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Review: Minolta MC Tele Rokkor QD 135mm 1:3.5

Minolta MC Tele Rokkor QD 135mm 1:3.5 lens review (Minolta MC-II type by collectors classification).

Small but very proud lens. Like many other lenses of that era, it is already very good in terms of performance, but in the next versions, it has been improved even more. The usual representative of  ‘Hills&Valleys’ hull design.

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_MCC13535_040_exterior_logo.jpg

Minolta MC Tele Rokkor-QD 135mm 1:3.5 parameters:

minolta.eazypix.de index 188
Name engraved on lens MC TELE ROKKOR-QD
f[mm] 135
A max [1/f] 3.5
A min[1/f] 22
Lens design [el.] 4
Lens design [gr.] 4
Filter thread Ø front(rear)[mm] 52
Lens Shade screw-in
closefocus[m/ft] 1.5/5
Dimension Ø x length [mm] 63×88
Weight[g] 370
Year 1969
Style MC II
Code No. (ROKKOR-X) or Order No. 567-1xx
Notes

Floating elements NO
Aperture blades number 6
Average international price (sold items) 2019: USD 20-30
Reviewed Lens SN: 1592643


Lens exterior:

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

Lens shade:

On Minolta SR-T 101 camera, it’s a very suitable set – both are from the one era of design:


Lens code name – Chise Toudou  藤堂 ちせ:

ChisePrincess Principal – Chise has a very strong character. She could murder her own father, as well as a countless amount of other people during spy missions without a second of thinking it over. But we also saw that Chise has a weak spot for children. When a little girl got hurt she helped her, showing her kindhearted and tender side to us.


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)

Chise Toudou 25 2print.png

Scene preview:

MCC13535__b_res_close_previewNEW.jpg

Test results:

MCC13535__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:

MCC13535__e_far_preview.jpg

Test results:

MCC13535__e_res_far.jpg


Vignetting:

(frames scaled – 300×200)

MCC13535__f_vignettingNEW.jpg


Geometric distortion:

(frame scaled 1200×800)

MCC13535_geometry_82.jpg


Coma aberrations:

(100% crops – 300×200)

MCC13535__h_coma_aberr_.jpg


Chromatic aberrations:

(100% crops – 300×200)

MCC13535__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)

MCC13535__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)

MCC13535__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)

MCC13535__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)

MCC13535__m_dots_far_mid_2_5m_NEW.png


Other resources with reviews:

no other reviews were found. Give me shout if you know a one


My overall conclusion about the Minolta MC Rokkor-QD 135mm F3.5:

MCC13535__Avatar.png

Pros:

Firstly, and independently of test results, I want to say that this lens is very cheap. This is a real sign. It is so cheap that I think you can meet the sales like “three for the price of one”. Just kidding, but probably this is the cheapest Minolta lens on auctions. Secondly, it has the steel&glass construction and easy in support: the owner can perform CLA at home with a hammer and pliers.

Neutral:

About IQ: it has good overall sharpness at the center and middle positions but not at corners. It’s better to close it for F5.6 and it will become a totally sharp over the frame on F8. So, it can works well on APS-C cameras, but for ‘full frame’ it’s maybe better to get another 135mm lens. In other aspects, it shows results which are typical for tele lenses of that years – quite big aberrations and ideal creamy bokeh.

So, it seems that I wasn’t impressed by this Rokkor. It’s true. But I tend to believe that it’s just because as a tester I’ve had an experience with a few better and faster 135mm lenses, and this small beauty is just staying in the shadow of that monsters. To be honest, I’m not sure that a photographer will see the lack of performance if to use the lens for portraits, you know, a smooth rendering based on big aberrations helps in portraiture much more than sharpness at corners.

Finally, the recommendation is the same as for some another Rokkors from that era – there is no need to hunt for this lens, but use it without doubts if you got it.


This lens took part in battles:MCC13528_MCC13535_MD13528_Battle__Avatar.png

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