Konica AR lenses for Four Thirds

Started Nov 29, 2005 | Discussions
NoRules
NoRules Senior Member • Posts: 1,443
Konica AR lenses for Four Thirds

I have managed to adapt Konica AR lenses for my Oly E300. Somebody asked about this a long time ago. I posted my discovery on the Konica SLR Yahoo! group, but nobody payed much attention.

Long story short: All my Konica SLR lenses are now beeing used with my E300, including the legendary 40mm "pancake" f.1.8 "sharpest lens ever made for 35mm". Also the 28mm f.1.8, 57mm f.1.2, 85 f.1.8, and a super rare 800 f.8 works fine. I Use no adapter because the mount is partly compatible (unscrew the black plate at the back of the lens, and the aperture lever; 5 screws total, put som felt pads on the rear of the lens to get some tension, and you're done. I like to add a new light-baffle of card-board on the end of the lens to limit the amount of light to the 25mm circle of 4:3. This make the lenses much better. It's that easy!

The film-> flange distance for Konica is 40,5mm, so you loose a little of the macro abilities, and the lens focuses a little beyond infinity, but hardly noticable.

The 40mm kan be had for as little as $20 on eBay, and is totaly worth it. It's like carrying only the camera-house around. Beautiful for portraits.

You loose AF (not permanently, of course:-), and only program that works are M and A(perture priority), so you have still one AE mode. It slows you down, but not much.

I have a lot of pictures of camera, and pictures taken with different konica lenses. Maybe someone here can receive them by e-mail and post them for all. I don't understand how to incorporate pics in this message.

Wrotniak http://www.wrotniak.net/photo/moon/index.html published one of my pictures taken with Hexanon 800mm of the moon (scroll down the page)
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Namenlos Contributing Member • Posts: 584
Wow

Hi,

NoRules wrote:

Long story short: All my Konica SLR lenses are now beeing used with
my E300, including the legendary 40mm "pancake" f.1.8 "sharpest
lens ever made for 35mm".

This sounds like such a great idea, and stunningly simple. I'd love to see more images of the setup, particularly some photos during the procedure you used to modify the lenses.

Do you not have issues with infinity focus?

Unfortunately I'm not at home so I can't access my FTP to upload your pictures, but I'm sure someone here will be able to assist.

I've always wanted some kind of manual focus pancake lens. 80mm EFL is a bit long, but the speed is amazing. What kind of quality does this lens give you?

Cheers,

David

NoRules
NoRules OP Senior Member • Posts: 1,443
Re: Wow

The quality of the 40mm is exelent, better than my 14-45 from f.2.0. At f.5.6 there is no competition; the konica pancake is way better in terms of color, resolution, CA (of whitch the konica has none!), distortion, and so on. The 85mm is better than my Sigma zoom, but I have not compared it to any of Oly's lenses. It's deadly sharp already at full aperture. The 28mm 1.8 is not so sharp, but than again, ther are no alternatives at this aperture. At f.5,6 it's equal to the standard zoom in resolution. It has more saturated colors. The 57mm 1.2 is the jewel in the crown. It's as sharp as the Sigma zoom when stopped down to f.4,5, but the bokeh at full aperture is spectacular. I have never seen anything ever that renders out-of-focus like this. Clearly my favorite lens for portraits and flowers! It's very similar to the Leica 75mm 1.4 in every way.

The wide angles are not good performers on E300. The "normals" and short-teles ARE! The 50mm 1.8 is $10 on eBay. On Four Thirds this is a razor-sharp 100mm eqv. at f.1.8!

I have pictures of the convertion procedure, but it's rather obvious how to do it once you hold a konica lens in your hand. The mount fit like a glove after the felt-pads are glued on the rear of the lens. (Felt pads= those things you put under legs of chairs to avoid scratches on the floor, with felt on one side and tape on the other) Three small pieces on the end of the lens, and it fits!

You maintain infinity focus, but loose some at the close-up range.
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rapick
rapick Veteran Member • Posts: 4,479
Re: Triple Wow!!!

NoRules wrote:

I have managed to adapt Konica AR lenses for my Oly E300. Somebody
asked about this a long time ago. I posted my discovery on the
Konica SLR Yahoo! group, but nobody payed much attention.
Long story short: All my Konica SLR lenses are now beeing used with
my E300, including the legendary 40mm "pancake" f.1.8 "sharpest
lens ever made for 35mm". Also the 28mm f.1.8, 57mm f.1.2, 85
f.1.8, and a super rare 800 f.8 works fine.

