26 February 2015

big lenses can be fun too..

Now I've done it.

My brother was trying to offload some old Minolta MC/MD/SRT-era glass a year or two ago, and I said I'd try to help.  The only value such items have any more is for the mirrorless crowd - hey that's me now!  I actually tried them with my micro|43 gear but it wasn't quite for me.  Perhaps with the NX300 I'd reconsider?  So  today I picked up a $12 MD:NX adapter, so at the very least we'll add the Rokkor 50/1.4 for its possibilities in extra-low light.  And of course I'll have to haggle with my brother about the price! :^)

This purchase opened the door to another option: finding a good 200mm lens.  The Pentax smc-M200/4 is a nice lens to own, I've done so at least twice.. but it's fairly heavy (by my low standards!) and not as well liked as slightly smaller classic Pentax primes.  Wandering into Minolta mount I found several bargains at 200mm - but these were heavier still.  One fun option is the MD 250mm f/5.6 mirror lens, but at around $1k it's expensive, rare and therefore out of reach.

from e-bay listing
But hmm, what is this? A no-name, Minolta-mount 200mm f/3.3, $36 shipped.

Curious.  Where can I learn more about it?

Well, very few places in fact.  Many folks make f/2.8, 3.5 and 4.0 versions but f/3.3 is a real oddball.  Searching the web in vain I finally hit this mini-review of a Hanimar 200mm f/3.3 with the cool green stripe, 67mm filter size and all the rest.  Unlike the off-brand f/3.5s I read about this one showed some promise - but it was one massive beast!  I had a line on a Soligor 200/2.8 in Pentax mount a few months back but for $100 and more; this was getting closer to my reach financially if not in other ways.  No tripod mount, sadly - but the Rexatar looks almost new, quite stylish, and frees up the JCPenney 80-200mm f/3.5 for someone else to stick on a shelf and admire.

Sold!  Oops.

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