Focal Lenght: 52mm
Max Apeture: 1.4
Lens Mount: Konica FP
Min. Focus: 0.6 mm
Filter Size: 55mm
Weight: 290 (?)
This was a strange one. I travelled abroad and ended up selling a few lenses – opting in for store credit instead of cash. This lens caught my eye. Why did it say Hexanon? Is Konishiroku the old name for Konica? I decided to get it. We talked with the store clerk and he shared that finding an adapter was extremelly hard. He was both right and wrong, it turned out.
The Konica FP lens mount is on the rare side, adapters aren’t massed produced and there aren’t that many lenses using it. Information online is somewhat scarce on the lens itself.
I ended up ordering one custom made, which (non-destructively) changes the lens mount to m39, so I could then adapt it to the Sony a7. It’s lucky I live in a smaller country, where this is possible, without costing an arm and a leg.
The lens handles well, it has a very short (and smooth) focus throw. It’s very solid and made of metal.
It has a rather large filter size and I had to dig out a brandless hood (55mm if sources online are correct)
The aperture ring on my copy is somewhat stiff, with switching from 1.4 to 2 very hard.
While shooting this lens, I realized it represents the idea behind my website very well. The challenge I set to myself is to use lenses that have imperfections or limitations, and work with them and get images I like. This lens challenged me in a lot of ways.
Sharpness: You get a some in the center. After you stop down to 2.8. The corners never improve a ton, they’re always soft and fuzzy. This would work really well for portraits but…
With the aberations and bokeh combined you get a very interesting effect, it’s like the corners are moving towards the viewer. Bokeh can be very distracting and it’s almost always busy. If you step down to f4, focus in the center is good for portraits, but the overall effect isn’t that flattering. (or maybe I just couldn’t get it to work)
Flare is a big problem, even with the lens hood, any sky in the image can cause problems. If you’re looking for a washed out effect, it works, but there is a point where you don’t want a specific trick in all of your photos.
All of that combined, this lens really pushed me. Composition was a challenge with only a small center area in focus. (I realized how much I depend on the rule of thirds). Focusing the lens wide open was an experience, with the image so soft, you’re not even sure if you nailed focus. (even with focus peaking)
This lens was a very valueble and interesting experience, but my advice is: don’t get it. Adapting it is hard and it has a lot of different optical imperfections, which make it very niche in usage as well. (Just get a Helios for some weird and interesting bokeh if you want to experiment with a vintage lens for portraits?)