This is the best 'photo' news I heard since my 1984 FS-1 shutter mechanism died (unrepairable...). Got 28/2.8, 40/1.8 'pancake' (me too!) plus the rarest 35-70/3.5 zoom. Also a Tamron 80-200, but not much sure about acceptable quality. So sad to see these good pieces of glass resting in the bottom of my cabinet!

I Use no adapter
because the mount is partly compatible

you mean the bayonet size is exactly the same? Sure the E-300 internals (e.g AF & lens diaphragm drive contacts) cannot suffer damage?

(unscrew the black plate at
the back of the lens, and the aperture lever; 5 screws total, put
som felt pads on the rear of the lens to get some tension, and
you're done.

better using a watchmaker's screwdriver?

I like to add a new light-baffle of card-board on the
end of the lens to limit the amount of light to the 25mm circle of
4:3. This make the lenses much better. It's that easy!
The film-> flange distance for Konica is 40,5mm, so you loose a
little of the macro abilities, and the lens focuses a little beyond
infinity, but hardly noticable.

The 40mm kan be had for as little as $20 on eBay, and is totaly
worth it. It's like carrying only the camera-house around.
Beautiful for portraits.

You loose AF (not permanently, of course:-), and only program that
works are M and A(perture priority), so you have still one AE mode.
It slows you down, but not much.

I have a lot of pictures of camera, and pictures taken with
different konica lenses. Maybe someone here can receive them by
e-mail and post them for all. I don't understand how to incorporate
pics in this message.

I'll be glad to host your pics and any detailed instructions on how to modify the lens mount. Have 50 MB free on line.

Wrotniak http://www.wrotniak.net/photo/moon/index.html published
one of my pictures taken with Hexanon 800mm of the moon (scroll
down the page)
--
Free your mind, and your camera will follow...

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Rapick
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AMomcil Senior Member • Posts: 1,018
Great, please do a small How-To

Hei Morten,

That is really a very interesting idea. I hope I can repeat it myself easily!

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MVH, Aleksandar

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nick66davis Senior Member • Posts: 2,401
Re: Wow

Namenlos wrote:
Hi,

NoRules wrote:

Long story short: All my Konica SLR lenses are now beeing used with
my E300, including the legendary 40mm "pancake" f.1.8 "sharpest
lens ever made for 35mm".

This sounds like such a great idea, and stunningly simple. I'd love
to see more images of the setup, particularly some photos during
the procedure you used to modify the lenses.

Me too!!!!!

kind regards

Nick

Never argue with an idiot...they'll drag you down to their level and beat you on experience!!!

http://www.pbase.com/nickjdavis

Four Thirds FAQ's - http://www.fourthirdsFAQ.com

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NoRules
NoRules OP Senior Member • Posts: 1,443
Re: Triple Wow!!!

I have a lot of pictures of camera, and pictures taken with
different konica lenses. Maybe someone here can receive them by
e-mail and post them for all. I don't understand how to incorporate
pics in this message.

I'll be glad to host your pics and any detailed instructions on how
to modify the lens mount. Have 50 MB free on line.

I have taken Rapick up on his offer, and posted him the How-To pictures and a couple of samples with the 40mm at f.1.8

I don't know when he will put them available for the forum though:-)

Free your mind, and your camera will follow...

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rapick
rapick Veteran Member • Posts: 4,479
Re: Morten's Tutorial pics are here!!!

At the moment, I have uploaded Morten's original pics (procedure & samples) and notes into this dedicated gallery:
http://www.pbase.com/rapick/hexanon

I'll try the 'surgery' myself on one of my 'vintage' lenses. 'Operation' is planned during the weekend. Then, stay tuned: I'll add my comments, tips & tricks (if any) and possibly a few samples of mine ti this thread.
Morten, my sincere thanks, by now!
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NoRules
NoRules OP Senior Member • Posts: 1,443
Re: Morten's Tutorial pics are here!!!

Many thanks to you for the picture gallery, Rapick. It's nice to see this knowledge spread to the forum in such a fine way!

