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Super-Multi-Coated Takumar/Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9 Review RSS Feed

Super-Multi-Coated Takumar/Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9

Sharpness 
 9.2
Aberrations 
 9.0
Bokeh 
 9.6
Handling 
 9.6
Value 
 9.3
Reviews Views Date of last review
21 115,047 Mon April 30, 2018
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Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $242.00 9.43
Super-Multi-Coated Takumar/Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9

Super-Multi-Coated Takumar/Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9
supersize
Super-Multi-Coated Takumar/Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9

Description:
The 85mm F1.9 Takumar came in three versions, two Super-Takumar and one Super-Multi-Coated Takumar. The early Super-Takumar stopped down to F22, the other two only stopped down to F16. The photo shows the latest version, the Super-Multi-Coated version. They are all of the same optical design.

The fist Super-Takumar:
Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9 (early)
© www.pentaxforums.com, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
M42
Aperture Ring
Yes
Diaphragm
Automatic, 6 blades
Optics
5 elements, 4 groups
Mount Variant
M42 Stop-down Pin
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
F1.9
Min. Aperture
F22
Focusing
Manual
Min. Focus
85 cm
Max. Magnification
0.13x
Filter Size
58 mm
Internal Focus
No
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 19 ° / 16 °
Full frame: 29 ° / 24 °
Hood
Case
Lens Cap
Coating
Weather Sealing
No
Other Features
Diam x Length
68 x 58 mm
Weight
350 g
Production Years
1962 to 1964
Engraved Name
Super-Takumar 1:1.9/85
Product Code
364, 43640
Reviews
User reviews
Notes
Rare first version, stopping down to F22
Variants

1: Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9, min. aperture F22 (this lens)
2: Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9, min. aperture F16
3: Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 85mm F1.9



The second Super-Takumar:
Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9 (late)
© www.pentaxforums.com, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
M42
Aperture Ring
Yes
Diaphragm
Automatic, 6 blades
Optics
5 elements, 4 groups
Mount Variant
M42 Stop-down Pin
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
F1.9
Min. Aperture
F16
Focusing
Manual
Min. Focus
85 cm
Max. Magnification
0.13x
Filter Size
58 mm
Internal Focus
No
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 19 ° / 16 °
Full frame: 29 ° / 24 °
Hood
Case
Lens Cap
Coating
Weather Sealing
No
Other Features
Diam x Length
68 x 58 mm
Weight
350 g
Production Years
1964 to 1971
Engraved Name
Super-Takumar 1:1.9/85
Product Code
364, 43640
Reviews
User reviews
Variants

1: Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9, min. aperture F22
2: Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9, min. aperture F16 (this lens)
3: Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 85mm F1.9



The Super-Multi-Coated version:
Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 85mm F1.9
© www.pentaxforums.com, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
M42
Aperture Ring
Yes
Diaphragm
Automatic, 6 blades
Optics
5 elements, 4 groups
Mount Variant
M42 Stop-down Pin
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
F1.9
Min. Aperture
F16
Focusing
Manual
Min. Focus
85 cm
Max. Magnification
0.13x
Filter Size
58 mm
Internal Focus
No
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 19 ° / 16 °
Full frame: 29 ° / 24 °
Hood
Case
Lens Cap
Coating
SMC
Weather Sealing
No
Other Features
Diam x Length
68 x 58 mm
Weight
350 g
Production Years
1971 to 1972
Engraved Name
Super-Multi-Coated TAKUMAR 1:1.9/85
Product Code
43461
Reviews
User reviews
Variants
1: Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9, min. aperture F22
2: Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9, min. aperture F16
3: Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 85mm F1.9 (this lens)
Features:
Manual FocusAperture RingFull-Frame SupportAdapter needed for DSLRsDiscontinued
Price History:



Add Review of Super-Multi-Coated Takumar/Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9
Author:
Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 1-15 of 21
New Member

Registered: February, 2015
Posts: 3
Lens Review Date: April 30, 2018 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $160.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: overall IQ superb,
Cons: long throw I guess, lacking contrast enough to focus wide open.
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Canon 6D   

