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04-17-2011, 09:00 PM   #1
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Is it an upgrade or a downgrade?

Dear All,

I am constantly looking for old, cheap and the sharpest manual lenses out there...

I own the Super Takumar 35mm 3.5... will it be an upgrade or downgrade if i purchase a CZ flektogon 35mm 2.4 or Mir 1B 37mm 2.8 (IQ wise)?

Thanks in advance...

04-17-2011, 11:21 PM   #2
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I wouldn't call the Flektogon cheap! As to whether it's sharper than the Super Tak 35/3.5, well, do realise that the Tak is exceptionally sharp and would be a hard act to follow - despite the CZJ's reputation. (I do own a S-M-C Tak 35/3.5, but not a Flektogon.)

In terms of other areas of optical performance, there may be a significant difference. Colours and contrast may well be better in the case of the CZJ and Mir lenses, but these can be corrected quite easily in PP. Bokeh will no doubt be different, but as to whether one is "better" than the other, I wouldn't know.

Perhaps the main area of significance would be that of CA/PF. German and Soviet vintage lenses have a reputation for being much better in this respect, so that might be a good reason to "upgrade" to a Flektogon (or MIR, of which I know even less.)

By the way, since you're interested in sharpness/cost, the best bang for buck you're likely to come across is the Rikenon 50/2. These come in 3 versions, the XR (biggest, heaviest, best-built), the plain Rikenon (middling size/weight) and Rikenon-P (smallest/lightest and has the dreaded pin which must be removed before mounting on an autofocus camera body!).
04-17-2011, 11:24 PM   #3
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I should add that the Rikenon is probably even sharper than either the Tak 35/3.5 or Flektogon!
04-18-2011, 03:50 PM   #4
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Allow me to talk about my admirable 35's.

* The Mir-1 BV 37/2.8 (M42) is sharp, good bokeh, good rendering.
* The Meyer Primagon 35/4.5 (Exakta) is sharper, slower, good.
* The Super-Takumar 35/3.5 (M42) is sharpest, most excellent.
* The Vivitar-Tokina 35/2.8 (OM) is very sharp and very good.
* The Porst-Tokina 35/2.8 (M42) is also sharp, good, different.
* The Isco-Westron 35/2.8 (M42) is very sharp and magical.
* The Nikkon-O 35/2 (N/AI) is exceedingly sharp and excellent.

The Meyer has 10 iris blades; the Isco has 13 blades. I think these give the best bokeh. The Isco is one of my very few "pixie-dust" lenses, with almost magical rendering and dimensionality. The Nikkor and Takumar are quite the sharpest, but the Isco and Meyer are not far behind. Of all these, the Tokina-made Vivitar and Porst are the most 'ordinary', quite good but not special. All the others are special, differently.

(I also have an Enna Sandmar 35/4.5 in Argus C3 mount, reputedly funky-weird, but I haven't adapted it yet so I can't comment on it. A Petri 35/2.8 should arrive today, but I'll need to adapt it also. And I haven't tried a Flek.)

I am about to leave on a two-month journey, driving around the SouthWest USA. I can take *almost* as many lenses as I want. The Nikkor and Isco, almost always in my bag anyway, are both going, as are the Takumar and Mir. The Meyer is just a bit too slow, the Tokinas are just too ordinary.

(I have non-destructive tricks for mounting Exakta and OM lenses on PK cameras, and a destructive trick for the Nikon. The Exakta adaption is a secure mount; the OM and Nikon adaptations are force-fit but *can* be secured.)

You want comparisons with the Tak 35/3.5? The Tokinas and maybe the Meyer would maybe be slight downgrades. The Nikkor and Isco would be upgrades. The Mir would be a side-step -- not better|worse, just different. But all are sharp and classy; you wouldn't go wrong with any (or all) of them.

04-19-2011, 02:45 AM   #5
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I am much over-whelmed by the wonderful people on this forum, really appreciate all the help from you guys.

@RioRico: Thank you, i will now stick with my Super Tak 35mm 3.5
@m42man: (i am guessing you have a lot m42 of lenses) I will try to look for that Rikenon you were talking about.

I am trading my A50 1.4 with M50 1.7 tomorrow (for sharper IQ)
is the Rikenon sharper than the M50 1.7?

Again Thank you
04-19-2011, 06:34 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by HoBykoYan Quote

I am trading my A50 1.4 with M50 1.7 tomorrow (for sharper IQ)
is the Rikenon sharper than the M50 1.7?

