Need recommendation for a manual prime lens for portraits etc.

Iconindustries

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I'm going to vouch for the MD Rokkor lenses. The 50mm 1.4 is razor sharp and the 45mm 2 is brilliantly fast to focus. It snaps to focus faster than any other manual focus lenses I've used.

50mm 1.4 Rokkor

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Burning Tendrils by iconindustries, on Flickr


45mm 2 Rokkor

View attachment 404760P1160666 by iconindustries, on Flickr
 

HarryS

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Thank you so much for the clarification.

Having never used this setup, do you set the lens to max while focusing, then stop down and take the shot--letting the camera decide at Aperture priority what the Shutter Speed should be?
You can program one of your EPM2 buttons for magnification. Touch the button, camera goes into magnify mode, and if the LCD is viewable, focus the lens. It works best at ful aperture, so that is where I usually focus. Then I dial the aperture ring back to the desired setting. Trip shutter in A or P mode, Camera sets the proper shutter speed.In my experience, poorer lenses show crappy images under focus. Good lenses stay crisper.

An alternate available on the EMP2 is to use the key line art filter to simulate focus peaking. I have a button set for this on my EPL5 and EM5, but found it less useful than magnify. It's more useful for something like a fisheye.

Some photographers grew up with manual focus. so they have no problems going back to it on a current camera. Others can learn it, but don't like it. A few cannot be bothered to master it. As you don't know where you fit here, there's no reason to toss a lot of money into your first, and maybe last manual lens.


.
 

pellicle

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Hi

... I would love to get something like the E-M10 with EVF, I am using the E-PM2 as an entry into the m4/3 system, also because the E-M10 is currently not in my budget :smile:
consider a used GH1 which will cost less and be at least its equal ... with some advantages, such as its multi format sensor, which works to capture wider images when in 3:2 or 16:9
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blog post with more details
http://cjeastwd.blogspot.com/2011/03/gh1-formats-and-raw-pixels.html
 

mattia

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With the sharpness and size of the 45/1.8 I don't see much value in legacy 50's on a MFT body. Remember the E-PM2 has a sensor that's pretty much identical to the E-M10, so image quality gains are easier to get from a lens (there are other advantages to the E-M10, but the lens will provide a greater benefit immediately). I have plenty of legazy 50's, and they're fun, but they can't compete with the Oly 45/1.8 - particularly at the price point here in europe (around 250-260 euros).
 
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With the sharpness and size of the 45/1.8 I don't see much value in legacy 50's on a MFT body. Remember the E-PM2 has a sensor that's pretty much identical to the E-M10, so image quality gains are easier to get from a lens (there are other advantages to the E-M10, but the lens will provide a greater benefit immediately). I have plenty of legazy 50's, and they're fun, but they can't compete with the Oly 45/1.8 - particularly at the price point here in europe (around 250-260 euros).
The issue is cost and the OP is looking to buy something sub $100 and use a sub $50 adapter.
 

yorik

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One thing that has been hinted at here - focusing will be quite slow at first. I only mention this because you (the OP) mentioned `.. kids at play' as one of your target subjects. I would say
that your best bet for that is prefocus on a spot you expect them to pass through and wait for the shot. A smaller aperture (for more depth of field) is useful for these shots too.
 

jhumroo

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I'm going to vouch for the MD Rokkor lenses. The 50mm 1.4 is razor sharp and the 45mm 2 is brilliantly fast to focus. It snaps to focus faster than any other manual focus lenses I've used.

50mm 1.4 Rokkor

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Burning Tendrils by iconindustries, on Flickr


45mm 2 Rokkor

View attachment 404792P1160666 by iconindustries, on Flickr
Wow. These are gorgeous! I used To shoot Minolta film cameras and I think at onetime i owned the 50mm Rokkor. Unfortunately I sold it when I went digital:mad:

What's different about the Rokkor 45mm f2 to make it fast focussing?

May need to start looking for one again :smile:
 

jhumroo

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jhumroo

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You can program one of your EPM2 buttons for magnification. Touch the button, camera goes into magnify mode, and if the LCD is viewable, focus the lens. It works best at ful aperture, so that is where I usually focus. Then I dial the aperture ring back to the desired setting. Trip shutter in A or P mode, Camera sets the proper shutter speed.In my experience, poorer lenses show crappy images under focus. Good lenses stay crisper.

An alternate available on the EMP2 is to use the key line art filter to simulate focus peaking. I have a button set for this on my EPL5 and EM5, but found it less useful than magnify. It's more useful for something like a fisheye.

Some photographers grew up with manual focus. so they have no problems going back to it on a current camera. Others can learn it, but don't like it. A few cannot be bothered to master it. As you don't know where you fit here, there's no reason to toss a lot of money into your first, and maybe last manual lens.
.
I come from shooting film using MF on Minolta SLRs, but it's been a while since I switched over to digital. However, as long as my eyes can handle it, I don't mind MF with legacy lenses.
 

