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Helios lens

Kaleinar-3B lens review

Kaleinar-3 is a moderately telephoto lens for medium format cameras such as Kyiv-6S, Kyiv-60 and Kyiv-88. On these cameras, a focal length of 150 mm gives a picture similar to that of an 80 mm lens on narrow film or full digital frame.

At the full frame, the lens will demonstrate, as stated, a FR of 150 mm at f2.8 aperture. Those. it will be a very fast telephoto.

If you are not very clear about the effect of focal length on the image on different photosystems, read my article on the crop factor.

The Kaleinar optical design was originally developed by the German company Rüo-Optik G.m.b.H.

According to sources, in the 1930s, VOOMP abroad bought several optical schemes that were considered promising, incl. four-lens Kaleinar.

The VOOMP intended to use fast long-focus schemes in filming and aerial photography lenses. However, the types of glass available at that time in the lenses created according to the Kaleinar scheme gave a strong drop in resolution at the edge of the field.

By the way, this is noticeable in the performance characteristics of the object, so it was not possible to completely get rid of the effect.

The scheme was abandoned for a long time and revived already in the late 1960s with the advent of new types of optical glass.

According to the Kaleinar scheme, two lenses were produced in the USSR. These are Kaleinar-5N 2.8/100 for narrow-format devices Kyiv and Kaleinar-3 2.8/150 for medium-format devices Kyiv.

The third Kaleinar could have two types of mounts - mounts B and C.

Both the third and fifth Kaleinar were produced from about the beginning of the 80s at the Arsenal plant.

Kaleinar-3 is a rather rare lens. With which of the types of attachment - B or C, it is more common, it's hard for me to say. Roughly equally rare.

In the review, a copy of Kaleinar-3 with a B mount, released in 1984. There is a quality mark on the lens barrel.

Optical design:

Focal length: 150mm
Frame size: 60×60 mm
Number of lenses/groups: 4/4
Working length - 74.1 mm

Relative aperture: 1:2.8
Aperture scale limits: 1:2.8 - 1:16
Number of aperture blades - 6
Aperture adjustment - "Blinking"
Close focus limit - 1.8 m
Resolution (center/edge) — not less than 45/18 lines/mm.
Thread for the filter - M82x0.75

camera lens - Bayonet B
Filter mount location: front

Weight - 1040 grams

Kaleinar-3B lens is large and heavy. Weight more than a kilogram is no joke.

In fairness, modern zooms from full-frame DSLRs are no smaller in size and not much lighter in weight. So on a large modern digital SLR, the lens looks appropriate.

But on a small mirrorless crop, I would be seriously afraid to break the mount.

The lens has a single-layer coating with a barely noticeable purple tint.

The focus ring is wide and quite comfortable. True, the lens diameter is still unusually large for coverage. There is a high-quality “plucked” knurling on the ring.

The full stroke of the helicoid is more than 270 degrees. The ring moves smoothly, focusing is comfortable.

The aperture control ring is farthest from the device.

Apertures switch with clear clicks and with stops in intermediate positions.

There are only 6 aperture blades and this is a little sad. It's good that the petals are normally matted.

Kaleinar-3B has a blinking aperture and you can automatically close it, of course, only on the corresponding camera - Kyiv-60, for example.

However, the design of the diaphragm drive is successful in that to close it to the working value, the pusher must not be pressed, but, on the contrary, released.

On the Kyiv-60 camera, during framing, the pusher is pressed all the time, while the diaphragm is open. While pressing the shutter button, the pusher is released and the aperture is covered to the working value.

Thanks to this feature, the lens, being put on modern devices through an adapter, allows you to control the aperture in manual mode without any problems. The pusher is never pressed and therefore the aperture is always covered to the working value, which can be changed by turning the ring.

On a full digital frame, Kaleinar-3B is now a pronounced portrait lens. It gives a soft picture without excessive sharpness. Specifically for a portrait, this is useful.

Large FR at high aperture allows the lens to blur the background very much. By the way, I have a separate article on the topic of blurring the background.

I really liked Boke Kaleinar-3B. The blur pattern is calm and plastic. For my taste, it looks very nice.

The lens coolly conveys the amount of space.

Meanwhile, I would like a little more contrast in the picture. And chromatic aberration is noticeable too often.

If you have read any of my reviews, you may have noticed that I am not a fan of looking at the details of a picture with a mega-zoom. I think the general atmosphere is more important. But here HA cannot be ignored.

Should I look for Kaleinar-3B for modern use?
My opinion is no, it's not worth looking for.

The lens is good. This is a specialized portrait painter, and in this incarnation, all its shortcomings are leveled and its advantages are revealed.

F2,8 with a FR of 150 mm - this is directly powerful with a t.z. background blur. Only the same rare Jupiter-6 2.8 / 180 can offer you more. But it is also bigger and heavier. And Jupiter will only fit on a Nikon DSLR with a lens adapter.

On the other hand, the lens is rare. They will ask for a lot of money for him. At the same time, the quite common Tair-11A 2.8 / 135, although it has a slightly simpler TTX for blurring, but in practice it will not be noticeable.

And a FR of 150 mm is convenient only if at the shooting location it is possible to keep a distance with the model seriously so much more than the recommended social one. It is not always possible to go that far.

In general, it is better to take the more common Tair-11A or even the generally massive and cheap Jupiter-37A 3,5 / 135.

I want exotic and not too lazy to look for - Vega-28B 2.8 / 120 would be a good option. This lens is more balanced for my taste than Kaleinar-3.

All of the above will work for Nikon DSLRs.

That's all I have

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