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Using a little Opteka fish attachment, I've gotten some very cool shots. The problem is that all shots get, of course, progressively less sharp as you move out from the center. I know that this is to be expected, especially with fisheye lenses and wide apertures. However, the blur is so bad that any photo taken with the attachment is completely unsuitable for printing.

So, here's the question: If I go buy a Canon/Sigma dedicated fisheye lens, how much better will the quality be? Worth the (steepish) price?

Thanks!

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Do you seriously think that a piece of attachable glass in front of your lens might be comparable to a lens on its own? –  Leonidas Jan 6 '11 at 2:53
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@Leonidas - It's a fair question, we were all beginners once and the lure of a cheaper option and misinformed sales people can often lead people to make those decisions. Starting to ask the question is how you avoid the same mistake twice. :) –  John Cavan Jan 6 '11 at 3:22
    
Neither "how much better will the quality be" or "worth the (steepish) price" are answerable by anyone other than you. It is safe to say that the quality of a dedicated lens will be vastly superior to a cheap attachment lens, and depending on what you plan to do with it, it will be worth the price. –  Jay Lance Photography Jan 6 '11 at 3:22
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2 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

Adding an additional piece of glass to an already complex arrangement of elements is, at the very basic level, something that can degrade the performance of the lens. Adding one that is designed to optically alter the lens raises even greater risk, this is, after all, not explicitly designed to work with the lens. On that basis, you're already in the optical "hole" here as it were.

A dedicated fisheye lens is specifically designed to be such a lens and the combination of optical elements are there to handle the result of that. So, even the cheaper end of the fisheye lens options is very likely to perform better than your current combination. A better grade of lens is just going to be better in result. The same holds true for macro attachments and other forms of front or rear element items designed to change the essential optical properties of the lens.

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Um... yes. You're comparing a cheap (a quick Google search shows around $35) aftermarket attachment to a dedicated lens from a major manufacturer. Lenses are very often "you get what you pay for" but you're not even talking about the same category of glass here.

Any fisheye lens from Canon/Sigma is going to give you vastly better results.

From a Sigma 4.5mm fisheye...

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