Vintage Lenses

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Yes, I do tend splurge now and again but I think now I've got a better idea of what I actually use. My main guilty pleasure is tracking down mint examples of the lenses I want which normally costs me a fortune extra. :oops: :$ This is my personal example of the Vivitar 55mm f2.8 Macro Komine (Nikon F Mount):


Even has it's tatty box and polystyrene inserts.
Within my numerous purchases, I’ve also spent a bit more on “mint” examples and these are keepers - e.g. my Minolta 35-70, Zeiss Distagon 28mm, Minolta 100mm macro (original box etc).
Recently got lucky with a Canon FD 80-200L bought unseen at auction.
And along the way, there have been disasters. I still can’t forgive myself for the Pentax ME Super I bought locally with 3 lenses. I “looked” through the lenses but not with a torch. That taught me a valuable lesson. 2 lenses junked, one sold to a shop for peanuts.
 
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And if there was one bit of advice I would give to anyone newly into purchasing legacy lenses it would be to take care examining lenses for fungus, haze, etc, no matter how they are described.
Difficult, I know with most purchases on line at the moment, but when we do return to the point where it’s possible to inspect a lens before purchase, I’d say a good torch is an invaluable aid - even a loupe if you have one.
Case in point. I have a Canon FD 70-210 zoom. I have used this lens many times and looked through it many times. I have enough experei3nce to know what fungus looks like -even small amounts. Yet despite all my looking through this lens, it’s only now (I’m checking over prior to selling) that I notice two absolutely TINY spots of fungus - so faint that even now I don’t see them every time and even then, it depends on the position of the zoom ring. Now this doesn’t bother me in the slightest, but others will “run for the hills” at the very mention of the word.
 
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Lee
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Have a look at the Macro-Takuma 100mm f/4. I'm about to start testing mine but it gets rave reviews.
This is probably the craziest recent find. A Vivitar Series 1 (v3) 70-210mm f/2.8-4 KOMINE, brand new, unused in original box with polystyrene inserts. Not sure I even dare use this one! :oops: :$


It's nothing special or exotic but I still have the original box & inserts for the Tokina 28-70mm zoom that I bought in the early 90's!

I'll look into the macro. The Contax Carl Zeiss 80-200/4 isn't too bad at 200mm & 1m MFD in all honesty.
 
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I got lucky at a local auction room 18 months ago, spotted an ME Super with 50 1.7 and 28 3.5 in a mangy, tatty camera bag along with some more lenses in another box. I went home for a battery to test it and found on my return the LED's worked but it had the sticking shutter, I went back home and put in an online bid for £90. Checked online after the auction and I'd won with an opening bid of £15!!! After a good clean up the lenses were fine and the camera was fixed with a judicious application of sewing machine oil and new light seals. I sold the 50mm on for £35 and also made £65 on the lenses in the other box (M42 mount Pentacon 30mm , 135mm and 200mm ) Still got the ME Super and 28mm.
 
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THIRTYFIVEMILL
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Dunc
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Within my numerous purchases, I’ve also spent a bit more on “mint” examples and these are keepers - e.g. my Minolta 35-70, Zeiss Distagon 28mm, Minolta 100mm macro (original box etc).
Recently got lucky with a Canon FD 80-200L bought unseen at auction.
And along the way, there have been disasters. I still can’t forgive myself for the Pentax ME Super I bought locally with 3 lenses. I “looked” through the lenses but not with a torch. That taught me a valuable lesson. 2 lenses junked, one sold to a shop for peanuts.
LOL! There'll always be the odd disaster. I snagged a Minolta 35-70mm 3.5 this morning at 6.30. :D
 
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Neville
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Funny you should say that. Been chatting to Phil @Phiggys about this lens as he's currently trialing one.. and look what I purchased early this morning.. :p (seller's pic)

Good review of this lens by a trusted source can be found here:


The 35 - 70 is a popular range. I'm currently using the Tamron version and so far, at least, I've had very good results with that.
 
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richard
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Just taking a side track from current discussions for a moment, I just picked up a cheap but nice copy of the Zeiss Mutar 1, 2X TC on a whim since I don't have a 200 ish contax prime and I was interested to see how this performed. The Zeiss MTF's for its use on the 50/1.4 aren't encouraging and, in modern terms, I don't have any long 2.8 primes so the only TC I use regularly are the 1.4X on f4 lenses,

Back in the day, I used to use a 1.5X ?? Vivitar TC with my contax lenses but even on film it wasn't great.

