Today I write about a lens I used recently. It’s an other rebranded lens from a lens manufacturer specially made for the Australian marked. The lens is a Hanimex 28mm f.28 lens. I bought this lens for less than 10 USD. My particular lens has many small hear fractures in the front lens, they don’t seem to influence the picture quality but I can’t compare it. The aperture also changes from f22 to around f8 when I focus from the minimum distance to infinity. I only noticed this when my viewfinder and light meter didn’t change when I changed the aperture past f8 when taking landscape shots. These flaws might temper my enthusiasm about this lens but compared to the other 28mm I tested not so long ago (Orion 28mm f2.8) this lens is better. I will compare them side by side in the future but for some reason I like to take pictures with this lens. I also made some pictures of landscapes but they all came out bad. It might have something to do with the strange aperture behavior or with me not taking the time focusing accurately. Maybe I just like the focal lens on my 1.5 crop camera of this lens.
For the M42 the distance from the film to the lens mount is 45.46mm and for the X-mout it is 17.7mm so the adapter has to be 45.46-17.7= 27.76mm
I measured my adapters and the one from E-bay was 27mm on both sides, 0.76mm to short. The other two are seemingly from the same (no-)brand, one of them was 27.95mm and 27.85 so a 1/10 mm difference from one side to the other. The other was exactly 27.80mm, only a Little to big.
I put the other two away, the E-bay one is the same height around but almost a millimeter to short. When the adapter is to small it might influence your infinity setting but you have some wiggle room here. When the adapter is not the same height it influences the sharpness, specially in the corners so this one has to go.
I might buy a brand one one day but i looks like it is a gamble no matter what, at least I have one that is good. Who new it was so hard to make these things.
Today I tested an other wide angel lens from the 70/80s the Auto Weltblick. Its a strange name, its German for worldview and it is one of those lenses made by a lens manufacturer for an other that will give it its own name. In this case I think its made for Neckerman in Germany, their is not mush on the internet about this brand and lens.
On the X-T1 this lens is almost a 35mm so a nice focal length. It is well build and easy to use. My first impression is that it is sharper overall than the other wide angel I tested, the 28mm Orion but it has more barrel distortion. For now it is definitely a lens I will bring with me, I like it for architecture inside and outside and it might be good enough for landscape photography. All the pictures here are edited in Lightroom
Today I tested a 28mm lens made by Super Orion. I can not find much about this brand, its probably a copy of some other branded 28mm lens. I bought it for around 15,- USD with the hope I could bring it with me together with my 50 mm lenses. On my Fuji crop sensor it is around 42mm, almost wide angle for me. But the lens is not so good, specially not for landscapes. It is soft overall and sharpness is important in landscape photography. I took a lot of pictures today on different apertures but they are all soft and at 2.8 it is really bad, you can see some examples down below.
I also took some pictures in the museum where I work and for these kind of pictures I don’t mind that the lens is not sharp at f2.8, the aperture I used to shoot the pictures inside. In lightroom you can still make something nice out of the RAW files. There is not so much vignetting to see and the distortion is hardly noticeable. The lens also misses some “vintage picture” quality. The pictures look quit neutral with no muted colors or other charms that some of my other vintage lenses have.
The lens id nicely build, for the most part out of metal I think, it has an ensuring weight to it. I don’t think it is a lens I would bring with me, specially if I have a choice.
Today I tested the very small Industar 50mm f3.5. It is based on an old Zeis lens design from before ww2 and made in Russia. It focuses easy but the aperture ring is not easy adjustable with one hand, the focuses will change if you try to do this.
The photos are edited with Darktable, for most of them I only changed some tone curve and the B&W conversion. The tones of the colors have this nice vintage feel and the sharpens is good but not as overly sharp as modern lenses. Combined with the manual focus you can get some great results and because it is such a small lens there is no excuse not to bring it with you. I read online that this lens is not as good on full frame camera’s when it comes to sharpness in the corners and vignetting but I cannot confirm that. I like it a lot on the X-t1 and it is a good conversation starter.
Today I stopped besides a field of grass waiting to be mowed for maybe the last time this year. I wanted to catch some of the “grass feeling” but because the Industar is a decent macro lens I got caught up by the small details.
This is one of the Russian lenses and though it is not as sturdy as the Rikenon it still feels good. I’m not a big fan of the clickless aperture ring but it is stiff enough to prevent it being moved to easy.
I love the out of focus parts of the picture, both with details close by and far away. I also get used to focusing with this lens and it might not be super sharp it is still impressive for a 50,- US Dollar lens.
