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09-30-2013, 04:05 PM   #1
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First Attempts with the Super Taks...

Hi All -

I'm pretty new to this group and thought I'd introduce myself with a couple of pics. I'm actually just getting back into still and *movie* photography after a pretty long absence (I was still shooting film when I left... ). I recently acquired a Canon T3i, and began looking around for some real glass, but as I'm of fairly limited resources right now, needed something that didn't cost an arm and a leg (and I was hesitant to invest in anything called a "plastic fantastic!). That's when I stumbled upon this forum - and the words "Super Takumar." I did a ton of reading up on them, and decided to give them a try. I was able to purchase 3 lenses - a 28mm/3.5 and a 135mm/3.5 Super Taks, and a 55mm/1.8 Auto Tak, and all for less than $100 total (including shipping!). I'm still getting the feel of the camera, but was able to capture a couple photos I feel comfortable enough sharing. I welcome - and would like to hear - any type of constructive feedback. Also - I'd love to hear thoughts on the glass that created these shots - are these images pretty standard for the series, or better or worse? (All 3 shots were done wide open). Thanks & greetings all!
Name:  Spreading Wings FIN2.jpg
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"Spreading Wings" 55mm Auto Tak @ f/1.8. Enhancement & sharpening done in Photoshop.

Name:  Sunset.jpg
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"Sunset" 135mm Super Tak @ f/3.5. Mild enhancement done in Photoshop.

Name:  A Sharp Eye.jpg
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"A Sharp Eye" 55mm Auto Tak @ f/1.8. Enhancement & sharpening done in Photoshop.

Last edited by arrimantim; 10-01-2013 at 10:22 AM. Reason: I listed the incorrect lens.
09-30-2013, 07:57 PM   #2
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That looks about right to me. I like to use the 55/1.8 for portraits so that wide open look adds to the shot. If the 135/3.5 came with its original hood, you can use that on the 55/1.8 and it won't vignette on the smaller sensor. For some reason, the only hoods that stayed with the lenses over time are the 135/3.5. You can find metal screw-in hoods on eBay that are about an inch or an inch and a half deep that work on the 28mm and 55mm lenses. Some of what you see is called bokeh fringing or longitudinal chromatic aberration, where out-of-focus areas have purple fringing in the foreground and green in the background.
09-30-2013, 09:14 PM   #3
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Thanks for replying. I actually like the look of the 55 when it's wide open. It's got a very old-school "film" look to it (LOVE the "haloing"). 30-40 years ago, people worked really hard to get that look. I guess I'm wondering if it's still a desirable thing... (Like I said - I like it...).
10-01-2013, 09:29 AM   #4
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Ooops - I goofed!

I just double-checked - the 55 f/1.8 is actually an Auto Tak - NOT a Super-Tak. Hmmm.

10-01-2013, 10:48 AM   #5
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I am not sure of the exact history, but the later Auto-Takumars were pretty much the same as Super-Takumars. If it has an A->M switch it's one of the later ones. Some construction differences make that lens nearly a pancake size. The earlier versions had a cocking lever for the aperture blades instead of an A->M switch.
10-01-2013, 11:16 AM   #6
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Thanks Just1MoreDave - Yes, it has an A/M switch. But you think the basic elements/coatings/construction is equivalent to a Super Tak?
10-05-2013, 06:11 PM   #7
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I like that first shot very much If you have Lightroom in can be improved a bit by "remove chromatic aberration" or you can just dial down the purple saturation.

Tak 50 / 55 in good light REALLY shines imo. Try to find time to shoot early morning or late afternoon in golden, directional light, and you can see why people love this lens so much. Imo while the bokeh is decent, it's really better stopped down a little, at least to 2.4 or so. The 50 is my favourite tak.

I find that midday is not really good for taks as even the SMC version can be prone to flare and redued contrast sometimes, and often purple fringing.

28 is my least favourite out of the taks as it is a real pain to focus in the viewfinder. If you're comfortable with live view you can get really good results out of it though. I like it much better on film / full frame. Or maybe it's just that my copy transmits less light for whatever reason.
10-06-2013, 09:32 PM   #8
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well nice pictures!
just one thing (well please forgive me if I got it wrong). You might need some work to reduce the purple fringe---try to do it in LR.
I use 55/1.8 most among all my taks (28, 35, 50, 55, 135, 200). I just love it---very sharp, and since it is so cheap that I won't feel guilty if I have to use it as a workhorse.
And try taking pics @ F4 or even F8. I don't have lots pics of taks, but here you go.

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