I have just tried it on a 85/1.4 planar, a 135/2.8 sonnar and the 80-200/4 and am surprised that it seems to work OK - probably not good enough for dedicated pixel peepers but certainly fine for me when I get round to using film again.

The planar is well known for being very soft at 1.4: low contrast and resolution so I am surprised it works as well as it does. The sonnar has a fairly uniform performance from f2.8 down.

Here are a couple of shots: these are SOOC so no sharpening and the originals look better than the uploaded ones.

DSC_0466.JPG
Planar 85/1.4 fully open + mutar 2X so at 170mm f2.8

DSC_0439.JPG
135 2.8 sonnar fully open + mutar 2X so at 270mm f5.6
 
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richard
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My wife used to use a Minolta X700 ( I have been scanning her and my negs in - a long project ). I dug it out last week and, having tried to get it going months ago, managed to fire it up ( just battery contacts needed cleaning up ).

She used some Tokina Zooms SD's ( I think ) but I thought I would try and pick up a decent and cheap Minolta 50 prime and give it a whirl - maybe the 50 f2 MD - any thoughts please. It would be for "landscape" - nothing special.
 
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My wife used to use a Minolta X700 ( I have been scanning her and my negs in - a long project ). I dug it out last week and, having tried to get it going months ago, managed to fire it up ( just battery contacts needed cleaning up ).

She used some Tokina Zooms SD's ( I think ) but I thought I would try and pick up a decent and cheap Minolta 50 prime and give it a whirl - maybe the 50 f2 MD - any thoughts please. It would be for "landscape" - nothing special.
Just wondering whether you feel 50mm to be wide enough for landscape? if yes, then although I don’t have this particular version in all the time I’ve owned Minoltas I’ve heard good things about the 50mm F1.7 (incidentally, I’m a 50mm F1.4 owner).
If wider needed then I can say from experience that the MD 28mm F2.8 makes a pretty decent fist of things.
And there’s always the 35-70 which a couple of us have mentioned earlier in the thread (It’s not the lightest of lenses, though).
 
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Lee
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My wife used to use a Minolta X700 ( I have been scanning her and my negs in - a long project ). I dug it out last week and, having tried to get it going months ago, managed to fire it up ( just battery contacts needed cleaning up ).

She used some Tokina Zooms SD's ( I think ) but I thought I would try and pick up a decent and cheap Minolta 50 prime and give it a whirl - maybe the 50 f2 MD - any thoughts please. It would be for "landscape" - nothing special.
I think I mentioned it earlier with regard to something else..... But here's some older shots with my Tokina SD 28-70mm - They must be older, they were taken on the 5D2!!

 
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Lee
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Just taking a side track from current discussions for a moment, I just picked up a cheap but nice copy of the Zeiss Mutar 1, 2X TC on a whim since I don't have a 200 ish contax prime and I was interested to see how this performed. The Zeiss MTF's for its use on the 50/1.4 aren't encouraging and, in modern terms, I don't have any long 2.8 primes so the only TC I use regularly are the 1.4X on f4 lenses,

Back in the day, I used to use a 1.5X ?? Vivitar TC with my contax lenses but even on film it wasn't great.

I have just tried it on a 85/1.4 planar, a 135/2.8 sonnar and the 80-200/4 and am surprised that it seems to work OK - probably not good enough for dedicated pixel peepers but certainly fine for me when I get round to using film again.

The planar is well known for being very soft at 1.4: low contrast and resolution so I am surprised it works as well as it does. The sonnar has a fairly uniform performance from f2.8 down.

Here are a couple of shots: these are SOOC so no sharpening and the originals look better than the uploaded ones.

View attachment 313496
Planar 85/1.4 fully open + mutar 2X so at 170mm f2.8

View attachment 313497
135 2.8 sonnar fully open + mutar 2X so at 270mm f5.6
Good to hear.

I have a Vivitar MC 2x here which I keep meaning to 'test' but I don't seem to get around to it!
 
