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Thread: zuiko 50 1.4

  1. #1
    msbarnes's Avatar
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    zuiko 50 1.4

    I'm interested in purchasing this lens but how much variance should I expect between the different versions? I know that they had multiple versions, and that the latest (youngest) ones are the most desirable but I'm not sure if this difference is something that I should care about.
    Last edited by msbarnes; 10-01-2011 at 04:09 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  2. #2
    chriscrawfordphoto's Avatar
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    People today are charging what I think are outrageous prices for the early ones that are not as good as the last version, so you might as well get the best one, which is the ones with serial number over 1,100,000
    Chris Crawford
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  3. #3

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    They are all very nice and there is probably more variance in individual copies than between versions. Depending on usage and storage some may have internal haze from smoking or such. Most are over 30 years old now so may require some cleaning.

    I have the "silver nose" version and I love it. It has a Leica-like glow.

    My number one rule is to use a lens hood in daylight and occasionally a polarizing filter. In overcast light, at night or indoors it's hard to detect any difference between the first and last versions.
    - Bill Lynch

  4. #4
    MrclSchprs's Avatar
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    Some say the silver nose is preferred for black and white.

  5. #5
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    There is definitely variation among the various serial numbers of 50mm f1.4 lenses.

    The earliest serials, say starting at 100,000-200,000, had a yellowish coating. These were the so-called silver nose. Some have said that they used thorium glass but I have not had a confirmation of this.

    I have a 5xx,000 serial number that is more clear than the earlier model. But the coating is still a yellowish color. I am not sure if it is MC or not. But when I put it right next to a MC-labeled serial number 8xx,000 lens, it looks different. the later model lens has more of a purplish coating, and appear to have better coating, as the reflections are darker and I can see into the lens easier.

    I dont have a f1.4 over serial number 1,000,000 so i cannot comment.

    So I can honestly say that the later serial numbers of this lens have better coatings, but I am not sure if the design changed.

    here is a good website to reference:
    http://www.datasync.com/~farrar/zuiko.html#normal
    Last edited by darinwc; 10-03-2011 at 12:48 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    Go not to the elves for counsel, for they will say both yes and no.

  6. #6

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    There are 5 versions of the 50mm f1.4 zuiko. As Chris mentioned, the most desirable version is type 5. Multicoated, black edged filter ring, above serial number 1,100,000. John

  7. #7

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    I just won an ebay 50/1.4 in the 782,000 range. Black nose "MC" variant. I'm curious to see the difference.
    - Bill Lynch

  8. #8
    Newt_on_Swings's Avatar
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    I have a black edged 788xxx version, its one of my most favorite lenses. It gets more camera time than any of my 50's.

  9. #9
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    I have 677,027.
    It's a sharp and contrasty lens. I haven't got anything to compare it to. It doesn't flare easily though I do always use a hood with it when flare is likely.
    Last edited by tomalophicon; 10-05-2011 at 03:48 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  10. #10
    jjphoto's Avatar
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    I suspect that it's a bit of a myth that the 1.1M versions are optically superior to any other verions although I haven't had a chance to test that. There will always be sample variations too so I doubt it can ever be either proven or disproven. Even if there where manufacturing changes in the later serial number versions it doesn't always translate to optical differences. I suspect that any of the later (multi coated) versions will perform about equally. I have a fairly late 862xxx serial # lens which I find to be excellent. It's a '1 owner', I bought it new in the mid 80's.

    JJ

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