Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences

Started Mar 10, 2013 | Discussions
eques
Senior MemberPosts: 1,623Gear list
Like?
Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
Mar 10, 2013

Hallo,

my lastest acquisition is a Minolta MC 1,4/50; I have been using some legacy lenses before (3 AIS Nikkors from 20-105 and Minolta MD from 28-135), some are excellent, even wide open, some I have to stop down 1-2 stops for best resolution.

I have posted a similar post on the m43 forum, because at the moment I only use m43gear. But I read a lot on this forum about experiences with legacy glass and I plan to get a NEX 6 body specifically for these old lenses, because they are so much fun to use.

Here one of my first tries with lots of fine detail in the centre:

f1,4

There are huge bloomings and flare alsong all edges with higher contrast. Here a detail

f1,4 100% crop

Still, the image is very sharp with a lot of details, but low contrast because of the flare:

f1,4 100% crop

Last example: a nicely ornamented door, which was completely in the shadow, no sun at all:

f2,0 100%crop

And this is stopped down!

Does any one have similar experiences with this lens or is it just a problem of my copy?

Is this a characteristic of the MC lenses, because of less coating?

I will try it stopped down, but actually I got it because of the shallow DOF wide open!

Peter.

 eques's gear list:eques's gear list
Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH Samyang 7.5mm F3.5 UMC Fisheye MFT Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-150mm F4-5.6 ASPH Mega OIS +1 more
YuriS
Regular MemberPosts: 337Gear list
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to eques, Mar 10, 2013

eques wrote:

Hallo,

my lastest acquisition is a Minolta MC 1,4/50; I have been using some legacy lenses before (3 AIS Nikkors from 20-105 and Minolta MD from 28-135), some are excellent, even wide open, some I have to stop down 1-2 stops for best resolution.

I have posted a similar post on the m43 forum, because at the moment I only use m43gear. But I read a lot on this forum about experiences with legacy glass and I plan to get a NEX 6 body specifically for these old lenses, because they are so much fun to use.

Here one of my first tries with lots of fine detail in the centre:

f1,4

There are huge bloomings and flare alsong all edges with higher contrast. Here a detail

f1,4 100% crop

Still, the image is very sharp with a lot of details, but low contrast because of the flare:

f1,4 100% crop

Last example: a nicely ornamented door, which was completely in the shadow, no sun at all:

f2,0 100%crop

And this is stopped down!

Does any one have similar experiences with this lens or is it just a problem of my copy?

Is this a characteristic of the MC lenses, because of less coating?

I will try it stopped down, but actually I got it because of the shallow DOF wide open!

Peter.

Hi Peter! I own two 50mm f1.4 Minolta lenses: MC Rokkor-PG and MD Rokkor . Both produce very good picture, slightly soft at f1.4 (especially MC), but not something unusual. Please see test and sample pictures, may be it will help…

http://natalispalette.jimdo.com/photo/minolta-md-rokkor-50mm-f1-4-lens/

http://natalispalette.jimdo.com/new-and-old-camera-lenses-by-yuri-stangrit/comparisons-and-reviews/several-50mm-prime-lenses-comparison/

 YuriS's gear list:YuriS's gear list
Olympus PEN E-PL1 Sony Alpha NEX-6 Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4.0-5.6 Samyang 7.5mm F3.5 UMC Fisheye MFT +1 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Letsgokoulos
Senior MemberPosts: 1,413
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to eques, Mar 10, 2013

eques wrote:

Hallo,

my lastest acquisition is a Minolta MC 1,4/50; I have been using some legacy lenses before (3 AIS Nikkors from 20-105 and Minolta MD from 28-135), some are excellent, even wide open, some I have to stop down 1-2 stops for best resolution.

I have posted a similar post on the m43 forum, because at the moment I only use m43gear. But I read a lot on this forum about experiences with legacy glass and I plan to get a NEX 6 body specifically for these old lenses, because they are so much fun to use.

Here one of my first tries with lots of fine detail in the centre:

[...]

And this is stopped down!

Does any one have similar experiences with this lens or is it just a problem of my copy?

Is this a characteristic of the MC lenses, because of less coating?

