Opinions please

Started Jul 29, 2007 | Discussions
gwillys Senior Member • Posts: 1,502
Opinions please

i have these two lenses. what kind of results can i expect from them with a dslr?
picture courtesy of rokkor 58mm 1.4

Renato1 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,327
Re: Opinions please

You would have to buy an adapter for them to work on a DSLR, and you would have to use them in totally manual mode.

The adapter will probably cost as much as both those lenses.

They will then behave as higher powered lenses, because of the 1.5X crop factor.

The results won't be very good unless you have very sharp eyesight and are able to manually focus properly without use of a split focusing screen which is absent from most DSLRs. You could buy a split focusing screen for the DSLR but again, that would cost more than both those lenses.

If you do have sharp eyesight, the results could be good.
Renato

EvilOne
EvilOne Forum Pro • Posts: 14,485
Re: Opinions please

These lenses started showing up in the early 50's, But the lenses have rare earth in their build which is a radio active aliment which will cast a yellow tint on colored pictures..you can correct this by exposing the lens to UV rays... but this will cause the lens to loose lubricity. they are of very little value to a DSLR.. the MC stands for meter coupling used in early model SLR's..
--
Regards
Bill
USA

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OP gwillys Senior Member • Posts: 1,502
Re: Opinions please

thanks for the reply. i should have said that i use manual lenses all the time on a dslr. im curious more about the optical qualitys. im trying to decide if its worthwhile to either replace the bayonets or spring for a cameraquest adaptor. these are post radioactive element build. how are these lenses generally regarded in the minolta community?

OP gwillys Senior Member • Posts: 1,502
Re: Opinions please

i would like to hear from someone who's used them. i've converted a rokkor 58 1.4 and im very happy with it. it took the picture above as well as this

Renato1 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,327
Re: Opinions please

I can see why you are happy with it.

Can't help you with your question. Probably the people at the Manual Minolta forum can help you out.

http://members.aol.com/manualminolta/index.htm
Renato

David Kilpatrick Veteran Member • Posts: 5,436
Re: Opinions please

EvilOne wrote:

These lenses started showing up in the early 50's, But the lenses
have rare earth in their build which is a radio active aliment which
will cast a yellow tint on colored pictures..you can correct this by
exposing the lens to UV rays... but this will cause the lens to loose
lubricity. they are of very little value to a DSLR.. the MC stands
for meter coupling used in early model SLR's..

The Minolta lenses did not appear until the 1960s - Minolta did not even have an SLR until 1958 and it was not launched with an f1.2. It can take a long time for a thorium glass element to discolour and the thicker it is, the more the effect. The very slight warm cast in some old Minolta glass using this stuff is not unpleasant and on a digital camera it's pretty much cancelled out by auto WB.

David

EvilOne
EvilOne Forum Pro • Posts: 14,485
Re: Opinions please

David Kilpatrick wrote:

EvilOne wrote:

These lenses started showing up in the early 50's, But the lenses
have rare earth in their build which is a radio active aliment which
will cast a yellow tint on colored pictures..you can correct this by
exposing the lens to UV rays... but this will cause the lens to loose
lubricity. they are of very little value to a DSLR.. the MC stands
for meter coupling used in early model SLR's..

The Minolta lenses did not appear until the 1960s - Minolta did not
even have an SLR until 1958 and it was not launched with an f1.2. It
can take a long time for a thorium glass element to discolour and the
thicker it is, the more the effect. The very slight warm cast in some
old Minolta glass using this stuff is not unpleasant and on a digital
camera it's pretty much cancelled out by auto WB.

David

-MINOLTA'S f1.4 NORMAL LENSES
LENS FEATURES IMAGE COMMENTS
FOCAL LENGTH: 58mm
f-STOPS: 1.4-16
PERIOD: 1958-1966
INSCRIPTION: MINOLTA AUTO ROKKOR - PF 1:1.4 f=58mm
DESIGN: 6/5
FILTER: 55
DIAPHRAGM: auto
MC: no
MD: no
CLOSE FOCUS: 2'
SIZE: 2.6"x1.7"

WEIGHT: 11.3oz. Minolta's first "speed-demon" -- and it produces superb results. At this time it was preferred over the 55mm f1.8 due to it's 1/2 f-stop advantage in low-light, but many prefer it because it provides a little more optical reach. A few of Minolta's lenses, like this one, incorporate rare-earth elements, such as thorium and lanthanum, to produce a high refractive index not obtainable with normal glass. These radioactive elements degrade over time and can cause the lens to turn yellow if not regularly exposed to UV light. The yellow tint will not affect B&W pictures, but will cast a tint on color pictures. It can be removed by exposing the glass to UV light, such as a bright window sill. Make sure the lens is not exposed to direct sunlight as the heat can cause the internal lubricants to migrate. Depending on where you live, the yellowing will take a few weeks to a few months to disappear. Storing this lens without the lens caps will prevent the yellowing.
-
Regards
Bill
USA

