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on 12 August 2013
I fin d it handy to have cant wait to get out and use it as of yet due to illness I haven't had chance yet, but when I do I will be out there snapping photos. ty again.
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on 19 May 2017
shows up as f/0 lens not attached, its cheap for a lens and you get what you pay for
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on 20 July 2017
Great service and great product
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on 29 October 2010
Excellent service, the lense arrived on schedule and came with a free cleaning kit. The lense itself is lovely to use it is very well balanced on my 1000d and has a very smooth action, its fixed at f8 so working exposure is just a matter of playing with the shutter speeds and iso numbers, there is a slight drop in image quality when the 2x converter is attached but to be honest i think that applies to all lenses. the 4 star rating is simply because i feel the depth of field is quite shallow for f8, but this might be the norm for mirror lenses, i havent used one before. all in all i would recommend this lense without any doubt.
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on 8 August 2011
This is an absolute bargain at the price but it is essential to use a good sturdy tripod for clear photos and no trace of blur. Never having had a mirror lens before it was somewhat offputting to see where the three free filters should be fitted but they all seem to work very well and do their job. The lens and extension tube are very well built if a tad basic. I bought the kit to take good photos at a distance without eating into my life's savings. It certainly takes excellent photos (with practise) and my savings are intact!

A great buy!
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on 5 May 2011
I use a Canon EOS 450D and have a sturdy tripod. The 500mm lens, itself, is well manufactured, precise and light-weight. It comes with a small "kit", with useful items such as an air brush, which is a small bonus. The lens-camera adapter is very well machined and a precise and easy fit to both the lens and the camera body. The lens focusing ring is very smooth, sensitive and easy to operate. At 500mm, the lens is usable; it requires some "tweaking" of camera settings and lots of trial and error, but it is usable and even the manual focusing is not a massive problem. There is, unfortunately, a huge "BUT": the 2 x teleconverter, (which is also manufactured to a very high quality) quite frankly, is a waste of money. Since the lens is fixed at f8, with the teleconverter, this increases (or is it decreases?) to f16, which means a much smaller aperture and therefore considerably less light entering the camera. In cases of very bright light, 3 "filters" are provided, which screw in to the rear of the lens. These, too, are very well made and fit precisely and comprise a clear filter for normal use and two darker ones, for situations with considerably increased light (these replace being able to reduce the aperture even further). I'm not altogether sure how useful these will be, bearing in mind the already very small aperture.

It is relatively (and I use the term advisedly) easy to focus the lens manually, using either the viewfinder or the camera screen, although good eyesight and considerable patience are a significant bonus. However, taking a clear picture is still incredibly difficult. I do accept that, since the lens is all manual and very powerful, a lot of trial and error is inevitable and, to some degree, this is part of the "enjoyment" of photography, but it can still be extremely frustrating. When focussing, it is essential to take into account "camera shake" and, when taking pictures, mirror lockup (if your camera has this) can help to reduce this. Don't get over confused about depth of field; with this lens, because of the small aperture, the background will be blurred and the area in focus will be quite small. You won't be able to take photographs of far-off galaxies, distant landscapes or even celebreties in compromising situations! Close-ups of still items, perhaps even the occasional sparrow-hawk, are possibilities, although not from a considerable distance.

So far, I have only been able to produce very grainy, blurred and low-contrast images (and I have taken several hundred). I have used the lens in bright daylight conditions, with a tripod, but have still been unable to produce anything that is usable. It is virtually useless in low light and certainly no good for moving subjects, or any "spontaneous" photography; hand-held is just not going to work. A sturdy tripod, along with remote shutter release and other "steadying" features are absolutely essential. Considerable patience and many trials are also high on the priority list. Because the aperture is fixed, it is a matter of adjusting shutter speed/ISO rating and ensuring the camera is held as steadfastly as possible.

My unprofessional opinion, after trying the lens and reading many reviews, is that it is a high-quality build, light but sturdy and certainly has a "novelty" factor (it looks pretty impressive), but with the 2 x teleconverter, it is nigh on impossible to get good results. There are numerous views and reviews to be found, but these can confuse the issue. If you are an expert/professional photographer, I don't think you'd buy this type of lens. As an amateur, on a tight budget, being able to see and understand the facts is essential. I suspect most reviews relate to the 500mm lens only, rather than its usage with the 2 x teleconvertor. Even with the quality build and the "workable" 500mm lens, the usefulness of this lens is going to be limited. Please be guided by my experience: certainly, research this for yourself, but I'm sorry to say that I truly regret having bought this lens!
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on 19 February 2013
Look, this is a 1000mm telephoto at a stupidly low price and something has to give - in this case a little too much has been compromised for my liking which is why I've settled on a low score, but really, at this price for 1000mm lens, what do you expect?

Right - the good: Yes, it does give you a 1000mm tele and it's cheap. It's compact, light and feels reasonably solid and well made...but that's about it. I can't really say anything good about the image quality or usability.

Bad - the depth of focus of this lens is INCREDIBLY tight and the focus adjustment is manual and VERY sensitive making getting well focused shots frustrating and more luck than anything. There's more distorsion of various types than you can shake a stick at although non of it is absolutely awful. The way out of focus elements look due to the nature of the reflector looks "odd" compared to what one is used to.

All in all, if you absolutely have to use a long lens and you can spare the time to keep messing with the focus until you hit a sweet spot then you CAN get a little more information in your photos than a shot taken at about 250mm and magnified digitally 4x...but not by much. With a lot of effort, I managed a semi acceptable sized shot of the moon, but frankly, don't expect to be using this lens as more than a gimmick from time to time.
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on 19 March 2011
This lens produces great results with a Canon EOS 550d. Focussing is a little challenging, as you would expect with a lens of this focal length, with no split prism or microprism on the 550, so make sure you set the viewfinder dioptre setting properly if you have dodgy eyesight like me. A tripod is pretty much essential, also as you would expect. The fixed aperture is no problem, set the camera to Av mode, and the exposure will be correct. OK, you can't adjust depth of field, but that's always going to be narrow at 500mm.
Is the lens as good as a Canon L series? No, but you can have at least ten of them for the price of an L. At this price point, the lens is an absolute bargain, and you should have one in your bag.
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on 30 May 2016
Good value for money. When used alone (i.e. w/o the 2x teleconverter) the image quality is significantly better, contrast is higher, chromatic aberrations are also less visible unless pixel-peeping. Focusing as expected is a hit-miss affair given its manual only option but for a scoping lens and occasional wildlife or bird photography or even astrophotography it's fairly good. You won't win any prizes with what this lens produces but it'll be pretty usable, perhaps not print material but usable nonetheless.

A special note on astrophotography, I tried on a regular photo tripod with and w/o the 2x teleconverter and without a proper finder scope to use on the camera finding even the brightest star/planet even on a clear night sky with no moon is a pain. Part of the fun of it though. Also once acquired the heavenly body runs almost instantly out of the field of view so a very very very stable tripod is a must but then again that means more and more money spent on a already cheap lens which produces reasonably focused pics of let's say Jupiter and its moons.

With the 2x teleconverter it's possible to catch a glimpse of the giant planet and its 4 moons albeit there's little detail in the 100-200 pixels "blob" that's Juptier and the almost dot-like moons of its. The lens itself however is quite better than most of the entry level or toy/kids telescopes with similar focal length lenses you can purchase for quite more money. So provided you have a set of eyepieces and a camera adapter to mount them in you should get fairly decent and detailed shots of Jupiter, Saturn, Mars and Venus.
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on 17 April 2014
It a budget lens and you have to be prepared to use it manually on the camera,but it can get some great shots with a little bit of patience and practice.
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