Review: Minolta MC Tele Rokkor PF 135mm 1:2.8

Minolta MC Tele Rokkor-PF 135mm 1:2.8 lens review.

This is the fast lens with classic focal distance – very suitable for portraits and landscapes. Tons of such lenses have been produced by a lot of competitors, many of them are beautiful, and it’s very hard for any lens to get a ‘recommended’ status in so huge and cool collective.

After getting a new lens, I always take a few technical shots to understand its strengths and weaknesses – usually, it helps me a lot to start using an unknown lens with much less of doubt. One day I decided that my data might be interesting for someone else and this site has been made.

Minolta_Rokkor_MCC13528_039_exterior_logo.jpg

Minolta MC Tele Rokkor-PF 135mm 1/2.8 parameters:

minolta.eazypix.de index 177
Name engraved on lens MC TELE ROKKOR-PF
f[mm] 135
A max [1/f] 2.8
A min[1/f] 22
Lens design [el.] 6
Lens design [gr.] 5
Filter thread Ø front(rear)[mm] 55
Lens Shade built-in
closefocus[m/ft] 1.5/5
Dimension Ø x length [mm] 67×93
Weight[g] 490
Year 1970
Style MC II
Code No. (ROKKOR-X) or Order No. 667-008
Notes

Floating elements NO
Aperture blades number 6
Average international price (sold items) 2019: USD 50-100
Reviewed Lens SN: 1603324


Lens exterior:

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

On Minolta SR-T 101 camera – both are of the same generation of design:


Lens code name – Canaan:

Canaan (カナン Kanan) is the main protagonist of the series. She is a mercenary currently operating in Shanghai.

She was known as the only survivor when her village had been destroyed in a war in the Middle East. She was found by Siam and gave her the name Canaan. Siam trained her and acted like a father-figure to her in some ways, thus earning her respect and love. When he was murdered, she claimed to have “lost her light”.


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)

Canaan 28 2print.png

Scene preview:

MCC13528__b_res_close_previewNEW.jpg

Test results:

MCC13528__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 (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:

MCC13528__e_far_preview.jpg

Test results:

MCC13528__e_res_far.jpg


Vignetting:

(frames scaled – 300×200)

MCC13528__f_vignettingNEW.png


Geometric distortion:

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MCC13528_geometry_83.jpg


Coma aberrations:

(100% crops – 300×200)

MCC13528__h_coma_aberr_.jpg


Chromatic aberrations:

(100% crops – 300×200)

MCC13528__i_chrome_aberrNEW_.png


Long distance bokeh:

Test#1:

Test conditions: lens was focused on minimal distance 1.5m, houses were fixed in infinity distance on the ground.

Such scenes can’t be meet often, so this is a 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)

MCC13528__k_bokeh_far_min_1_5m_NEW.png

Test#2:

Test conditions: lens was focused on 2.5m – ‘portrait distance’, houses were fixed in infinity distance on the ground.

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MCC13528__k_bokeh_far_mid_2_5m_NEW.png


Light dots long distance bokeh:

Test #1

Test conditions: lens was focused on minimal distance 1.5m, lights were fixed in more than 200m.

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

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MCC13528__m_dots_far_min_1_5m_NEW.png

Test #2

Test conditions: lens was focused on 2,5m – ‘portrait distance’, houses were fixed in infinity distance on the ground.

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MCC13528__m_dots_far_mid_2_5m_NEW.png


Other resources with reviews:


My overall conclusion about the MINOLTA MC Rokkor-PF 135mm F:2.8:

MCC13528__Avatar.png

Through history, Minolta has released 16 (!) 135/2.8 manual lenses for SLR cameras (SR-mount). They were in 6/5, 7/5, 5/4, 4/4, 5/5 schemes. Can I say that this particular lens is better than those that were released later? Definitely not. It occupies a middle position among the other 135/2.8 Minolta lenses – looks not so sharp as more modern lenses, but – it is still sharp enough for any photographer tasks. Independently of full metal construction this lens is not heavier and has close the same weight as other models, even lighter than many another with rubberized elements. It was a little surprise, because when you see the full metal lens – you expect heaviness, but not this time. And as it was expected, the construction of this MC-II version is simple enough for the owner to fix the lens if it needed.

Rendering and aberrations of this Rokkor are not something special – a lot of other 135mm provide the same results. Bokeh is like a ‘Plain/Gauss’ type (not ‘Swirly’). To be honest, I didn’t meet a fast 135mm lens with bad bokeh – each of them at least very good and this Rokkor isn’t exclusion – bokeh is fairly common, but without flaws.

As you understand, this lens is not for sharpness maniacs. On the other hand, it keeps balance, and can’t be called ‘soft lens’. I wouldn’t recommend it for the role of the champion of the resolution, but it will work fine for photographers, who don’t care about pixels.

Thus, we have a very good lens, but it does not stand out among a large number of other lenses with the same parameters. There is no need to hunt for it, but if you get it – then save.

 


This lens took part in battles:MCC13528_MCC13535_MD13528_Battle__Avatar.png

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