First, to be honest had I rated this lens five years ago I would say it's sharpness and aberrations were better than they are, that being said I think this is the best lens I own. Almost all of it's issue can be solved with 1-2 clicks of the aperture wheel. If I were shooting on a higher resolution camera I might not like it as much, or maybe would. In short, the 6d is 20 mega pixels, I have installed a super precision matte focusing screen so I MF through the view finder. Wide open the DOF is so thin, that can be hard but the biggest problem is wide open it lacks that extra hair of contrast the makes focusing manually possible. That lack of contrast is also evident in the photos. However it is still sharp enough wide open to give some beautiful shots(if the subject is within 8 feet). Getting around ten feet I have to stop down to know if I am in focus. The level of sharpness is at an odd point, wide open it is soft on my 6d, which is around 5.4K resolution, on 1080p video it is as sharp as anything, I know that is an important thing for some people so I wanted to state that, My videos with it look sharp even wide open. first image is wide open
second image is stopped down to f2.5.
   
Pentaxian

Registered: September, 2013
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 916
Lens Review Date: April 29, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $176.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Build quality, large aperture
Cons: long focus throw
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 9    Camera Used: K30   

This lens is an all around good low light portrait lens for the money, as long as you have enough time to focus manually with its relatively long focus throw (when compared to 2 other Takumars I own). It is built very well and my copy had clean glass and showed very few signs of wear. This lens is sharp enough wide open as long as you nail focus correctly, and gets better as you stop down. Strangely though it doesn't get infinity in focus until you stop down a bit, so I am not sure if this is the case for my lens in particular or just a limit in the design. Usually you want to stop down when shooting at infinity anyways to get enough of the foreground in focus, so this wasn't a real problem for me. I should also mention I was using an adapter that allows infinity focus too.

The lens is a rather heavy chunk of metal and glass, but still very manageable to carry and fit in a camera bag. Direct light can cause flare and/or a decrease in contrast, but that is to be expected for such an old design without modern coatings and can easily be remedied adding contrast in post processing and perhaps adding a lens hood or shielding the lens from the sun with your hand. I don't remember ever seeing anything too offensive in terms of bokeh or aberrations, and I got a few keepers from it. Not a bad lens by any means, but it never inspired me as much as my 77 limited so I ended up letting it go. I hoped it could replace the 77 so I could use all screw mount lenses and not worry about changing the m42 adapter out all the time but this lens was just a bit too hard to keep up with people moving around and I just preferred the limited. If the 77mm limited is out of your budget this lens could be a good alternative for you.

Here's a couple of samples:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/adudenamedjosh/30357695561/in/dateposted-public/
https://www.flickr.com/photos/adudenamedjosh/29811738443/in/dateposted-public/
https://www.flickr.com/photos/adudenamedjosh/30146728590/in/dateposted-public/
   
Senior Member

Registered: April, 2011
Location: Stuttgart
Posts: 287

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: December 1, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $360.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Handling, Bokeh, Size, comfort using
Cons: Filter size, the 58mm is odd next to all those 49mm filters

I used this lens one whole month without a break in the well known SiC. This means daily a photo with this one lens.

I used a couple of 85mm lenses and close to that focal lengths. This is with the Helios my favourite 85mm so far. The color rendering is very nice, the bokeh is super smooth, the handling is takumar like very well and there is not much to complain about. I would say that the color rendering is more on the warm side, which is something good for portrait and people photography. To go more into the delicate things like Flowers or even a step in direction of macro is possible, but don't forget the macro tubes, because this lens has not a very close near focus distance.

compared to the Helios 40 it is lighter, smaller, easier to use (smoother focusing) and has not the crazy bokeh.
compared to the Isco Travenar, an adapted Pentacon Biotar, the Volna 3 (also Medium Format) this lens is sharper wide open and again easier to use. Fast focusing might be difficult because of the long focus throw, but it makes focusing easier if it has to be exact!

