Possible to mount M42 lenses to Olympus OM10 or OM20?

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ted_smith

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I've been searching for a good quality lens to accompany my Olympus OM camera setup as I only have the 50mm 1.8 for it.

I stumbled across a few of these 'CARL ZEISS JENA' lenses which get fantastic reviews on many of the posts I have read (like this one : https://www.pentaxforums.com/userreviews/carl-zeiss-jenna-sonnar-mc-135mm-f35.html), and they are surpprisingly affordable for some reason (?) but they are M42 mounts. I am very keen on Carl Zeiss lenses as I have 3 for my Hasselblad, which furthers my confusion at the low cost of the one I have linked to, and several others like it that I have seen.

So I Googled mounting M42 lenses to Olympus OM cameras like my OM10 and OM20, and most report the need for adapters etc which pretty much put me off. However, some posts, like the end of this one (https://www.photrio.com/forum/threads/m42-to-olympus-om-adatper.63454/#post-902705) suggest no adapter is needed.

So I am hoping for a finite answer. Do I need an adapter mount, or not, to mount a 'CARL ZEISS JENA' lens, like this one (https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/CARL-ZEI...=item4d7e9ff20c:g:qicAAOSw2CJaqsvS:rk:19:pf:0) to my Olympus OM10 and OM20? Thanks.

UPDATE : Just found this entry (https://www.photo.net/discuss/threads/when-is-a-carl-zeiss-lens-not-a-carl-zeiss-lens.282268/) which is insightful and has helped me understand the 'Jena' significance, but the fact remains that the image quality of these lenses seems to be very good, regardless of "branding" and even if they are not considered 'true zeiss' lenses (opinions seem to vary). So I am still interested about the M42 mount to Olympus OM.
 
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MattKing

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Yes you need an adapter. And because of the flange to film distance, for normal it will need an image degrading lens element in it in order to focus to infinity.
And when you are using an adapter, the metering will only function in stop down mode.
So you spend a lot of time with a dim viewfinder, or switching back and forth between a large aperture to compose and focus and a small aperture to set the exposure correctly.
Over here, the OM 135mm f/3.5 lenses are "cheap as chips". As are the OM 28mm f/3.5 lenses.
This one looks good: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/OLYMPUS-...m=163287754591&_trksid=p2047675.c100005.m1851
 
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ted_smith

ted_smith

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OK Matt...thank you. That answers the question! I'll stick with the Zuiko lines (though I have been taken by the fine contrast in the examples I've seen of the CZ Jena's...not sure the Olympus 135mm f3.5 is known for that same image quality which is why I was asking...similar prices but seemingly\apparantly better image quality)
 

abruzzi

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Your key problem is that the Olympus OM Mount is 46mm from the flange to film plane. The M42 Mount is 45.46mm. What this means is if you were able to mount the lens flange surface flush with the camera flange surface, you would not be able to achieve infinity focus, because the lens elements couldn’t get close enough. In addition you might not be able to build a mount to even get flange to flange, since a half a millimeter is not a lot of space to work with. You could potentially get an adapter but it would require optics in the adapter to correct for focusing.

If you want to try out M42 lenses, you’re probably better off getting a Pentax Spotmatic, or something else that uses M42.
 

MattKing

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OK Matt...thank you. That answers the question! I'll stick with the Zuiko lines (though I have been taken by the fine contrast in the examples I've seen of the CZ Jena's...not sure the Olympus 135mm f3.5 is known for that same image quality which is why I was asking...similar prices but seemingly\apparantly better image quality)
I owned a 135mm f/3.5 Zuiko for several years, and it served me extremely well. I used it for newspaper work, travel (it is wonderfully compact) and general photography.
Do you use your cameras hand-held? If so, any marginally small difference between one good quality 135mm lens and another won't matter.
While the excellent size and weight and ergonomics of the Zuiko lens will matter.
 

AgX

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If for whatever reason you do not want to use Olympus lenses, there are a lot of lenses available from other manufactuters in OM-mount.
 

btaylor

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Keep life simple, put M42 lenses on M42 bodies and Zuiko’s on your OMs. If you really want to try those DDR Zeiss Jena lenses pick up a great body like a Spotmatic for a few bucks and have fun. If you go down that road you’ll get a chance to find out how great the Takumars are.
 

AgX

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Keep life simple, put M42 lenses on M42 bodies and Zuiko’s on your OMs. If you really want to try those DDR Zeiss Jena lenses pick up a great body like a...
... Praktica, to follow your advise.
 

thuggins

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An OM that takes an M42 lens is called an Olympus FTL. Olympus made a very fine set of M42 Zuikos.
 

MattKing

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An OM that takes an M42 lens is called an Olympus FTL. Olympus made a very fine set of M42 Zuikos.
For clarity, it might be better to say "The Olympus SLR that takes an M42 lens is the earlier Olympus FTL. Olympus made a very fine set of M42 Zuikos."
Once you say "OM", you are talking about the later, OM bayonet mount cameras.
 
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