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Old 01-18-2019   #81
Ronald M
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Image quality was not great. I had 12 all bought new. Diaphragm was weak. I dropped more than one screwing on lenses and they fell on my bed from 18 inches.
Diaphragm immediately became sticky from perfect before.

Have Nikons now to mate with Leicas, both digital and film in each, and Nikons are much better and Leicas are far better.

My 35 2.8 fell from my coat pocket to cement and all it got was a small finish imperfection.

Guess Pentax needed a premium line which they came out with for more money, but my kit was sold off by then.
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Old 01-18-2019   #82
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Above may be correct but I am continually amazed at the quality of both cameras and lenses from all major Japanese companies during the 60s and 70s. It seems to me to have been the golden age of cameras.
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Old 01-18-2019   #83
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I agree - these lenses were still built as serious tools (even Takumars, which I have found to be impeccable).

Quote:
Originally Posted by charjohncarter View Post
Above may be correct but I am continually amazed at the quality of both cameras and lenses from all major Japanese companies during the 60s and 70s. It seems to me to have been the golden age of cameras.
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Old 01-18-2019   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronald M View Post
Image quality was not great. I had 12 all bought new. Diaphragm was weak. I dropped more than one screwing on lenses and they fell on my bed from 18 inches.
Diaphragm immediately became sticky from perfect before.

Have Nikons now to mate with Leicas, both digital and film in each, and Nikons are much better and Leicas are far better.

My 35 2.8 fell from my coat pocket to cement and all it got was a small finish imperfection.

Guess Pentax needed a premium line which they came out with for more money, but my kit was sold off by then.
My Nikkor P.C. 85/2 LTM is the most well-constructed lens that I own, but it trades off that solidity for weight. The Takumars are a happy medium between the Nikkor lenses and Olympus, for example, in regard to robust build quality, size, and weight. I love the Nikkors but the 135mm Nikkor pre-Ai f2.8 weighs almost as much as the camera that I mount it on.
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Old 01-18-2019   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greyscale View Post
My Nikkor P.C. 85/2 LTM is the most well-constructed lens that I own, but it trades off that solidity for weight. The Takumars are a happy medium between the Nikkor lenses and Olympus, for example, in regard to robust build quality, size, and weight. I love the Nikkors but the 135mm Nikkor pre-Ai f2.8 weighs almost as much as the camera that I mount it on.
I found the Takumars to be the best constructed of the Japanese lenses, when compared to the Nikkors, Canons, Rokkors and Zuikos that I own.
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Old 01-18-2019   #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xayraa33 View Post
I found the Takumars to be the best constructed of the Japanese lenses, when compared to the Nikkors, Canons, Rokkors and Zuikos that I own.
Agreed. Compared to every F mount Nikkor that I have used, Takumars always feel way smoother and nicer. I have only used these lenses in the last 8 years so they were all far from new, but I find this interesting from a build quality point of view as (in my admittedly limited experience) the Takumar lenses seem to have held up better than the Nikkor lenses. I haven't had the opportunity to use any LTM Nikkor lenses so can't really comment on them.
From what I have used of 60s and 70s Japanese made SLR lenses, the Takumar lenses (excluding the Takumar bayonet lenses) are every bit as well built (or better) than those from Canon, Nikon, Minolta, and Olympus.
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Old 01-18-2019   #87
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Here's one from a Super-Takumar 55/1.8, I think at f/2.8 and near minimum focus distance.



Untitled by Colton Allen, on Flickr
Asahi Pentax SV
Super-Takumar 55/1.8
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Old 01-21-2019   #88
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Pentax 6x7, S-M-C Takumar 6x7 90mm f/2.8 LS, Kodak 400TX at E.I. 200, developed in LegacyPro L110 at 1:31 for 5.5 minutes.