Here is the album of November in 2o16 on FLICKR.
   
Junior Member

Registered: July, 2010
Location: Cardiff, UK
Posts: 47
Lens Review Date: April 15, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Character; quality; sharp; bokeh; colour...
Cons: -
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 9    Camera Used: K3   

I've always been put off using M42 mount lenses on a dslr due to the need to insert that annoying adaptor. On film this was not a problem, but the grit and oily black residue caused by simply turning a lens round and round on a screw thread is not something I feel especially comfortable with near a sensor. The copy I have of this (Super Takumar) is very battered. The glass inside the front element has some tiny scratches, too. This made me feel unworried about fitting a screw-on bayonet mount adaptor and then making some minor adjustments to allow for infinity focus.

The adjustments are not complex. Simply unscrew the rear element, unscrew its casing and remove, then insert a washer (a strip of the narrow plastic lead culled from some in-ear phones works) to ensure that when the element is placed back in its casing juts around 3mm further out than it would have done. Reassemble. Then remove front lens ring and cover, loosen focus adjust screws and readjust the front element for proper infinity focus. You then have a bayonet mounting M42 lens that works fine. (You have to move the rear element, by the way, or the front element adjustment needed is too extreme and interferes with the aperture's ability to stop down when focused at infinity). This method also works for the Takumar 55mm f2, by the way.

As said, this copy of the lens is very battered and bruised. I like it all the more for that reason. As for the images it produces: their quality is stunning - slightly hazy wide open; sharp as anything once stopped down only a little. Nice to leave at 2.8 and simply shoot. The M85 f2 is nice; this is better, if bigger. A great lens capable of producing photographs oozing character.
   
Senior Member

Registered: March, 2007
Location: Denmark
Posts: 268

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 31, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $150.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Build, bokeh and image quality
Cons: Cannot think of any
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: K-5   

I have both this lens - Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9 - and the newer Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 85mm F1.8. The newer lens with an improved optical formula and full S-M-C coating is better, but not by much.

I have given both this and the newer 85mm Takumar 9 in handling, as handling is after all more restricted on a modern Pentax DSLR than a lens from the DA-series, but on the other hand it is a bit unfair to hold the lack of aperture automation or auto focus against these old gems - after all they are 40 to 50 years old and were constructed long before our modern DSLR left the drawing board. Anyway, you cannot go wrong with either of these lenses. They are both great.

Example from the K-5:
#1 - wide-open


To test its flare resistance I took this image late one evening with the sun just outside the frame. I always use a hood, but still some of the sunlight hit the front element directly. The resultant flare is not too bad, considering that this lens is a Super-Tak with only 3 layers of coating. Taken at F5.6.
#2


100% crop - the sharpness improves when the lens is stopped down - this is F5.6
   
Junior Member

Registered: June, 2014
Location: Upper East Coast
Posts: 28
Lens Review Date: June 18, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $275.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Handling, sharpness, bokeh, build quality, price/performance ratio
Cons: Stop-down only with an adapter
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: Pentax Spotmatic SP, Pentax KX   

As a disclaimer, I should mention that I have not shot with this lens on a digital camera and so cannot speak to its performance with regard to sensors. Also, I shoot with a Zeiss ZF 85/1.4 (both film & digital), Olympus OM Zuiko 85/2, and Leica Summicron R-90/2 & M-Apo 90/2 Asph. with film, and I would say that this lens performs as well as any of them while also having its own distinctive character.

This lens came to me purely by chance in neglected & unusable condition, so I invested approx. $90 in a CLA to bring it to near new condition; money well-spent.

What most impresses me is the smoothness of the focus. This alone makes me want to focus & compose shots, even if I have no intention of shooting the scene. As a portrait lens, it is almost brutally sharp with a smooth & pleasant bokeh that is a joy to behold both through the viewfinder and on the final image. The best lenses impart a sense of dimension to the final image, which this lens certainly does.