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richard
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Just wondering whether you feel 50mm to be wide enough for landscape? if yes, then although I don’t have this particular version in all the time I’ve owned Minoltas I’ve heard good things about the 50mm F1.7 (incidentally, I’m a 50mm F1.4 owner).
If wider needed then I can say from experience that the MD 28mm F2.8 makes a pretty decent fist of things.
And there’s always the 35-70 which a couple of us have mentioned earlier in the thread (It’s not the lightest of lenses, though).
Thanks - and yes you are right - I should have said “general purpose” instead of “landscape”.
I usually am at 24-30 ish for landscapes but I suppose it was just to try this x700 out.

From philip reeve and elsewhere I know minolta made some of the best. I did have a MF 70-200 or thereabouts a long time ago, adapted to milc- I thought it was the “beercan” but it seems that was used for the AF.

Seen a few 50/2 and 45/2 on ebay - will have a think.
cheers
richard
 
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richard
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Good to hear.

I have a Vivitar MC 2x here which I keep meaning to 'test' but I don't seem to get around to it!
yes - from digital, the received wisdom is that 2X TC = bad news but I am glad I got and tried this mutar - it’s a keeper for me.
 
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richard
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I think I mentioned it earlier with regard to something else..... But here's some older shots with my Tokina SD 28-70mm - They must be older, they were taken on the 5D2!!

Nice shots - as are the photos my wife took. It doesn’t get too good reviews for some reason but not in my limited experience - seems fine.
 
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Lee
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Nice shots - as are the photos my wife took. It doesn’t get too good reviews for some reason but not in my limited experience - seems fine.
Well, according to that album I've taken two images since 2014!! That's just because I have nicer lenses to use I guess.
 
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richard
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The 35 - 70 is a popular range. I'm currently using the Tamron version and so far, at least, I've had very good results with that.
I use the contax 35-70/3.4 which again is a very good and solid performer but I think, as with a lot of Zeiss stuff, it’s reputation is over stated ( and I have used a lot of contax lenses over the years )

In general, using it, I miss the WA 24 or even 28
 
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Neville
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Well, I suppose the best thing about it is that the wide angles are tiny and easy to carry around in your bag as well.
 
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Lee
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I use the contax 35-70/3.4 which again is a very good and solid performer but I think, as with a lot of Zeiss stuff, it’s reputation is over stated ( and I have used a lot of contax lenses over the years )

In general, using it, I miss the WA 24 or even 28
Mate of mine bought one of those from Japan! He does really like it.
 
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Thanks - and yes you are right - I should have said “general purpose” instead of “landscape”.
I usually am at 24-30 ish for landscapes but I suppose it was just to try this x700 out.

From philip reeve and elsewhere I know minolta made some of the best. I did have a MF 70-200 or thereabouts a long time ago, adapted to milc- I thought it was the “beercan” but it seems that was used for the AF.

Seen a few 50/2 and 45/2 on ebay - will have a think.
cheers
richard
And without wishing to complicate things even more - there is (I believe) the further option of using M42 lenses with the addition of Minolta’s P adapter - I have one and use my Helios 44 on a Minolta mount.
I appreciate that this is extra cost and perhaps I got lucky when I picked up my original adapter for under a tenner.
Possibly it might just give you another option if you have any issues sourcing an MD lens (which I very much doubt).
 
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THIRTYFIVEMILL
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Dunc
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Took the 28mm Takumar out today to visit my favourite trees. My editing isn't to everyone's liking, but "It'll do" as they say in Yorkshire. The farm machinery in the foreground makes the image for me.
View attachment 313735
Love it. I’ve purchased a few Takumars the last couple of days including an 8 element 50mm f/1.4
 
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Stephen
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Tried to get rid of a "mark" on one of my images today. Spent ages wondering if it was something on the sensor or the lens. Turned out to be the remants of a plane's vapour trail. So few of them at the moment. I live between the Manchester and Leeds final descent routes.
 
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THIRTYFIVEMILL
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Dunc
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Had to decide on filters for the newly acquired Asahi Pentax lenses and have now bought some vintage Asahi skylight filters. Can't exactly say I'm keeping everything vintage when the lenses are on the front of a Nikon DSLR but.. Interestingly, one is a "ghostless" filter, that I'd not really heard of before and is quite scarce apparently.
 
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Tried to get rid of a "mark" on one of my images today. Spent ages wondering if it was something on the sensor or the lens. Turned out to be the remants of a plane's vapour trail. So few of them at the moment. I live between the Manchester and Leeds final descent routes.
I blame the chemtrail conspiracy!
 
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