I will try it stopped down, but actually I got it because of the shallow DOF wide open!

Peter.

The quality of the details wide open, even though slightly soft, is typical of the Minolta 50mm f1.4 at its maximum aperture. The haze that is all over your picture and that aggravates the colour fringing at locations of  high contrast can be caused by several factors. I have had a similar behaviour with a Konica Hexanon 40mm f1.8, and found two issues:

  • The adapter had a light leak. My adapter came with a tripod extension which bothered me. I removed it and forgot to plug the screw holes
  • The front lens had been removed for some reason, and some cleaning was necessary

I advise you to start checking if there is or not a light leak between the adapter and the lens. I any leak suspicion, then use gaffer tape at that location and try to shoot a few other pictures.

You can then check the lens by having a strong light source directed through its optics and inspecting it at close range. At a first look, my 40mm seemed to be clean, but I found out after very carefully inspecting it that some sort of grease had ben spread all over the front element on the inside of the lens. If your lens does not appear to be cristal clear, then try to identify whether the smearing is at the front or at the back of the lens. According to where the smearing is located, remove the front ring with either a rubber lens ring tool or a spanner wrench, and clean the front lens and the first group, or remove the back lens and clean it along with the back group.
You may have to repeat the cleaning operations several times, depending on the cause of the smearing.

As I noted above, other factors could be the origin of the problem. Given the fact that the details of your picture are fine, I would expect the situation can be corrected.

Marc

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
captura
Forum ProPosts: 12,593Gear list
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to Letsgokoulos, Mar 10, 2013

Although there is clearly something wrong here, (light leak?) with your 1.4 lens, I did a series of comparisons with my Minolta prime lenses recently and found one other lens which gave superior results. That was the MD 50mm f2, but I'm told that the commonly found 50mm f1.7 is even better. My 50mm f1.4 MC PG is also a bit soft, even stopped down a bit.

 captura's gear list:captura's gear list
Fujifilm X10 Sony Alpha NEX-7 NEX5R Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R Sony E 55-210mm F4.5-6.3 OSS +9 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Letsgokoulos
Senior MemberPosts: 1,413
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to captura, Mar 10, 2013

captura wrote:

Although there is clearly something wrong here, (light leak?) with your 1.4 lens, I did a series of comparisons with my Minolta prime lenses recently and found one other lens which gave superior results. That was the MD 50mm f2, but I'm told that the commonly found 50mm f1.7 is even better. My 50mm f1.4 MC PG is also a bit soft, even stopped down a bit.

Steve, I am not familiar with the 50mm f2. Have you published your comparisons anywhere ? I have had a 50mm f1.7, and it was not so sharp as my 50mm f1.4 although both were really close. My copy of the f1.4 is very slightly soft full open, but then really sharp when stopping down and its bokeh is delicious, and to my eyes, far superior to this of the f1.7.

Marc

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
john-photoguy
Regular MemberPosts: 444Gear list
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to Letsgokoulos, Mar 10, 2013

I bet that there is a haze (or dare I say fungus) on the inside of the lens,  This affects many lenses that are older, and can be a very slight haze to a heavy haze.  Often near the iris, but I have one right now that is in between two elements that I can't get apart.  The newest lenses have sealed groupings made from plastic.  Minolta MC and the first MD series are still metal, and come apart easily enough to clean all the elements.  be VERY careful, some of the elements scratch extremely easily.  Once cleaned, you will notice that your blooming will only be with the lens wide open, where it is not as sharp, but sharpens quickly as you stop it down.

Great lenses, but any old lens is prone to need a good cleaning

-- hide signature --

Let just all take more photographs!

 john-photoguy's gear list:john-photoguy's gear list
Nikon D200 Nikon D5000 Nikon D300S Sony Alpha NEX-3 Sony Alpha 7 +19 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
ProfHankD
Senior MemberPosts: 1,818Gear list
Like?
"Glowy" lenses usually caused by haze, scratches, or fungus
In reply to john-photoguy, Mar 10, 2013

john-photoguy wrote:

I bet that there is a haze (or dare I say fungus) on the inside of the lens,

Many older lenses are slightly "glowy" -- which is what you're complaining about. Teleconverters and glass adapters greatly magnify the effect, often producing IQ usable only as a special effect.

