The Asahi SMC Takumar 55mm F1.8 which is an excellent and wildly popular lens made sometime between the 60s and 70s. In my possession is one such lens which was loaned to me a couple of weeks ago by another respectable gentleman.
To be frank, I’ve been struggling to shoot with it. My main style of photography is street. Although the lens has an aperture ring on it which I appreciate a lot, the focal length of 55mm and manual focusing make it really difficult for me.
I had the same problem with the Helios 44.
Typically what I do is frame a composition and then wait for my subject to walk into my frame – but because the lens is vintage – I find my exposure fluctuating which results in many missed shots.
Today my young daughter and I decided to take a bicycle ride together despite the haze.
So I told her that I would be taking her photo everytime we took a break along the way, to which she agreed.
I guess it is true that you need the right tool for the right job.
The Asahi SMC Takumar 55mm F1.8 was great for portrait shots when you can take your time to compose the shot and your model is not moving about.
I must also say that the Asahi SMC Takumar 55mm F1.8 was very easy to use although it was a manual focus lens.
The smooth focus ring combined with focus peaking on my Fujifilm X-T3 made it easy to nail focus every time.
In conclusion, I really liked the Asahi SMC Takumar 55mm F1.8 and will be looking at getting my own copy after I return my loaner.