Some of the best konica lenses do not deserve to die. Stories go that Konica stole som industrial secrets from Leica in the eighties. Although this has been denied by everyone, the two-element 800mm, the marvelous 57mm 1.2, and the 35 f.2 on the Konica Hexar, makes one wonder... But the philosophy for Konica in those days was not to go for sharpness alone, but also bokeh, the over all feeling of a picture, and extreemely saturated colors given by their secret coating. And theese are elements Four Thirds cameras can exploit to the fullest, giving us the possibility of produsing pictures with shallow depth of focus, the sharp and the unsharp in perfect harmony. In fact, Olympus, with their circular apertures, and sellection of expencive lens glass, think in the same direction.

As for spreading this "discovery", I leave it up to the people on this forum, as I myself am a dork with computers and internet pages:-)

Cheers!

M-)
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rapick
rapick Veteran Member • Posts: 4,479
Re: Tutorial Gallery now Updated

... with additional explanations and notes I received from Morten:
Link: http://www.pbase.com/rapick/hexanon
[View at the pic renamed 'Questions and Answers' - See also below the BW flower]

If anybody else is performing lens 'surgery', please let us know, and add notes, comments, sample images HERE! (I have not yet tried it myself).
Hope will help.
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george_online Senior Member • Posts: 1,590
Re: Konica AR lenses for Four Thirds

What about danger of letting some fiber from felt getting on sensors?
George

jebir Senior Member • Posts: 1,339
Good point!

Maybe a solid ´spacer´and a non-cardboard baffle would be more appropriate?

Cheers, Jens.
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rapick
rapick Veteran Member • Posts: 4,479
Re: Good point, but..

george_online wrote:

What about danger of letting some fiber from felt getting on sensors?
George

... I'm more concerned about other internals, such as mirrors, AF sensor, contact pins, etc. (CCD should be 'protected' by the ultrasonic dust buster).

And not just felt fiber... I understand that the bayonet 'teeth' alone cannot ensure tight coupling, then all internals are continuously exposed to dust, atmospheric moisture, etc... what would make the use of the e-300 / Hexanon lens combo 'at your own risk' in any less than ideal environment outdoors.
I wonder: maybe it's possible to think of installing an O-Ring on the lens?
Hmm...
Morten (NoRules): would this be feasible, according to your experience?
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NoRules
NoRules OP Senior Member • Posts: 1,443
Re: Good point, but..

As I have stated in the How-To on Andres' site, I have not experienced any damage to camera, any damage to mirror or AF or contacts. Not even dust on the sensor, as clearly explained in the Q&A. Only problem I have had is with jamming of lenses if I try them before the pads are in place.

O-ring is of course possible, but not all the way around because of the pin on camera body. And a rubber O-ring might give too much friction. Then again you have the problem of gluing rubber to metal. The pads glue to everything, and different thickness gives different friction. It's an ongoing project, and any experiences are received with thanks. The pads do not shed, they are not designed like that. They are designed to maintain cushoning against hard surfaces.

To me I could afford to "loose" a camerabody during the experiments, because I had the money, and the reward would be so great. But any way I was a total nerve-wreck about the contacts shorting out and everything, but all is fine.

Remember; I am the guy who tryed and failed, and tryed again untill it worked, and I am still using the same camera with a 11-22mm Oly as a standard and fully working outfit. I have twisted, turned, pulled and forced lenses in and out, but nothing has broken. I have used many different materials, filed, sawed and cut them into place. And not even dust on the sensor! I have not used the lenses in dusty conditions, but I can think of nothing worse for my E300 than what I allready have done to it. I am amased of the robustness of the system. I even destroyed a lens with metal dust, but camera was fine. Mind you, the camera was in my "work-shop" all the time, exposed to everything that happened there. Must have changed lenses 3-400 times during those days. Only a test round demands 20 lens changes. Finding right spots for pads recuire 3 changes. Finding right size of baffle hole I changed each lens 5-10 times. My poor, poor Oly'...

If you follow instructions and do not use any force, I can't see anything bad happen to your cameras. Only tool you need is a small screwdriver, pads with tape, black cardboard, sissors and some drops of superglue for baffle-mounting.

As I metion in Q&A the baffle must be cut to make place for contacts on lenses that go too far into the camerabody at infinity.

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Amfibi Regular Member • Posts: 423
Re: I must admire..

Your Pioneering on this department. Clearly you have skills and the courage too! Thanks for sharing the information!

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Petri

BDavis Regular Member • Posts: 466
modifying mine right now

Thank you for the tips. I have an old Konica set my grandfather left me that has just been sitting up for years. The cameras have battery compartment corrosion and I have just never taken the time to fix it. I have plenty of film cameras that DO work that I am not using. And I don't use Konica.
I am working on a Konica 57mm f1.4, not the 1.2, on my project.
I am using JB Weld ( an epoxy here in the US) to create my pads .
The epoxy has not set yet, so much of this is speculation.