I have a third 50(ish)mm lens I am trying out now that I really like. Maybe I have three 50mm lenses in my bag on my next vacation.
Today I took pictures of this agricultural machine I’ve been passing by for the last few weeks. I really like the Rikenon, compared to the Russian lenses I have this feels much better in the hand. It’s quit heavy and solid and gives the feeling it will last forever. The focus ring feels mechanically tight and smooth. They make great lenses these day’s to but not for a 150,- US Dollars. Optically there are probably things that modern lenses do much better but though I like the technical aspects of photography I never have been that interested in the optical qualities of a lens. I can differentiate between a good lens and a bad lens but that has more to do with the impression the picture gives me and not the lack of color fringing, distortion or what you have.
I like taking pictures with this lens because it forces me to take it slowly. I like the results to, even after some editing in Lightroom I can still see that the pictures where taken with this lens, maybe not so much with the B&W but definitely with the color pictures.
For consistency I used the B&W Flat preset in Lightroom with some sharpening. For the colored ones I left all the settings from the preset untouched I just put it on color.
Today me and my girlfriend went out for a drive, looking for some nice spots to take pictures of her and to test my Auto Rikenon. I get better in focusing with these manual lenses combined with my new Fujifilm X-T1. I zoom in with the focus peaking and that works great. If you get closer and especially with the lens wide open you have to time your shot because the slightest movement results in an out of focus picture.
For me out of focus is not always bad but I am glad that some of the pictures are in focus so you can see a nice separation of subject and background even when stopped down. Wide open the out of focus parts are nice with smooth colors and almost round light circles.
There is more potential in this lens and I am glad that I bought it, it gives me the change to learn new things.
Today I took my new Industar 50mm with me to work. There was a big 3 master from Holland docked in the harbor, being raised there and working as a wooden boat builder I naturally wanted to meet the people on board. I was not a wooden boat, what I expected, but the wooden mast and rigging looked nice so I had something to admire. I had a nice talk with one of the guest and just before it left I took a few snapshots of the some details.
The lens works great, I really like it. It is sharp and easy to focus. I noticed today that there was a lot of glare in the viewfinder, the sun was bright and high in the sky. The glare prevented me from focusing so I have to buy a better eye cup and see if that helps. There came one with this camera when I bought it but I am used to have the camera hanging on my right shoulder and the larger eye cup was rubbing against my leg and got ripped of, I guess I have to find a solution for that. The sun had not so much affect on the lens itself. The front element is almost 5 cm recessed so it has more or less a build in hood.
I did some more editing in Lightroom so you wont see a clean picture to judge the lens by but in the color photo’s you can see the sharpness. All the pictures where shot at an aperture of f5.6 and an ISO of 200.
I used Lightroom again though I want to use the other programs, but with Lightroom I don’t have to think and when I use Dark table, Capture one or After shot 3 I have to constantly look
Today I used four different lenses to shoot insects. I used a flash for some extra light even though It was a sunny day. I shot at ISO 400 and an aperture of f1, I had to adjust the flash strength when I moved into the shade but for the rest I didn’t change settings. I also used a small and lightweight tripod for some extra stabilization.
Today I used the Mir-1b with a 12mm extension tube to see how it goes as a macro lens. The first thing I have to say is that even with my smallest extension tube you get really close with this lens. This is no problem if you want to take pictures of small flowers, they can not be bigger than 5 or 6 cm if you want to fill the frame but taking pictures of insect is more of a challenge because you have to get so close. The quality of the pictures is not bad but it is not as sharp as my dedicated macro lenses. I like the flower pictures, but even with f11 there is not mush in focus, as expected.
I bought a cheap reflector for my large flash on E-bay. It focuses the light straight forward or down if you want to. There are three reflective surfaces to choose from, i choose the gold one. It was sunny and with the shutter on 180/s and the lens closed down to f8.0 or f11 I didn’t need a flash but It provided some subtle light. I have to use it more but for 6 dollar you can’t go wrong.
The pictures are edited in Dark table, I did some extra sharpening and some levels but not much more.
Today I took the Rikenon 55mm with me on a work trip. I wanted to try the lens out in a normal situation wherein I take a camera with me to take some casual pictures. I am more satisfied with the focusing, I only used the focus assist of the X-t1 and that worked fine, I guess I get used to it. The lens seems to give a 1960/70s kind of vibe with muted colors and low contrast but I want to take some comparison pictures in the future. I used Darktable to edit the RAW files. Besides the standard setting Darktable applies I did the black and white conversion with it and some curves.