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EvilOne
EvilOne Forum Pro • Posts: 14,485
Re: Opinions please

David, These lenses started showing up "In general" in the fifties.. but as you say, their Minolta application didn't start showing up until 1961. I was just saying that this lens has been around a long time. "IN General" and The OP showed a stock picture... from Rokkor. I was just saying that there are many other lenses out there that would be a better choice... the lens coatings on these Rokkors leave much to be desired. Especially in todays market. It is hardly worth putting any money or effort into making these work. And again the OP was asking for opinions.
--
Regards
Bill
USA

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OP gwillys Senior Member • Posts: 1,502
Re: Opinions please

EvilOne wrote:

David, These lenses started showing up "In general" in the fifties..
but as you say, their Minolta application didn't start showing up
until 1961. I was just saying that this lens has been around a long
time. "IN General" and The OP showed a stock picture... from Rokkor.

there is no stock picture here, both images were taken by me with a lousy old

rokkor 58mm 1.4 on my camera. i was hoping to find an opinion from someone who has actually used these lenses and understands their purpose. not the same old generalized assumptions.

heres the 58 1.4 on a camera
courtesy of e1/ zeiss 28mm 2.8

David Kilpatrick Veteran Member • Posts: 5,436
Photo showed late 50mm f1.4, 58mm f1.2, not early 58mm f1.4

The photo did not show a 1958 58mm f1.4 - it showed a mid-1960s 58mm f1.2, looks like a late example with Double Achromatic coating, and a 1970s MC 50mm f1.4 which definitely has Double Achromatic and is a superb performer. I believe the conversion of the mount is easier to do with the 58mm f1.2, and this does look like a late example.

The 58mm lenses - all of them - tended be quite low in contrast and with the original Achromatic coating (using two or three different thicknesses of single coating to correct colour shifts caused by the coatings) need good deep lens hoods to avoid serious flare issues into the light. They are really pleasant lenses to use for portraiture.

The 50mm lenses from the very late 1960s on have Double Achromatic coating, but seemed quite soft at the time compared to Pentax who had just introduced Super Multi Coating and were using it on some very simple lenses which hardly needed it - getting stunning contrast as a result. In 1974 Minolta began to multicoat their lenses, without saying anything much about it; the term 'Super Achromatic' was hardly ever used, or 'Multi Achromatic', but they stuck with the policy of using the coatings to get similar colour transmission across their entire lens range, rather than just to boost contrast and kill flare.

Canon used single coatings during Minolta's achromatic period and did little to balance colour. The moved to Spectra Coating (equal to Double Achromatic) a bit later than Minolta but made a bigger fuss about Super Spectra Coating - true multicoating - while Minolta never revived the emphasis they placed on their coatings in the 1960s and 70s. With the AF range they barely mentioned any aspect of the coatings.

Essentially - pre-1968, watch for low contrast and flare. Post-1968 - better. Post-1974 - often superb. Post-1980 - really not much difference between Minolta and any other make, all had got much the same glass and coating tech by then, but Minolta continued to make all their own from start to finish.

David

OP gwillys Senior Member • Posts: 1,502
Re: Photo showed late 50mm f1.4, 58mm f1.2, not early 58mm f1.4

Thanks David, so i take it the MD 50 1.2 and MC 58 1.2 are worth the effort/expense of putting into use. the 50 1.2 was my prime objective to aquire because of its alleged sharpness and the 58 1.2 kind of fell in my lap at an auction gone wrong (to my benefit).

yes, the 58 1.4 is a great portrait lens partly due to its pincushion distortion, also the sharpness & great bokeh. its just about perfect. of course using these old lenses is not for your everyday shooter, but its my favorite type of photography. most of my lenses are listed in my profile.
Thank all you guys for taking the time to respond.

David Kilpatrick Veteran Member • Posts: 5,436
Re: Photo showed late 50mm f1.4, 58mm f1.2, not early 58mm f1.4

gwillys wrote:

Thanks David, so i take it the 50 1.2 and 58 1.2 are worth the
effort/expense of putting into use. the 50 1.2 was my prime objective
to aquire because of its alleged sharpness and the 58 1.2 kind of
fell in my lap at an auction gone wrong (to my benefit).