Klorenzo

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Can you comment on stopping down; I've read that on some forums and don't quite understand the need to do that. Is it not possible to shoot these adapted lenses at the maximum aperture?
Almost all lenses get more sharpness and contrast when stopped down by a couple of stops. You can use it wide open and be happy with the result but the lens is not at its best. Only the best lenses are already good wide open and the gain is so small that it is not something to worry about.

This is even more true with fast adapted lenses: the lens throws in a lot of light that does not fall on the smaller sensor and this extra light bounces around washing out the picture. The amount of this effect depends on the specific lens but stopping down helps.
I have a Nikon Ais 50/1.4 and wide open is quite soft and blurred, could be even great for dreamy portraits but not for anything. At f/2 gains a lot and at 2.8 is very good with only a small improvement at f/4. The Nikon 50/1.8 series E has almost the same performance for the same apertures.
 

Iconindustries

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Wow. These are gorgeous! I used To shoot Minolta film cameras and I think at onetime i owned the 50mm Rokkor. Unfortunately I sold it when I went digital:mad:

What's different about the Rokkor 45mm f2 to make it fast focussing?

May need to start looking for one again :smile:
It's crazy how the value of the older manual lenses went up when mirrorless cameras enabled them to be used again. I've noticed since starting years ago with the panasonic GF1 and back then scouring ebay brought in bargains. Now it takes a lot more to pick up a bargain. There used to be a nice gentleman on the forum and he gifted me his 45mm Rokkor, all I had to pay was postage to Australia. I've had both 1.4 and 1.7 50mm Rokkors and both have gone but the 45 has remained. Firstly because I found the focal length for portraits more natural than the extra 5mm and as stated the focusing. When I say fast focus I mean it doesn't take much ring movement to bring it to focus. I guess about a 10mm latitude from far to near... I'll have to double check that.
 

EdH

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My first adapted lens was a Konica 40mm f1.8 left over from my film days. It's a pancake lens, which keeps the overall length of lens+adapter down, and I've always found it very easy to focus. Once I had the adapter I found a Konica 50mm f1.7 which is lovely to use and very sharp. Both are pretty cheap.

Also worth a try is the Helios 44-2. It's a Russian 58mm f2.0 lens that can be found really very cheaply and can take a great portrait. It's a preset lens which I find makes it very easy to focus wide open and then stop down to your desired aperture for shooting. It has interesting swirly bokeh wide open too. It's M42 fit, so once you have the adapter there are plenty of other interesting and affordable M42 lenses to choose from.

Most of these adapted lenses are a bit 'glowy' or dreamy wide open and really benefit from being stopped down a notch or two.

I do have the Olympus OM 50mm f1.8, and it's a great lens, but I haven't yet bought another OM lens. The 50mm f1.8 can be found very cheaply but I've found that the other Olympus OM lenses are a fair bit pricier and so the adapter doesn't get as much use.

As suggested before, the adapted lens showcases on this site are a great resource when researching what you're after.

Here's a shot with the Konica 40mm f1.8

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P7130512 by Ed Herridge, on Flickr
 

Peakbagr

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How would an Olympus 50mm f/1.4 lens that I used with my old OM-1 film camera work as a portrait lens with an Olympus OMD E-1 ? Would it require adaptor ( suggestions), and I suppose manual focus. the 50mm was a fantastic lens paired up with my OM-1 and OM-3 and Kodachrome 25 film.
 
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How would an Olympus 50mm f/1.4 lens that I used with my old OM-1 film camera work as a portrait lens with an Olympus OMD E-1 ? Would it require adaptor ( suggestions), and I suppose manual focus. the 50mm was a fantastic lens paired up with my OM-1 and OM-3 and Kodachrome 25 film.
Yes, you would need an adapter. They can be found pretty cheap. It would be manual focus only. Check out the Showcase section for examples of just about any legacy lens on micro four-thirds.
 
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The OP might also look at shopgoodwill.com. Their shipping costs are often about 2X higher than what an ebay seller might charge, but then the prices are often 1/3 lower. Here's an OM 50 that expires tomorrow, with reasonable shipping charges. It's where I got my Canon and Konica 50mm's for $5.

http://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Olympus-OM-System-Suiko-Lens-19592688.html
You effectively killed my lunch hour. Anyone interested in legacy lenses should not only check out the Lens and accessories category but the Film Cameras and Vintage Cameras sections. Lots of old "nifty fifites" there going for not too much.

I know where to go when my GAS flares up.
 

jhumroo

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Is there anything else that needs to be set in the camera (menus) besides setting the shooting mode to Aperture priority, when using these legacy lenses?
 

jhumroo

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Thanks for the clarification. I was able to snag a 45mm Rokkor f2 on ebay. Hopefully it's in good shape (pictures of the lens looked okay), so I'm looking forward to trying it out.
 
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