What 3 lenses?

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I'm sitting here looking out my window playing with my FP-1. I'm trying to decide what lenses I should take with me on a little trip to a outside shopping area here in Kansas City called the plaza. It made me think since my camera bag will only hold three lenses, if I could only OWN 3 what would I pick?

Since it's been awhile since I've own a Konica (1983 a TC)I you just could afford 3 lenses what would you pick? Not brands but configuration.

I'm thinking a 40mm, a 35-70 zoom and a 70-210 zoom. Any thoughts? I'm going to sell off my extras and get keep 3-4 lenses, and your insight would be extremely helpful! I have a FP-1 & will have a FT-1 that's on it's way to Konica for a full rebuild as I type.

Thanks for the help.

-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000


3 lenses...

Hi Brad,

Well, I wouldn't pick zooms over primes. The prime lenses will produce a much higher picture quality over the 15+ year old zooms. Even today, pro zooms are still just reaching prime quality. But, just my option.

So, that being said, I would pick a wide angle (wider than better) a 57mm to 135mm lens and a 300mm or bigger lens.

That would be my choices. So, out of the lenses I currently own, here is my 3:

17mm 57mm 1000mm TC x2 (does this count?)

(I don't own anything between a 136-999mm lens)

BTW: If you are interested in selling anything, give me an email and let me know.



-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000

Just 3 lenses!

Oh geez, Brad, this is a tough one!

At last count, I have 31 lenses for my Konicas (admittedly, 6 are "normals", most of which came w/various bodies).

Hey, one way to get around bag limitations is to mount two lenses on two bodies and hang those around your neck too! Then, under your scenario, I could get at least 5 focal lengths!

Like Mike in his earlier post, I shy away from the older zooms, including Hexanons. The only one I currently have, which I've used when travelling to lighten my camera bag, is a 24-40/3.5 Sun. IMHO, wide zooms are much more useful and more forgiving than long zooms.

Okay, there are 5 fixed focal length lenses in my bag right now, ranging from 21, 24, 135, 200 macro & 500 Cat. Using my theory that lenses mounted on bodies don't count, I have a 90/2.5 macro Tamron that practically lives on an FT-1 and a 55/2.8 macro Vivitar on a T4 w/winder.

But, peek in the trunk of my car and you'll find a separate backpack with a backup body, 85, 100, fast 135, 200, 300, 400, plus a bellows unit. (I like to use the 85 & 135 on the bellows.)

And there is another bag with a tripod and a monopod, but that sort of lives in the trunk of my car, anyway. So it doesn't count, right?

Oh, and then there is the other case with flashes, battery packs, brackets and flash meter.

Just 3 lenses, huh? Okay, I'd take the 24-40 zoom, 90/2.5 (but I get to keep my auto extension tubes) and either the 300/4.5 Hexanon or my dream lens, a 300/2.8 Tamron (can I sneak in a 1.5x or 1.4x TC?).

Let us know when you decide to "dispose" of that equipment. We'll be glad to help!

Alan Myers

-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000

Let me know when you decide to "dispose" of that equipment

Hi Alan,

Let me know when you decide to "dispose" of your equipment. haha. :))

Seriously, I am looking for a 40mm f1.8 cheapie if you have one. Hell, I'll take any lenses for cheap that you might want to unload, even 3rd party window glass lenses! haha.


-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000

Only 3?

24mm f2.8 Hexanon 57mm f1.4 Hexanon 300mm f4.5 Hexanon

If I can sneak it in: 135mm f3.2 Hexanon


-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000

Oh, so it is you who keeps stealing all my stuff I bid on at eBay..hahaha

Hi James,

I recognise the -jwk- there and was wondering if it is you who keeps stealing all my stuff I bid on at eBay..hahaha Seems someone there with their eBay ID: -jwk- keeps getting all the good deals from under my nose. ;)

If you wanted to sell anything you got extra, please let me know ok? :)

Mike michael.lepard@home.com <== my eBay ID haha.

-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000

what three lenses

I carried only three lenses in my travel kit for many years; seldom did I ever need more:

- 28mm f/3.5 Hexanon - 57mm f/1.4 Hexanon - 135mm f/3.2 Hexanon

Slides from these lenses hold up splendidly with my 30X magnifier. I eventually replaced the 28mm with the 24mm f/2.8, but I would be comfortable with either and quality is comparable--in other words, darned good! I have always packed the Hexanon 2X as well, but seldom if ever use it. An 80-200 range zoom would have been great, but I could never get the results I wanted from the zooms, especially at large apertures which I was often forced to use since I shoot mostly Kodachrome 25 or 64. Most of the Konica zooms are OK when stopped down, but at full aperture, my results were disappointing. The 135mm f/3.2 was simply a better choice for my work; it also focuses to almost three feet, closer than most 135s, so I use it for some close-up work, flowers, leaves, etc. It will really fill the frame for portrait work. I must admit that I also carried a 17mm f/4.0 Pentax Takumar full frame fisheye lens in my travel bag. I used it in the manual mode with the Konica/Pentax adapter of course. That would be lens number four. It was primarily for shots on board aircraft during my Air Force trips--there are few straight lines on most aircraft, very little room, and the fisheye really fills the bill. I eventually replaced it with the Hexanon 15mm f/2.8, which was a better lens. So, I carried four lenses for many years, but really only used three once the wheels were down. Throw in a set of Vivitar auto extension tubes, or even just one of the three sections, a few filters, and a nice auto flash, and you're set. This basic three lens outfit will take care of 90% of my work. At todays eBay prices on the 28mm/3.5, 57mm/1.4 and 135mm/3.2, the investment in great image potential has never been better.


-- Anonymous, December 16, 2000

How about 3.5 lenses?

I think the 40/1.8 "pancake" should only count as half a lens! Maybe the 28/3.5 too.

Happy holidays!

Alan Myers

-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000

What 3 Lenses?

Brad, Easy one: 28mm Hexanon, 55mm Vivitar macro, 70-210 Tamron. Since they are not strictly lenses, a set of extension tubes, too.

Jon from Deepinaharta, Georgia

-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000

55mm Vivitar macro

Hi Jon, What type of 55mm Vivitar macro do you have there? Is it a Konica mount or Nikon Non-Ai? I am interested in finding a good 1:1 macro lens, and believe it or not, I don't want the Hexanon one.


-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000

55mm Vivitar macro

Mike, I have the Konica mount on mine. Actually, there are few dogs in macro lenses (zoom lenses don't count as macro). They are just too expensive and difficult to make to let quality control go to hell. Your biggest problems in choosing one are price and focal length. Some prefer relatively short focal lengths (50-60mm), others wouldn't be caught dead without a 90-100mm length. Still others love the 200mm length. Again, it comes down to what you will use the lens for. If it's for copy work, fine details of objects, or record shots of small creatures, a 50mm or so lens works fine. But, for skittish insects or subjects that can't be approached too closely, or extra light is wanted, a longer lens is needed. Being a "bug" type, I use whatever works which explains why I own several bellows, a few extension tube sets, a 55mm, a 105mm, and other assorted paraphenalia associated with extreme close-ups and macro-photography. I almost bought the Hexanon, but, being basically lazy, I didn't want to have to putz around with an adaptor to get to 1:1. Eventually, though, I will break down and get it. Think about what you want the lens for is the best advice I can give when it comes to such specialty lenses. Then you will know what questions to ask for your specific case.

Jon from Deepinaharta, Georgia

-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000

Macro Lenses.

Hi Jon,

Thanks for the macro lens advice and tips, very helpful. I have been looking for a 90mm+ macro lens for some time for my Nikon camera, so this would definately be the focal lenght I would want to have. Right now I use a Vivitar 80-205 f4 RL Edition zoom that goes down to 1:3.4 not bad for a zoom I think, with an x2 TC it goes lower and with two x2 TC's you can get REALLY Close, but forget the f stop at f16. haha.

I also didn't like the Hexanon 55mm macro 1:2 lens for 2 reasons, 1. the extention tube idea and 2. the f7 when you are at 1:1 too dark.

I wish they made the Sigma EX 105mm 1:1 f2.8 lens in Konica mount, this is a really outstanding new lens for AF cameras. But I will look around for the 90mm+ lenses in K/AR, Non-AI, or M42 screw mounts. :))

Thanks agian,


-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000

What 3 lenses

OK - Let's see...

Undoubtably my 21mm Hexanon, Then my 35-70 Hexanon and finally my 200mm Hex with the 2x Hex AR

I would probably miss my 135mm 3.2 and may bring it with the 2X instead of the 200.....


-- Anonymous, December 11, 2000

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