The glow can come from many factors, ranging from incorrect reassembly of the lens after cleaning to sensor reflections. Some lenses also have a little glow by nature of their optical design, but generally not as severe as what you're showing. For a sharp image with heavy glow the most likely culprit is some type of diffuser in the lens:

  • Haze is simply the deposition of diffusing material on (inner) lens surfaces over time. Most lenses suck air through as you focus, and humidity, volatile organics, and other materials go along with it, condensing and accumulating on inner surfaces over time. I've also seen a lens where oil had spread out onto an element near the aperture iris. Cleaning internal surfaces is problematic, but the only fix.
  • Contrary to popular belief, scratches don't have much impact on lens sharpness, but they do cause refractive problems like glow. The impact of surface scratches can be reduced by filling them with light-absorbing material, such as black paint, but that is feasible only for very deep scratches. Scratches in the rear element usually impact IQ far more than ones in front.
  • Fungus, with its well-known white branching structures, will reflect a little light. However, it's after a long-term fungus infection that the real glow issue starts -- especially after the fungus is removed. Fungus emit chemicals that can etch lens glass (certain glasses more than others; for example, some older Canon lenses seem to be particularly vulnerable), leaving the equivalent of many-faceted micro scratches after the fungus has been removed. Once etched, no simple repair is possible.

Note that dust usually doesn't cause glow because typical dust particles block light, rather than causing refraction. Close visual inspection of the lens with a penlight should tell you which problem you have....

 ProfHankD's gear list:ProfHankD's gear list
Canon PowerShot A640 Canon PowerShot A720 IS Canon PowerShot S70 Canon PowerShot G1 Canon PowerShot G5 +19 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
eques
Senior MemberPosts: 1,623Gear list
Like?
Re: "Glowy" lenses usually caused by haze, scratches, or fungus
In reply to ProfHankD, Mar 10, 2013

Thank you for your detailed answer.

ProfHankD wrote:

john-photoguy wrote:

I bet that there is a haze (or dare I say fungus) on the inside of the lens,

Many older lenses are slightly "glowy" -- which is what you're complaining about. Teleconverters and glass adapters greatly magnify the effect, often producing IQ usable only as a special effect.

The glow can come from many factors, ranging from incorrect reassembly of the lens after cleaning to sensor reflections. Some lenses also have a little glow by nature of their optical design, but generally not as severe as what you're showing. For a sharp image with heavy glow the most likely culprit is some type of diffuser in the lens:

  • Haze is simply the deposition of diffusing material on (inner) lens surfaces over time. Most lenses suck air through as you focus, and humidity, volatile organics, and other materials go along with it, condensing and accumulating on inner surfaces over time. I've also seen a lens where oil had spread out onto an element near the aperture iris. Cleaning internal surfaces is problematic, but the only fix.

I could not make out any haze on the internal lenses. The lenses look clear to me. But of course I am no expert.

  • Contrary to popular belief, scratches don't have much impact on lens sharpness, but they do cause refractive problems like glow. The impact of surface scratches can be reduced by filling them with light-absorbing material, such as black paint, but that is feasible only for very deep scratches. Scratches in the rear element usually impact IQ far more than ones in front.

There are no visible scratches.

  • Fungus, with its well-known white branching structures, will reflect a little light.

There is no visible fungus in the lens.

  •  However, it's after a long-term fungus infection that the real glow issue starts -- especially after the fungus is removed. Fungus emit chemicals that can etch lens glass (certain glasses more than others; for example, some older Canon lenses seem to be particularly vulnerable), leaving the equivalent of many-faceted micro scratches after the fungus has been removed. Once etched, no simple repair is possible.

This seems to me the only possibility left.

Note that dust usually doesn't cause glow because typical dust particles block light, rather than causing refraction. Close visual inspection of the lens with a penlight should tell you which problem you have....

