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Nikkor-h Auto 50mm f/2: any detailed information on this on?
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 1:18 pm    Post subject: Nikkor-h Auto 50mm f/2: any detailed information on this on? Reply with quote

Hi there, a few hours ago I found this lens in my basement:



in perfect conditions. I did some research but I couldn't find any info on how this lens could be different from the model where it says "Nippon Kogaku Japan" instead of "Nikon". Is my lens newer? Older? Better? Worse? The only thing I noticed is on the internet the "Nippon Kogaku Japan" are way more common.

Thanks a lot for any info!


PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 2:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great lens praised in its day by photojournalists as easy focusing, durable, and providing wonderful rendering.

The Nikon name was used on newer Nikkor lenses including this nice pre - AI/AID example. Without checking I would estimate from 1971. Right before the H-C which had different/ better coating.

One of my favorites. I no longer have mine. Sad

Easily adaptable to mirrorless cameras.


PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 5:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That lens dates from ~1971 when multi-coating became standard, according to Roland Vink's database http://www.photosynthesis.co.nz/nikon/serialno.html#50slow when your lens dates from.

As mentioned above it was the solid, inexpensive entreé to Nikon in the early 1970's. There are superior, more recent options available more modest sums.


PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks a lot for the replies. I actually found this lens literally few minutes after I ordered on Ebay a Konica Hexanon 50mm 1.4 for my Sony A7 III. I guess the Konica is pretty superior to this Nikkor, but I think I will still keep this lens for sentimental value. Also, I'm new to the vintage manual focus lenses world, so having one more is cool Smile


PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2019 10:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jmkmva wrote:
Great lens praised in its day by photojournalists as easy focusing, durable, and providing wonderful rendering.

The Nikon name was used on newer Nikkor lenses including this nice pre - AI/AID example. Without checking I would estimate from 1971. Right before the H-C which had different/ better coating.

One of my favorites. I no longer have mine. Sad

Easily adaptable to mirrorless cameras.


Wonderful lens.
Lovely "old'school" rendering.
This link gives some background on the development of the Nikkor 2/50:

https://imaging.nikon.com/history/story/0002/index.htm

Tom


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 12:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you turn to this page (a great resources on the summary details of old Nikkors) http://www.photosynthesis.co.nz/nikon/serialno.html you can see that this lens dates to 1971/72, most likely 1972.

The model you have is also single coated which means its ability to handle backlighting without excessive flare is more limited Not a big issue for most people and easy to cope with. In fact many prefer this for the classic rendering it can deliver to images, especially monochrome ones. Its rendering is classic (sharp enough and not soft but pleasant and "rounded") is on par with other highly regarded Nikkor primes of the era like the 35mm f2. Here is a short review: http://www.momentcorp.com/review/nikkor50mmf2.html

I can vouch for the capability of this lens. I own one and regard it as a gem.

ABOUT AI CONVERSION - Should you need it

The lens you have was made to the pre Ai (aperture indexing) specification and most likely will still be pre AI unless converted already (as many were when AI cameras become available) and if not converted should not be used on some later Nikon film cameras (and most DSLRs). If you post a picture of the lens mount, people here at this Board, would most likely be able to tell you by sight if it is AI or not. Check this page for more info: https://www.nikonimgsupport.com/ni/NI_article?articleNo=000001497&configured=1&lang=en_US

I was lucky with mine as I found an original Nikon factory made conversion kit for conversion of the pre AI lens to AI spec. (These are seldom found these days, something which is made more rare and difficult by the fact that the conversion kits differ not just with each lens but with each version of each lens so I was very lucky indeed). As a result I can use mine on modern digital Nikon DSLRs without having to resort to a metal saw and file to cut the necessary notch in the lens base. (And note that if you propose to use this lens with an adapter on, say, a mirrorless camera like an M4/3 or a Sony NEX of course conversion is not needed - this is a Nikon requirement for most Nikon DSLRs - a few Nikon DSLRs will allow you to mount the lens without damage.)

Fortunately conversion to AI can be done at home by a reasonably skilled and careful person with a little research online to tell you how. If you have tool handling skills (i.e. needle file, fine metal saw) and can follow instructions to demount the rear ring then reassemble it, its a breeze. Here is a video on the subject: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHs8SB2NpLw

Note however while the video may be useful to someone who has not done it before, the guy in the video placed the notch he filed wrongly - research this subject online to find out where the notch SHOULD start and end for an f2 lens - it is this position which is calibrated to convey the aperture info to the camera. The correct starting position all depends on the maximum aperture of the lens. According to another thread the correct location for the notch is to start it at the f8 + 2/3 position. You should do more reading on specifics yourself to make sure you are fully acquainted with details.

