canon's wide angle offerings leave so much to desire, i finally sprung for a couple of exotics to use on my 1Ds M2.
yes, i suppose one can hope the rumors of new sharp canon wide angle primes come true next month or at photokina . . . but pigs may fly too some day!
after much research (bleeding eyeballs, i mean how many 100% f/8 corner crops can one look at before madness ensues!), i decided on a couple of highly commended zooms in the wide end: the f.2.8 AF 17-35mm nikkor (heavy, expensive, w/ a whole of autofocus stuff that will never be used!); and the zeiss 35-70 f/3.4 vario-sonnar T (small, compact, not one bit bigger than it needs to be--a true manual lens w/o any of the stuff on the nikkor that will never be used on my canon).
both these lenses compare very favorably against some of the very best primes (zeiss 21 distagon, nikkor 24/28, etc.) and for me, zooms are a must.
that said, with cameraquest adaptors firmly in place, i finally got out to shoot some today. first time out with the whole manual focus, stop-down metering, manual aperture control deal and i was quite pleased with the results. evaluative metering worked fine in aperture priority with the usual minor tweaks with exposure compensation & histogram. i can see i would do well with a focusing screen changeover to something more manual focus friendly (brightscreen microprism!).
but even with the standard screen, i managed to capture focus and came home with some of the sharpest, most highly resolved images i've ever shot. i mean scanning around the image in capture one, 100% focus mag and i'm just blown away by the detail. as a friend said tonight, almost 3D.
see for yourself. these have been sharpened and processed for the web as i always do. same workflow, incredibly sharp results:
four shot vertical stitched pano, canon eos 1Ds M2; zeiss 35-70 @ 40mm, f/8, 1/125s, iso 100
nikkor 17-35 @ 30mm, f/8, 1/25s, iso 100
zeiss 35-70 @ 35mm, f/8, 1/8s, iso 100
i can't wait to do some printing!!