Peter.

 eques's gear list:eques's gear list
Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH Samyang 7.5mm F3.5 UMC Fisheye MFT Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-150mm F4-5.6 ASPH Mega OIS +1 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Letsgokoulos
Senior MemberPosts: 1,413
Like?
Re: "Glowy" lenses usually caused by haze, scratches, or fungus
In reply to eques, Mar 10, 2013

eques wrote:

Thank you for your detailed answer.

ProfHankD wrote:

john-photoguy wrote:

I bet that there is a haze (or dare I say fungus) on the inside of the lens,

Many older lenses are slightly "glowy" -- which is what you're complaining about. Teleconverters and glass adapters greatly magnify the effect, often producing IQ usable only as a special effect.

The glow can come from many factors, ranging from incorrect reassembly of the lens after cleaning to sensor reflections. Some lenses also have a little glow by nature of their optical design, but generally not as severe as what you're showing. For a sharp image with heavy glow the most likely culprit is some type of diffuser in the lens:

  • Haze is simply the deposition of diffusing material on (inner) lens surfaces over time. Most lenses suck air through as you focus, and humidity, volatile organics, and other materials go along with it, condensing and accumulating on inner surfaces over time. I've also seen a lens where oil had spread out onto an element near the aperture iris. Cleaning internal surfaces is problematic, but the only fix.

I could not make out any haze on the internal lenses. The lenses look clear to me. But of course I am no expert.

  • Contrary to popular belief, scratches don't have much impact on lens sharpness, but they do cause refractive problems like glow. The impact of surface scratches can be reduced by filling them with light-absorbing material, such as black paint, but that is feasible only for very deep scratches. Scratches in the rear element usually impact IQ far more than ones in front.

There are no visible scratches.

  • Fungus, with its well-known white branching structures, will reflect a little light.

There is no visible fungus in the lens.

  • However, it's after a long-term fungus infection that the real glow issue starts -- especially after the fungus is removed. Fungus emit chemicals that can etch lens glass (certain glasses more than others; for example, some older Canon lenses seem to be particularly vulnerable), leaving the equivalent of many-faceted micro scratches after the fungus has been removed. Once etched, no simple repair is possible.

This seems to me the only possibility left.

Note that dust usually doesn't cause glow because typical dust particles block light, rather than causing refraction. Close visual inspection of the lens with a penlight should tell you which problem you have....

Peter.

Peter, a long-term fungus should be visible with a pen-light. If you are absolutely positive that the glass is cristal clear with a pen-light, I would think the only other possibility is light leak, most likely with the adapter.

Your pictures are focused, so it is not a problem with focusing. The glass is clear, so it is not a problem with altered glass... so what else could it be ? If you have the chance to mount the lenses on someone else's adapter and camera, try it.

Keep us informed...

Marc

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
forpetessake
Senior MemberPosts: 3,168
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to eques, Mar 10, 2013

I had a bunch of normal manual lenses of old, some of them got into my test chart, most of them (with the exception of Olympus Pen-F and Takumar) were very soft and glowing wide open and required 2 stops to get to good sharpness. That softness actually works very good for portraits, for everything else there is no reason not to get SEL5018, it's very sharp lens with excellent contrast:




Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
blakninja
Regular MemberPosts: 129
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to forpetessake, Mar 10, 2013

I got same lens, same glow

Sometimes it's cool to not have super sharp photos. But I like vintage look and I mostly like the color reproduction.

I have Hexanon 40 1.8 too, not sure why I need it when I have the MC Rok 50 1.4

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
captura
Forum ProPosts: 12,593Gear list
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to Letsgokoulos, Mar 10, 2013

Letsgokoulos wrote:

captura wrote:

Although there is clearly something wrong here, (light leak?) with your 1.4 lens, I did a series of comparisons with my Minolta prime lenses recently and found one other lens which gave superior results. That was the MD 50mm f2, but I'm told that the commonly found 50mm f1.7 is even better. My 50mm f1.4 MC PG is also a bit soft, even stopped down a bit.

Steve, I am not familiar with the 50mm f2. Have you published your comparisons anywhere ? I have had a 50mm f1.7, and it was not so sharp as my 50mm f1.4 although both were really close. My copy of the f1.4 is very slightly soft full open, but then really sharp when stopping down and its bokeh is delicious, and to my eyes, far superior to this of the f1.7.

