Must-have Minolta manual focus (MC/MD/etc) lenses?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by viridari, Nov 6, 2009.

  1. viridari

    viridari Member

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    My old man gave me his old Minolta X-700 and some really forgettable lenses (Albinar!) Since I don't have any decent glass for it and I'd like to shoot some more 35mm, I'm wondering what some of your favorite "must have" lenses are for this system, and maybe post some examples of your favorite photos taken with the lenses that you recommend.

    The only lens I have that looks like it might be worth keeping is a Minolta 50mm f/2 MD (49mm filter). I don't see myself wanting anything much longer than maybe 135mm but I could see wanting some wider glass.

    I shoot a lot of models, portraiture, urban architecture, rural decay, and a little bit of landscapes.
     
  2. d.sge

    d.sge Member

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    The 20 or 21/2.8, 24/2.8 (optionally, the vfc version instead), 28/2.0, 35/1.8, 58/1.2, 85/1.7, 100/2.0, 135/2.0 are all very nice and expensive as compared to their slower cousins.

    The Rokkor Files and Minolta Manual Focus group offer a lot of information, too, if that's of any help.
     
  3. dynachrome

    dynachrome Member

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    Must Have Minolta Manual Focus Lenses

    The X-700 is a beautiful camera. I have four of them. There are many MC and MD lenses to choose from and even some pre-MC lenses. Some of my favorites: 28/2.5 MC, 35/1.8 MC, 50/1.4 MC Rokkor-X, 50/1.7 MC Rokkor-X, 50.1.7 MD, 100/2.5 MC, 200/3.5 MC Rokkor-X, 50/3.5 MD, 50/3.5 MC Celtic, 35/2.8 MD Celtic (1st version), 28/2.8 MD Celtic (1st version). The 28/2.5 MC usually has the tan color and needs the UV light treatment but is quite sharp and suitable for b&w work even without the treatment. The 50/1.7 MD is sharper than the 50/2 MD and sells for very little. Among collectors and users there are two schools of thought on the late MD lenses. Some people like them because they have the latest coating and are typically smaller and lighter. Others prefer the late MC Rokkor-X and early MD Rokkor-X because there is more metal in them and they feel better made. The 100/4 Macro lens and the earlier 100/3.5 Macro have a following. If you have the need for them there are the more expensive and exotic Rokkors like the 35/2.8 shift lens, the 200/2.8, the 50/1.2, I think there was an 85/2.8 Soft Focus lens, the 85/1.7 and later 85/2, the 7.5mm fisheye and others.
     
  4. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Subscriber

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    Vivitar makes some good MD glass. I have a 28 f/2.8 that has been a mainstay in my bag for years. 135, stay away from Celtic lenses. Nothing but trouble for me. Go Rokkor or Makinon (I got one this year and it is SWEET!). 50 f/1.4 will put you back a good bit but well worth having. Zooms are good. I have had a couple 28-70's and I have a great 70-210 Quantaray (another notable off brand MD). But there are uber zooms out there as well. I had a 28-200 a couple of years back and gave it to a friend. Lots of coverage but lots of poundage as well.
     
  5. David Brown

    David Brown Subscriber

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    Any MC or MD lens will work on the X700, but you will want the MD to fully utilize the program functions of the X700.
     
  6. viridari

    viridari Member

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    Great stuff, guys. Thanks.

    I got on Flickr & did some searches for these lenses. The 24mm f/2.8 was consistently producing results that knocked my socks off. That's going to have to be one of the first.
     
  7. Wolfeye

    Wolfeye Subscriber

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    Be prepared to pay

    These lenses are legendary. And priced so. I used to desire one but at the time, they were going for over $200 on eBay and I never had that much free cash.

    Another lens that I adore is the 35-70mm macro zoom. I've had mine since 1985 and it produces very nice results, especially at f8. Then again, all lenses will do nicely at f8. You should give the Albinar lenses a try. Unless they have obvious defect like scratches or fungus or oily aperture blades you should be able to get very nice images with them. Of course, lens snobs will look down upon you, and make rude comments behind your back. Or to your face. Isn't it worth a shot to try out the lenses you have and see if you can't find a diamond in the rough?
     
  8. viridari

    viridari Member

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    I have Albinar 28mm f/2.8 Macro and Kiron 70-210mm f/4 Macro. Neither of them came with end caps. The Kiron had a UV filter but the glass behind the UV filter is filthy so I need to clean that up. I need to get caps for both & clean them.