2018.07.04 Roll #170-02659-Pano-positive.jpg
by dourbalistar, on Flickr
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Old 01-22-2019   #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charjohncarter View Post
Above may be correct but I am continually amazed at the quality of both cameras and lenses from all major Japanese companies during the 60s and 70s. It seems to me to have been the golden age of cameras.
Much is made of W. Edwards Demming (and other Americans) contribution to quality assurance and the improvements made in manufacturing in this regard in post-war Japan. (It's an interesting read if unfamiliar...) He is often credited with rise of the Japanese auto sector but I'm sure the focus on quality processes impacted the camera industry.
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Old 01-22-2019   #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dourbalistar View Post
Pentax 6x7, S-M-C Takumar 6x7 90mm f/2.8 LS, Kodak 400TX at E.I. 200, developed in LegacyPro L110 at 1:31 for 5.5 minutes.
Nice shot. I need to take out my 6x7 again. Freezing cold, grey/grey and too much work.
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Old 01-22-2019   #91
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I've become seduced by these fine old cameras and lenses. The two lenses I've had for several years (with a 28/3.5), used with other bodies; the two bodies are new to me. The Spotmatic (SP) on the left was bought for me by my granddaughter recently. I liked the look of it when we saw it in a shop window, but really wanted an SV. But she said, "You like it, don't you and you're gonna have it, Grandad". There was no argument! The SV (right) is one I've been waiting for. I saw it for auction with a starting bid of $5. No-one else bid on it and it's the best bargain I've ever had. Only a couple of years older than the Spottie, I feel it's better made. The film wind is silky smooth and the shutter noticeably quieter. Both will get a CLA soon. (Phone pic.)
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File Type: jpg Two Old Pentaxes copy.jpg (37.3 KB, 2 views)

Last edited by Barry Kirsten : 04-11-2019 at 15:28. Reason: No longer using Flickr.
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Old 01-22-2019   #92
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Beautiful!
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Old 01-22-2019   #93
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Old 01-22-2019   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Kirsten View Post
The SV (right) is one I've been waiting for. I saw it for auction with a starting bid of $5. No-one else bid on it and it's the best bargain I've ever had. Only a couple of years older than the Spottie, I feel it's better made. The film wind is silky smooth and the shutter noticeably quieter.
Agreed. The early Asahi Optical Co SLRs are splendid works of art. Even the lowly Asahiflex IIb from 1954 has a wonderfully smooth shutter release and a build quality reminiscent of the screwmount Leicas.

Cheers!

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Old 01-22-2019   #95
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Photon42 View Post
Nice shot. I need to take out my 6x7 again. Freezing cold, grey/grey and too much work.
Thanks for the kind words! Unfortunately, my winter shooting has slowed, too, even though I'm in sunny California. I did get a panoramic adapter from eBay a little while back, so I might be trying that in the 6x7 soon.
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Old 01-26-2019   #96
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Auto-Takumar 85/1.8

It was like herding cats. by Mike Novak, on Flickr

Auto-Takumar 135/3.5

Wollensak Model 43 by Mike Novak, on Flickr
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Old 01-26-2019   #97
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Pentax 6x7, S-M-C Takumar 6x7 90mm f/2.8 LS, Ultrafine Xtreme 400, developed in LegacyPro L110 at 1:31 for 5.5 minutes.


2018.09.01 Roll #178-02801-Pano-positive.jpg
by dourbalistar, on Flickr
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Old 01-27-2019   #98
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The 50mm f/1.4 eight-element lens (mounted on the black body in photo) is my personal favorite 50mm. It was so good that I never needed a 50mm for my Leica rangefinders and it delayed me for decades before I bought a 50mm for Nikon SLRs.



Pentax Spotmatics by Narsuitus, on Flickr
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Old 01-27-2019   #99
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Decades ago when my first SLR broke (a Miranda Sensorex), I was loaned a Pentax Spotmatic with a 50mm f/1.4 lens. I eventually replaced my Sensorex with a Nikon but for years delayed buying a 50mm Nikon lens because I could not find one that had image quality as good as the Pentax. I discovered that the lens I had been using was the 8-element version of the m42 Asahi 50mm f/1.4 Super Takumar and had a reputation for being one of the best 50mm f/1.4 lenses ever made.

The 7-element Takumar is also a very good lens but is not as good as the 8-element version. One major problem with the 7-element lens is that it has a radioactive lens element that gradually turns yellow.

Other than the image quality, the two ways to tell the two lenses apart are:

a) The 8-element version has the infrared focus mark located to the right of the f/4 mark.

b) The diaphragm switch on the 8-element version is marked with “A” and “M.”

