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01-10-2016, 01:13 AM   #1
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The Impossible lens; Volna 8 50mm 1.2

It actually came in two Variants; The Volna 8 50mm 1.2 and the Volna 8H 52mm 1.2, both made by Arsenal. They came in Pentax K and Nikon F.

Here's the question; I know they exist, but has anyone ever actually seen one? Beyond a single stock image and a scan of the catalog, I have never seen one of these lenses, and I'm curious if anyone on here has ever seen and tried one of these? Or is it truly the impossible lens, known only in rumors and whispers?

01-10-2016, 01:57 AM   #2
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Can you read Russian? Some pics here: PHOTOHISTORY -
01-10-2016, 06:51 AM   #3
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The MC Volna-8 50 mm f/ 1.2 Lens. Specs. MTF Charts. User Reviews.


A mate just had a look at it and noted it's flat rear element. Won't work great on digital due to sensor reflections..

However, if that average price is right we may need to employ someone in russia to track down a few..
01-10-2016, 08:00 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mothballs Quote
Or is it truly the impossible lens, known only in rumors and whispers?
Reminiscent of that ultra-fast 35mm film-era Pentax lens, of which only 7 prototypes are rumoured to have ever existed.

01-10-2016, 09:40 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Topsy Quote
The MC Volna-8 50 mm f/ 1.2 Lens. Specs. MTF Charts. User Reviews.


A mate just had a look at it and noted it'cs flat rear element. Won't work great on digital due to sensor reflections..

However, if that average price is right we may need to employ someone in russia to track down a few..
I get good results with a flat element cosina 55mm f1.4. get interesting light rings sometimes.

The Tamron 90mm 2.5 however, that gives the purple center reflection.

Depending on which, it goes from annoying to actually interesting And fun.
01-10-2016, 01:24 PM   #6
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Even those links say the lens is "especially rare." I would like to see some samples, looks really interesting.
01-10-2016, 01:50 PM - 1 Like   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
Even those links say the lens is "especially rare." I would like to see some samples, looks really interesting.
I almost feel like I've shot myself in the foot by mentioning it here, as now everyone's going to be looking for them, ahaha.


Ah well.
01-10-2016, 02:41 PM   #8
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I'd never even heard of it until I saw this thread. I didn't know the Ruskies had made such fast glass.

01-11-2016, 05:41 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jonathan Mac Quote
I didn't know the Ruskies had made such fast glass.
It is even more surprising that similar 50/1.2 lenses (based on Volna-8 formula) are produced nowadays. Unfortunately, only for Canon and Nikon mounts, though Zenit SLR is m42/K-mount camera (Zenit and Zenitars lenses are produced by the same factory).

Review for "Zenitar S 50 mm 1.2 Lens for Canon EOS" Zenitar S 50 / Rugift.com

Official web site (in Russian)
01-11-2016, 06:19 AM   #10
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Has anyone actually tried the modern Russian lenses ?
01-11-2016, 06:27 AM   #11
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Found this website while looking for a zenitar lens yesterday. Cameras and Lenses / Rugift.com I know nothing about it and I am not affiliated nor do I recommend ordering through them, but a quick look seems to indicate they carry most modern Russian lenses.
Edit : oups, link was posted above - sorry.
01-11-2016, 12:17 PM   #12
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Two aspherical elements. Huh. Might not be bad at all.

Nikon one would be easy to convert...
01-11-2016, 01:51 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mothballs Quote
I get good results with a flat element cosina 55mm f1.4. get interesting light rings sometimes.

The Tamron 90mm 2.5 however, that gives the purple center reflection.
i have a couple of those lenses, i've never seen any sensor reflection, neither on the k10d nor the a7r.

sensor reflections are often caused by the camera body, the a7 problem for example, has been well documented even on this forum, with multiple modern lenses... it usually happened at night, with longer exposures in particular.

sony fixed the issue with the a7ii, it does not have a sensor reflection problem.
01-12-2016, 06:50 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by osv Quote
i have a couple of those lenses, i've never seen any sensor reflection, neither on the k10d nor the a7r.

sensor reflections are often caused by the camera body, the a7 problem for example, has been well documented even on this forum, with multiple modern lenses... it usually happened at night, with longer exposures in particular.

sony fixed the issue with the a7ii, it does not have a sensor reflection problem.


Annnd then there's this.
01-12-2016, 07:25 PM - 1 Like   #15
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F/1.2? Cool......desirable..........with film. As a very old timer, I am not happy with the few fast lenses for digital cameras. Especially at the prices being asked.

But then I realized, those fast lenses were needed for film. With ISO's over 400 being real grainy, and topping out at maybe 3200 anyway. The modern digicam sensors with ISO's that the film era couldn't conceive of don't need fast lenses. Take a fast combo in the old days; an F/1.4 lens with Tri-X at ISO 400. So now with a digicam, using a modest F/4, we shoot it at 3200. Will the noise be worse than the Tri-X grain? I doubt it, and I'm sure a lot of the comparison will depend on the developer and camera.

So, no more worrying about not having a fast lense with my Pentax.
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