This lens was produced only in one incarnation – MDII version. No analogs before and after, and this case quite rare for Minolta, because usually we can see product lines of the lenses with identical focal distances and apertures, like MC-version, then MD-I, MD-II etc. We have a right to call this lens as unique, so let’s see the abilities of one of the most famous pancakes in the world’s lenses history in Minolta Rokkor MD 45mm 1:2.0 lens review.

MDRR4520_exterrior_042.jpg

Minolta Rokkor MD 45mm F2.0 parameters:

# in minolta.eazypix.de index 88
Name engraved on lens MD ROKKOR (-X)
f[mm] 45
A max [1/f] 2.0
A min[1/f] 16
Lens design [el.] 6
Lens design [gr.] 5
Filter thread Ø front(rear)[mm] 49
Lens Shade
closefocus [m/ft] 0.6/2.0
Dimension Ø x length [mm] 64×30.5
Weight[g] 125
Year 1978
Style MD II
Code No. (ROKKOR-X) or Order No. 588-100 (-300)

Note: tested lens has ‘ROKKOR-X’ yellow labeling, it means that the lens was produced for North America market, but there are no any other differences with same lenses without this label.


Lens exterior:

(Please, forgive me the dust on the lens, I never have the patience to clean objects for close-up photo sessions)


Lens code name – Eru Chitanda (千反田 える)

Eru Chitanda (千反田 える Chitanda Eru?) is the deuteragonist of Hyouka. She is a student of the Kamiyama High School and president of school’s Classic Literature Club. Usually she is the one who gets the club involved into solving of the various mysteries.


Sharpness – close distance:

Test description: target is a 10×15 cm picture (printed, glossy photo paper), fixed on the wall by scotch. Distance – 1.7m. Camera Sony A7II (24mpx, full frame) was fixed on the tripod and managed remotely with computer display as a viewfinder. All groups of shots were repeated 3 times for every target position on all apertures from fully opened up to F16, ISO-200, WB – same for all shots. SteadyShot – OFF. Focus was manually corrected for each shot. After all needed shots have been taken for one target position – I moved the target to the next place. Main idea – to exclude the field curvature affect on so close distance. Of course, I can’t be absolutely accurate, but test results looks correct.

Finally, pictures were converted from ARW-files in Capture One with default settings (Some single files have a slight light correction, for better visual convenience in comparison), then cropped for 300×200 px elements, combined into diagrams and exported into JPEG-files

Original target image (printed in horizontal orientation on 10cm X 15cm glossy photo paper)

MDRR4520_eru_chitanda_4print.png

Scene preview:

MDRR4520__b_res_close_previewNEW.jpg

Test results:

MDRR4520__c_res_close.jpg


Sharpness – long distance:

Test description: Camera Sony A7II (24mpx, full frame) was fixed on the tripod and managed remotely with computer display as a viewfinder. Targets (buildings) were fixed by gravity power on the distances in more than 200 meters. All shots have been taken with apertures from fully opened up to F16. ISO-50. Shutter Speed – depends on light (camera A-mode), WB – fixed and the same for all shots. SteadyShot – OFF. Focus was manually corrected for each shot to exclude focus-shift affect.

Finally, pictures were converted from ARW-files in Capture One with default settings (Some single files have a slight light correction, for better visual convenience in comparison), then were cropped for 300×200 px elements, combined into diagrams and exported into JPEG-files.

Scene preview:

MDRR4520__e_far_preview.jpg

Test results:

MDRR4520__e_res_far.jpg


Vignetting:

(frames scaled – 300×200)

MDRR4520__f_vignettingNEW.jpg


Geometric distortion:

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MDRR4520__geometry_74


Coma aberrations:

(100% crops – 300×200)

MDRR4520__h_coma_aberr_


Chromatic aberrations:

(100% crops – 300×200)

MDRR4520__i_chrome_aberrNEW_.jpg


Long distance bokeh:

Test#1:

Test conditions: lens was focused on to minimal distance 0.6m, houses were fixed in infinity distance on the ground.

Such scenes can’t be meet often, so this is demonstration of extreme conditions. In most cases of real life photography the blur level will be less, see the next Test#2.

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MDRR4520__k_bokeh_far_0_6_m_NEW

Test#2:

Test conditions: lens was focused on 1m – in the middle of the focus ring, houses were fixed in infinity distance on the ground.

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MDRR4520__k_bokeh_far_1_m_NEW


Light dots long distance bokeh:

Test #1

Test conditions: lens was focused on to minimal distance 0.45m, lights were fixed in more than 200m.

Such scenes can’t be meet often, so this is demonstration of extreme conditions. In most cases of real life photography the blur level will be less – see the Test #2.

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MDRR4520__m_dots_farNEW

Test #2

Test conditions: lens was focused on 1.5m – ‘quite portrait distance’, houses were fixed in infinity distance on the ground.

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MDRR4520__m_dots_far_1_5_m_NEW.jpg


Other resources with reviews:


My overall conclusion about the Minolta Rokkor MD 45mm F2.0:

Small and pretty prime lens with uncommon focal distance. Very good choice for photographers who likes a little bit wider than classical fifties. Nice performer in the middle and center, corners are good enough too, but this lens better to recommend for street or portraits than landscapes for example, but for landscapes it is fine too. This feature with not perfect sharpness distribution over the whole frame may be a one of reasons of interesting bokeh rendering provided by the lens – quite ‘old-school’ if wide-opened, and if closed – with amazing pentagons because the five-blades aperture. A lot of fans have added lens into favorites and many people use it permanently without changing to another lenses. This lens is from ‘pancakes’ family, but I believe that it still too thick for this category, but it still smaller than average 50mm lens and very lightweight. It wouldn’t take much room in photographer’s bag and unexpectedly can invert a simple scene into amazing picture – looks very close to ‘must have’ lens, especially if to remember the price. In ‘heavy case of dependence’ it can became the only lens for owner.

MDRR4520__Avatar.png

2 thoughts on “Review: Minolta MD Rokkor 45mm F2.0

  1. Hello,
    Congratulation for your website, it is really interesting and useful for minolta md shooters.

    What do you think about this lens against de 50 mm minolta MD III?. This fifty may be better in every regard, and i dont know if it is worth the extra little more size and the little less field of view.

    All the best,

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello, thank you. And what about me personally – I prefer faster (F1.4) 50mm lenses from Minolta MD line with 49mm filter thread MDIII or MDII – 7 elements in 6 groups optical design, also the legendary MC PG 58mm F1.2 can be recommend if price looks OK. All these lenses have been reviewed and compared on the site

      Like

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