The 7-element version has:

a) The infrared focus mark located to the left of the f/4 mark.

b) The diaphragm switch on the 7-element version marked with “AUTO” and “Manual.”




m42 Pentax Super Takumar 50mm f/1.4 lenses by Narsuitus, on Flickr
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Old 01-27-2019   #100
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Auto-Takumar 85/1.8, Sony A7II by Mike Novak, on Flickr


Auto-Takumar 85/1.8, Sony A7II by Mike Novak, on Flickr
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Old 01-27-2019   #101
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I love my Takumar lenses. I don't have the full range of them, but enough to give me something for a range of shooting conditions. And enough to give a sense of the special qualities of each. Here are a couple of shots with two quite different ones: the butterfly with the needle-sharp Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 28mm f/3.5 and the dove with the buttery bokeh of the Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 135mm f/2.5.

Bench sitter by Noel Parsons, on Flickr

Dove by Noel Parsons, on Flickr
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Old 01-27-2019   #102
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Quote:
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Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 28mm f/2.8
You may be mistaken. If you have a photo of this lens please post it.

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Old 01-27-2019   #103
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I am growing quite fond of the Auto-Takumar 85/1.8.

Sit a spell. by Mike Novak, on Flickr
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Old 01-27-2019   #104
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Old 01-27-2019   #105
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Pentax ESII (unusual chrome finish), 50mm f/1.4 SMC Takumar, Ilford XP2 Super
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Old 01-27-2019   #106
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Old 01-27-2019   #107
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Pentax ESII (black), 50mm f/4.0 SMC Macro Takumar, Fuji Neopan 400CN

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Old 01-27-2019   #108
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Quote:
Originally Posted by narsuitus View Post
Decades ago when my first SLR broke (a Miranda Sensorex), I was loaned a Pentax Spotmatic with a 50mm f/1.4 lens. I eventually replaced my Sensorex with a Nikon but for years delayed buying a 50mm Nikon lens because I could not find one that had image quality as good as the Pentax. I discovered that the lens I had been using was the 8-element version of the m42 Asahi 50mm f/1.4 Super Takumar and had a reputation for being one of the best 50mm f/1.4 lenses ever made.

The 7-element Takumar is also a very good lens but is not as good as the 8-element version. One major problem with the 7-element lens is that it has a radioactive lens element that gradually turns yellow.

Other than the image quality, the two ways to tell the two lenses apart are:

a) The 8-element version has the infrared focus mark located to the right of the f/4 mark.

b) The diaphragm switch on the 8-element version is marked with “A” and “M.”

The 7-element version has:

a) The infrared focus mark located to the left of the f/4 mark.

b) The diaphragm switch on the 7-element version marked with “AUTO” and “Manual.”




m42 Pentax Super Takumar 50mm f/1.4 lenses by Narsuitus, on Flickr

right! generally speaking

however I have a version that got the two signs of an 8 element you mention, I called it "Hybrid,

3 versions of Super Takumar f1.4/50mm ?! by andreas, on Flickr

and verified that it actually is a 7 element version.


The infrared mark is to the left of the f4 mark and there is no A/M on the diaphragm switch, the 2 signs you say make it an 8 element. The shape of the "daimond" and the distance of the infrared focus mark to the f4, though on the other side, concur with those of a 7 element. Actually the red mark is where the mark for the f4 in white should be, looks a bit screwed up Paints look original though.


I assume that this "hybrid" is a transitional piece.
The telling part, if it is a7 or an 8 element, from the outside, is the protruding rear lens of the 8 element:


Hybrid f1.4/50mm Super Takumar? by andreas, on Flickr

and in the inside, of course, it was the 4th lens group which in the case of the 7 element consists of 2 lenses cemented together, in the case of the 8 element it's 3 lenses cemented together which makes it "thicker".
Note also the often mentioned "yellowing" of the 7 element lenses that has not happened with the 8 element version


4th group of 3 Super Takumar f1.4/50mm by andreas, on Flickr

had presented the above earlier here, there are interesting comments: http://forum.mflenses.com/hybrid-3rd...mm-t55617.html
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Old 01-27-2019   #109
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Pentax 645NII, adapted 135mm f/4 SMC Macro Takumar-6x7, Portra 800
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Old 01-27-2019   #110
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Old 01-27-2019   #111
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the predator
by andreas, on Flickr



