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Yashica Auto Yashinon 5.5cm f/1.8 on Pixco Focal Reducer
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2018 12:52 am    Post subject: Yashica Auto Yashinon 5.5cm f/1.8 on Pixco Focal Reducer Reply with quote

Yashica Auto Yashinon 5.5cm f/1.8 on Pixco Focal Reducer

I got this on ebay, very cheap of course, with a "rear cap", beat up but working Yashica J.

DSC01006 by luisalegria, on Flickr

This was the kit lens on most of the Yashica J-series throughout the 1960's. Apparently a version of this was also the standard lens on the Yashica Pentamatic of 1960, in the proprietary Yashica bayonet, but most are in the later cosmetic form in standard M42 auto mount. I guess its from sometime between 1965 and 1968 or so, but thats just a guess.

It looks very much like a DX, with similar styling, but its not marked as such. Its a bit beat up which is a pity as these can be very pretty in their highly polished aluminum 1960's "space age" form.

Graham did a much nicer presentation than mine here - so its not unknown here either - and his was much nicer.


On the whole it is a very standard, typical third party six-element double gauss normal slr lens of its day, without notable special features. The same sort of lens can be had from most of the cheaper slr's of the time. I used it mainly to investigate a bit better the qualities of the Pixco focal reducer, to see what it could do with a common standard lens.

In general, this is a sharp lens in the center, though with considerable "glow" if used on extension rings wide-open, which happens with or without the focal reducer. Its got fairly poor corners wide open and the focal reducer does not make it much worse that I can see, and corners become quite reasonable at f/4-5.6 even with the focal reducer - though this is a matter of personal standards of course. It does flare considerably and absolutely requires a hood, and some care. One of the shots shows some interesting flare artifacts.

On the focal reducer on APS-C it (or any 55mm) is equivalent, bokeh-wise and with DOF, with the same framing, to a 35mm f/1.2. And its almost as "bright", in terms of speed increase. This is a big deal. The focal reducer gives a lot more bokeh in the frame, if thats what you are looking for. I find the tradeoff on an APS-C camera vs native lenses is mainly in size. The biggest loss is that you get worse close-focus performance -not because you can't get just as physically close as before, but because the image is not cropped, and the center subject is smaller on the image. If you want to get a larger subject image, you will have to reach for your extension rings sooner.

I need to try an f/1.4 next.

DSC09997 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09840 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09787 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09379 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC00025 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC08313 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC08318 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09251 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09583 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09573 copy by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09544 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09541 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09895 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09918 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09942 by luisalegria, on Flickr

DSC09927 by luisalegria, on Flickr

PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2018 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice photos!

I bought this lens because it looked good and was very cheap. In my opinion both the lens and the pictures it takes have a bit more vintage feel than the average lens of its kind.

Here are some pics I've taken.
Sony a7:





PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2018 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Beautiful results, both of you, this looks like a very capable lens.

Luis, some of those modern architecture shots are simply stunning.

PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2018 7:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I see anything with Yashinon on it, I'll buy it, and so far I haven't been disappointed. I'll be looking for one of these lenses for sure.

PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2018 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Like 1

PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2018 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep - Yashinon rarely disappoints.
These are all great

PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, beautiful! Yashica is one brand I've never had. Looks like this will have to change. Smile

PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great photos. I have a few yashica. I pickec up a J-7 camera in excellent condition that had the 50mm 1.4 that is very similar in style to this lens. I also have several DX and a few ML in 50mm and 135mm. They are all pretty good.