sharing.
Jonathan Crowther

dickb
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by dickb »

A very interesting article. In its summary you say:

The redesign caused the nominal aperture to increase from f/2.8 to roughly f/4.8-f/5.6

I would suggest the aperture decreased or was reduced.

You suggest as an alternative to this lens a combination of the Laowa 25mm and 100mm lenses. It would be interesting to know how the IQ of the 85mm lens at 2:1 compares to that of the 100mm. Perhaps even comparing them at 5:1, using extension for the 100mm. If the IQ is comparable, the 100mm would be a better option for those needing the long working distances.

Lou Jost
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by Lou Jost »

Nice review, but I have one minor suggestion. You say that no one you know uses filters for these types of lenses. However, filters are very useful and I know many who use them, including myself. Cross-polarization is a common technique in macrophotography. I also use barrier filters for fluorescence photography.

There is a missing datum:
a focal length of 71 mm makes the nominal aperture to be f/

enricosavazzi
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by enricosavazzi »

dickb wrote:
Sun Nov 01, 2020 3:55 am
The redesign caused the nominal aperture to increase from f/2.8 to roughly f/4.8-f/5.6

I would suggest the aperture decreased or was reduced.
The way I use the term aperture value in the review is in the sense of f/ratio. This is the aperture as expressed in several of the geometric optics formulas used in the review, for example. So aperture increases when the f/ratio value increases. The other way to express aperture is NA (numeric aperture), which changes in the opposite direction than the f/ratio (closing the aperture increases f/ratio and decreases NA, all other things remaining the same). When we are talking of lens speed, we use "fast" to indicate low f/ratio and "slow" to indicate high f/ratio, so in this case we say that lens speed decreases when f/ratio (fully open) increases.
dickb wrote:
Sun Nov 01, 2020 3:55 am
It would be interesting to know how the IQ of the 85mm lens at 2:1 compares to that of the 100mm. Perhaps even comparing them at 5:1, using extension for the 100mm. If the IQ is comparable, the 100mm would be a better option for those needing the long working distances.
Since the 100 mm is nominal f/2.8, I expect this lens fully open at 2x to be better than the 85 mm fully open at 2x, at least if the 100 mm is properly designed and aligned. Pushed to 5x, the 100 mm is no longer working at its design specifications, so all bets are off.
Last edited by enricosavazzi on Mon Nov 02, 2020 12:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
--ES

Scarodactyl
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by Scarodactyl »

I found this lens's narrative arc very strange. One kind of gets the impression this company has no idea what they're doing, but I almost never follow normal camera lens development so I don't know if this kind of thing is normal?

enricosavazzi
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by enricosavazzi »

Scarodactyl wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 12:49 pm
I found this lens's narrative arc very strange. One kind of gets the impression this company has no idea what they're doing, but I almost never follow normal camera lens development so I don't know if this kind of thing is normal?
I would not say it is normal, but it is not unheard of either, especially in macro lenses. Faulty lens designs are generally caught in the testing stage, but in this case it seems the beta test prototypes were not built the same way as the commercial product.

On the other hand, lens flare and low contrast are well-known problems e.g. in the first-generation Olympus OM 20 mm and 38 mm bellows lenses (especially the 20 mm). Even the CoastalOpt 65 mm Apo Macro frequently suffers from a strong central hotspot, at least across part of its magnification range.

A more worrying fact is that the increase in nominal aperture in the Mark II model of the 85 mm 1-5x is not documented by Zhongyi.
--ES

dickb
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by dickb »

enricosavazzi wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 12:45 pm
dickb wrote:
Sun Nov 01, 2020 3:55 am
The redesign caused the nominal aperture to increase from f/2.8 to roughly f/4.8-f/5.6

I would suggest the aperture decreased or was reduced.
The way I use the term aperture value in the review is in the sense of f/ratio. This is the aperture as expressed in several of the geometric optics formulas used in the review, for example. So aperture increases when the f/ratio value increases. The other way to express aperture is NA (numeric aperture), which changes in the opposite direction than the f/ratio (closing the aperture increases f/ratio and decreases NA, all other things remaining the same). When we are talking of lens speed, we use "fast" to indicate low f/ratio and "slow" to indicate high f/ratio, so in this case we say that lens speed decreases when f/ratio (fully open) increases.
OK, this is just a terminological difference of opinion, we both understand the underlying theory. I was assuming "increase" was a typo. But you use the term f/ratio differently than I expected. As I see it, you use the term f/ratio to mean 2.8 in this case, but the ratio is 85/2.8. 2.8 is just the denominator of the ratio. So when you close an aperture it decreases in whatever way you wish to express it, be it NA, f ratio or the general concept of an opening. The one thing that increases is the denominator, being the inverse of the aperture value.
enricosavazzi wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 12:45 pm
dickb wrote:
Sun Nov 01, 2020 3:55 am
It would be interesting to know how the IQ of the 85mm lens at 2:1 compares to that of the 100mm. Perhaps even comparing them at 5:1, using extension for the 100mm. If the IQ is comparable, the 100mm would be a better option for those needing the long working distances.
Since the 100 mm is nominal f/2.8, I expect this lens fully open at 2x to be better than the 85 mm fully open at 2x, at least if the 100 mm is properly designed and aligned. Pushed to 5x, the 100 mm is no longer working at its design specifications, so all bets are off.
Indeed, all bets are off. The assumption of a lens being properly designed may be slightly optimistic. That's why I appreciate tests like yours showing actual results rather than assumed ones.

tryphon4
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Re: Review of Mitakon Creator 85mm f/2.8 1-5X Mark II

Post by tryphon4 »

This review is very interesting.

However, I own this lens (ordered mark I version and sent it back, then received mark II) and I share your conclusions: this lens in interesting in the field but is not in the same league as specialized lenses.

I recently bought a Laowa 100mm 2x macro lens and, although its working distance is way shorter, I prefer it to the Mitakon.
I quickly compared sharpness of the two of them (between 1:1 and 4:1) to a reversed Schneider Componon 28mm F/4, for this test, my Laowa was helped by a 1.7x teleconverter and an extension ring. In a nutshell: the Laowa is comparable to the Schneider and the Mitakon is doomed.

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