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Super-Takumar 35mm f2,0 - Big Round One

CE Nelson , May 21, 2005; 10:15 p.m.

You guys and your Super-Takumar threads - well, you got me to thinking: I've been so busy in the past year with my forays into medium format gear & rangefinders that I have neglected the wonderful old 35mm SLR bits and pieces I have laying around.

Well poo on that.

Wifey awoke this morning craving a walk downtown at the local outdoor market. As I am currently at war with my job and did not go in this morning, I obliged her. Took five minutes to re-foam the back on my 1968 Chinon CS body, bolted my Super-Takumar 35/f2 on the front of that sucka, and off we went. I was in a foul mood, really sick of work shenanigans, figured my photos were gonna suck, too, but what the hey.

Hey what?

Now, I don't know WHY the Super-Takumar is so "in". I paid $60 for mine on impulse... I mean, there it was in the case, a giant, and I couldn't resist it. So I know WHY it is "in" to ME, but as for technical details, pishaw! Perhaps somebody can explain it to me, or perhaps I can stop being lazy and Google it.

Perhaps.

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CE Nelson , May 21, 2005; 10:24 p.m.

I should add that this specific camera body is a world traveler. It was sent to me by a gentleman who put an ad on one of the more-or-less DOA camera boards - FREE TO GOOD HOME. How did I find it? I typed "free camera to good home" into Google's search form. TADA!

The camera was purchased in a Navy PX during the Viet Nam conflict. The base was located in Bien Thien or something like that. After the tour in Viet Nam, the cameraman took his Chinon CS and went to Korea where he and the Chinon did time as photojournalists. More traveling came after that stint.

It has been a good camera, and when I hear people bad-mouth old Chinon gear (with exception of the one model... memo somethign or other) I remind them that this camera has stood the test of years of hard living, and continues to pull duty. Bulb to 1000th, metal curtains, M42 - Man, if there were only a place for a fuse I bet it could serve as a fricken mortar in time of war.

I had a GAF L-CS - a rebadged Chinon CS - which I refoamed and donated just the other day. Time may bring me regret for letting it go, but it went to a good soul. If you see one of these, it will probably be going for cheap - grab one, I say. Good to have in a pinch.

David M , May 22, 2005; 12:01 a.m.

The Chinon CS is one of the best screw mount SLRs, the Chinon lenses are also very good, just about as good as the Takumars; the later ones are also multi-coated. I'm also a big fan of the 35mm focal length.

Peter Evans , May 22, 2005; 01:01 a.m.

I've read that the Chinon 45/2.8 "pancake" is excellent. I think it's K-mount, though perhaps there's M42 as well.

CE Nelson , May 22, 2005; 08:39 p.m.

I don't know about the pancake, but I do have the Chinon 135/2,8 and it is a super performer.

On a side note, I'm getting the hang of re-foaming these old bodies. I did my Minolta XG1 today and the light leaks are banished. Excellent news as I picked up that not-yet-a-classic body in order to shoot through Rokkor-X lenses. And to that end, today I ran into a sweet 58mm 1,2 Rokkor-X MD, something I was not aware of. My Super-Takumar is a pretty big baby, but this 58mm will give it a run for the title. Now I just need to figure out how to finagle it from the lab for a decent price.

CE Nelson , May 23, 2005; 07:34 a.m.

One other thing - I could really use a better focusing screen for the CS. If any of you reading this thread know if it's even possible to have a brightscreen or split-image screen put in, let me know here or via e-mail. Better still if you know a source for same or the man who can do it.

Thanks, Craig

Graham Serretta , May 23, 2005; 09:13 a.m.

Craig - your work shenannegans are our gain - thanks for sharing these. That f2/35 Super Tak is not easy to find out there - well done on snagging it. It has "vertigo" bokeh, tho'!

We all need to just say "to 'ell with them" now and again, and just do our own thing. Refreshes the soul.

CE Nelson , May 23, 2005; 09:26 a.m.

Yeh, it does have some uglier bokeh. Not at like my MD Rokkor-X 50;1.4 as below - the Rokkor-X is a gem.


MD Rokkor-X 50mm|f1,4 - wide open

Nicolas Douez , May 23, 2005; 04:44 p.m.

Craig, too bad you focused on the hair at the rear of the head, not on the eyes - well the eyes were hidden so you're forgiven but the sunglasses frame would have been great as a focusing target :-)

50mm is definitely a bad focal length for close-up portraits. Even with a 35mm or a 28mm (and of course with a 21mm) it would be nicer because of a frank wide-angle purpose. Here we have something that is neither a telephoto, nor a wide angle, so it's frustrating...

It's not all about Freya, of course :-))

CE Nelson , May 23, 2005; 06:55 p.m.

Dear Nicolas, my focus was on me - the reflection in her shades. My wife's face held the canvas for me.

:)

By the way, DOF on that lens is tight wide open, eh?


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