Marc

John in the next message reports, "I bet that there is a haze (or dare I say fungus) on the inside of the lens, This affects many lenses that are older, and can be a very slight haze to a heavy haze."

And I believe he may be correct in the case of my 1.4 lens which is well-used, with a lot of very small scratches. Now you asked about the 1.7 but I've never tried one. People seem to like it.

Now the 50/f2 was common but is now quite forgotten. Small, light but not cheap like the 45. The pages in the Rokkor Files that did the comparison between all the smaller 50's seem to have disappeared from the internet. But there are allusions to it's goodness scattered about, here and there. Also the 1.7. The main thing in my opinion is that the later MD lens have a better multi-coating, which is nice in some conditions.

Another lens I have is a very nice MC 55 f1.9 which is very flat but wide and heavy. Now that lens is uncommon. Do you have any information on that lens, by chance?

Steve

 captura's gear list:captura's gear list
Fujifilm X10 Sony Alpha NEX-7 NEX5R Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R Sony E 55-210mm F4.5-6.3 OSS +9 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
eques
Senior MemberPosts: 1,623Gear list
Like?
Re: "Glowy" lenses usually caused by haze, scratches, or fungus
In reply to Letsgokoulos, Mar 10, 2013

Letsgokoulos wrote:

eques wrote:

Thank you for your detailed answer.

ProfHankD wrote:

john-photoguy wrote:

I bet that there is a haze (or dare I say fungus) on the inside of the lens,

Many older lenses are slightly "glowy" -- which is what you're complaining about. Teleconverters and glass adapters greatly magnify the effect, often producing IQ usable only as a special effect.

The glow can come from many factors, ranging from incorrect reassembly of the lens after cleaning to sensor reflections. Some lenses also have a little glow by nature of their optical design, but generally not as severe as what you're showing. For a sharp image with heavy glow the most likely culprit is some type of diffuser in the lens:

  • Haze is simply the deposition of diffusing material on (inner) lens surfaces over time. Most lenses suck air through as you focus, and humidity, volatile organics, and other materials go along with it, condensing and accumulating on inner surfaces over time. I've also seen a lens where oil had spread out onto an element near the aperture iris. Cleaning internal surfaces is problematic, but the only fix.

I could not make out any haze on the internal lenses. The lenses look clear to me. But of course I am no expert.

  • Contrary to popular belief, scratches don't have much impact on lens sharpness, but they do cause refractive problems like glow. The impact of surface scratches can be reduced by filling them with light-absorbing material, such as black paint, but that is feasible only for very deep scratches. Scratches in the rear element usually impact IQ far more than ones in front.

There are no visible scratches.

  • Fungus, with its well-known white branching structures, will reflect a little light.

There is no visible fungus in the lens.

  • However, it's after a long-term fungus infection that the real glow issue starts -- especially after the fungus is removed. Fungus emit chemicals that can etch lens glass (certain glasses more than others; for example, some older Canon lenses seem to be particularly vulnerable), leaving the equivalent of many-faceted micro scratches after the fungus has been removed. Once etched, no simple repair is possible.

This seems to me the only possibility left.

Note that dust usually doesn't cause glow because typical dust particles block light, rather than causing refraction. Close visual inspection of the lens with a penlight should tell you which problem you have....

Peter.

Peter, a long-term fungus should be visible with a pen-light. If you are absolutely positive that the glass is cristal clear with a pen-light, I would think the only other possibility is light leak, most likely with the adapter. Your pictures are focused, so it is not a problem with focusing. The glass is clear, so it is not a problem with altered glass... so what else could it be ?

I tried stopping down today: at F4 and F5,6 contrast is high and resolution great. This points in the direction of some plaque on the lenses, I suppose.

If you have the chance to mount the lenses on someone else's adapter and camera, try it.

I'll try tomorrow after light-proofing the adapter, which works ok with other lenses.

Keep us informed...

Marc

Thanks for your interest and help.