Here is a summary article which gives more step by step info: https://richardhaw.com/2016/01/21/diy-ai-conversion/ .


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for all the info Peter. Fortunately David won't have to hack up his nice lens, since he'll be using it on his Sony A7 III.

I have one of the later AI lenses, but I've owned a couple of the early ones. I kept my AI mostly just because it is what it is. Back when I was a camera dealer, I had no trouble selling the old 50/2's because of their solid reputation. Which was nice, because typically any normal lens that was f/1.7 or slower back in those days had about the same value as a body cap.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks a lot for all the info! I shot more pics of this lens:


#1


#2


#3


I'm no vintage lens expert but this one seems to be in very good conditions. At least to me Smile I wonder if that filter on top (I guess it's a UV?) came stock with the lens of was purchased separately.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

davidrf wrote:
Thanks a lot for all the info! I shot more pics of this lens:



I'm no vintage lens expert but this one seems to be in very good conditions. At least to me Smile I wonder if that filter on top (I guess it's a UV?) came stock with the lens of was purchased separately.


It is a great lens and yours looks superb.
The filters were usually sold separately, but were often added at time of sale - sometimes as an upselling item (like - do you want fries with that?) or thrown in by the dealer to sweeten the sale.
A Nikon filter would have been top flight among filters - ie cost more than say a Hoya or a Vivitar
Tom


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I might be mistaken here because I was a teenager when that lens sold new, but I'm pretty sure the filter was a separate item, although it is very likely it was purchased at the same time.

As for condition, there are some general guidelines that most purveyors of used equipment follow, but some folks are more strict in their evaluations than others. The condition ratings you typically see are, in descending order of condition, as follows:

Mint (as new but previously sold)
Mint- (one or two tiny marks)
Exc+ (very light indication of wear)
Exc (very little wear, still better than 95% original finish)
Exc- (wear is more evident, some brassing, but no dents or deep scratches)
VG (considerable wear evident, pronounced brassing, some dents and scratches)
Good (not pretty, very heavy wear and brassing, deep dents or scratches)
Poor (butt ugly)

The above ratings are for cosmetic condition only. Mechanical and optical condition are always assumed to be in perfect function and condition.

As I mentioned above, most but not all sellers use the above grading system. One well known seller of used gear that has a much stricter grading system is KEH. Their Exc is the same as everyone else's Mint and their BGN (Bargain) is often as clean as others Exc or Exc+.

Using the above grading system, because of the wear evident on your lens, I'd rate yours condition as a solid Exc. Which, considering its age, is a remarkably good and uncommon find.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congrats
And welcome to the forum.
Nice looking lens and I have heard good things about it.
I have an Nikkor auto-S 1.4 50mm and a Micro-Nikkor 55mm
so I haven't purchased one although they are not so expensive.

I hope you will post some photos from it.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congratulations on the find, it's a great lens, with a beautiful bokeh and splendid sharpness! Its only drawback is a stronger than usual barrel distortion.

Cheers!

Abbazz


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Reminds me of a few years ago at the bootsale when I bought a Nikon AF F90x for £12 and the guy used a 50mm f2 H C as a body cap...well at the time I was worried, after reading, that you could ruin the F90x mount using pre AI lenses.....but the camera seems to work ok with AF lenses etc. Like 1 small
To use pre AI lenses I bought a Nikon FM and recently a F4 for AF that can also take pre AI lenses.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excalibur wrote:
Reminds me of a few years ago at the bootsale when I bought a Nikon AF F90x for £12 and the guy used a 50mm f2 H C as a body cap...well at the time I was worried, after reading, that you could ruin the F90x mount using pre AI lenses.....but the camera seems to work ok with AF lenses etc. Like 1 small
To use pre AI lenses I bought a Nikon FM and recently a F4 for AF that can also take pre AI lenses.


F4 takes everything.
Great camera and still sooooo under priced and under appreciated
Tom


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oldhand wrote:
Excalibur wrote:
Reminds me of a few years ago at the bootsale when I bought a Nikon AF F90x for £12 and the guy used a 50mm f2 H C as a body cap...well at the time I was worried, after reading, that you could ruin the F90x mount using pre AI lenses.....but the camera seems to work ok with AF lenses etc. Like 1 small
To use pre AI lenses I bought a Nikon FM and recently a F4 for AF that can also take pre AI lenses.


F4 takes everything.
Great camera and still sooooo under priced and under appreciated
Tom


The F4 (body only) is not very common in the UK, but plenty in Japan and that is where I bought mine.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 11:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

uddhava wrote:
I hope you will post some photos from it.


