Lenses with the aperture ring at the front?

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by svenkarma, Aug 31, 2016.

  1. svenkarma

    svenkarma Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 5, 2013
    mark evans
    The two adapted lenses I've been using most this year are a Jupiter8 50/2 on a rangefinder and an Olympus PenF 38/1.8 on the GX7, both of which have their aperture rings at the front of the lens.

    Now I've gotten used to it, I actually prefer the ergonomics of having the aperture ring at the front to the more usual arrangement, muscle memory taking care of the occasional danger of stray hand bit in photo.

    Was it just a rangefinder or half-frame thing? Are there any SLR lenses with this set-up?
  2. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    Many Olympus OM lenses have rings at the front.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. barry13

    barry13 Super Moderator; Photon Wrangler Subscribing Member

    Mar 7, 2014
    Southern California
    Some of the older Rokkor or pre-Rokkor Minolta's have it towards the front.
  4. gnarlydog australia

    gnarlydog australia Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Feb 23, 2015
    Brisbane, Australia
    Damiano Visocnik
    some Russian Helios 44 (brilliant lens) have the aperture ring up front, de-clicked too (not indexed)
  5. EdH

    EdH Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Jul 14, 2014
    Devon, UK
    My Jupiter 11 has it's aperture rings (it's a preset lens) at the front, and also my Industar-50. Like the Helios 44 they're clickless too.
  6. vm666

    vm666 Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    Jan 19, 2013
    All the OM lenses had the aperture ring on the front. IIRC, Olympus said at the time that this allowed them to build more compact lenses. This may well be true, the OM system was more compact than other full frame systems.

    There is at least one inconvenient: some companies like Minolta displayed the aperture in the viewfinder (at least on the X700, maybe other bodies). This trick only works when you have the ring on the back.

    Now that you say it, I realise that Leica M lenses have the ring on the front. Is this for compactness?
  7. rbelyell

    rbelyell Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 15, 2013
    Mountains of NY
    the pentax digital fa ltd series has them.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016
  8. eteless

    eteless Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 20, 2014
    Not all Olympus lenses have it at the front, many of the zooms have it closer to the mount. The advantage gained was that they could put the shutter speed dial around the lens mount (and it wouldn't get confused with aperture), this allowed the body to be more compact.
  9. stratokaster

    stratokaster Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 4, 2011
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    Pentax DA lenses, included Limiteds, don't have aperture rings at all.
  10. rbelyell

    rbelyell Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 15, 2013
    Mountains of NY
    Im sorry, i meant FA Ltd, 31, 43 and 77mm all with aperture rings. correction made., thanks.
  11. dwig

    dwig Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 26, 2010
    Key West FL
    Many, many camera manufacturer's lenses had the f/stop ring in the front long long ago. It was originally easier to do it that way as the ring was directly connected to the iris and the optical system moved as a unit, along with the iris, as it was focused. Moving the f/stop ring in tandem to the iris made for simple mechanics. Auto-diaphram and later meter coupling changed all that for SLRs. Now the iris was controlled by the body and the f/stop ring was merely a "preset" ring setting a limit on the body's control range. Many manufacturers found they preferred placing the f/stop ring nearest the body as it made the meter coupling simpler. The advent of zooms and internal focusing only reinforced the mechanical advantages to the rearward placement.

    Olympus was one of the few that stuck with the front placement. The designer had a "Leica fetish" it would seem and he retained an f/stop ring position similar to the current Leicas. Throughout the '60s there was much talk about the desire to have an SLR that would return to the size of an RF. With the Pen and OM series, Yoshihisa Maitani achieved this goal for the most part (OM's prism peak is extends past the height of a Leica M and the hinge extends wider but otherwise an OM with 50mm f/1.8 matches the height, width, and depth of an M4/3/2 with a 50mm f/2 Summicron).
    • Informative Informative x 3
    • Like Like x 1
  12. Petermfiore

    Petermfiore Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 1, 2015
    Canon FL series lenses have the aperture ring at the front...

    • Like Like x 1
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.