Peter.

 eques's gear list:eques's gear list
Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH Samyang 7.5mm F3.5 UMC Fisheye MFT Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-150mm F4-5.6 ASPH Mega OIS +1 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
eques
Senior MemberPosts: 1,623Gear list
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to captura, Mar 10, 2013

captura wrote:

Letsgokoulos wrote:

captura wrote:

Although there is clearly something wrong here, (light leak?) with your 1.4 lens, I did a series of comparisons with my Minolta prime lenses recently and found one other lens which gave superior results. That was the MD 50mm f2, but I'm told that the commonly found 50mm f1.7 is even better. My 50mm f1.4 MC PG is also a bit soft, even stopped down a bit.

Steve, I am not familiar with the 50mm f2. Have you published your comparisons anywhere ? I have had a 50mm f1.7, and it was not so sharp as my 50mm f1.4 although both were really close. My copy of the f1.4 is very slightly soft full open, but then really sharp when stopping down and its bokeh is delicious, and to my eyes, far superior to this of the f1.7.

Marc

John in the next message reports, "I bet that there is a haze (or dare I say fungus) on the inside of the lens, This affects many lenses that are older, and can be a very slight haze to a heavy haze."

And I believe he may be correct in the case of my 1.4 lens which is well-used, with a lot of very small scratches. Now you asked about the 1.7 but I've never tried one. People seem to like it.

Now the 50/f2 was common but is now quite forgotten. Small, light but not cheap like the 45. The pages in the Rokkor Files that did the comparison between all the smaller 50's seem to have disappeared from the internet. But there are allusions to it's goodness scattered about, here and there. Also the 1.7. The main thing in my opinion is that the later MD lens have a better multi-coating, which is nice in some conditions.

I have a MD 1,7/50mm; it is soft at 1,7, but very nice from 2,8 - 8. I got the 1,4 after seeing YuriS (see his links) pictures and tests, because I wanted DOF as shallow as possible and I hoped for good resolution beginning with F2.

Another lens I have is a very nice MC 55 f1.9 which is very flat but wide and heavy. Now that lens is uncommon. Do you have any information on that lens, by chance?

Steve

Sorry, I never heared of this lens.

Peter.

 eques's gear list:eques's gear list
Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH Samyang 7.5mm F3.5 UMC Fisheye MFT Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-150mm F4-5.6 ASPH Mega OIS +1 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
eques
Senior MemberPosts: 1,623Gear list
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to forpetessake, Mar 10, 2013

forpetessake wrote:

I had a bunch of normal manual lenses of old, some of them got into my test chart, most of them (with the exception of Olympus Pen-F and Takumar) were very soft and glowing wide open and required 2 stops to get to good sharpness. That softness actually works very good for portraits, for everything else there is no reason not to get SEL5018, it's very sharp lens with excellent contrast:



What a difference! - Peter.

 eques's gear list:eques's gear list
Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH Samyang 7.5mm F3.5 UMC Fisheye MFT Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-150mm F4-5.6 ASPH Mega OIS +1 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Jefenator
Senior MemberPosts: 1,338Gear list
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to eques, Mar 10, 2013

Well it just so happens I recently picked up one of these. I like it a lot - definitely a whole lot better than my copy of the MD 50 1.7. The corner on the older MC 1.4 wide open looks about as sharp as my MD 1.7 at its best setting!



Hazy, to be sure, but the detail is there. Stop it down to f/5.6 and it easily beats my MD in the corners.

And that's with some fungus cleaned off the rear coating!

This corner stuff is relevant for me because I often like to use 50mm for telephoto landscape shots and I like nice tidy corners for that.

This lens also shows some nice potential for portraits. Here it is, wide open:

Minolta MC 50mm 1:1.4 f/1.4

Just a small click over to f/2 gives it a whole different personality. More contrast, and I think I actually like the background blur a little more.

Minolta MC 50mm 1:1.4 f/2

Almost like two lenses for the price of one!

These are my quick, rough test results, anyway. But I'm pretty sure this one's a keeper. (Not bad for $15!)