However, I am using the epoxy as I have used it many times in the past and am familiar with how to make a mess and not make a mess.
My goal was to replace the felt with something perhaps more sturdy and firm.

It may indeed be that the foam pads ARE the way to go with this, but I also like to experiment.

I modified the lens by removing the offending projections in the manner described on the website.

I noticed the lens only mounts with the distance markers ending up to the bottom of the camera. Inconvenient, but I know them by feel, I don't need to see them quickly.

I then marked the area on the mount with a ink marker where the camera body pin touches the lens as it is turned. That is the area where you do NOT want to put felt or anything else, again, as mentioned in the website.

Then I mixed my JBWeld and applied it in a series of caterpillar or macaroni shaped mounds in the flat areas on the lens mount, AVOIDING the lens mount screws, and avoiding the lens flange areas. I used a toothpick. Easy stuff, just go slow and a little bit at a time. Remember you can make a mess. Esily cleaned up though.

I built up the epoxy mounds to exceed the height of the outer flange on the lens. This will be sanded or razorbladed down later to fit flush with the flange until it fits the camera. We will know in a few hours when the epoxy sets. There is a 5 minute epoxy and I have used it on some projects, but I feel it will not grip the steel flange as well and that I will not have enough time to form it the way I want until it sets. It sets TOOO fast.

I did notice when the lens is mounted (before applying anything to the mount to hold it tight) that I can hear part of the flange VERY lightly touching the internal camera pins as the lens is rotated on and off. This may NOT occur however once the felt pads OR the method I am using is used as it would tend to push the lens mount further away from the pins. And of course some camera's pins may stick out further than others, who knows? Any way it is something a piece of cellophane tape would fix, or shaving that particular lens flange down by half a millimeter.

I will let you know how it comes out. I will take off the epoxy and try the felt method if this does not work well. Congrats on that 800mm. Sound like a real beauty.

By the way, I have the 14-54 and the 50-200 and a ton of OM Zuiko lenses, so it is not like I am hurting if this does not work well. I just like to play. I have my sandbox. You have yours. The trick is keeping the cats out.

Jorgen Bergfors Contributing Member • Posts: 749
Re: modifying mine right now

I noticed the lens only mounts with the distance markers ending up to > the bottom of the camera.

This is strange. In the tutorial it is not far from the top in the picture with the 55/1.2, but in another place in the picture with the 40/1.8 on the camera. Can you mount the lens more than one way?

Jörgen

george_online Senior Member • Posts: 1,590
Re: modifying mine right now

Hi NoRules,
They say rules are here to be broken

Experimenting that way with your camera you definitely earn my admiration. I have some Konica lenses too, but I have to admit I love my camera too much to put it through that (I am not rich enough to be able to replace it in hurry). I defintely rather use an adapter (I have some OM lenses left from my OM20) but having 14-54,50-200 and 40-150 it is very rarely I used them (except of 50mm/F3,5 macro that I use till I will be able to afford its digital replacement).
Good luck with your pioneering.
George

BDavis Regular Member • Posts: 466
top of lens in different places

yes I looked closely at the orientation of the lenses in the photos on the website and noticed the two lenses were in two different orientations. Mine is definitely upside down as it is the ONLY way I could get it to fit.
Again, mine is the 57mm f1.4, not the 1.2.

I kept trying to make it fit that way, oriented up and could not. I tried every position of the flanges and the only one that fit was the upside down one. I suppose I COULD unscrew the lens flange from the lens and see if the screws still line up and rotate the flange on the lens 180 degrees and fix it that way. We do not have to worry about the aperture rod of the rear of the lens matching up anymore, so it is possible. If the screw holes match up going around 180 or so. I may try that later. I want to let the epoxy set. Then I can take it off the areas that hit the camera body pin and leave the rest.

BDavis Regular Member • Posts: 466
I fixed the lens orientation

Just remove the four screws that hold the lens flange to the lens body, rotate 180 degress to realign with the holes, replace screws, "oila" as thay say.

The area that the camera flange pin is on needed to be re-marked. I removed the epoxy that is in that newly marked area and will add new epoxy in the area that was previously marked for the camera pin. This should put everything right.
The epoxy is now "plasticky" but still easily removeable.

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