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09-04-2012, 06:23 PM   #1
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Helios 44-2 and Flare

I've been using the Helios 44-2 for a couple of months, and I really love it, but notice an extreme abundance of flare, with even modest side light. It seems to be much worse at f16 than at f2. For example, here is a picture of my hobby desk @ f11 or f16. The only side light is the glow of my monitor and it looks terrible:




Using my hand as a makeshift hood fixes it (yes, those are my fingers in the photo, I tried to get as much "hood" as possible):



What I have noticed is if I look at the lens at an angle, it appears the reflections are coming from the edge of the glass. Here's an example of what I mean, near the middle of the lens, there is a grainy reflection all along the outside edge of what I think are the lens elements:





My question is if all Helios 44-2's are this bad for flare, and would a 44-3 be appreciably better? I guess a second question is if the lens can be disassembled and those areas painted flat black or something?

09-04-2012, 06:37 PM   #2
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If you have the same version as me, you'll notice the blades are not painted matte black, they're shiny metal. That means you get reflections at smaller apertures depending on the angle.
09-04-2012, 10:25 PM   #3
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That lens needs a deep hood.

Last edited by Ikarus; 09-04-2012 at 10:57 PM.
09-04-2012, 10:39 PM   #4
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i have noticed light leaks through the mount when the sun is bright and the angle is just right. This may sometimes look like traditional flare so check for that too.
good luck.


Last edited by mikeSF; 06-22-2013 at 10:11 AM.
09-04-2012, 10:48 PM   #5
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I have a 44-2 and it is fairly prone to flare - a lens hood is essential for outdoors and is still worth having on for indoors too!

Not sure about the -3 but the 44M series are said to have better coatings that make them less prone to flare.

On the other hand its very sharp in the center and the bokeh is pretty interesting.
06-22-2013, 03:16 AM   #6
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Hi sorry about the late post but I bumped into this while researching whether others were having flare problems with the 44-2. The problem is that it has a really small back plate and the light pours in through the notches on infinity adapters. If you use non infinity adapters or like myself put a large o-ring over the offending join things go good. A really good examples of these flares are here on the reviews.KMZ Helios 44-2 58mm F/2 Lens Reviews - Russian and Zenitar Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database.
06-22-2013, 05:01 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
or like myself put a large o-ring over the offending join things go good.
Would you mind posting how you did this? Does this allow you to use CiF?

But yes, light leaks, shiny aperture blades, old lens coatings,.. the lens has its weaknesses. A deep hood can help with some of them.
Oh, and the 44-3 won't be that much better, but the later 44k models might be, due to wider mount base (K-mount) and better coatings. They are also sharper and more controlled, much less artistic and crazy. I dunno, I like my 44-2 especially because it can deliver very sharp photos, but also very odd low-definition "artistic" photos. But a lot of members on this forum like the newer K-mount Helios 44 lenses.

Last edited by Na Horuk; 06-22-2013 at 06:05 AM.
06-22-2013, 09:52 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
...The problem is that it has a really small back plate and the light pours in through the notches on infinity adapters...
Interesting! I know the narrow base on this and certain other vintage M42 lenses might result in "rocking" on the mount, but it never occurred to me that there might be stray light as a result as well.


Steve

06-22-2013, 10:13 AM   #9
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We'll look so classy in front of our canikony brethren with a sock tied around the lens base...
06-22-2013, 01:02 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
Would you mind posting how you did this? Does this allow you to use CiF?

But yes, light leaks, shiny aperture blades, old lens coatings,.. the lens has its weaknesses. A deep hood can help with some of them.
Oh, and the 44-3 won't be that much better, but the later 44k models might be, due to wider mount base (K-mount) and better coatings. They are also sharper and more controlled, much less artistic and crazy. I dunno, I like my 44-2 especially because it can deliver very sharp photos, but also very odd low-definition "artistic" photos. But a lot of members on this forum like the newer K-mount Helios 44 lenses.
I doesn't alter how you use the camera-- just assemble the lens and infinity focus on the camera (pentax) and look at the leaky spots. It is something like a 30mm rubber o-ring that I roll off the lens back plate and onto the join. MikeSF-- maybe we could colour coordinate a matching ribbon for our camera colour . Tie a pretty bow in it.
06-22-2013, 01:16 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF Quote
We'll look so classy in front of our canikony brethren with a sock tied around the lens base...



Steve
06-22-2013, 02:17 PM   #12
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Well years ago I used a purple brocolli band as a focus grip on my old Rikenon till I found a donor.
But these days they don't make brocolli bands like they used to.
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