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Bower800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens
 
2.7

(based on 10 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (3)

50%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Lightweight (4)

Cons

  • Blurry focus (3)
  • Poor in low light (3)
  • Slow focus (3)

Best Uses

  • Wildlife photos (3)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Semi-pro photographer (3)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (3)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

fun lens to view flat perspective

I got the lense to fit Canon EOS and use it on the digital rebel xt. The image is slightly soft at high mainification but what fun to see how it flattens out the...Read complete review

I got the lense to fit Canon EOS and use it on the digital rebel xt. The image is slightly soft at high mainification but what fun to see how it flattens out the perspective. I use a tripod and this must attach to the camera,not the lens, so it is front heavy and you have to aim high, crank the lever and let the lense drift downward to where you want to frame the image. This is a bit of a nuisance. I use the M setting and adjust the shutter speed to get the exposure. It's fun to have this ultra telephoto. Canon extenders didn't work with the lens but extension tube did. The lens is a bit bulky but fits in my bag. I thought about the 500MM lense for less but this is more reach at better f stop. I like the lens for what it is. Need to figure out a better tripod mounting situation to reduce time in framing

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Decent Performance for the Price

I purchased the Bower 800mm f/8 Reflex Mirror Lens looking for an inexpensive 'recording' telescope for remote inspection and industrial photography. For the price this lens is hard to beat. It isn't...Read complete review

I purchased the Bower 800mm f/8 Reflex Mirror Lens looking for an inexpensive 'recording' telescope for remote inspection and industrial photography. For the price this lens is hard to beat. It isn't the same as a $15K refractor telephoto- for one thing it's around $350… it's also a lot shorter and lighter. It IS a cheap lens, completely manual, fixed aperture, lots of plastic, screw mount with adapters, somewhat 'soft' without any really absolute sharp focus and f/8 so it's dark in the viewfinder.

When I started in photography most of my lenses had some of these attributes so I'm fairly good at 'follow' focus and have made some nice, very usable images handheld at 50-100 yards with this lens. From a tripod with a D3 back at high ISO settings and 'live-view' focus magnification I've produced usable images from typical room lighting and had better results outdoors. This is what revealed the limits of focus quality however- at very high focus magnification the limits of resolving power of this lens is evident.

So it's not a lens for fine art or serious wildlife photography but within the limits of price and materials incorporated in its construction this lens is well engineered. For its size and weight it's a good addition for anyone wanting extreme telephoto capability on a budget.

Reviewed by 10 customers

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(0 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
1.0

Very dissapointing

By Andrew

from Holmdel, nj

About Me Semi-pro Photographer

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Rugged

Cons

  • Blurry Focus
  • Poor in Low Light
  • Slow Focus

Best Uses

    Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

    By an extender instate of this lens

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    Share this review

    (10 of 17 customers found this review helpful)

     
    1.0

    Very sorry I wasted the money...

    By Steve

    from Orlando, FL

    About Me Pro Photographer

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • None

    Cons

    • Blurry Focus
    • Heavy
    • Poor in Low Light
    • Tough To Attach

    Best Uses

    • Paper Weight

    Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

    For "under $1000 what more do you want?"

    IMAGE CLARITY! This lens is probably the worst purchase I've made so far. If you purchase this lens, do not expect much out of it. You MUST use a tripod (and a remote shutter release) to get anything worth looking at, and even with that, the images are still very blurry.

    Manual focus is very touchy at these focal lengths, so expect to spend more time than usual trying to focus. It will NOT be useful for wildlife unless you're shooting stuffed animals or possibly sloths. Being so difficult to focus quickly makes it almost unusable for anything that moves.

    With a fixed f/8 and 800mm, your shutter speed needs to be at least 1/1600 for full frame or about 1/2400 for cropped sensors. This requires A LOT of light, or an ISO that induces plenty of noise, so in addition to being blurry, your pictures will most likely be dark or noisy.

    Overall, I would NEVER recommend this lens to anyone. Anyone that would tell you differently obviously does not care about image quality. I would welcome anyone to show me a clear, usable picture taken with this lens. My guess is, you can't.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    Share this review

    (6 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

     
    2.0

    Not that good

    By Japio

    from Greenville, SC

    About Me Photo Enthusiast

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Lightweight

    Cons

    • Poor in Low Light
    • Slow Focus

    Best Uses

      Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

      The high ISO settings these days make it possible to shoot hand-held with this kind of focal length.
      However, with this lens, the image quality is not that great, and the focusing is not very smooth, making it difficult to handle.
      Later I bought a second hand Nikon 500mm F/8, and that is what I should have done right away.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Share this review

      (7 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

       
      3.0

      Not as good as i hoped for

      By Good better best

      from South Africa

      About Me Semi-pro Photographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Durable
      • Easily Interchangeable

      Cons

      • Image quality very soft

      Best Uses

      • Wildlife Photos

      Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

      I bought this lens primarily to photograph birds from a hide because of the focal length and compactness and price. Although no metering or autofocus, it works and handles fine. Unfortunately image quality is not very good, just as soft as my 70-300 + 1.4TC setup cropped to the same size so i did not gain anything that the extra reach was supposed to provide. You need enough daylight and a sturdy tripod to get barely usable results.