In short, you can pay a lot more money for a manual-focus 85 to get this kind of performance.

By the way, I am admin for the Flickr group Super-Takumar 85/1.9. If you use this lens, please join the group and display your photos.
   
Pentaxian

Registered: October, 2009
Location: North
Posts: 4,261

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 4, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Well built; smooth focus; nice light rendering
Cons: no longer cheap against the likes of Samyang or even 85/1.8 options from competition
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 8    Camera Used: K30; 5D   

I got this lens mainly for my FF wants using it on a 5D.

Its is really well built and a joy to handle.
The focus and aperture rings are silky smooth.
To me, it has a finer drawing and rendering style compared to later Pentax lenses.
Maybe the predating of the use SMC is one of the reasons.
It is sharp enough wide open for all intents.
Since I use it mostly on my 5D, I'm glad to report that it works fine on FF.


The downsides are that I'm pretty spoilt by the size of the M85/2 and FA77ltd.
So this lens is heavier and bigger, but still smaller than many Canikon counterparts.
The other thing is cost, as the Samyang 85/1.4 is about the same price (poorer build of course) and Canikon 85/1.8 options (almost same price 2nd hand with auto functions; again poorer build )


Personally, this is a lens to get above the others mentioned if one values build quality, MF handling, collecting of old lenses and its rendering style.





   
New Member

Registered: July, 2013
Location: Ancona - Marche - Italy
Posts: 3
Lens Review Date: July 4, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $300.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: bokeh, speed, color rendition and built quality
Cons: None so far
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-5   

This Super Takumar 85/1.9 is one of my favorite lenses for portraits and according to me is wonderful for black and white photography. However it should be fine even for color portraits, floral themes, and much much more

All the shoots were taken wide open

PENTAX K-5 + Super Takumar 85 f1.9 @ f1.9


PENTAX K-5 + Super Takumar 85 f1.9 @ f1.9


PENTAX K-5 + Super Takumar 85 f1.9 @ f1.9


PENTAX K-5 + Super Takumar 85 f1.9 @ f1.9
   
New Member

Registered: October, 2011
Posts: 5
Lens Review Date: September 28, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $271.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Pictures like a painting
Cons: Hexagon-shaped highlights stopped down
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: K5   

SMC version, picked up like new at a bargain price.

One of my lenses that makes backgrounds look like paintings. The enhanced Ernostar design yields slightly smoother bokeh compared to it's 1.8 sibling. Every bit as capable of producing 3d images with great color.

The only thing I don't like is the 6-bladed aperture, which can create potentially distracting highlights. Not much of an issue, however, stopped down one or two.

   
Site Supporter

Registered: November, 2010
Location: California
Posts: 2,223
Lens Review Date: January 31, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $390.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Everything
Cons: None
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K5 and Kx   

I bought this lens after I read a book about quality in photography and the authors regreated that they had sold theri SuperTak 85/1.9. I found one and got it. It is like everyone has said, the perfect lens. For wedding, I purchased the Rokinon 85/1.4 just because it has the A and can be used with the latest pttl flashes. I was going to sell the Rokinon, but I am not sure. It is also a great lens. Definetly, the Super Multi Coated Tak 85/1.9, the version I have is really rare. I have not seen another SMC Tak 85/1.9 around. Its best secret: the best for black and white photography.

Update-December 26-2014:

Coming soon



SMCTak85-1.9-Portrait-1 by Palenquero, on Flickr



SMCTak85-1.9-KonicaB&W-1 by Palenquero, on Flickr


SMCTak85-1.9-LAStreet2B&W-1 by Palenquero, on Flickr


See the comparison between the 85/1.9 and 85/1.8 here.
   
Inactive Account

Registered: January, 2011
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 15
Lens Review Date: January 24, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $200.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness and handling
Cons: Price, slight CA wide open
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 8   

This review is for a 5 element Super-Takumar that stops down to f16. Cosmetics are rough but the glass is very nice. Filter threads have an ugly dent (repaired and working fine) hence the price reflected the beauty marks. Another testament to the abuse these Takumars can take and still deliver quality images.

