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10-09-2020, 02:59 PM - 17 Likes   #1
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Created a new vintage lens reference site for major SLR lens systems

Hey all,

I'm a web engineer who was laid off for a bit this past spring due to COVID, and used that time to create https://aperturepedia.com, a new lens reference site which I wanted to share with you all. My goal here was to create a free resource with long-term support for referencing and comparing specs for most vintage first-party SLR camera lenses, as well as a repository for helpful links to other sites which may not immediately come up in Google, or Wayback Machine-cached dead sites (RIP Geocities).

Right now the site includes OEM lens tables for the following systems:

- Pentax K
- Pentax M42
- Pentax M37
- Minolta SR
- Nikon F
- Canon FD
- Olympus OM
- Konica AR

Each lens table features expandable rows with more info and helpful links to other sites including reviews, repair guides, & more source material for each lens. The site itself is open source, anyone interested in checking out the source code can do so here: GitHub - nklein1/aperturepedia: Guide to first-party vintage SLR lenses

I've been following PentaxForums among other camera forums for a while, ever since I inherited my grandmother's Minolta XE-7 and discovered I could also adapt her Rokkor lenses on my Sony A7II. I found Dennis Lohmann's lens reference table (www.minolta.eazypix.de/lenses) extremely useful while I was investigating how to expand my Minolta lens collection, but wished that similarly comprehensive lens tables existed for other systems so that I could compare lenses at a glance.

As the site's still in its infancy, I wanted to reach out to you all to see if you had any thoughts about new features, information, or corrections which would make it more useful, or are interested in collaborating. I'm also actively seeking more links to add to the "Helpful Links" pages I've created for each system.

Hope you find it useful!
Nick

10-09-2020, 03:27 PM - 1 Like   #2
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Welcome to the Pentax Forums!

Thank you for the very cool introduction post. I am sure your work will prove useful.

Steve
10-09-2020, 04:05 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by nklein Quote
or corrections
On the Minota SR page (https://aperturepedia.com/minolta-sr/), bad link to http://www.subclub.org/minman/5014.htm


Steve
10-09-2020, 04:15 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Thanks for the feedback! Which lens row(s) has the bad link? I checked the 50mm f1.4 MC & MD's, but their links to MINOLTA'S f1.4 NORMAL LENSES seem to go through despite the linked subclub.org page showing some broken images. (Unless you mean I should use "www" rather than their naked domain)

As you can imagine manual QA testing the data for this site has been fun.

10-09-2020, 05:12 PM - 2 Likes   #5
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Nice work!

Here's a link to Mamiya-Sekor lenses if you want to add them, they are good lenses:
Mamiya 35mm SLR Lens Auction Prices
10-09-2020, 05:16 PM - 1 Like   #6
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Great data and layout, however after a few minutes of reading the background colors gave me a headache.

Might want to consider sticking with plain old black letters on a white background. That's the highest contrast and easiest to read. If you intend to keep the low contrast, brightly colored backgrrounds maybe you can give your viewers the ability to shut off the colored backgrounds?

My favorite part are the links to "repair resources" shown on the far right side - exceedingly valuable! Here's a link to a YouTuber who has excellent videos on repairing dozens of lenses. You might want to link to his videos too.

Two must have Nikkor F lens links are: http://www.naturfotograf.com/lens_surv.html and http://www.photosynthesis.co.nz/nikon/serialno.html

Also, check out http://www.lenscore.org/ for what I consider to be excellent ratings on: Canon, Nikon, Sony, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina, Zeiss, and Leica lenses. This is the only resource that I am aware of that has tested and quantitatively rated the bokeh of lenses!

Last edited by Fenwoodian; 10-09-2020 at 05:50 PM.
10-09-2020, 06:06 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by nklein Quote
Thanks for the feedback! Which lens row(s) has the bad link? I checked the 50mm f1.4 MC & MD's, but their links to MINOLTA'S f1.4 NORMAL LENSES seem to go through despite the linked subclub.org page showing some broken images. (Unless you mean I should use "www" rather than their naked domain)

As you can imagine manual QA testing the data for this site has been fun.
The expanded rows for MC Rokker-PF 58/1.4, both versions. Could not resolve subclub.org from my ISP's DNS server.


Steve

10-09-2020, 06:14 PM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by nklein Quote
As you can imagine manual QA testing the data for this site has been fun.
I feel your pain...*

More pain...scrolling the table with up/down arrow and page up/page down keys fails. (Firefox and IE on Win 10) Mouse scroll works fine.

Steve

* Lots of years building front and back ends for commercial sites...
10-09-2020, 07:04 PM - 1 Like   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
The expanded rows for MC Rokker-PF 58/1.4, both versions. Could not resolve subclub.org from my ISP's DNS server.


Steve
@nklein , I tried a different DNS server and it worked. Sorry for the false alarm.


