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Is the Novoflex M42 adapter worth it?

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by Weasel_Loader, Jul 7, 2012.

  1. Weasel_Loader

    Weasel_Loader Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 6, 2012
    Since the M42 to M4/3 adapter seems like such a simple piece, I'm wondering if the Novoflex is worth the extra expense. I've got a SMC Takumar 50/1.4 on the way and looking for a good quality adapter. Can anyone share experiences with the different M42 adapters?
  2. harrysue

    harrysue Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 12, 2011
    My Supertaks only cost me $30 for a 35 f3.5, 50 f2, and 135 f3.5 altogether (in 2006). Not going to spend more than that for adapters. Quality varies. I own three M42 adapters. All focus past infinity because they are on the short side. Using the tak 135, one is just off while the other two indicate 30 meters. There is a fair amount of travel between 30M and infinity on a Tak 135mm. I don't use the distance scales so this is not an issue. I do wonder if the lenses loses much resolution quality when focused with a register distance that is way off.

    Fit can vary too, One of the above is loose on the EPL1, while the other two are reasonably tight. The loose one is a one piece design, machined from a single piece of metal. Any M42 lens mounted on it has the aperture display about 60 degrees off of center. Bad design. The other two are two piece designs, where a threaded insert can be rotated and locked with set screws so the lens will be aligned to the body. I think the first type is no longer sold. I like to think that crappy poor fitting adapters get screened out by the middlemen selling them on ebay, but more and more new sellers pop up. I think the ebay prices have dropped about 30-40% because of the new sellers coming in with cheaper product. By the way, these three adapters cost $12, $18, and $12 shipped. I bought the $18 one to replace the loose $12 unit, and bought the last one for parts for a d-i-y project.

    I also own other cheap adapters and they can all be described as acceptable fit and on the short side, focusing past infinity. I took one and shimmed it to fit what I thought was perfect infinity focus for my FD 135mm, but that was too long to work with the FD 50mm.
  3. KVG

    KVG Banned User

    May 10, 2011
    yyc(Calgary, AB)
    Kelly Gibbons
    I'm cheap and I buy ebay specials and they have always worked great.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Jorg.S

    Jorg.S Mu-43 Regular

    I bought a cheap one on Amazon made by Rainbow imaging and it works great although they are somewhat large and heavy to me.
    I think buying expensive on the m42 adapter is a waste since it is very simple in design and operation.
  5. ryanlogic

    ryanlogic Mu-43 Veteran

    May 23, 2012
    Antakya, Turkey
    So YOU'RE the one who outbid me!!!

    Haha, just kidding.. Can't wait to see some pictures from it.
  6. Weasel_Loader

    Weasel_Loader Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 6, 2012
    Didn't get mine on ebay. Got it through KEH. Paid through the nose for it, but should be a very clean copy.
  7. ryanlogic

    ryanlogic Mu-43 Veteran

    May 23, 2012
    Antakya, Turkey
    I was just kidding, I'd be very interested to see pictures of it when it comes.

    BGN,EX,or EX+?
  8. Weasel_Loader

    Weasel_Loader Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 6, 2012
    I went with an EX+. Should have it on Thursday. I guess I need to decide on an adapter now and order it. :cool: 
  9. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    I've got several adapters and I've been pretty satisfied with the eBay cheapies. As you mentioned, the M42 adapters are really pretty basic, so particularly for them, I'm not sure if I'd pay the extra price for Novoflex.

    But really it depends on your tolerance for potentially shoddy craftsmanship and how much you value your lenses and your images (if you're booking paid gigs at $100/hr. then the Novoflex is a no brainer).

    I just ordered an M42 adapter from a Hong Kong seller on eBay for less than $13 to mount a Helios 44 I just picked up for next to nothing. When it arrives, I'll be happy to give you a report.
  10. Weasel_Loader

    Weasel_Loader Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 6, 2012
    I ended up getting the FOTGA M42 to M4/3 adapter. Works great at only $7.25. So glad I didn't spend the money on a Novoflex. Will have to see how it holds up over time though.

