Monday, February 19, 2018

Digital Moments: Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8

Digital Moments: Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8 01
Digital Moments: Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8 02
Digital Moments: Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8 03
Olympus Pen E-P5, Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8

Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8

Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8, View

'Digital moments with the Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8 with images captured with the Olympus E-P5'

It is one of those days when I can spend, literally, only a few minutes with a lens before I had to send it off to a buyer, and in this instance, the lens was the Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8, a vintage from the FED factory in Kharkov, Ukraine.

Commonly found as standard lenses on FED and Zorki rangefinder cameras, the Industar 61 is four elements in three groups construction, and comes with a six-blade iris providing a range of apertures from f/2.8 to f/22. Coming in as a simple, sleek, and sturdy designed, the lens is acknowledged as one of the best normal SLR lenses to come out of the Soviet Union.

Digital Moments: Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8 04

Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8, Top
The lens elements are multicoated, images are surprisingly sharp and contrasty, and with a focal length of 50mm, makes it worth the fit as a standard for normal use.

Though not designated as Macro, the 61 L/Z has a close focus of 30cm, and with its front element located deep in the barrel, you can go without the need of a lens shade, which also makes macro shooting a very functional aspect of the lens.

Due to a very shallow DoF (depth of field), you might find it hard to get the right focus plane for your macro shots with the lens opened wide at f/2.8 (see second and third image above).

With the preset aperture system, however, where you stop the lens down to the correct aperture before taking the shot, you can always go for a deeper DoF with a smaller aperture opening, combined a longer shutter duration for the correct exposure.

Digital Moments: Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8 05

On the E-P5, the lens looks slightly longish, extending out 95mm (including the M42/M4/3 lens adapter) from the lens mount face at its closet focal length, it does not add too much to the weight of the camera, though. Effective focal length is now 100mm. Both the focus and aperture rings are easily manipulated with the thumb and index finger of your left hand.

Olympus Pen E-P5, Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8

As I mentioned earlier, these mixed images were rushed through in about 5 minutes, taken at f/4 for the first three images, and at f/16 for the last two, with the final image especially framed to capture the shooting star effect generated by the lens at its smallest aperture. Images were post-processed on Olympus Viewer 3 (OV3) and print sharpening done on Google NIK Sharpener Pro 3.

The Industar 61 L/Z 50mm f/2.8 is definitely a lens which I will want to have as part of my collection, and the sooner I look one up at the auctions, the better.


Resource Links:
Industar-61-LZ 50mm F2.8
The Industar-61 L/Z (MC) 50 mm f/ 2.8 Lens. Specs. MTF Charts. User Reviews.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Minolta Maxxum 7: Getting The Feel

Minolta Maxxum 7: Getting The Feel 01
Minolta Maxxum 7: Getting The Feel 02
Minolta Maxxum 7: Getting The Feel 03
Minolta Maxxum 7, Maxxum AF 50mm f/1.7

Getting The Feel

'Analog diary - getting the feel of the Minolta Maxxum 7, the best of Minolta's A-mount autofocus film cameras'

There are reviews on the net that recommends the Minolta Maxxum 7 (Alpha 7 in Japan, Dynax 7 in Europe) as perhaps one of the best of Minolta's A-mount autofocus film camera one could get.

While the top-of-the-line Minolta model was the Maxxum 9, the Maxxum 7 does have its ways by being smaller, lighter and more compact, comes with features that are more appealing to the enthusiast, and has an LCD panel fitted to the film back.

Highlights of the Maxxum 7 includes a shutter speed range from 30 seconds to 1/8000 second, plus Bulb, flash sync speed at 1/200th of a second, three metering modes, full PASM shooting modes, exposure compensation, AE lock, continuous shooting at up to four frames per second, unlimited multiple exposures, self-timer, both DX and user-selectable ISO control, and more.

Minolta Maxxum 7: Getting The Feel 04

Minolta Maxxum 7, Maxxum AF 50mm f/1.7
I took the camera down from the display shelf recently, fitted it with a newly acquired Maxxum AF 50mm f/1.7 RS, which has its own share of good reviews and decided to give the camera and lens combo a once-over with a roll of Kodak Gold 200.

Ultimately, my wish was to have the opportunity to test out the Maxxum 7's STF function, which is supposed to be extremely cool. The function mimics the effect of Minolta's 135mm STF 'master bokeh' lens, by taking a sequence of 7 multi-exposed shots of the image with varying aperture opening.

Minolta Maxxum 7: Getting The Feel 05

Are these the shots then? No, they are not. These are just the initial shots when trying the camera out, or, as the title says it, 'Getting The Feel'. As expected, the nominal functions of the Maxxum 7 were easy enough to operate, with the PASM dial, the shutter release, and the control dial for aperture control just within the grasp of your right hand.

Minolta Maxxum 7, Maxxum AF 50mm f/1.7

The camera was easy to get started with, autofocus is fast and accurate, metering seems equally flawless, and as these images show, it looks like the Maxxum AF 50mm f/1.7 RS is also equal to the task. Beyond this scratch on the surface, looks like I still have a long way to go to really understand the full potential of the camera. Let not wait too long for that.



Resource Links:
The Minolta a7 (Maxxum 7, Dynax 7) is the Perfect Film SLR for Shooters Who Want it All
Minolta Maxxum AF 50mm f/1.7 Review

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