Konica Hexanon 40mm f1.8 Review

In this article, we are here again with a famous lens review. We are reviewing the Konica Hexanon Ar 40mm f1.8 lens. In our article, you will find the technical specifications, sample photos and user comments of the Konica 40mm f1.8 lens.

Technical Data of Konica AR 40mm f1.8

Lens name Konica Hexanon Ar 40mm f1.8
Aperture max-min 1.8 to 22
Weight 140 g
Length 2.9 mm
Element 6 optical elements in 5 groups
Minimum focusing distance  45 cm
Number of diaphragm blades 6
Maximum magnification
Anti-shake  no
Filter diameter   55 mm
Mde in  Japon

I am faced with a lens that differs from the usual focal length. 40mm is a very rare focal length in the market. For what purpose is it used, if you say; If you like the lens, you can use it for any purpose.

An example photo with sony a7r2 at f2.8 and 1/6 sec at iso 250.

Konica 40mm Physical Properties

It is extremely compact with a weight of 140 g and a length of about 3 cm. Close to pancake style. Since the adapter to be used in mirrorless is also relatively short, it only corresponds to a normal 50mm size with the adapter. Although the 55mm filter diameter goes against the minimalism of the lens I just mentioned, we assume it’s worth it for the f1.8 aperture. When viewed from the front surface, the 1.8/40 text highlighted in red on the ring where the brand and features are written is strong enough to attract the attention.

It has 6 optics. Compressing 6 optics, large and small, to a short distance of 3 cm is just an engineering for the Japanese. With its 6 bladed 6-gen structure, the aperture can take the maximum f1.8 value, while the min can be f22. The aperture ring, approximately 5mm wide, is designed to stop at full stops. Frankly, I would sincerely wish that it could get value at half stops. I’ll talk about why in a little while. The ring is all metal. In serrated form, except for the written parts on the upper part. The fineness of the aperture ring is also reflected in the clarity ring; because the lens itself is very thin. The focus ring has a thickness of around 8mm-10mm. But unlike the diaphragm ring, the focus ring is the heart with plastic parts. Obviously, it eliminates the feeling of slipping in the hand and can provide full grip. The focus ring has a rotation angle of approximately 150 degrees. Windshield does not rotate while focusing. In this state, it is quite suitable to use cpl filters.

Konica 40mm MDF

Minimum focusing distance is 45cm. Therefore, it is not possible to talk about macro photography. I wish it was 30 cm. That’s when this lens could be beyond great. 45cm distance is very ideal for uses except macro. It has the bokeh power that can easily destroy the background with f1.8. It is no different from a classic 50mm lens, especially at open apertures at distances up to 2 – 2.5 m. In this state, I can define the purpose of the Konica 40mm f1.8 as taking portraits on the street. The bokeh character in the background felt different for some reason. Complex cream bokeh. As in Konica 50mm Hexanon f1.4, it resembles an oil painting with objects of different colors. Like…

Color Contrast and Sharpness on Konica 40mm f1.8

The colors are so sweet. It is common to see Hexanon colors in this lens as well. It has saturated colors that are not artificial. It’s hard to describe, frankly. You can see it from the shot samples below. Contrast isn’t perfect at f1.8, but it’s great at f2.8 and above. Close to Minolta contrast. Sharpness is also low at f1.8, similar to contrast. Not quite a few; less usable. But when it is taken to 1 stop, that is f2.8, the sharpness increases. At f2.8, colours, contrast and sharpness are all at a high level. These phenomena I mentioned are especially valid for full-frame cameras. The f1.8 values I mentioned give better results on crop compatible machines. There is no need for full-stop throttling, but unfortunately, full-stop throttling is necessary since there are no half-stops in the aperture transitions I mentioned in the first paragraphs. This is what hurt me so much.

The text samples from the center of the photographs taken with the Konica 40mm at different f values are a good example for us to see how the sharpness and contrast progress.

Although the Konica 40mm f1.8 Hexanon lens is made for full-frame cameras, it is also quite open to use on many other ratio crop cameras. While 60mm is equivalent to 1.5x factor cameras, 80mm with 2x factor (m43, Olympus, Panasonic) turns into a full portrait lens with f1.8 values. When we add the convenience of carrying in a much more compact way with the adapters, which are shorter than other bayonets due to the short flange distance, it will be a matter of time that it will become one of the indispensables of the users.

Optical Defects on Konica Hexanon ar 40mm f1.8

Corner blackouts, vignetting, are observed at f1.8 on full-frame cameras. There are also noteworthy vignettes, especially in the upper right two corners. As you pinch the diaphragm, the vignettes disappear and become unobtrusive, possibly around f5.6-f6.3. In crop cameras, on the other hand, vignettes are much less at f1.8 compared to ff and it is very difficult to watch like 2.8.

Chromatic Aberrations are similar to vignettes. While observed quite a lot at the widest aperture, these purple glows disappear as the aperture is narrowed. And again, the errors we call coma in night shots are also below mediocre at f1.8.

The light entering from the top of the frame has reduced the contrast, Glare has occurred. Sony a7r2, f2.8 iso 500

The luminance resistance of the Konica 40mm f1.8 is not very good, especially at wide aperture. According to Konica, I could not find any coating information, but as far as I understood by looking at the glass colors in the light, it may have a simple coating. I am not sure. Although there is a coating, it obviously did not work in f1.8. Frankly, f2.8 is not exactly as desired. f5.6 is also recording serious recovery. Personally, I can’t say it got a full pass for these ghostly glows. One of the technical reasons for the aforementioned glare may be the fact that the front optics protrude almost at the same level with the filter plane and the filter diameter is 55mm. It does not have a recessed design like the Helios 44-2 or the Industar 61lz.

Konica ar 40mm f1.8 Pros and Cons


First of all, its compact structure and ease of transport.

It is very fast at very wide aperture like f1.8.

Produces color, contrast and sharpness good enough to use even at f1.8

Increasing many optical values to the upper level at f2.8.


Absence of intermediate aperture values.

Low resistance to backlight.

f1.8 wide aperture optical defects (vignette, ca, ghost)

Especially at night, the appearance of defects in point light sources.

In conclusion;

If you want to have a lens that has strengthened its place among 40mm lenses, Konica 40mm f1.8 Hexanon is the lens for you. While the equivalent 40mms get at least f2 value, the Konica 40mm has an aperture value that can make itself faster. While it can be found for around $ 50 in the global market, it will always be a profitable investment to buy and set aside. For the price, I can say that it is successful. Of course, I would like to point out that it does not have the power to compete with the current 10x – 15x expensive lenses.

One thought on “Konica Hexanon 40mm f1.8 Review

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