Minolta MD 50mm f1.7 – Legacy 50mm. Which one is the best? Part 3

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18 Responses

  1. Unknown says:

    very nice review i think i will go ahead and purchase this now


  2. I have this Lens and I use it on a Nex-5n. I like it because is light and balances well on the 5n.


  3. Photography says:

    Thanks for review, it was excellent and very informative.
    thank you 🙂

  4. Ian Y says:

    Hi… I wondered if you had a comparison with the MD 1.7 lens and MD 1.4 lens? Is there a great deal if improvement in the f1.4 version?


    • Hi Ian, I don’t have direct comparison, but from some brief tests that I did on FF sensors, sharpest Minolta was actually 50/2 wide open. I wouldn’t expect big difference in sharpness between the two you mentioned, I have a feeling though that 50/1.4 has slightly higher micro contrast and there is that f/1.4 DOF benefit.

  5. malcolm kyle says:

    My dog ate this lens.

      • malcolm kyle says:

        He just said ‘ruff’

        Joking aside, I bought one just 2 hours ago for my Nex 5N for4 euros. It looks in perfect condition but I won’t find out for real until my MD/Nex adaptor (ordered 2 weeks ago) arrives. Focusing is a bit stiff though. Would silicon spray help? The serial number is 5487419. Will let you all know how it behaves.

        • Hi Malcolm, “ruff” means “great” in dogish I believe. To release the stiffness of the focus ring, you will need to open the lens and disassemble focus helicoid. It is my advice to give it to the proper service facility or to live with it. In any case, don’t spray anything on it or inside of it, that can permanently damage optics.

          Let us know how you like it when your adapter arrives.

  6. Mike says:

    Is there any indication that this is one of the great legacy era lenses that used Thorium in the glass and are radioactive?

  7. Hamstump says:

    Nice review, there were 5 versions of this lens, only one MC version and 4 MD versions. The MC is noticeably different because it’s a 240g. It has a brass- aluminum helicoid, the only version that does of course so it weighs more….but it has pure Leica like smoothness and control, unsurpassed precision of all and if someone doesn’t think this matters more than sharpness ? I’m simply not speaking in terms you can comprehend because consistently nailing focus is everything in manual lenses, and sharpness is abundant in anything 50mm…..

  8. Hamstump says:

    The first MC Rokkor 50 1.7 didn’t hit the streets until 1973 and Thorium was prohibited or stopped in the 60’s
    The other Minolta 1.7 was a “55mm 1.7” not a 50mm
    The only real Thorium Minolta was the MC 28mm F2.5, I have one and they 100% require disassembly of the elements to be UV treated, the LED Jansjo lamp is nonsense hocus pocus and DOESN’T work

  9. Lumens says:

    I am the happy owner of MDIII 50 1,4 and 2,0; MDII 1,7, MD and MC PG 1,4.
    All of them are good. The 2,0 is very even across the frame but might have a tad less microcontrast than others (easily fixed in post), the PG is excellent on most of the frame but suffers at borders and corners unless significantly stopped down; Haptics are fantastic. The 1,4 is excellent with excellent micro contrast and better performance on borders and edges compared to the PG, the 1,7 is as good as the 2,0 on borders and edges but has better micro contrast than the 2,0. Do not ask me why but I tend to use the 1,7…

    • Many years later, as you can see, I ended old lens testing and comparing for the most part. There are many reasons, economic included, but one of the main is that I learned in time, how hugely important the sample variation can be. Simply put, most out of this cheap category lenses are rather good, if you manage to get a good copy. Canon, Minolta, Pentax, Nikon, Olympus, Ricoh, Yashica, you choose, no big differences there (in the comparable FL and speed).
      Happy shooting, Viktor

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