my cat by andreas, on Flickr, both taken with S-M-C Takumar f1.4/50mm, Pentax *istDs, Bali 2009
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Old 01-27-2019   #112
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How would the Super Takumar compare with the Pentax-M 50/1.4?
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Old 01-27-2019   #113
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It's said that the M line of lenses gave up a little optical quality in exchange for more compact size appropriate for the smaller M bodies.
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Old 01-27-2019   #114
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The Black Mirror by Mike Novak, on Flickr
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Old 01-27-2019   #115
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Regarding the 50mm f/1.4 Takumars, there seems to be opinion that the 8-element version produces better image quality than the 7-element. I'm wondering if anyone here has done comparison testing which bears this out? I'd be curious to see any results.
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Old 01-27-2019   #116
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Kirsten View Post
Regarding the 50mm f/1.4 Takumars, there seems to be opinion that the 8-element version produces better image quality than the 7-element. I'm wondering if anyone here has done comparison testing which bears this out? I'd be curious to see any results.
I have the 7-element model, and I think the radioactive one. Are there two models of non-SMC 7-element 50mm f 1.4 lenses: one radioactive and one not? The Pentax site gives the 8 element a slight edge. But if you read the comments for both (or posssibly 3) of these lenses they are a million miles from scientific testing.
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Old 01-27-2019   #117
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As far as I know, John, there is only one model of the 7-element, available in either Super-Multi-Coated and SMC versions. I think both have the radioactive rear element. The only other m42 50mm f/1.4 lens in the Pentax range is the 8-element, which is not radioactive. I haven't found the radioactive element a disadvantage. In my experience it takes a couple of years for slight increase in yellowing to occur, and a couple of days sun exposure to get rid of it (being careful of course to wrap the lens body in foil to minimise heat build-up).
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Old 01-27-2019   #118
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As far as I know, John, there is only one model of the 7-element, available in either Super-Multi-Coated and SMC versions. I think both have the radioactive rear element. The only other m42 50mm f/1.4 lens in the Pentax range is the 8-element, which is not radioactive. I haven't found the radioactive element a disadvantage. In my experience it takes a couple of years for slight increase in yellowing to occur, and a couple of days sun exposure to get rid of it (being careful of course to wrap the lens body in foil to minimise heat build-up).
Same here, I have two RA lenses and the yellow is easy to get rid of. But to your question about resolving power. Maybe old issues for POP or MODERN mags would have tests. I doubt that they are significantly different.

My Super-Takumar 50mm f1.4 version 2 is sure a wonderful lens. I know the thorium element (rear) was to do some correction that was previously required by two elements. The 8 element was designed to be a Zeiss beater.
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Old 01-27-2019   #119
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typing on my handphone, which i dislike, therefore short: 1.4/50mm lenses made by Pentax:
1. Super Takumar 8 element
( 1.a rare transitional as shown above)
2. Super Takumar 7 element ( and all following are 7 elements)
3.Super-Multi-Coated Takumar ( improved coating, though some Super Taks, that don't say so, already have the new, improved coating later marketed as Super Multi Coating)
4. SMC Takumar (optically same, but rubberized focus ring instead of fully metal)
this marks the end of Takumars, next comes first in Pentax K mount:
5. Pentax SMC, also called Pentax K f1. 4/50
6. Pentax M (somewhat smaller and 30 gr. lighter body. i believe optics have not been changed though!)
7. Pentax A ( has electrical contacts, aperture can be set on camera. if used manually aperture ring much less smooth than all earlier version. optically, of course arguably, best of all because of superior coating? though also for me very early Takumars have something special. these colors of Auto Takumars!
8. Pentax-F 1st autofocus lens
9. Pentax-FA
10. HD Pentax-D FA
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Old 01-27-2019   #120
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For me it's not about resolving power. I have to laugh at myself when I think back to the time when MTF and other optical stats seemed everything and I had to test all my lenses on a lens test chart before I could have confidence in them. In search of lens quality I switched to Contax bodies and had a collection of Zeiss lenses for them. The Zeiss lenses for 35mm were amazing; how much better would Zeiss be in 120 format? So I had to have a Hasselblad, but couldn't afford one, which made me miserable. So I put up with my Kowa lenses, and learned to appreciate them. In more recent years I became aware of work done with old uncoated Elmars and Canon and Nikon glass for RF, and then came upon the Takumars. I realised there's more to image quality than optical performance specs and now I no longer anguish about them or even give them a thought. As kuuan has just mentioned, the Auto Takumars are also special and I look forward to discovering what can be achieved with these old gems, especially as they're so cheap to buy. So getting back to the question of whether the 8-element 50/1.4 produces better images than the 7-element, I wonder if anyone can offer any subjective evidence on the subject?
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