    I show up at strobist meetups with a TLR while everyone else has the DigiWhizBang 3000's. I even show up at fashion shows with antiquated hardware. I'm used to getting funny looks. :wink: In the end, my standing in the local community is based on the images that I produce, and I'm on solid ground there even if I'm using what can often be described as "ghetto gear" (though I doubt Avedon or Newton would have scoffed at some of my hardware hahahahaha)

    The 24mm/2.8 is pretty affordable now that I check KEH.
     
  9. Chazzy

    Chazzy Member

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    All I know is that I would like to have the MD 85/2, and that they go for more money than I can afford on eBay. The 135s, on the other hand, are very cheap.
     
  10. Excalibur2

    Excalibur2 Member

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    ***The X-700 is a beautiful camera.***

    Indeed, very basic compared to a Canon T90, but the X-700 in one of those cameras that you just like. And I don't know if it's been mentioned but a Tamron adapter is cheap and many of their zooms are good.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 9, 2009
  11. fmajor

    fmajor Member

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    OK, here are my picks - I own/use all of these:

    1) Minolta MD W Rokkor-X 24mm f2.8 (55mm filter - yes it makes a difference). It's really all that it's cracked up to be
    2) Minolta MD W Rokkor 35mm f2.8 (49mm filter) - an amazing walk-around/street lens
    3) Minolta MC Rokkor-X PG 50mm f1.4 (55mm filter) - possibly the sharpest 50mm ever made - 'nuff said there
    4) Minolta MC Rokkor PF 58mm f1.4 (55mm filter) - my fav for b&w 35mm stuff -simply amazing
    5) Minolta MD Tele Rokkor-X 135mm f3.5 (55mm filter) - yep, it's an amazing short tele and super for portraiture

    I don't have the following lenses, but believe/have read/seen images/etc that they are truly magnificent:

    1) Minolta MC Rokkor-X 85mm f1.7 - excellent portrait length...
    2) Minolta MC Rokkor-X 100mm f2.5 - heard its among the sharpest lenses ever made by anyone - again, 'nuff said...
    3) Minolta MD 135mm f2.0 - it's the KING of 135mm's!!!!
    4) Minolta MD 200mm f2.8 - it's the KING of 200mm's!!!! OK, i've read where the 200mm f4 is a serious contender, but still....

    hth,

    fm
     
  12. viridari

    viridari Member

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    Do any of you have Flickr accounts where I can get a sense of your work with these lenses?
     
  13. fmajor

    fmajor Member

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    i do, but only have a few scanned images......

    My flickr ID is fmajor007
     
  14. Excalibur2

    Excalibur2 Member

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  15. viridari

    viridari Member

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    Flickr is saying your photo stream can't be found. :sad:
     
  16. jime11

    jime11 Member

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    ***Minolta MC Rokkor PF 58mm f1.4 (55mm filter) - my fav for b&w 35mm stuff -simply amazing***

    I have the earlier Minolta auto Rokkor pf 58mm 1:1.4 --- is that the same lens without the mc stop down capability?
     
  17. Excalibur2

    Excalibur2 Member

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  18. vitor

    vitor Member

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    You can see some taken with Minolta Rokkor 24mm f/2.8 on Paris.
     
  19. unohuu

    unohuu Member

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    28mm f/2; 58mm f/1.4; 85mm f/1.7; 100mm f/2.5; and 135mm f/2.8.

    I own these all except the 85mm which I regret selling.

    Luke
     
  20. M.A.Longmore

    M.A.Longmore Subscriber

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    The Minolta 85mm. 1.7 lens, Amazing Combination Of Metal & Glass !!!
     
  21. fmajor

    fmajor Member

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    Hey viridari, make sure you do a search on people.... I just searched myself and whaddya know - i found me!!!
     
  22. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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    This is the one I have. It's sharp allright!

    My other Rokkor lenses are the slower f3.5 versions of the 28mm and 135mm. Still nice though.

    I would like an 85mm or a 100mm (or both!).

    I also have a Vivitar Series 1 28mm - 105mm in MC mount which I need to try out.


    Steve.
     
  23. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    So many to choose from so I will mention two that I had that really stood out:
    Minolta MC Rokkor PF 58mm f1.4 (55mm filter)
    Minolta MC Rokkor 21mm f2.8

    Both have been mentioned before several time in this thread.

    Steve