I surely will. And I also will post photos taken with my other two vintage lenses I just bought: Konica Hexanon 135mm f/2.5 and Konica Hexanon 50mm f/1.4.

But I have a question: with vingate lenses is it customary to post unedited photos? In many forums I've seen people specify "not edited" and stuff like that...


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It doesn't really matter here. If you want to be conscientious about it, you can list the adjustments you did to the original image file. Sometimes it is important to mention if any edit has been done, usually this is when a lens's capabilities are being evaluated. For example, if I want to show the level of detail a lens provides, I may make a 100% crop of an image produced with that lens, and I will state that no editing has been done to the image. 100% crops are handy because you can post a portion of the image at its actual size, but because it's only a portion, you're not overloading the thread with huge images that are hard to fit onto a typical monitor's screen.

As a practical matter, I almost always perform a few basic adjustments to photos I post here, such as image size, a touch of sharpening and contrast adjustment, but I try to keep these adjustments to a minimum unless I'm specifically after a particular effect.

I use Photoshop and Paint Shop Pro for my file adjustments. I'm more comfortable with Paint Shop Pro than I am with Photoshop, and I find that pretty much anything that can be done with Photoshop can be done with Paint Shop Pro, with one glaring exception. Photoshop's raw converter is vastly superior to PSP's. PSP's get's the conversion job done, but little else, whereas with Photoshop's converter there is a much larger selection of adjustments that can be made to the raw image.

Corel, the author of PSP, also produces a separate product called Aftershot, available for an additional charge. It does much what Photoshop's converter does and then some. It's actually closer to Adobe's Lightroom in its capabilities. But I personally find it confusing -- same with Lightroom, far as that goes -- so I don't usually use it.


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cooltouch, KEH grading is sometimes less than accurate, and generally in favor of the buyer. I have purchased several items that were graded ugly but came in as excellent (per the more common usage, not KEH's sytem) or even mint. I think they get so much merchandise throughput that they don't have the time or inclination to do a proper grading and err on the side of the customer. I recently got a an "as-is" Topcon RE 35mm 2.8 in mint condition including the cap that was also in mint condition for around 50 USD. Treasures can still be found...


PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

davidrf wrote:
But I have a question: with vingate lenses is it customary to post unedited photos? In many forums I've seen people specify "not edited" and stuff like that...

No, do whatever you want short of local painting with image editor and share full size with us to pixel-peep.

Take a lens and show us how great it can be.

OOC JPEG is just a one way of interpreting data.
Worshipping that "just because" is not doing service to anyone but believers.


PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks to all. One last question before I buy an adapter: this lens is Nikon F-Mount right?


PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

davidrf wrote:
Thanks to all. One last question before I buy an adapter: this lens is Nikon F-Mount right?


Yes it is.
Tom


PostPosted: Wed Aug 14, 2019 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Here is my first ever test shot with this lens. Sony A7III, I guess it was f/8, the image is slightly edited in Lightroom (black/whites, a bit of exposure and a bit of texture).

for the big version: https://imgur.com/a/LhZTlWN


PostPosted: Wed Aug 14, 2019 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I disagree with aidaho. I personally don't like having to maneuver around a 5600 pixel image, such as the one that was uploaded here, just to see it. It's a great image, showing the sharpness of the lens. But it's WAY too much. Impossible to view the entire image. I reduce my images to about 1600 pixels on the horizontal, which I believe, is the suggested limit here.

You can always provide a link to the full size image if you want. But for those of us who don't have a monitor that can handle a 5600 pixel image on the horizontal -- which is all of us, I'm guessing -- it is much nicer to view the image at reduced levels. Consider editing your image, reducing it n size to more view-friendly levels.


PostPosted: Wed Aug 14, 2019 6:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cooltouch wrote:
I disagree with aidaho. I personally don't like having to maneuver around a 5600 pixel image, such as the one that was uploaded here, just to see it. It's a great image, showing the sharpness of the lens. But it's WAY too much. Impossible to view the entire image.

I never explicitly said "put a full size into post img tag". Link is perfectly fine by me. I do so myself.

However, the scrolling problem is to be blamed on your browser, not the posted image.
It scales down just fine in Firefox.


PostPosted: Wed Aug 14, 2019 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome!

For showing lens capabilities there are two forks. One does no sharpening or contrast adjustments with minimal resizing. No ooc jpeg as often camera settings adjust the jpg sharpness or contrast. The second uses post processing to get the best image possible. Typically the first example is posted in the Manual Focus Lenses section of the forum; the second in one of the Gallery sections.