Monday, October 26, 2015

Topcon UV Topcor Lenses

It's often confusing when it comes to Topcon Topcor lenses, because it could be one of the two mounts: modified Exakta or UV mount.  The lenses themselves are physically very different between mounts.

The Topcor UV mount is the very cheap line, with aperture controls on the camera body, but thankfully, focusing is still done on the lens.  With the lens detached from the camera, the UV mount lens looks incomplete; they look like half lenses.  This is the whole point of this line of camera/lenses.  To be made cheap.  There are very few lenses available for the UV mount.  I have the 50mm f1.9, 53mm f2, 35mm f3.5, and 135mm f4.  Other UV lenses made were 28mm f4, 100mm f4, and 200mm f4.  Not many, and no fast lenses other than the 53mm f2.

Two Topcors. Left: Topcor 5.8cm f1.8. Right: UV Topcor 50mm f1.9
Mounting these lenses could be a problem.  As far as I know, there are no proper made adapters to use them on digital cameras.  You can make one with the mount from the camera, like I did here, and this is probably the only way to go.  I tried the lenses and I was not blown away by their image quality.  They are pretty much run of the mill quality in the same era as other lenses in the same class.  However, the 53mm f2 have pretty nice bokeh.

UV Topcor 53mm f2 on Sony A7
Spent an hour today shooting with the 53mm f2 UV Topcor.  The lens is quite sharp in the centre at f2, but the corners are kind of mushy.  Since aperture is controlled from the camera body, there is no easy way to control it on the lens when adapted to digital, so I just shot everything wide open.  That's not a great loss for me, as I like shooting wide open.  The only thing I couldn't do is the test the smaller apertures and see how the lens performs.

Overall, not really bad for a cheap lens.

All pictures below were taken with UV Topcor 53mm f2 & Sony A7.

F2 at infinity.  Not bad at the centre.

Flare -- Even the best lenses could not do much better in this situation.

Growing out of the wood --  Bokeh #1.

Milkweed Pods -- Bokeh #2

More Milkweed Pods

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