Thursday, October 04, 2012

Using manual Minolta M-Rokkor 90mm F4

As I wrote in one of my previous posts, I bought a very small Minolta M-Rokkor 90mm f4, which I intended to use as a telephoto, at least until there are no native Fuji lenses. It was not expensive.

I have taken some nice photos with it. However, using it on Fuji X-Pro 1 is not that easy. Last month I did a photostory on a iaido seminar, which took place in Wrocław, Poland. 


I did want to have some closeups (or semi-closeups), and because you cannot move freely around during the tournament, I decided to use this lens - the longest I had. I saw some sport photos taken with similar lens on Steve Huff's blog, so this is in principle possible...
Conflict of opinion. Fuji X-Pro 1, Minolta M-Rokkor 90mm f4.

Sensei. Fuji X-Pro 1, Minolta M-Rokkor 90mm f4.
Unfortunately, it turned out that many of the photos were not focused correctly.

An example of incorrect focus
Incorrectly focused photo, X-Pro 1 with Minolta M-Rokkor 90mm f4.
Maybe some of those incorrectly focused photos could be saved by stopping down to get more depth of field, however, it was not possible because of the available light level and the required shutter speed - most of the photos presented some action, and I did not wanted to set up very high ISO. Besides, 90mm requires shorter shutter times than 50mm.  
Also, for some photos such DOF is not required - I did similar photos in the past with 2.8.

Focusing wide open and stepping down to working aperture was quite difficult, and in most cases, I just did not have the time to do so.

Also, it was almost impossible for me to focus in aquariums by another occasion...

Using magnifying view was very problematic (not possible for action), by this magnification my hands are too shaky (All the photos were taken without a tripod). Generally, it was a hit or miss, with more misses.

I did much better while taking more stationary landscape photos.

Echizen Matsushima, Fukui. Fuji X-Pro 1, Minolta M-Rokkor 90mm f4
Echizen Matsushima, Fukui. Fuji X-Pro 1, Minolta M-Rokkor 90mm f4


I have two M lenses, this and Voigtlander 15mm 4.5. With Fuji adapter it is easy to change the camera setting which lens is used, so that the correct EXIF is written. However, it is easy to forgot when you do not use OVF for a particular shot. I forgot a few times to switch the lens type after I switched the lens...

Otherwise, I have no complaints against the Fuji adapter. I wish the aperture could be written into EXIF data though...


The lens is capable of very nice results. However, it is not an easy-to-use lens. It requires some skill and a lot of practice, and with firmware 1.1 does not fit to action shots.


The text applies to using M-Rokkor 90mm with X-Pro 1 with firmware 1.1. All the photos mentioned in this post were taken with firmware 1.1.
I will make another test with firmware 2.0.

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