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Helios 44M-7 (Valday) 58mm, F/2

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12 86,321 Sat April 18, 2020
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
100% of reviewers $48.00 9.25
Helios 44M-7 (Valday) 58mm, F/2

Helios 44M-7 (Valday) 58mm, F/2
Helios 44M-7 (Valday) 58mm, F/2
Helios 44M-7 (Valday) 58mm, F/2
Helios 44M-7 (Valday) 58mm, F/2
Helios 44M-7 (Valday) 58mm, F/2
Helios 44M-7 (Valday) 58mm, F/2

Helios 44M-7-58mm f / 2.0 MC fast standard lens, M42 mounting thread. Lens has a Multi-coating with 6 blade iris, providing a well harmonic bokeh
These later 44M's don't have a A-M switch. Modding or use with a flanged adapter that depresses the auto pin to get the use of the aperture range.
NB there are fakes floating around: earlier models altered to look like 44M-7's. Check that the spec is consistent (the later 44M's don't have an A-M switch and have 6 blade iris), and also that the date indicated by the serial number (first two digits on many Russian lenses indicates year) is consistent ie no earlier than around early '90's. Pic 6 shows an example of a 44M with a fake nameplate.
Re fake copies one way to distinguish is to weigh the lens : it should weigh 270g being different from certain other models:

Was being produced in the "Jupiter" factory in Valday.
It has the highest resolution among all family Helios-44 lens. Resolution of a technical passport (center / edge): not less than 50 lp / 30 / mm.
Mount Type: M42 Screwmount
Price History:

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New Member

Registered: November, 2016
Posts: 1
Lens Review Date: April 18, 2020 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $55.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Solid Build, Smooth Bokeh
Cons: Stiff Focus Ring, Relatively Soft Results
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 7    Value: 9   

Was recommended this lens by a friend who had success with is copy. Overall I have found this to be a fun prime that I like to include in my regular lens lineup. The soft bokeh produces an effect that is no longer seen in portrait lenses. When wide open, it will produce a swirl of light rings radiating from the center of the image. My copy has a stiff, but workable focus, and its aperture works perfectly. For the price, this lens produces great results.
Site Supporter

Registered: May, 2019
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 121
Lens Review Date: December 1, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $85.00 | Rating: N/A 

Pros: Sharpness, bokeh, and build quality
Cons: None I can observe
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: Sony A7II (w/ adapter)   

Understandably, there are a number of potential buyers who shy away from purchasing this lens because it's sold almost exclusively by Eastern European vendors, a number of whom are peddling counterfeit 44M-7 lenses, sadly. After doing my homework, I opted to buy my lens from a reputable Ukranian gentleman who sold me a terrific example in new condition. While it took a number of weeks to get here, it arrived in great shape as it was packed quite well.

I eagerly mated it with my Fotodiox M42 adapter and put it through its paces. Only after returning home and evaluating the shots I took on my monitor did I realize how beautifully cinematic this lens was--especially when shooting portraits. While the bokeh isn't nearly as distinct as that of the 44M-2 variant, I personally prefer it. What also surprised me was how nicely the lens handled. Granted, my lens was new, so I can't speak to how it will hold up over time, but I was very impressed with how positive the aperture detents were, and how smoothly it focused.

All in all, I couldn't be happier with this lens, and I would certainly recommend it to anyone eager to try a manual lens with a truly distinct character. So if you're intrigued by this lens, but remain concerned about finding a reputable seller, please don't hesitate to PM me, for I believe I have discovered a vendor you can trust. Cheers, and happy shooting!
Senior Member

Registered: December, 2016
Location: Bhubaneswar; A State in the East of India
Posts: 137
Lens Review Date: January 20, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $24.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, Bokeh,
Cons: None
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 10    Camera Used: Canon 350D   

One of my favourite Helios lenses. I own a Helios 44-2 as well as the Helios 44M-3 versions. I'd have to say handling wise Helios 44-2 is the worst for me. I find rotating the smooth aperture ring without any groves very difficult.

Compared to the rest, the 44M-7 ticks all the boxes for me. It has a very nice bokeh, lovely colour saturation and is easy to focus with. I don't shoot videos, so the click stop aperture ring is not a problem for me.

The only reason I'm not giving this lens a 10/10 is maybe there is some other lens out there which out performs this which I might acquire some day.

Rest I'll let the pictures do the talking.

Inactive Account

Registered: November, 2016
Posts: 8
Lens Review Date: November 20, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: N/A 


Re fake copies I reckon the easiest way is to weigh the lens : it should weigh 270g being different from certain other models
Junior Member

Registered: January, 2016
Location: Warsaw
Posts: 32
Lens Review Date: March 5, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Price, construction.
Cons: Problems with sharp copies.
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 7    Camera Used: K-3   

One to rule all Helios. Best of all Helios in sharpnes and coating. Ultra rare. But M42 without switch auto/manual.