Again Thank you
I hope you're getting some cash in that trade too. the A50/1.4 is worth probably twice as much!
04-19-2011, 11:11 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by HoBykoYan Quote
I am much over-whelmed by the wonderful people on this forum, really appreciate all the help from you guys.

@RioRico: Thank you, i will now stick with my Super Tak 35mm 3.5
@m42man: (i am guessing you have a lot m42 of lenses) I will try to look for that Rikenon you were talking about.

I am trading my A50 1.4 with M50 1.7 tomorrow (for sharper IQ)
is the Rikenon sharper than the M50 1.7?

Again Thank you
Actually, I do have a fair number of M42 lenses, but I suppose "m42man" is equally a reflection of my age...

As for the Rikenon, I do find my Rikenon and XR-Rikenon 50/2's are sharper than my M50/1.7 (which is itself a sharp lens), though my Rikenon-P perhaps isn't quite as good (also it's the least well-made - and has the Pin).

You can easily live with both a Rikenon and M50/1.7 - the Pentax lens seems to have superior bokeh (which is something I've gleaned more from Internet images than with my own experience). A Rikenon should be very cheap to buy.
05-04-2011, 10:17 PM   #8
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Does anyone here think the M35mm 2.8 has a better IQ than the Super Tak 35mm? 3.5 is too slow for me for indoors but i like the IQ...

05-04-2011, 10:45 PM   #9
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No, I have both, and the M 28/2.8 is definitely inferior to the Tak 35/3.5 - especially wide open. In fact, it is quite an ordinary lens, so I wouldn't recommend it.

If you really want an excellent performer at this focal length, I would suggest looking into the idea of a Komine-made Vivitar (identified by serial number 28.......) 28/2 or maybe the 28/2.8 Close Focus version.
05-04-2011, 11:44 PM   #10
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Hi again m42man,

i do mean the M 35 2.8 not the M 28 2.8 thanks. Hoping you have this lens also....
05-04-2011, 11:46 PM   #11
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I was just wondering why this lens (M 35 2.8) has a very low rating. The IQ ive seen from pentaxphotogallery is very sharp and may even be sharper than the super tak
05-05-2011, 02:06 AM   #12
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Oops! My mistake - I should learn to read!

I don't have the M 35/2.8, but my feeling (from what I read and see on the Internet) is that it will be inferior to the 35/3.5 in terms of sharpness. For instance, if you look here:

http://www.takinami.com/yoshihiko/photo/lens_test/pentax_35.html

you'll see that the resolution figures for the M35/2.8 are significantly inferior to the K 35/3.5 (which I'm assuming is basically the same as the Tak version, but with better coatings). In fact, the 35/3.5 really stands out as being one of the sharpest Pentax lenses, which doesn't surprise me.

So, if you want a faster "version" of 35mm lens, you could look out for an M 35/2, but I suspect these may be rather rare and expensive. Alternatively, you could try the 28mm lenses which I mentioned earlier...
05-05-2011, 02:50 AM   #13
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Thanks m42man,

after reading your reply, i think i should keep my super tak then but since i am really looking for that low light with that focal range (35mm) will the 28-75mm or 17-50mm 2.8 tamron suffice?

I am torn between these 2 lenses (same as others while browsing the web)...

is the IQ of these 2 lenses comparable to primes?

Thanks
05-05-2011, 03:29 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by m42man Quote
Oops! My mistake - I should learn to read!

I don't have the M 35/2.8, but my feeling (from what I read and see on the Internet) is that it will be inferior to the 35/3.5 in terms of sharpness. For instance, if you look here:

http://www.takinami.com/yoshihiko/photo/lens_test/pentax_35.html

you'll see that the resolution figures for the M35/2.8 are significantly inferior to the K 35/3.5 (which I'm assuming is basically the same as the Tak version, but with better coatings). In fact, the 35/3.5 really stands out as being one of the sharpest Pentax lenses, which doesn't surprise me.

So, if you want a faster "version" of 35mm lens, you could look out for an M 35/2, but I suspect these may be rather rare and expensive. Alternatively, you could try the 28mm lenses which I mentioned earlier...
Have you tried the Vivitar 35 1.9? I have one, and would love to see how it compares to the 35 3:5.
05-05-2011, 03:58 AM   #15
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do you have any sample pictures? we'd like to see that here also.

Thanks
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