Sorry, I meant late 50mm f1.2 not 1.4 - that's such a rare lens that seing the rubber grip made me think f1.4. In fact I don't think I have ever seen a rubber-grip, last type 50mm MC f1.2 and I am pretty sure they never made an MD version.

I would not risk having the 50mm f1.2 converted to AF as I think it may have a high value left exactly as it is, for the future. Unless anyone can tell me otherwise? I never even saw one of these on a demonstration camera in the UK, and Minolta used to lend me all the best lenses they had - for example, 17mm f4, 21mm f2.8, 24mm VFC, 35mm Shift CA, 50mm f1.4, 100mm macro, 135mm f2, 80-200mm (first zoom) in the MC range. Never saw the 50mm f1.2 or I would have grabbed it to try out straight away.

The 58mm f1.2 looks like a late model in very good condition, and we know this can be converted permanently and accurately to fit the AF mount. I'd go for that one. It may be a bit less perfect in some ways but it gives you something close to having an '85mm f1.2' on the Alpha.

David

OP gwillys Senior Member • Posts: 1,502
Re: Photo showed late 50mm f1.4, 58mm f1.2, not early 58mm f1.4

im not explaining myself very well, lol. as of last week i own these lenses. the picture of them was taken by me. they were sitting on my dining room table. i took the picture with my e1 and a rokkor 58mm 1.4 that i converted to fourthirds mount, lol. im sure glad to hear the 50 1.2 is well regarded. its mint and now with your advice, i will probably get the cameraquest adaptor rather than hack the mount. in case your curious, i paid $220 usd for the 50mm like new with case. the 58mm mint with case, was $150. cheap thrills.
when i get the adaptor, i'll post a pic.
Thanks again.

RonnieJ Contributing Member • Posts: 565
Testing...........

I have not read every thread on this post, so this may be redundant, but the following link has some head-to-head comparisons of these two lenses.
I have always wanted a Rokkor 1.2, but have always gotten by with 1.4's.

All that i have read through the years is the MD lenses are almost always better, generally, because of the superior coatings.
Read the following, perhaps you will find it useful.

http://www.rokkorfiles.com/Battle%20of%2050s1.htm

Cheers.......

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OP gwillys Senior Member • Posts: 1,502
Re: Testing...........

thanks RonnieJ, thats a good read. i had previously seen that and it was the main reason i bought the 50mm. also, they will be used on a fourthirds 'cropped' sensor camera, so much of the soft corner area is eliminated. more of the sweet spot. im really looking forward to using these lenses, but im still having problems getting used to the idea of sending Steve Gandy @ cameraquest 175 bucks for his adaptor. a high quality chinese adaptor costs less than $20, but cameraquest has the only minolta/fourthirds adaptor.

RonnieJ Contributing Member • Posts: 565
Re: Testing...........

My opinion..........

The only use I see for the 1.2 would be extreme low-light situations. I have numerous manual focus Minolta cams and Rokkor lenses and have very rarely ever needed a 1.2. The Rokkor 1.4 is a very good lens and unless you are shooting in the dark I really don't see a need, generally speaking.
The 1.2 is soft wide open, the 1.4 is far superior wide open than the 1.2 at f2.

I have found a steady hand and a slightly slower shutter speed make for better results with the 1.4 than the inherently soft renditions of the 1.2 wide open.
IMHO

PS.....I still want to have a 1.2 of my own!!

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EvilOne
EvilOne Forum Pro • Posts: 14,485
Re: Testing...........

Here is all the information you might need to convert these lenses, including pictures of a 7D mounted with this lens and the how too do it.. it also includes a picture gallery:

http://www.pbase.com/pganzel/58mm_f12_rokkor__on_maxxum_7d
--
Regards
Bill
USA

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OP gwillys Senior Member • Posts: 1,502
Re: Testing...........

Thanks alot guys, heres another view of the 50 1.2 for David or whoever's interested.
courtesy of e1/zeiss 35-70mm f3.4

OP gwillys Senior Member • Posts: 1,502
Re: Testing...........

EvilOne wrote:

Here is all the information you might need to convert these lenses,
including pictures of a 7D mounted with this lens and the how too do
it.. it also includes a picture gallery:
http://www.pbase.com/pganzel/58mm_f12_rokkor__on_maxxum_7d

Thanks Bill, i must have made the rounds. i had seen that before. he did a great job documenting his hack. i didnt do so well with a tutorial but i posted this after converting the 58 1.4. of course it for fourthirds and its permanent:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat.asp?forum=1022&message=23125047&q=rokkor&qf=m

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