 Jefenator's gear list:Jefenator's gear list
Sony Alpha NEX-7 Canon EOS M Sony Alpha 7 Nikon AF Nikkor 35mm f/2D Sigma 30mm F2.8 EX DN +2 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
ProfHankD
Senior MemberPosts: 1,818Gear list
Like?
Less likely causes... you don't have a filter on the lens, do you?
In reply to Letsgokoulos, Mar 10, 2013

Letsgokoulos wrote:

Peter, a long-term fungus should be visible with a pen-light. If you are absolutely positive that the glass is cristal clear with a pen-light, I would think the only other possibility is light leak, most likely with the adapter.

I'd be shocked if this was due to a light leak; that would lower contrast or impose a pattern, not glow.

If the glass really looks good, odds are it's just a mechanical tolerance issue... that can happen in 40-year-old lenses, especially if it was taken apart and put back together without a collimator. As has been said, a small degree of glow is very common for old lenses -- its just a matter of degree that yours looks worse than, for example, the copy of the same lens that I have.

One more "obvious" thing: you aren't using a filter, are you? DO NOT USE A FILTER. Even the best, absolutely clean, UV/Skylight filters can cause glow problems. Basically, even perfectly flat glass changes the optical properties measurably, and reflections can cause more problems. My lenses are always "going commando" and, unless you're  somewhere they'll get splashed, yours should too.

 ProfHankD's gear list:ProfHankD's gear list
Canon PowerShot A640 Canon PowerShot A720 IS Canon PowerShot S70 Canon PowerShot G1 Canon PowerShot G5 +19 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
OngT8m
Junior MemberPosts: 28
Like?
Re: Less likely causes... you don't have a filter on the lens, do you?
In reply to ProfHankD, Mar 11, 2013

I got a nice copy of Min 50 1.4 without any scratch or fungus. The Lens is sharp at wide open but the contrast isn't good if you point at strong natural light source. Purple fringes are easy to spot.

This is the result at f1.4. (Because I uploaded on Facebook, so details are not good, just an example :))

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
captura
Forum ProPosts: 12,593Gear list
Like?
Re: Minolta MC 1,4/50 experiences
In reply to captura, Mar 11, 2013

captura wrote:

Letsgokoulos wrote:

captura wrote:

Although there is clearly something wrong here, (light leak?) with your 1.4 lens, I did a series of comparisons with my Minolta prime lenses recently and found one other lens which gave superior results. That was the MD 50mm f2, but I'm told that the commonly found 50mm f1.7 is even better. My 50mm f1.4 MC PG is also a bit soft, even stopped down a bit.

Steve, I am not familiar with the 50mm f2. Have you published your comparisons anywhere ? I have had a 50mm f1.7, and it was not so sharp as my 50mm f1.4 although both were really close. My copy of the f1.4 is very slightly soft full open, but then really sharp when stopping down and its bokeh is delicious, and to my eyes, far superior to this of the f1.7.

Marc

John in the next message reports, "I bet that there is a haze (or dare I say fungus) on the inside of the lens, This affects many lenses that are older, and can be a very slight haze to a heavy haze."

And I believe he may be correct in the case of my 1.4 lens which is well-used, with a lot of very small scratches. Now you asked about the 1.7 but I've never tried one. People seem to like it.

Now the 50/f2 was common but is now quite forgotten. Small, light but not cheap like the 45. The pages in the Rokkor Files that did the comparison between all the smaller 50's seem to have disappeared from the internet. But there are allusions to it's goodness scattered about, here and there. Also the 1.7. The main thing in my opinion is that the later MD lens have a better multi-coating, which is nice in some conditions.

Another lens I have is a very nice MC 55 f1.9 which is very flat but wide and heavy. Now that lens is uncommon. Do you have any information on that lens, by chance?

Steve

PS:

Here's a nice review series on manual Minolta lenses.

http://digitalrokkor.altervista.org/minoltalens.html

 captura's gear list:captura's gear list
Fujifilm X10 Sony Alpha NEX-7 NEX5R Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R Sony E 55-210mm F4.5-6.3 OSS +9 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
captura
Forum ProPosts: 12,593Gear list
Like?
Re: Peter!
In reply to eques, Mar 11, 2013

eques wrote:

captura wrote:

Letsgokoulos wrote:

captura wrote:

Although there is clearly something wrong here, (light leak?) with your 1.4 lens, I did a series of comparisons with my Minolta prime lenses recently and found one other lens which gave superior results. That was the MD 50mm f2, but I'm told that the commonly found 50mm f1.7 is even better. My 50mm f1.4 MC PG is also a bit soft, even stopped down a bit.

