Camera Geekery: MS Optics Apoqualia-G 28mm f2

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by Bellamy /

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Camera Geekery: MS Optics Apoqualia-G 28mm f2
It has been a long and hot summer in Japan, but that has not stopped Miyazaki San from getting back into the lab and bringing out some new masterpieces. The first of which is the stunning and extremely small Apoqualia-G 28mm f2 Ultra Thin.
Apologies for the images, I only have my i-phone at the moment. I shall have better images soon.

As many of you may know, MS Optics is the official name for Miyazaki sans brand. He has famously released a number of handmade and often curious lenses for M mount cameras. Including the ridiculously tiny 21mm pancake and the ultra fast 50mm 1.1 Sonnetar. One of the lenses that Miyazaki made in the past was a 28mm f4 Perar, which was extremely popular. Now Miyazaki san has decided to have another crack at the 28mm, this time going for an f2! And yet it is still a tiny wee lens.

As usual for Miyazaki, he likes things to be on the smaller side. And this lens is no exception. He even marks it ‘Ultra Thin’ on the barrel (if you can call it that), minus any spelling mistakes this time of course.

Each lens comes with this delightful description of the lens in Miyazaki’s handwriting. You can read the translation of this below.

APOQUALIA 28mm F2 Full MC

Due to the retro-focus designs and aspherical elements that have become the norm in recent years, 28mm F2 lenses now have very high optical performance. However, such lenses are bigger which makes them poor for doing footwork. I am always aiming for something unique so I continued my research on a compact gauss formula lens and finally came up with an extremely compact lens only 50mm in diameter, 9.8mm long, and weighing just 70 grams that delivers my kind of character and gentleness of performance.

Astigmatism is fully corrected (although field curvature of about 0.3m/m remains) and a beautiful circular image with beautiful bokeh is obtained at the point of focus. Chromatic aberration is minimal and on par with what you would expect for an APO lens, and curvature is minimal at about 1/5 to 1/8 that of a retro-focus lens. Sagittal coma, which is a weakness of the gauss design, cannot be avoided, and coma flare increases from the middle of the image towards the corners at f2 to f2.5. However, the center 20mm circle of the image has good sharpness and contrast to emphasize a subject placed at the center. The focus shift from the center out to the 70 degrees position is about 0.2m/m, which is minimal but you might notice it if shooting flat surfaces wide open to f2.8.

To use this lens skillfully, it is important to combine its strengths and weaknesses. Performance is very good when the lens is stopped down to f4 and beyond, making it a good all-rounder lens. f2 to f2.5 is the aperture range in which the character of this lens appears, and the high contrast in the center 20mm circle and beautiful flare wide open can be utilized to good effect.

Please note this lens does not work with Bessa cameras. Though Miyazaki declines to mention why.

Specifications

Gauss type with six elements in four groups
Focal length = 28.8mm
Maximum aperture = f2.08
Leica M-mount
Focusing = coupled from 0.9m to infinity, from 0.6m to 0.9m on mirrorless bodies
Filter thread = 28mm with 0.75mm thread pitch
Size = 50mm diameter x 9.8mm length
Weight = 70 grams

@ f2 Resolution over the entire field is good
Outside the center 20mm circle, coma flare increases and contrast drops

@ f4 High image quality over entire field
Beautiful image with no astigmatism

@ f8 Highest resolution
Waviness in contrast is due to image plane field curvature

This lens has only just come in, so I have not had a chance to test it out on a camera yet. I hope to take it out this weekend and put it through its paces. On film, of course. I shall share images taken with the lens when I get them.

Limited stocks are available of this lens and there is a waiting period as they come in trickles. You can pre-order your copy of this lens by following the link here www.japancamerahunter.com/shop/ms-optics-apoqualia-g-28mm-f2-ultra-thin

Thanks
Japancamerahunter

10 comments on “Camera Geekery: MS Optics Apoqualia-G 28mm f2”

    former bessa owner October 6, 2016 at 9:37 pm / Reply

    Bessa bodies have this “step” at the bottom, when you look into the body from the lens mount. If the back of this lens is wide and reaches into the mount, chances are that large step will block the lens from fitting. That’s all that I can think of, really.

    Very cool lens, but as with all of these delightful pancakes I really wish they were LTM, as these would be perfect companions to the classic Barnack bodies. Small, slim, light and with plenty of character.

    Big fan of Miyazaki’s works. I always look forward to the next thing he comes up with.

    Lich October 7, 2016 at 4:31 pm / Reply

    So is it 5 elements or 6 (as shown in the diagram)? I bet 6, fix it please Miyazaki-san! :)

      Bellamy October 7, 2016 at 5:33 pm /

      It is six elements. Thanks.

    irmfried windbichler October 10, 2016 at 5:12 pm / Reply

    this lens is ver interesting. in the pictures it is always shown on analogue leica cameras, does this mean it does not work on a full frame digital m?

    Alex Jackson-Smith October 10, 2016 at 6:06 pm / Reply

    Oh, that is so beautiful. What an amazing person. Just the energy, effort and skill to create something like this and then, on top, to do it with such obvious enthusiasm and passion. Its a pity you don’t do videos, a short visit to his workshop would be fascinating. Even an iphone vid would be great, but you probably don’t have time.

    Wow, Bellamy you really do find connection with great people.

    Simon October 13, 2016 at 2:41 pm / Reply

    YESSSSSSSPLEASSSSSSSSE,

    Matt October 13, 2016 at 3:55 pm / Reply

    Most sites mention that these lenses are designed, manufactured and hand assembled by the Mr. himself. I believe the design and assembly, but from all the photos I have seen of his workshop I do not believe he manufactures these himself at all. Any comment on that? Someone who has the capabilities of manufacturing such a well made lens is not the same person that would cut those two notches into the front ring so crudely.

      Bellamy October 14, 2016 at 8:25 am /

      Hi Matt,
      The lenses are hand assembled by Miyazaki San, but the elements, aperture and bodies are made to order for him by outside sources to his design.
      The thing is about Miyazaki san is that he likes to do things that are what he considers to be practical, and not necessarily aesthetically pleasing.
      Thanks

    Matt October 13, 2016 at 6:45 pm / Reply

    Most likely that’s not happening anytime soon, part of the charm of the lenses is the idea that he makes these himself, an idea that is not completely faithful.

    fabien October 14, 2016 at 4:28 pm / Reply

    Is this a “modern” copy a the kinoptik 28mm f2 Apochromat? =)

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