Decently sharp wide open with just enough of the Takumar glow, and it only gets sharper as you stop it down. Fabulous by f2.8 while retaining good bokeh. Gorgeous rendering at f5.6 that reminds me of the 50mm f1.4 at the same settings.

Colour is very nice. Metering requires attention to detail!

Handles like a dream. The long focus throw is a benefit at this focal length, allowing for very precise focus but fast enough to follow a moving subject. Fits the hand nicely and doesn't draw too much attention.

Slight CA and occasional purple fringe only when wide open (wet chrome in bright sun)

The cost is the only downside, as it's one of the more expensive Taks I've purchased. That being said, it's still quite cost effective compared to new glass and has the classic Takumar feel.

Like many, I will probably never part with this one!
   
Veteran Member

Registered: March, 2009
Location: Ohio, USA/ India
Posts: 475
Lens Review Date: June 1, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: N/A | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: IQ, Build,
Cons:

This is my most expensive takumar. It is one of my favorite lenses for portraits. I think that the IQ comes pretty close to the limiteds. I believe that pentax already had their optics right a long time ago. Some one at the forums mentioned that without limiteds pentax were nothing. I disagree, they just happened to call their premium lenses limited for the past 2 decades or so, but they had quality lenses way back in the screwmount era. This is one such legendary lens.
   
Inactive Account

Registered: March, 2009
Location: Coral Springs, FL
Posts: 5,216
Lens Review Date: September 29, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $240.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Perfect FL, Build Quality, Feel
Cons: None

I have the Super version...drooled over it for months before buying...and it hasn't disappointed at all. I also find the 85 to be the perfect FL for a longer lens on our sensors when walking around, and also perfect for portraits.

This is one to buy NOW, especially since the prices on these will continue to go up and up. I thought I was getting killed paying $240, but I wanted it so much that I bit the bullet. However, a week later, $240 became the average price, and now they're going for $300 and up.

Two samples:

(Non working links removed)
   
Inactive Account

Registered: September, 2008
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 92
Lens Review Date: September 21, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $250.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: built quality, speed, color bokeh
Cons: under or over expose (see details below)

I got the S-M-C version, including the original hood caps leather carrel, for around 250 USD.
The built quality is good, as always for Takumars. The color and bokeh are satisfactory (you may want to avoid the high contrast in the background).
The only thing I don't like is it under-exposes too much above f/4 and starts to over-expose below f/5.6 (this is less concerned since I never shoot below f/5.6 because of the split focus screen). I guess this problem goes for many other M42 lenses when you use AV mode, i.e. measures light with the set aperture, but it is not nice that sometime I even have to compensate for +2EV. However, I am not sure if this is common for all copies.
   
Pentaxian

Registered: February, 2009
Location: Cork, Ireland
Posts: 1,335

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 25, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $175.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Tactile feel, Colours, gentle bokeh.
Cons: Its heavy and bulky compared to the FA77 Limited

My first Super Takumar. The build quality is extremely high and mounted on a K20D it balances very well. Its a solid piece of metal and glass that is from another age. Colours, sharpness and bokeh are what this lens is all about, its a bit softer that the f1.8 version but the colours rendered are warmer which I personally prefer and also the extra bit of softness helps with portraits especially, stopped down to f4 or f5.6 and its as sharp as they come.
Focussing is a delight given that you have 330 degrees to play with which allows you to nail focus quite easily.
On the K20D with a Katzeye with Optibrite I find I generally use +0.3 or 0.7EV when metered using the green button.
So why a 8? prices are going up, and compared to a more modern FA77 at 10, this is where it is at in my opinion.


Rufus, K20D, Super Takumar 85 f1.9 @ f1.9
Add Review of Super-Multi-Coated Takumar/Super-Takumar 85mm F1.9



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