Steve, I am not familiar with the 50mm f2. Have you published your comparisons anywhere ? I have had a 50mm f1.7, and it was not so sharp as my 50mm f1.4 although both were really close. My copy of the f1.4 is very slightly soft full open, but then really sharp when stopping down and its bokeh is delicious, and to my eyes, far superior to this of the f1.7.

Marc

John in the next message reports, "I bet that there is a haze (or dare I say fungus) on the inside of the lens, This affects many lenses that are older, and can be a very slight haze to a heavy haze."

And I believe he may be correct in the case of my 1.4 lens which is well-used, with a lot of very small scratches. Now you asked about the 1.7 but I've never tried one. People seem to like it.

Now the 50/f2 was common but is now quite forgotten. Small, light but not cheap like the 45. The pages in the Rokkor Files that did the comparison between all the smaller 50's seem to have disappeared from the internet. But there are allusions to it's goodness scattered about, here and there. Also the 1.7. The main thing in my opinion is that the later MD lens have a better multi-coating, which is nice in some conditions.

I have a MD 1,7/50mm; it is soft at 1,7, but very nice from 2,8 - 8. I got the 1,4 after seeing YuriS (see his links) pictures and tests, because I wanted DOF as shallow as possible and I hoped for good resolution beginning with F2.

Another lens I have is a very nice MC 55 f1.9 which is very flat but wide and heavy. Now that lens is uncommon. Do you have any information on that lens, by chance?

Steve

Sorry, I never heared of this lens.

Peter.

Peter,  the  50mm_f2_MD-iii is an excellent lens; my favorite Minolta. It is improved over the earlier MC version (see below) although it must be said that the MC version was rumored to be another Minolta design partnered with a Leica version. It also compares favorably to the f1.7 MD and MC lenses because the center is sharp from wide open.

http://artaphot.ch/nex-lens-comparisons/345-nex-5n-und-minolta-50mm-objektive-teil-ii

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3219585

Minolta MC Rokkor-PF 50mm 1:2

"Let's start with the Minolta MC Rokkor-PF 50mm 1:2, a six-element in five limbs. The lens came in the forums a very good reputation - can underpin the test with the NEX only partly. This is actually not surprising, because this was a budget 2/50mm lens, which was at least in this country have only a set with the (cheap) SRT-100-series. As a small portrait lens is the MC 2/50mm nevertheless suitable - although MC 1.4/58mm would be preferable in the second variant (MC-II) actually. I am, moreover, ensure that the above illustration is representative performance - after all, three copies of the MC 2/50mm tested, all with the same result. " (translated.)

minolta_50mm_f2_MD-iii
"The MD-III version of the Minolta MD 50mm 1:2 was compared with the previous model, significantly improved obviously. Although the MD-III series is in the forums often regarded as "inferior", the test results do not support this myth really. The MD 2/50mm tested here has a solid aluminum version, the worm gear but does not run as smoothly as the (much heavier!) Alu-/Messing-Schneckengänge the MC-X and MD-I lenses. By design, the MD-III lenses fit quite well for NEX, they are most favorably available - that is a very good option for those who want to get into the low exciting world of "vintage lenses".
"  (translated)

Furthermore, here's another review from Digitalrokkor, the Minolta MC Rokkor PF 50mm f2

A very compact lens with good general performance. Very good optical quality (center and corner) starting from f2.8 . Very good bokeh at f2 and f2.8 at stort distances. Very good sharpness between f4 and f8. Good contrast. A cheap lens with great values for the money.""

http://digitalrokkor.altervista.org/minoltalens.html

Steve

 captura's gear list:captura's gear list
Fujifilm X10 Sony Alpha NEX-7 NEX5R Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R Sony E 55-210mm F4.5-6.3 OSS +9 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads