Sunday, April 9, 2017

Albinar-ADG MC 80-200mm Auto Zoom MARCO f4.5-5.6

I picked-up this vintage Albinar-ADG MC 80-200mm Auto Zoom MARCO f4.5-5.6 at a local record store (yes 'record' store) for $14.99 in a used camera/lens display case.  This particular lens was a Minolta (MD) mount, that was easily adapted (with an inexpensive Fotasy adapter) to my Samsung NX1 Digital Camera.

There are limited Internet reviews and incomplete data on this lens,  Most reviews 'put-down' the lens without explanation as cheap or a waste of money.  I like cheap, no-name lenses in the hope that they are either surprisingly good, or have some strange lens aberration that makes it useful as an 'effect' on photography or filmmaking.    

The research I conducted suggests the name 'Albinar' was branded for sale in a chain of electronic stores known as "BEST" that was in business from 1957-through the early 90's in 23 states.  Other posts suggest that the lenses were either manufactured by RICOH or Tokina in Japan. Source:

The photo below shows this ALBINAR lens on my NX1:

Some Basic Specs:

Manufactured:  Japan
Mount: Minolta (MD)
Focal Length: 80-200mm
Aperture Range f4.5-f22  MACRO 1:4
Focus: 1.1m to infinity.  In MACRO, 3-ft was the closest I was able to get to subject
Filter Diameter: 49mm
Elements: 11 in 8 groups
Aperture Blades: 6
Weight 390g
Features: Multi-coated
Manufactured Date: Unknown..Estimate Early 80's

Here are some initial test photos taken mid-morning with the Samsung NX1 with photosize set to 23.4 megapixel, 16:9 format, (6480x3648px)

Note: These photos are presented 'as-photographed' - no post editing, adjustments or effects. Camera settings are listed below each photo.

All photographs were on a tripod.

Note: The NX1 has an APS-C sensor.  The crop factor is 1.5, which is the 35mm equivalent for this lens 120mm to 300mm

    Shutter 1/60sec / ISO100  / -0.3 EV / f5.6 / Focal length 80mm

This photograph below was taken in the MACRO mode.  The closest I was able to get to the subject and still remain in focus was 3-feet.

The MACRO is good for close-ups, but the focus depth-of-view has a narrow range (see what's in and out of focus in the photo below), so I needed to be aware to double-check that I was happy with the foucs before taking the shot.

        Shutter 1/80sec / ISO100  / -0.3 EV / f5.6 / Focal length MACRO

Photographed at 80mm

       Shutter 1/160sec / ISO100  / -0.3 EV / f11 / Focal length 80mm

Photographed at 200mm 

Shutter 1/160sec / ISO100  / -0.3 EV / f11 / Focal length 80mm
Shutter 1/160sec / ISO100  / -0.3 EV / f11 / Focal length 200mm

   Shutter 1/160sec / ISO100  / -0.3 EV / f11 / Focal length 150mm

Comments: These first initial photographs are quite impressive for the Albinar.  No lens defects or fungus are present.  The zoom is a barrel push-pull and is smooth; however, the focus 'feels' rough/choppy, possibly due to lack of lubrication or mechanical wear (speculation).  Although there is no issue with the focusing the lens.

So to conclude my initial look at this lens, I am quite satisfied that the sharpness is good and the mechanical/optical properties have remained in good working order for this vintage lens.

Let me know if you have any questions or something to add about this particular lens.

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