A Site for Photographers by Photographers

Community > Forums > Canon FD > Canon 55mm f/1.2

Canon 55mm f/1.2

Jon Shumpert , Jan 07, 2013; 05:10 p.m.

I just bought a Canon Ftb at auction and it came with a 55mm f/1.2 lens. The lens is in excellent condition and the glass looks perfect. There is a yellow tint to the front element. I am curious if this is the coating or if it might be yellowing similar to some of the old Pentax Takumars? When looking through the lens there is no noticeable tint, which makes me think it might be the coating. Thanks.


    1   |   2   |   3     Next    Last

Flavio Egoavil , Jan 07, 2013; 05:20 p.m.

That's the coating. If you see no tint through the lens, all is fine. My FD 55/1.2 has yellowing although i feel it is slightly warm.

It is an exxxxxcelllllent lens so care for it !

Flavio Egoavil , Jan 07, 2013; 05:20 p.m.

correction: My FD 55/1.2 SSC has NO yellowing at all

Flavio Egoavil , Jan 07, 2013; 05:23 p.m.

Here is a sample pic with the 55/1.2 (fully open, IIRC) on a Canon A-1:


Mark Pierlot , Jan 07, 2013; 07:54 p.m.

My FD 55/1.2 SSC Aspherical has an amber coating. The Pentax Takumars and earlier FD 35/2 SSC have yellow tinting due to their thoriated elements, which I believe the FD 55mm's do not have. But I am not entirely certain about this.

JDM von Weinberg , Jan 08, 2013; 01:27 p.m.

For the 'thoriated elements" in the Takumars, there are many recommended fixes. most prominently, exposure to natural or artificial UV light, whether in confusion with fungus infestation, I know not.

Another solution where there is a noticeable effect on color is to (1) live with it as a permanent warming filter, or (2) shoot only B&W with it.

But I'm not at all sorry to post, yet again, an example of an extreme solution to the problem:
(I think this is a new address for the item anyhow)


Flavio Egoavil , Jan 08, 2013; 03:38 p.m.

The FD/FL 55/1.2 does not have thoriated or radiactive elements, i'm confident of this. I've "researched" this lens as far as i could on the net. It replaced the old Canon R 58/1.2 which might have had radiactive elements.

Mike Santos , Jan 08, 2013; 04:18 p.m.

Actually the FD 55mm F1.2 replaced the FL 55mm F1.2, which replaced the FL 58mm F1.2, which replaced the R 58mm f1.2. The two 55mms had identical optical formulas as did the two 58mms.
All are well regarded high speed lenses, but are not as good as the FD 55mm F1.2 AL (or aspherical - same lenses just different designations).

None of the 55mm have Thorium elements.

Michael Chuang , Jan 08, 2013; 04:36 p.m.

@JDM: Ah, the freedom of the Antipodes. My OSHA-compliant American eye was shocked, shocked by the lack of protective eyewear on Mr Ayling's part.
Slightly more relevant to the topic, there's a Youtube video floating around showing Geiger counts 60-70 times above background when "wanding" a Canon FL 58mm f/1.2 lens. I have a trio of those, all with apertures stuck wide open for some reason. I wonder if flying with those lenses, or better yet the thoriated Takumars, would result in even more quality time with the TSA.

Flavio Egoavil , Jan 08, 2013; 05:20 p.m.

LOL!! "More quality time with the TSA!"
Yes, the 55mm 1.2 aspherical is a superior lens. In fact, according to a very well written website, it is clearly superior to one of the Leica Noctilux-es and to the Noct-Nikkor.
But the 55/1.2 asph was significantly more expensive. Also, i think the aberrations of the regular 55/1.2 are part of the charm.
I wish i had a Canon 7 with the 50mm f0.95 lens !

    1   |   2   |   3     Next    Last

Back to top

Notify me of Responses