Saturday, November 3, 2012

New Life on an Old Lens

The Taylor-Hobson Ortal 3 Inch (75mm) f2 TV lens was a nice find for me, but it has a very short lens to sensor distance and I couldn't make it work on DSLRs.  Having no focusing mechanism, the only way to make it work is through a focusing helicoid.  I first got it to work on the original generic focusing helicoid on the NEX-5, but helicoid and the lens don't jive well together.  This lens is extremely heavy for it's focal length and aperture, and the focusing helicoid is kind of flimsy made.  After some use, the helicoid developed more and more play and eventually starting to wriggle. So, it hasn't been used for a little while.

The Yeenon helicoid came to the rescue.  The Yeenon helicoid is nearly identical to the diameter of the Ortal 75mm f2 lens so they actually look really nice together, and they work wonderfully together as well.  The only problem I have, is that the aperture ring is very large/wide, and it sits ahead of the focusing ring.  Even after some use, I invariably turned the aperture ring when I really meant the focusing ring.  Small niggle, but annoys me.

I am really liking this lens.  Very sharp at f2 and with wonderfully saturated colours.  Really looking forward to shooting with it more.

Brunch Talk - Sony NEX-5N & Taylor Hobson Ortal 75mm f2 TV Lens. Click for larger.


  1. Wow! That is sharp. I almost want to say razor sharp at that is at f/2.0.

    1. I think for a lens this old, and made for TV, it's outstanding.