      Share this review

      (5 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Better than I expected

      By Jeff

      from Ithaca

      About Me Semi-pro Photographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Wildlife Photos

          Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

          The lens has a much sharper focus than I expected and I've even been able to get some nice wildlife shots with it. Obviously there is no controlling the aperture with this lens, so make sure you want a F/8.

          Share this review

          (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

           
          1.0

          Not impressed at all

          By Constantine

          from Cyprus

          About Me Pro Photographer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Lightweight

          Cons

          • Blurry Focus
          • Extremely soft
          • Fixed aperture
          • No tripod collar

          Best Uses

            Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

            To begin with, I didn't expect a lot from a catadioptric 800mm lens at this price range. I don't usually shoot this kind of photo and I was looking for an occasional compact alternative to the 80-400mm with the teleconverter.

            This lens is extremely soft. Comparing it to the 80-400mm at 400mm with a 2x teleconverter it's considerably softer. I find that its quality is about the same as a crop of a refractive lens at 400mm (that is resizing 2x an image made with a 400mm lens) and even worse.

            To make things worse there is no tripod collar on the lens and even with a pro body the center of weight of the system is somewhere on the lens, thus becoming really unstable on a tripod.

            I would pick any of the superzooms instead of this lens any day and either crop and resize or use a teleconverter.

            Share this review

            (6 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            fun lens to view flat perspective

            By jsurf

            from San Diego, CA

            About Me Photo Enthusiast

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Consistent Output
            • Easily Interchangeable

            Cons

            • Bulky
            • Slow Focus

            Best Uses

            • Landscape/Scenery
            • Wildlife Photos

            Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

            I got the lense to fit Canon EOS and use it on the digital rebel xt. The image is slightly soft at high mainification but what fun to see how it flattens out the perspective. I use a tripod and this must attach to the camera,not the lens, so it is front heavy and you have to aim high, crank the lever and let the lense drift downward to where you want to frame the image. This is a bit of a nuisance. I use the M setting and adjust the shutter speed to get the exposure. It's fun to have this ultra telephoto. Canon extenders didn't work with the lens but extension tube did. The lens is a bit bulky but fits in my bag. I thought about the 500MM lense for less but this is more reach at better f stop. I like the lens for what it is. Need to figure out a better tripod mounting situation to reduce time in framing

            Share this review

            (3 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Hey,it's not an L

            By Troy

            from Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Affordable
            • Clean images

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Bright outdoor stills

              Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

              Seems to be an alright lens, full manual fixed f stop, under $1000 what more do you want?

              Share this review

              (9 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

               
              3.0

              Decent Performance for the Price

              By Johnw2k

              from Pleasant Hill

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Compact
              • Lightweight
              • Low priced

              Cons

              • Dark in Viewfinder
              • Tricky to Focus

              Best Uses

              • Remote inspection
              • Surveillance

              Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

              I purchased the Bower 800mm f/8 Reflex Mirror Lens looking for an inexpensive 'recording' telescope for remote inspection and industrial photography. For the price this lens is hard to beat. It isn't the same as a $15K refractor telephoto- for one thing it's around $350… it's also a lot shorter and lighter. It IS a cheap lens, completely manual, fixed aperture, lots of plastic, screw mount with adapters, somewhat 'soft' without any really absolute sharp focus and f/8 so it's dark in the viewfinder.

              When I started in photography most of my lenses had some of these attributes so I'm fairly good at 'follow' focus and have made some nice, very usable images handheld at 50-100 yards with this lens. From a tripod with a D3 back at high ISO settings and 'live-view' focus magnification I've produced usable images from typical room lighting and had better results outdoors. This is what revealed the limits of focus quality however- at very high focus magnification the limits of resolving power of this lens is evident.

              So it's not a lens for fine art or serious wildlife photography but within the limits of price and materials incorporated in its construction this lens is well engineered. For its size and weight it's a good addition for anyone wanting extreme telephoto capability on a budget.

              Share this review

              (7 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              Good Value

              By Manoel

              from around the world

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • 800mm
              • Clear image
              • Easy to focus
              • price
              • The set

              Cons

              • T-mont not fit so perfect

              Best Uses

              • Birding
              • Monopod walk
              • Seat and shoting
              • Wildlife

              Comments about Bower 800mm f/8 Manual Focus Telephoto T-Mount Lens:

              800 mm by about 250 bugs. cheap and good. buts not the best quality.make your choice:
              good points:
              price,big tele zoom very good to bird. need to use hi iso and fast speed about 1000. not so easy to hand the lens, but is a supertelezoon, so not use for close up pictures. the focus is clear and easy to get manualy (with you how to do it). the worst part of the kit is the T-mount for nikon. well not fit perfectly and with you force you can feel some flabby, but not in the use.

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