THE TOMIOKA 55mm 1:1.2 here in the AUTO REVUENON Version.
Compared to my CANON FD 55 1.2 the lens is more the size of a F 1.4 copy with that focal range. On the bottom glass you can see that normally its impossible to bring a F 1.2 in a so small housing. And this construction to combine with an adapter was a real challenge. The bottom lens is so large, that my unmodified M42 adapter was to small to let the bottom glass go its way for infinity focus.
Thus I modified the M42 adapter and finally I managed it to bring this legend again to a new life together with my Fuji X cameras.
The first evening with my Italian friends, showed the character of this lens and the ability to produce very soft but very mutual dreamy shots with a great bokeh and enough detail. Most of the modern lenses and even my CANON FD vintage lenses deliver wide open at F1.2 more contrast, but esp. for portrait or these spontaneous people shots the character of this soft and low contrast results is welcome.
The next series shoes the character of the bokeh from F16 to F1.2.
To compare the character of the lens vs modern glass or other high speed vintage glass I took the FUJINON XF 56 1.2 and the CANON FD 55 1.2 aspehrical.
But first a comparison of a RAW and a modest postprocessing in lightroom, to show that you can bring back the contrast if needed.
And here the comparison vs the CANON and the FUJI.
Here the TOMIOKA F 1.2 (after postprocessing) and F 2.8.
The CANON FD 55 1.2 aspherical F 1.2 and F 2.8
And the FUJINON XF 56 1.2 at F 1.2 and F 2.8.
The FUJINON beat both vintage lenses but the differences are minor. All three lenses delivering a great bokeh with enough detail. With the TOMIOKA you get ONTOP a dreamy opportunity for a special soft look and if needed with post processing nearly the performance of the others.
When you stop down the lenses the performance improves but You dont use a F 1.2 lens to shot at F11, you put it on your camera to have that special dreamy, bokeh and narrow depth of field.
But what can be a motivation to prefer the one lens over the other. As always...it depends...
The handling of the lenses is quite different. The Fujinon with the autofocus, vs the CANON and TOMIOKA with manual focus.
This is mainly a review of the TOMIOKA but this is the chapter where my personnel joy of use with the TOMIOKA is at home.
The built quality of the lens is excellent and the manual focus feeling is on par with my best manual lenses.
Sorry FUJINON XF but in the chapter manual focus feeling the focus by wire of the XF56 is absolute crap.
The classic lens design at its best in combination with the focus peaking abilities of modern DSLM like the FUJI X cameras are for me the best of two worlds. I have nearly every FUJINON XF lens thats available in my bag but that "manual focus thing" is currently my cup of tea.
Not every shot is a hit, but the silent and smooth handling gives is a good qualification to play with the subject and the focus and find some compositions out of the normal focus point areas.
I tried the very expensive LEICA M, but sorry this is only the best of one world. The old manual world. The rangefinder is not able to give you that flexibility of a modern EVF. The M10 tries to compensate this with its new CMOS sensor and the back screen and the focus peaking there. But I like the approach of SONY, Panasonic, Olympus or my FUJI System more, to have a high resolution EVF and a classic approach of holding the camera to your eye and not with your arms 50cm in front of you, like the IPHONE Way.
But lets see some more bokeh captures wide open.
The series show the bokeh form minimum focus distance to near infinity.
The next row show a bokeh comparison to my Minolta MD 55 1.4 on the left and my Takumar 85 1.9 adapted on a 0,72xfocal reducer or speedbooster on the right.
In the comparison you can see, that the TOMIOKA has a special bokeh signature with the half open balls. This is due to its special bottom glass construction. Many criticize it, I like it.
And here are some final street shots with the TOMIOKA AUTO-REVUENON 55mm 1.2. A beautiful soft character that can produce a special mute.
All in all the TOMIOKA is a joy to use.
The first challenge with this lens is to find the right adapter solution due to its special bottom glass construction and on top of that the aperture setting of my copy has some quirks due to a unstable switch for manual focus when you manage the challenges, the lens is yours.
The focus feeling is excellent and I like the softness wide open and the beautiful rendering of colors. It will never be a winner in every aspect but I love vintage glass for its special character and there the TOMIOKA has a lot, it plays in this discipline in the first league of vintage glass.