In my opinion good lens when You don't have a money for better portrait lenses. Second pros is swirly bokeh.

Good on film and for digital.

In minus - normal for USSR lenses - oil leak. Big problem with a unsharp copies.

Finally when You have a Zeiss or Takumar this lens make a negative suprise for You.
Senior Member

Registered: December, 2013
Posts: 166
Lens Review Date: April 30, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $10.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Great sharpness in the center even from f2
Cons: Really soft corners until f5.6, but that's "normal" with Helios lenses
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-5 II   

I compared this lens with 44-3 over here.

It's sharp in the center even from f2. Corners, in the other hand, are not that sharp and one must turn to f9 to have very good sharpness in the corners. It too has swirly bokeh.
For the past couple of days, it's always on my dslr. I just love it.

I can recommend it, but it's really expencive on e(vil)bay. I bought one, which was attached on Zenit 122 camera, for US$ 20.
New Member

Registered: February, 2010
Posts: 4
Lens Review Date: December 20, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: N/A 


Few months ago also I bought Helios 44M-7 with 8 blades. And I found today this:
My serial number start with 8...
My mistake

Site Supporter

Registered: January, 2009
Location: East Bay Area, CA
Posts: 6,270
Lens Review Date: September 6, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $60.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Super Sharp, metal construction, good contrast, good coatings
Cons: hard to find
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 9    Camera Used: K5   

There are a few different variants of this lens. Mine is a Valdai factory issue:

The sharpness and contrast are notable as this lens is a solid performer. Built with metal construction and very compact. It doesn't have the soft artsy swirling bokeh of the Helios 44-2, not even close to that, so it depends what you are shooting. Best coatings of the Helios bunch for flare resistance and micro-contrast.


Site Supporter

Registered: June, 2013
Location: Storrs-Mansfield, Connecticut
Posts: 200
Lens Review Date: May 20, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: N/A 

Pros: Unknown
Cons: Unknown

Bought this lens quite a while ago when I was looking for good manual lenses at a decent price. It arrived with another lens--the Super Takumar 1:4/50mm--which distracted me entirely as I took it on my trip to Alaska and, well, this one went into my camera bag and I just discovered it, alone and forgotten.

It's now mounted on my K-01 as of tonight and I plan on testing it asap. The reason I'm writing this is to mention that my Helios 58mm F/2, 44M-7 has EIGHT blades, not six and is multicoated. I can find no mention of this lens anywhere on the Pentax forum and only found one other mentioned anywhere, but no details or back links were given. There are any number of Helios lenses with up to 18 blades. Some of the early silver ones commonly have 13 and others, like many of the 44m-2s are multicoated. These have 8 characters in their serial numbers.

However, the combination of a 44M-7 with multicoating and eight blades seems to be extremely unusual. The serial number is 8125572. Some test shots I took inside without a flash seem extremely good--no obvious signs of oily/stuck blades--but only a further test will determine more. Tomorrow should be exciting!
Junior Member

Registered: June, 2013
Location: Ohio
Posts: 48
Lens Review Date: September 12, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $79.97 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Everything
Cons: M42, Manual (If those are problems for you), Would like it faster?
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 10   

Mine was even more expensive (though you could kind of knock about $20 off for shipping and take it down to around $60 paid for it).

Absolutely amazing lens. Always with me, usually on my camera. I don't even bother taking it off much anymore unless I want something specific from a different lens.

Focuses pretty close and with how good the resolution is, it sometimes looks like macro shots when you zoom in.

No complaints from me at all. The cons above are gripes I could see others make. I have none.

Shots below.

New Member

Registered: September, 2012
Posts: 7
Lens Review Date: July 13, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: sharpness, bokeh, contrast
Cons: not yet found
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 9    Value: 10   

Just delivered by the mailman and mounted on a Canon EOS M. This is my first test shot. I paid more than usual for this Helios 44M-7 MC, but it has been on my wishlist a while after my first Helios, the 44M-2. Renowned for its sharpness and lovely bokeh. The "7" has the best coating of the entire 44M family. Mine has six Aperture Blades and was manufactured in the Valdai Optical-Mechanical Factory. The Optical Resolution of this MC Helios-44M-7 is 50/30 lines/mm (center/edge) . Not bad for a lens build around 1970.
New Member

Registered: September, 2012
Location: Belo Horizonte
Posts: 17
Lens Review Date: October 19, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $45.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp, good contrast, quality of construction, QI great, great bokeh, low price
Cons: noo
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

I have such a lens and it very good in all aspects,
take a photo with helios. wonderful bokeh
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