Well, here we go, little bit of history behind my reasoning for this review/comparison. When i first started in photography I used minolta film camera's and MD mount lenses. When i converted over to digital and thusly the EOS camera's, my poor MD and MC lenses were left to collect dust in my closet along with the camera's themselves. I recently read a review of the Rokkor 58 1.2 and was absolutely enthused to give conversions a try. I originally started off converting my MD 50 1.4 as someone else had already done a conversion with a CnC machine. I am a fairly handy fellow so i opted to convert mine hand held via Dremel. In another post it shows my initial findings from that piece of glass. (of witch shows great results) But I was not satisfied there, i proceeded to convert my MC 50 1.4 that was my primary lens back in the day. Why leave such great glass alone... lol
So beyond the back story here is the conversions and my initial review of the two lenses wide open on a canon 40D.
The primary use of these two lenses were vastly different when i used them on film camera's and I am seeing the same pattern when used on digital.
I find that both of these lenses are very very sharp. I have used the canon EF 50 1.4 and found these two lenses easily exceed the canon version, and in some instances hold their own when compared to the canon L 50 1.2. (but that is for everyone else to decide)
This review is only at 1.4 on each lens, i have not had enough time to evaluate each at any aperture above 1.4.
My initial finds are that the MD 50 is a sharper lens but the bokeh is not quite as well blurred as the MC version. Like wise the MC 50 was not quite as sharp as the MD, but showed a better diffusion of the background and did not show quite as pronounced aperature blades in the background. Much more of a "creamy/dreamy" look. Not as good as the 58 1.2 demonstrates, but it shows a much better "glow" than that of the canon 50 1.4.
The characteristics of each lens varies also, from the slight change in the barrel size, and focus difference between the MD and MC versions, the halations appear and are more pronounced within the MC version, just like when used on film. To me, this make this lens a touch more appealing for portrate work, and anything requiring a large aperture with a "dreamy" glow.
all criticism is greatly appreciated!
Below are shots from the test. Each can is exactly 12 inches behind the other. The furthest right can is exactly 24 inches from each lens in the test. Each lens was tested at 50 and at 1.4 and auto metered in day light. The shutter speed measured out to 1/400s in each shot, and each shot was taken on a mostly level surface... lol each shot is unprocessed, and JPEG right from the 40D.
In the first set of pictures, the Top is the MC and the Bottom is the MD.
Rest of the pictures will retain this orientation.