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04-05-2012, 12:24 PM   #1
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Auto Sears f/1.7 vs... Auto Sears f/1.7?

I grabbed an old f1.7 along with a 135mm macro the otehr day at Goodwill, and pretty much ignored the thing until now since it was redundant (I already own an Auto Sears f/1.7). The thing is, they're two different lenses, other than in name and the fact they're both K-mounts. I sat down today to take a look at the 'new' lens, and realized that it has a number of marked differences from my older one.

The 'old' Sears has the red 'MC' and has 52mm threads, the new is all-white with 49mm threads. The 'old' lens doesn't have half-aperture stops, and is f/1.7 to f/16, while the 'new' lens has the half-stops and goes up to f/22. The 'new' lens is also a touch longer, and has a shorter minimal focus distance which surprised me (in a good way).

The thing is, I've never seen a pictuire of this 'new' lens in my futzing about online looking for information on the lens I already had. How rare is this thing? Does anyone else have any experience using it? If so, what impressions does anyone have of it?

I'm thinking the lens I picked up may be an older version due to the build and the similarity to the old screw mount lenses I've seen.

Here are the two lenses side by side, the differences are more than obvious even at a casual glance.


Minimal focus distance, wide open, first the 'red' (my older) lens and then the 'white' one. The blurriness of the first shot was my fault, not the lens. I've taken razor sharp images with it wide open before.





Again, Red then White lens, minimal focal distance, wide open.






Last edited by Sagitta; 04-05-2012 at 05:17 PM.
04-05-2012, 12:53 PM   #2
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By any chance does the "new" lens have a "Ricoh Pin"? The green color at f/22 may be an indicator of such.

In any case, Sears sourced its lenses from a number of different makers over the years with Ricoh being prominently represented and who knows where Ricoh got their stuff . I suspect that your "new" lens is of more recent date than your "old" lens. Either way, it looks to be a keeper.


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04-05-2012, 01:01 PM   #3
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The Auto Sears MC was made by Chinon, the Auto Sears was made by Ricoh. The MC was the kit lens for the KSX-P a clone of the Chinon CP-5.

@stevebrot - It doesn't have a "Ricoh pin". In fact it is a straight K mount. No contacts for anything. The KSX-P worked in auto mode only if set to f/22. That's why it's green.

I picked on up for $5, plus $5 shipping from shopgoodwill in 2010.
04-05-2012, 01:10 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
By any chance does the "new" lens have a "Ricoh Pin"? The green color at f/22 may be an indicator of such.

In any case, Sears sourced its lenses from a number of different makers over the years with Ricoh being prominently represented and who knows where Ricoh got their stuff . I suspect that your "new" lens is of more recent date than your "old" lens. Either way, it looks to be a keeper.


Steve
No Ricoh pin - its just a standard manual K-mount. 5 screws involved as well, which is different from the other lens as well. I did notice the rear element sits further inside the lens than the 'red' one does, which probably accounts for the closer focus distance. The mount 'structure' is different from all of my other Sears as well. I just went through them and couldn't find anything similar until I hit my one non-Sears prime - a Pentax-M 50mm f/2. I'm wondering if its actually a rebranded Pentax now.

Heres a shot of it next to the Pentax-M f/2. The only major difference I'm seeing is the spacer on the Pentax (probably since it has smaller glass in it since its slower). The Sears' screws look a bit smaller, but thats about it.

Pentax is on the left, Sears on the right.




04-05-2012, 01:12 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
The Auto Sears MC was made by Chinon, the Auto Sears was made by Ricoh. The MC was the kit lens for the KSX-P a clone of the Chinon CP-5.

@stevebrot - It doesn't have a "Ricoh pin". In fact it is a straight K mount. No contacts for anything. The KSX-P worked in auto mode only if set to f/22. That's why it's green.

I picked on up for $5, plus $5 shipping from shopgoodwill in 2010.
Cool! 'cept the MC lens is not the one with the green f/22! Both made by Chinon?
04-05-2012, 01:17 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Cool! 'cept the MC lens is not the one with the green f/22! Both made by Chinon?
No idea - and both are MC. The purplish color to it is the same as the 'red' 50 and my non-macro 135. I also just made the realization the font used is the same for both lenses as well, so maybe just a newer/older version of the same thing with a new design?

Its not as if the origins really matter, but its kind of fun trying to see the links between the lenses now that I've been insane enough to get a half dozen of the things.


04-05-2012, 01:20 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Cool! 'cept the MC lens is not the one with the green f/22! Both made by Chinon?
No, the one with the red lettering is Ricoh and the one with the green f/22 is Chinon.
04-05-2012, 01:28 PM   #8
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Oh, and FWIW, only the 28mm and the macro 135 (the yellow and green letters) are stamped "Made in Korea" - the other four are Japanese.

04-05-2012, 01:29 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
No, the one with the red lettering is Ricoh and the one with the green f/22 is Chinon.
Oh! The one prominently labeled "MC"!


Steve
04-05-2012, 04:42 PM   #10
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I think there were maybe a dozen different versions of SEARS AUTO 135/2.8s from various makers. At least you're not dealing with Soligor 28/2.8s -- AFAIK the current count of known versions is about 31!! BTW the Korean (Samyang) MC 'Macro' 135/2.8 version (with the adjustable front element) is the only Sears prime I've sold for IQ reasons. Too much purple fringing for my taste, but the buyer loved its sharpness.
04-05-2012, 04:56 PM   #11
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I've had several Sears and Rikenon lenses, including three 50s: f/2.0, 1.7 and 1.4. All had no half-stop aperture clicks and used 52mm filters, which is Ricoh's favorite filter size - heck even my 70-150 XR uses it I hadn't seen a copy with 49mm threads up to now, but indeed Sears could buy from anyone back then and call it theirs.
04-05-2012, 05:19 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by jimr-pdx Quote
I've had several Sears and Rikenon lenses, including three 50s: f/2.0, 1.7 and 1.4. All had no half-stop aperture clicks and used 52mm filters, which is Ricoh's favorite filter size - heck even my 70-150 XR uses it I hadn't seen a copy with 49mm threads up to now, but indeed Sears could buy from anyone back then and call it theirs.
The best part about it is I wasn't even interested in the 50 other than maybe selling it because I expected it to be the same as the one I had up until I took more than a passing glance at it. I was focused on the 135mm macro and was looking at the 50 as just fluff on the side. From the little fiddling I've done with it, it might be superior to my older lens.
04-11-2012, 06:20 PM   #13
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I went poking about online, it looks like the 49mm threaded 1.7 came off a Sears KSX-P (it seems it was that camera's kit lens) from around 1982 or so. The camera was made by Chinon, so I'm assuming that Boriscleto nailed it when he said they were the origin earlier.

The KSX-P is a cloned Chinon CP-5.

Last edited by Sagitta; 04-11-2012 at 08:33 PM.
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