Steve
10-09-2020, 07:29 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
More pain...scrolling the table with up/down arrow and page up/page down keys fails. (Firefox and IE on Win 10) Mouse scroll works fine.
Yeah, unfortunately that's a side effect of the dynamic DOM layout I built for the Lens Database pages, where the table takes up 100% of the excess viewport height not used by the rest of the page content above it.


QuoteOriginally posted by ramseybuckeye Quote
Nice work!

Here's a link to Mamiya-Sekor lenses if you want to add them, they are good lenses:
Mamiya 35mm SLR Lens Auction Prices

Thanks! I'll check them out and get started on research. And thanks for the request, when it comes to adding new systems or features for this project "the squeaky wheel gets the grease" as they say.



QuoteOriginally posted by Fenwoodian Quote
.
Great data and layout, however after a few minutes of reading the background colors gave me a headache.

Might want to consider sticking with plain old black letters on a white background. That's the highest contrast and easiest to read. If you intend to keep the low contrast, brightly colored backgrrounds maybe you can give your viewers the ability to shut off the colored backgrounds?

My favorite part are the links to "repair resources" shown on the far right side - exceedingly valuable! Here's a link to a YouTuber who has excellent videos on repairing dozens of lenses. You might want to link to his videos too.

Two must have Nikkor F lens links are: Lens Evaluations and Nikon Lens Versions and Serial Nos

Also, check out LenScore for what I consider to be excellent ratings on: Canon, Nikon, Sony, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina, Zeiss, and Leica lenses. This is the only resource that I am aware of that has tested and quantitatively rated the bokeh of lenses!
Thanks for the feedback! You touched on a point that I've been trying to figure out for a while now. I was a fan of how Dennis Lohmann (MINOLTA Manual Lens List) used color-coding to easily distinguish between different versions of the same Minolta lens (MC-I, MC-II, MC-X, MD-I, MD-II, MD-III, plus the AR and Celtics). I found that was useful for me, but it was a challenge trying to adapt that principle for other lens systems which weren't always as consistent (*cough* Olympus OM). I still think that color-coding for different versions of the same lens is useful, but perhaps a more subtle/less headache-inducing color palette may be the way to go here. The trick is I want to use a color palette that also supports various forms of color-blindness as well (I want Aperturepedia to be accessible for everyone)

But I'm also realizing that perhaps not everyone wants colors, even if they're more subtle, so I do like the compromise to toggle B&W vs colored themes, and I'll investigate how to best incorporate that into the site. Unfortunately Aperturepedia's not robust enough yet to preserve your preferences, but perhaps down the line I can implement a localstorage or cookie-based method for saving a user's preferred "theme".

Funny you should mentions mikeno62, I just found his YouTube account the other day while looking for new links and had bookmarked him to integrate links to all his lens repair videos into the site.
Thanks for adding those Nikon links, I'll be sure to add them. The LensScore site is an intriguing resource, esp with their novel approach to quantifying Bokeh "scores", but I'm focusing on vintage manual focus lenses for this project and it doesn't look like they include any in their ratings.

QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
@nklein , I tried a different DNS server and it worked. Sorry for the false alarm.
Weird, thanks for checking that out.
10-09-2020, 11:28 PM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by nklein Quote
Hey all,

I'm a web engineer who was laid off for a bit this past spring due to COVID, and used that time to create https://aperturepedia.com, a new lens reference site which I wanted to share with you all. My goal here was to create a free resource with long-term support for referencing and comparing specs for most vintage first-party SLR camera lenses, as well as a repository for helpful links to other sites which may not immediately come up in Google, or Wayback Machine-cached dead sites (RIP Geocities).

Right now the site includes OEM lens tables for the following systems:

- Pentax K
- Pentax M42
- Pentax M37
- Minolta SR
- Nikon F
- Canon FD
- Olympus OM
- Konica AR

Each lens table features expandable rows with more info and helpful links to other sites including reviews, repair guides, & more source material for each lens. The site itself is open source, anyone interested in checking out the source code can do so here: GitHub - nklein1/aperturepedia: Guide to first-party vintage SLR lenses

I've been following PentaxForums among other camera forums for a while, ever since I inherited my grandmother's Minolta XE-7 and discovered I could also adapt her Rokkor lenses on my Sony A7II. I found Dennis Lohmann's lens reference table (www.minolta.eazypix.de/lenses) extremely useful while I was investigating how to expand my Minolta lens collection, but wished that similarly comprehensive lens tables existed for other systems so that I could compare lenses at a glance.

As the site's still in its infancy, I wanted to reach out to you all to see if you had any thoughts about new features, information, or corrections which would make it more useful, or are interested in collaborating. I'm also actively seeking more links to add to the "Helpful Links" pages I've created for each system.

