7 January 2018

After my manual-focus epiphany, I thought about swapping my adapted New FD lenses for native, manual-focus Meike 28/2.8, 35/1.7, and 50/2 MFT lenses. Why? The Meikes are much more compact than just about any adapted lens, and compactness was one of the reasons I got into MFT.

Three things convinced me to keep my adapted lenses.

  1. There is no sufficiently wide option.

    I need a 17-20 mm lens on MFT (35-40 mm equivalent). The widest compact Meike lens is the 28/2.8 and as a native lens can’t be mounted on a focal reducer.

  2. The 50/2 has inadequate image quality.

    It is soft at the edges of MFT even at f/8, which is probably fine for centered portraits but not for other uses.

  3. Doubts about ergonomics.

    My GM5 with a New FD prime feels balanced in my hands, my fingers fall nicely on the focus ring, I have a reliable distance scale, and I have a reliable aperture scale with detents every half-stop. Looking at the Meikes, they seemed too small for good ergonomics, don’t have a reliable distance scale, don’t have a reliable aperture scale, and don’t have aperture detents.

So, I’ve stuck with my adapted New FDs.

And compactness? When I need it, I use a GM5 with a focal reducer and either a New FD 28/2.8 (40/4 equivalent) or a New FD 28-55/3.5-4.5 (40-80/5-6 equivalent). These are not as compact as a pancake, but are compact enough to fit in a coat pocket or man bag.

© 2018 Alan Watson Forster