normal, mundane, multiplicity manufactured, "rare" = ANY NIKON 50mm lens

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by David Lyga, Feb 26, 2012.

  1. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    I was at the Fort Washington, (PA) Camera Show put on by PHOTORAMA yesterday and bought ten (yes) Nikkormats, excellent condition, except for meter, for about $180 total. That is a good price until you consider that the normal lens needed to make those cameras viable are all too rare.

    I never thought that I would say that a mainstream, normal lens could be rare but that is what I am saying, without equivocation, here. I did manage to buy one 1.8/50 Series E with stiff focus (will take about 2 hours taking it apart to make it sing) for $10 but that was that. The others were about $50 each, even if "with prong".

    Digital 'did it' by allowing the Nikon mount to be adaptable for DSLRS, right? But cannot M42 lenses also be adapted? These are a dime a dozen, for cheap. In fact both M42 and Minolta (PF, MC, MD) are the cheapest lenses around. Are they not also adaptable for digital? Their optical quality is tops.

    My frustration with my naked Nikkormats needs to be placated. As a spoiled brat, who suddenly became "entitled" when digital achieved hegemony (and threw its lowly subjects out to pasture) I need to find a cheap, source of marginal Nikon normals that will not scare me away with price. - David Lyga
     
  2. CGW

    CGW Member

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    Plain old 50/2 Ai lenses are probably the cheapest of the lot--50/2 NAI are cheaper. Bizarrely, I've seen mint 50/1.8E lenses attached to FG/EM/FG-20 bodies go for less than OK condition lenses alone.

    Problem is, on DX Nikon DSLRs, these work out to a nice portrait length of 75mm. Faster 1.8 and 1.4 50s are nice on M4/3 cameras and the newer Sony NEX bodies. Right now, older film bodies sell, as you discovered, for very little relative to lenses unless they're collectible.
     
  3. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    I'll take the 'plain, old cheap ones'. They, for the past year or so, are sparse. But the SRT and Spotmatic and TLB are also cheap and normal lenses readily available. There is truly a 'mystique' about Nikon glass, really unwarranted when compared with the rest. - David Lyga
     
  4. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    I have a nai 50 H with some fungus.
    I shot it and it was fine to my eyes in those particular conditions but who knows.
    If you want it cheap make me an offer.

    On ePrey its cheaper to get one connected to a Nikkormat than to buy one by itself.
     
  5. ath

    ath Member

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    Nikon glass is probably the best solution if you want to put it on a Nikon and the Minoltas - I would love to adapt mine to an EOS3 but it doesn't work, the lens register is too short.
     
  6. erikg

    erikg Member

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    Nikon lenses have more uses than the bodies, as you've noted, they easily adapt to canon eos as well, interesting to dslr video folks especially. Look at the prices for OM lenses these days. What ever are you planning for 10 nikkormats?
     
  7. Aristophanes

    Aristophanes Member

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    Try sourcing older 35mm lenses. On APS-C DSLR's they are closer to the 50mm "normal" and have become rarer than hen's teeth.
     
  8. j-dogg

    j-dogg Subscriber

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    I haven't had a problem finding Nikon 50mm's, I own three of them and paid next to nothing.

    The 50 1.4 pre-AI was 40 (Came with free Nikkormat FT2) my Series E 50 1.8 came with an FG for 20 and I rescued a poor old beaten 50/2 pre-AI for 20 from an antique shop and got it back into shooting shape. I use it regularly.

    The 50 1.4's seem to be commonplace here and rarely sell for more than 50 or 60, I'm actually having a hard time finding Canon EOS glass that isn't off a Rebel or some other junk lens, which makes sense because a lot of the digisnapper high school kids snatch them up.
     
  9. clayne

    clayne Member

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  10. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    There's no shortage of early Ai and pre Ai normal lenses; I don't know where you are looking. The meter problem in many Nikkormats lies in the switch, which is under the advance lever. Remove the lever, drag some rough paper between the contacts of the switch, and seven or eight out of ten will come back to life.
     
  11. erikg

    erikg Member

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    The noct nikkor has taken on a status bordering on insanity. However the OP did pay 18.00 a piece for the cameras so even 50.00 for a decent 1.4 may seem like a lot.
     
  12. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    First: "What am I going to do with 10 Nikkormats" asked erikg. When they are so cheap and in such good cosmetic condition, I buy, regardless of whether I need them. They simply cannot depreciate further than USD 18 each.

