Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Yashinon 4.5cm f1.8 from Lynx-1000

Here is another rangefinder lens I removed from the Yashica Lynx-1000.  This time, I attempted to leave the original focus mechanism intact and made it into a native E-Mount.  This has the benefit of a nicer, more unified look than used on a focus helicoid.  The drawback is that minimum focus distance is at 0.8 meter, and the focusing mechanism is unintuitive and difficult to turn.  The focusing ring is very thin, but there is a little handle on the ring which you use to focus.  Instead of landing my fingers anywhere on the focusing ring, I have to find that tiny handle first each time I need to focus.  But, this is my first successful rangefinder lens conversion, and I am going to just keep it like this, for the time being.

Yashinon 4.5cm f1.8 on Sony A7.  Looks nice, no?

This lens is similar to the 45mm f1.8 from the Lynx-5000E, which my Flickr friend Matt tested, and claimed to be a very sharp lens, sharp to the edges, even on wide apertures.  You can check out the samples on his Flickr stream.  This one from Lynx-1000, however, is not very sharp at the edges, even stopped down significantly.  It does, however, have interesting swirly bokeh, and the centre of the frame is very sharp at f1.8.

In use, I find it less restricting than I thought, in terms of the minimum focus distance.  Sure, at times wished I could focus closer but one adjusts to it pretty quickly.  On the focus mechanism, I forego the little focus handle, and instead, just find the focusing ring and turn it instead.  It's workable if not cumbersome.

Swirly Bokeh - Yashinon 4.5cm f1.8 wide open & Sony A7

I like this lens as a walk around lens.  It's relatively small size matches the similarly small Sony A7 body, and they look pretty nice together, in my opinion.  The centre of the lens is very sharp, but if you like sharpness across the frame, this is probably not your kind of lens, and you may want to look at the 45mm f1.8 from the Lynx-5000E instead.  It's totally adequate for my use though, as I am more interested in how the lens renders the pictures, especially the bokeh.  There are plenty of sharp lenses, but interesting ones are few, and really interesting lenses that produce pleasing results are hard to find.

Greenwood Skating Rink - Yasinon 4.5cm f1.8 & Sony A7

This lens produces swirly bokeh when picture is taken wide open and the subject is focused at
minimum focus distance.  It's not so pronounced as the Biotar 75mm f1.5, or some C-Mount lenses with severely distorted edges like the Dallmeyer Speed 25mm f1.5. Surely, swirly background is not uncommon.  Many old lenses do this.  Some like this kind of aesthetics, I find it mildly interesting.  In the case of the Yashinon 4.5cm f1.8, this swirly background lends some uniqueness to the lens and sets apart from modern counterparts, which are usually well enough corrected that swirly bokeh does not happen.

Orange Wall -- Yashinon 4.5cm f1.8 & Sony A7


  1. HI! i have a Yashica Minister D with a Yashinon F 4.5 CM but i dont know how to Remove the Lense from the body. Do you know How? Thanks. Nice pics

    1. It's relatively easy. Just remove 4 screws from the front of the camera, though you need to remove the skin first. Once the 4 screws are removed, the lens module will come out easily.