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KALT 80-205mm f3.9 Maual Close Focus Zoom
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2018 8:14 pm    Post subject: KALT 80-205mm f3.9 Maual Close Focus Zoom Reply with quote

Greetings. I've been lurking on the forum for some time, but I've decided to jump in because I have acquired a slightly mysterious lens and I can't find much information about it. The lens in question is a KALT 80-205mm manual macro zoom lens. I got it in a box of old camera stuff I bought.

In the months since I found this one, I've often searched on ebay and never once have I seen a KALT lens of any kind come up for sale or auction. It seems there's little information to be found about KALT branded lenses. As far as I can tell that company makes camera accessories and not lenses, so I have no idea who might have manufactured their lenses in the past.

The only mention I've seen is from an alphabetical list of old lenses called "Third Party Lenses from the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s" from the Blackest Knight Photography website. According to that list the 80-205 came out in 1978, and was worth over $600 by 1998, however I have no idea how reliable this information might be.

Anyway, I'd be interested in any tips I could get. I mean, I have no plans to sell this lens, but the curiosity about it is bugging me.

Thank you in advance!


PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2018 10:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Probably the same lens as this one that is branded Kenlock McTor ? I've seen this with other names, Optomax and Prinzflex for sure. It has a lot of similarities with my Vivitar 90-230 / 4.5 Macro, that according to the serial number is a Tokina made lens.
The Kenlock is OK, but I have better in the range. It's an average third party lens.




PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 12:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome KEO

Iirc I once had a Kalt 400-800mm zoom. It was slow and cheaply made-- the zoom mechanism was a simple tube in tube slider, no helical. The front element is concave. Looks like



PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 10:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Fellows!

My KALT lens looks exactly like Lloyd's Kenlock-McTor.



I'm glad to know a bit more about it. I haven't even tried it out yet. The glass seems to be in excellent condition, although the overall design seems rather cumbersome - not as bad as that 400-800 zoom however!

I paid $35 for the box it came in, which also contained an Auto Chinon 55mm f/1.7, an Auto Chinon 35mm f/2.8, and an Auto Chinon 135mm f/2.8, all in great shape (the 135 looks unused and was still in the original box), plus a variety of other useful items, so I'm quite happy even though the KALT is nothing special.

Thanks again.


PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 7:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey, $35 for that box is a bargain Very Happy The 55 / 1.7 is worth more than that alone, it's a great lens. My 35 / 2.8 is OK, as well. I don't have the 135. And the Kenlock isn't bad, but I have got better. Wink


PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 8:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lloydy wrote:
Hey, $35 for that box is a bargain Very Happy The 55 / 1.7 is worth more than that alone, it's a great lens. My 35 / 2.8 is OK, as well. I don't have the 135. And the Kenlock isn't bad, but I have got better. Wink


Yes, I already had a nice 55/1.7 (off a Gaf L-17) and I've enjoyed that one a lot. No harm having another. The one from the box looks slightly different too, with green numbers instead of red/orange and a knobby rubber focus ring grip instead of the strange fake leather that matches the Gaf.

I haven't haven't had a chance to try the 35 and the 135 nearly as much as I'd like, but my experiences with them so far have been quite positive. I'm a fan of Chinon bokeh, and they both seem to have it, and they're both lightweight, which is nice.

There were many other useful little items in the $35 box too, like a wired shutter release with a 2.5mm connector and a flexible mini-tripod perfect for a small flash.

Thanks again for your insight. Maybe I'll post some pics when I finally get around to trying out the KALT.