    Really, in the past few camera shows in the Philadelphia area there really is a shortage of Nikon normals. I am given hope that they might come back since that is not the case everywhere. Thank you for the comments. - David Lyga
     
  13. erikg

    erikg Member

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    That's cool. I wondered if you might be setting up an film photo boot camp or building 5 stereo cameras or something. Good luck finding some lenses, I'm sure they will turn up if you wait long enough.
     
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  15. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    They are hard to pass up considering how capable a camera they are for the price these days.
     
  16. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    I'd say a Nikkor 50 has to be the most common normal 35mm lens on the planet. Here are the number of hits form an ebay search filtered for: film camera, lens, manual focus, normal, 50

    Nikkor 202
    Canon 186
    Pentax 170
    Rokkor 125
    Yashica 87
    Fujinon 15
    Topcor 9
    Rollei 5
     
  17. John_Nikon_F

    John_Nikon_F Subscriber

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    The usual problem, though, is that the micro 4/3rds crowd bids the Nikkors out of the affordable price range. Before the micro 4/3rds craze started, it was very commonplace to get a 50/2 AI for $35-$45 in decent shape. Now, most places tend to sell them for $80-$90, and that's what they're going for on eBay. Non-AI 50/2's could be had for $25-$30 in good working order. They're now hitting $60-$70 frequently.

    With my last 50, I lucked out. Local shop had a very nice 50/1.4 Nikkor-S NKJ lens for $35. Snapped it up, swapped the AI ring from my beater 50/1.4 Nikkor-S "Nikon" version, and now have a nice lens that'll look good on the F when it gets here and still works fine on the F5 that's currently wearing it, as seen below.

    [​IMG]

    -J
     
  18. clayne

    clayne Member

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    Don't even get me started on the digital kooks. Yet another thing they're trying to take - all the decent MF lenses. And for what? A bunch of shitty bokeh shots?
     
  19. Moopheus

    Moopheus Subscriber

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    Clearly it would be better if the digital folks couldn't use these lenses, then most of them would end up in the corners of closets or in the dump. Personally, I've yet to actually see someone using a digital camera with a vintage lens, but someone must be doing it, or they wouldn't be selling those adapters. And they're still pretty cheap compared to new lenses.
     
  20. EKDobbs

    EKDobbs Member

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    Videographers, mostly. DSLRs can't autofocus worth a damn during live video, so people would rather get the nice MF lenses. I'd know, I use my film lenses for video when they're not being used for film. You wouldn't believe how many (digital) canon people own a whole collection of Nikon MF lenses.
     
  21. John Austin

    John Austin Member

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  22. Moopheus

    Moopheus Subscriber

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    I recall seeing, in another context, some Canon users complaining they couldn't use their older, pre-EOS lenses with newer Canon gear; not being a Canon user I don't know how true this is. Maybe it is easier to use Nikon stuff?
     
  23. kitanikon

    kitanikon Member

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    Really people!...my Nikkors live on my Canon dSLRs....50/1.4 (and F2 too), 85/1.8-K, 105/2.5AIS, 135/2.8 (AI'd Q.C and later compact "K"), 180/2.8 ED, 200/4-Q AI'd, and 200/4AIS, and 300/4.5-H

    50/1.4AIS Nikkor 100% crop off my 40D
    [​IMG]

    Here's one....my old/long gone $50 beater....85/1.8 Nikkor-H (since replaced by an AI'd 85/1.8)...the above 50 was $60 with a working FE
    [​IMG]

    Here's another 85/1.8 Nikkor-H I had (owned between the beater above and my latest 85-K)
    Note the 3 holes that were drilled for a post/stem to "pull-focus" during a video shot....
    [​IMG]

    My career began with MF Nikkor primes and the whole artistic process/principle of ME focusing is behind my preference for using the lenses....just sayin'.......
     
  24. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    I use em on Canon as well but they are mostly used on my Nikkormat, F, F2 and FM2n.

    They certainly don't sit in any closets.
     
  25. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    Glad I got all my 6006 lenses cheap before that craze started.
     
  26. flatulent1

    flatulent1 Subscriber

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    The film register distance difference between FD and EOS makes it impossible to use FD lenses on EOS without an adapter + the usual mediocre optical element to allow infinity focus. Canon made one for looooong tele lenses when they made the switch, but they're rare and expensive. I'm using Zeiss C/Y lenses on EOS, because I can. :smile: Kinda wish I'd kept my Nikon lenses, though.