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Helios 44M 58/2 Adaptor
  • I recently found an old camera bag left on the street to be picked up as rubbish. Inside if found an Helios 44M 58/2 the lens seems to be in perfect condition apart from the aperture blades do not seem to make a perfect circle. Glass is perfect condition, It also came with a couple of interesting filters a Hoya center spot clear filter an a softener B! Wonder what these will look like in video mode. Has anyone ever used these? Anyways i'm looking to get an adapter so i can test it out. Suggestions please? Just another thing whilst browsing for that lens it seems like most of them go to aperture f16 mine is f22 is that something special or rare? Okay this is what i'm looking at

  • 18 Replies sorted by
  • I own two of those, they are both M42 mount and close up to f/16 though. It is by no means a "clinical" lens that'll give you a sharp and clean image, but they have a nice character which I find quite cinematic. I personally use them as taking lenses for anamorphic.

    You can find a butt-load of footage shot with that lens on vimeo:

  • @fetzu thx for the link. Some really nice footage coming out that lens. Cant wait to get my adapter and give it a go!!!

  • Good lens. I use the 'Fotga' M42 adapter from China and it works fine. They can easily be found on ebay with free shipping.

  • I have this lens too (m42 mount) @f2 it´s a little bit soft but when you stop it down to F2.8 the image will be sharper and more contrasty.. It´s not a supersharp lens but a good performer , I like the DOF control and the bokeh on this cheap lens

  • well if you can show any other lens that is as sharp as this one totally open(f2) would be very nice...especially for its price(next to nothing) This lens has more character then the whole panasonic range of lenses(cold clinical look) for the lumix combined ; ) just a subjective opinion of course(we are talking characters)

    @Diffusion33 f22 are you sure? do you have some pictures of it? As far as adapter usually they come in m42 mount but there also pentax ,etc.

  • I have the Helios, the Rokkor 58mm and the Vivitar 55mm. The Vivitar is the sharpest and has the best color. The Rokkor has very good Bokeh. Nothing wrong with the Helios, but I don't use it as much. Edit: I just ABC'd these against each other. They each have a few nice features. They all have fairly long throw focus rings. The Vivitar has the gorgeous macro. The Rokkor can be used for portraits with gorgeous bokeh and you can dial in the sharpness between F1.4 and F4. The Helios is usable at F2, but it has half clicks which are handy. And the click below F4 is nicely sharp. Handy if you want that in-between stop for a lower ISO and still plenty sharp. The Bokeh is fine on the Helios.

  • Vivitar is f2.8? And price is a few times more at least. Rokkor is 1.4 and the bokeh will be for sure more dramatic. But yesh all of them are good for different things.

  • I think I paid $12 for the Vivitar, not sure what the shipping was. The Rokkor set me back $35 and the Helios stuck on a camera I had in the garage for some inexplicable reason. I mean, they are all pretty cheap and good quality. The thing is, do I use the Vivitar, or do I move the tripod in closer and use the Olly 45mm for the same shot. Half of these lenses I don't use any more, I just move the tripod. The Sigma Super Wide 24mm, so very sharp, but not as sharp as the Panny 20mm, moved in a bit closer. The Nikon 35mm, fantastic lens, but move the Olly 45mm back a bit. The Helios is a nice lens, and the older version has the swanky aperture blades. If you really look around, you can find a copy with the right aperture blades and multicoating.

  • I am happy with my second c-mount adapter.

    made by Big_in

    I even bought their m42 mount for a Helios 44.

    It has a tiny screw so you can adjust the ring.

    And it was cheap.

  • There is a Rokkor 58mm in 1.2 and in 1.4 as well.

    After I grabbed the 1.2 by good luck for a decent price (they are quite sought after) I sold my 1.4. They are both good, but the 1.2 has a legendary bokeh, very creamy, which is not only because of the minor difference in DOF. It's a different optical formula.

  • Earlier versions of the rokkor 58/1.4 have more aperture blades. If you can find a 58/1.4/8 blade "auto", that is good for bokeh and hopefully won't glow in the dark. There are different numbers of aperture blades for the Helios as well--check the number before buying. More blades=smoother bokeh, usually. Neither the 58 1.2 nor the 58 1.4 is as sharp as the good batches of 50/1.4, and neither of those is as sharp as the Olly 45. But they are sharp enough for video! I actually do not like the color on the older 58 minoltas as much as the the 50mm ones, and they don't have the special 3D quality. But the Bokeh is awesome. The older ones, especially the 58 f1.2, have a radioactive coating that breaks down adds a color cast to the lens. It is worth noting that the prized bokeh on the 58's (Rokkor) does not kick in till you stop them down just a bit, and you can see why if you look at the way the aperture blades work. I believe that the contrast is a bit better on the 58/1.2 vs 58/1.4. However, some would argue that lower contrast allows you greater dynamic range in post. Seems crazy, but there it is. I think that is true if the color is good and the contrast meets a certain threshold so it can be "pushed". I'll try to do an AB on the Bokeh ofthe Helios and post it. It is good.

  • @DrDave You have been very lucky to get these lenses at these prices. I don't see anything similar price-wise on ebay a part from the helios. As far as bokeh and most likely lenses in general things tend to be very subjective. Sharpness and best color as well.We are not machines and cannot be calibrated to the same perception and taste ; )

  • hmmmm you are right, the prices have gone way up on the 55mm since I bought mine. Guess I should sell my old lenses! The 55 tests sharper on MTF tests, it isn't just subjective. The thing is, for video it only has to be sharp enough--it isn't a high resolution medium. If the lens is too sharp, you can even get ugly artifacts. The Helios, Rokkor and Vivitar 55mm all have nice sharpness and Bokeh. Not a big difference, just a small one.

  • While I agree about most points i still think that yes , charts etc, technical test are precise but human perception can vary greatly about it. Especially after a certain general limit is reached - "i do see the(important) things clearly"...but how clearly only you,me and the beholder of perceptions knows. Hope this makes sense : )

    @Diffusion33 can you please post a some pics of the lens, very curious to see a helios 44M 58/2 with a f22 :\

  • Probably the early KMZ Helios with the 13 blade aperture and F22 Would love to see the Bokeh on that one with all those blades. Curious if the serial begins with zeros. I agree about perception, and I perceive the Vivitar is sharper!

  • is someone using the RJ adapter with the helios on the gh5?