    I'll post some photos tomorrow of my 50mm SMC Takumar f/1.4 and Tele-Lentar 135mm f/2.8 mounted to the OM-D. These legacy lenses are really, really nice for the price. If you can live with manual focus, you can save quite a bit of money!!!
  11. ryanlogic

    ryanlogic Mu-43 Veteran

    May 23, 2012
    Antakya, Turkey
    Yo, I wanna see the lens!!!!
  12. Weasel_Loader

    Weasel_Loader Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 6, 2012
    Here you go. I'll try to take some better photos of just the lens and adapter.

    NEX-5    ---    18mm    f/4.5    1/1000s    ISO 200

    NEX-5    ---    18mm    f/4.5    1/640s    ISO 200

    NEX-5    ---    18mm    f/4.5    1/1250s    ISO 200
  13. ryanlogic

    ryanlogic Mu-43 Veteran

    May 23, 2012
    Antakya, Turkey
    Thanks, it looks clean from here!

    Is the lens yellowed??

    do you have any pictures taken with it?
  14. Weasel_Loader

    Weasel_Loader Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 6, 2012
    No yellow on the lens. I'll snap some tonight after work when I get home.
  15. brutto

    brutto Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    Feb 17, 2011
    If you have a quality lens, like good stuff and have deep pockets, Novoflex adapters are superb. I've tried cheapos (ebay UKP10), middling (Metabones UKP60) and ridiculously costly (Novoflex UKP£120) - the Novos were by far the best quality and most satisfying to use.
  16. chasm

    chasm Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 2, 2010
    I have two Novoflex adaptors - Minolta MD, which I also use for my M42 lenses with the appropriate ring, and Nikon - and a SRB Contax/Yashica one.

    The Novoflex adaptors are superb and will most probably outlast me.

    The SRB one: OK, it was 1/3 of the price of the equivalent Novoflex, and I can't complain as to the fit, but it's pretty ugly and I wonder if the interior finish (not matte enough?) is contributing to the strong purple fringing that I'm getting with my otherwise superb Planar 50mm f1.7 T* in certain conditions. Thank heavens for Lightroom 4!
    • Informative Informative x 1
  17. Weasel_Loader

    Weasel_Loader Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 6, 2012
    Looking at the lens in better light, it does indeed have a slight yellow tint.

    NEX-5    ---    55mm    f/5.6    1/500s    ISO 200

    NEX-5    ---    55mm    f/5.6    1/1250s    ISO 200

    FOTGA M42-M4/3 adapter. Pretty happy with it and seems to be built good enough. These M42 adapters are very simple. Most other adapters, I probably would have splurged for a Novoflex version. I saved about $150 bucks going with this one. :biggrin:

    NEX-5    ---    55mm    f/5.6    1/1000s    ISO 200

    NEX-5    ---    55mm    f/8.0    1/125s    ISO 200

    All images are straight from camera using the SMC Takumar 50mm f/1.4. Pardon the boring photos. Didn't really have time to go find good subject matter. Just a sample of what the lens can do.

    E-M5    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/250s    ISO 200

    E-M5    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/200s    ISO 200

    f/1.4 Don't really care for the bokeh on this one.
    E-M5    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/3200s    ISO 200

    E-M5    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/2500s    ISO 200

    E-M5    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/100s    ISO 200
    • Like Like x 1
  18. spangler

    spangler Mu-43 Rookie

    Aug 12, 2011
    Buckinghamshire UK
    Andrew Heelis
    I wanted an adaptor to use an old (35 years) Vivitar 50mm f2.8 macro lens with my GF1. It is a M42 mount. In the end I bought a Pk to M4/3 adaptor from a UK supplier and use the lens with an "official" Pentax screw to bayonet converter. It works very well indeed though I did find it beneficial to machine a hole in the rear of the Vivitar lens to locate the locking pin of the Pk mount thus preventing the screw mount inadvertently unscrewing whilst focusing. I have the additional benefit of being able to use my old Pk bayonet lenses as well.

  19. Picked up a Novoflex M42 to M43 adapter off eBay for about $19.50. I do like the solid nature of the adapter and that it comes in a nice case. Now I need to get some M42 lenses to try it out.
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