Hope you find it useful!
Nick


Herewith a link to a long-"dead" page of mine for Fujica slr's Fujica 35mm SLR Cameras
You may want to present it "as is" or extract the data for integration into your own database.


Good luck
10-11-2020, 09:20 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by kypfer Quote
Herewith a link to a long-"dead" page of mine for Fujica slr's Fujica 35mm SLR Cameras
You may want to present it "as is" or extract the data for integration into your own database.


Good luck
Nice, I've gotten some feedback about adding support for Fujica's M42 & X-mount lenses. This will be helpful in making that happen. Thank you!
10-11-2020, 09:30 PM - 1 Like   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by nklein Quote
https://aperturepedia.com, a new lens reference site which I wanted to share with you all.
My goal here was to create a free resource with long-term support for referencing and comparing specs for most vintage first-party SLR camera lenses, as well as a repository for helpful links to other sites which may not immediately come up in Google, or Wayback Machine-cached dead sites (RIP Geocities).

Each lens table features expandable rows with more info and helpful links to other sites including reviews, repair guides, & more source material for each lens.

I found Dennis Lohmann's lens reference table (www.minolta.eazypix.de/lenses) extremely useful while I was investigating how to expand my Minolta lens collection, but wished that similarly comprehensive lens tables existed for other systems so that I could compare lenses at a glance.

As the site's still in its infancy, I wanted to reach out to you all to see if you had any thoughts about new features, information, or corrections which would make it more useful, or are interested in collaborating. I'm also actively seeking more links to add to the "Helpful Links" pages I've created for each system.
How do you define "vintage" ?
And what do you think about 1980's AF lenses in case of vintage?

You can find more Information about legacy Pentax AF lenses there:
Template:Pentax K-mount AF lenses timeline - Wikipedia
Place to post scans of camera and lens manuals - PentaxForums.com
Product pictures of lenses - PentaxForums.com
Pentax SLR
Pentax Prospekte
schmickis.de/Prospekte/SLR.pdf
10-12-2020, 08:02 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by angerdan Quote
How do you define "vintage" ?
And what do you think about 1980's AF lenses in case of vintage?

You can find more Information about legacy Pentax AF lenses there:
Template:Pentax K-mount AF lenses timeline - Wikipedia
Place to post scans of camera and lens manuals - PentaxForums.com
Product pictures of lenses - PentaxForums.com
Pentax SLR
Pentax Prospekte
schmickis.de/Prospekte/SLR.pdf

Hey Angerdan, that's a great question and one that I should address on the home page of Aperturepedia. Here's what I had written for the Github code repo's README when I was starting the project:

QuoteQuote:
Criteria for lens inclusion:
  1. Lens must designed for full-frame film SLR cameras (rangefinder & medium format lenses may be added after 35mm lens data is complete)
  2. Lenses must be manufactured or branded by the camera manufacturer (Minolta, Nikon, etc). No 3rd party lenses for now.
  3. Only manual focus lenses will be included for now due to their greater adaptability to modern mirrorless cameras.
  4. Lenses must have been made in the 20th century (aka "vintage").
  5. Lens systems are generally prioritized by popularity and availability of reference data.
Some of these may sound arbitrary, but the idea to create Aperturepedia came from my experience as a Sony mirrorless shooter who realized vintage lenses could allow me to finally afford to move past shooting with my camera's kit lens. I have a habit of over-researching potential purchases, so when investigating which lenses to build a collection from, I dove down a year-plus long rabbit hole which quickly moved from the first page of Google results to obscure hobby pages and long-dead Geocities sites resurrected by the Internet Archive, along with foreign-language lens review sites which I browsed with the help of Google Translate.

I know I'm hardly the first nor the last person to make this realization, and so I wanted to create a resource to help other mirrorless shooters who aren't tied down by a particular film-era mount to discover & compare vintage glass across systems while also providing a valuable reference (including repair guides!) for dedicated film system shooters.

For the mirrorless crowd, I wanted to emphasize lenses which were relatively affordable to their modern counterparts, often with superior build quality. I also decided quickly that I wanted to emphasize manual focus lenses, as they could be used on a wide range of mirrorless and many analog systems as long as a "dumb" adapter existed. With AF lenses, that changes as many AF lenses require an electronic connection with the camera body and are therefore less versatile except when used in manual focus mode.
10-12-2020, 12:08 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by nklein Quote
I also decided quickly that I wanted to emphasize manual focus lenses, as they could be used on a wide range of mirrorless and many analog systems as long as a "dumb" adapter existed.

With AF lenses, that changes as many AF lenses require an electronic connection with the camera body and are therefore less versatile except when used in manual focus mode.
With Pentax screw-drive lenses, it doesn't matter about electronics.
Also since most cheap adapters are without contacts/AF, it doesn't matter if the adapted lens has AF or not.
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