Jupiter-21A 4/200 Review
Jupiter-21A 4/200 (Russian Юпитер-21А) is a telephoto lens with a removable mount. Designed for 35 mm cameras.
With appropriate adapter may be mounted on any system. Produced from 1968 through the late '70s on the Krasnogorsk Factory Zverev (KMZ).
Jupiter-21A has Sonnar optical design (4 lenses in three groups). All Jupiters have this design. The elements have a single coating—Jupiter-21A, one of the best Soviet telephoto lenses.
It has good optical characteristics and constructive convenience. It was awarded the diploma ENEA USSR. Despite its success, Jupiter-21A produced not so many copies.
In the late 70's - early 80-ies, KMZ ceases to manufacture Jupiter-21A. In 1973, the development was transferred to Vologda Optical and Mechanical Plant (VOMZ). As a result, the lens has been modified and produced the Jupiter-21M. There has been a design for the M42 system, added automatic preset aperture because of what has become a thicker barrel. and the lens is heavier at 240 grams, and the number of aperture blades decreased to 8. But the saddest thing is that Jupiter-21M shows the worst optical performance at the same optical system.
Those who use both versions say the worst sharpness and contrast. This is likely because Jupiter-21M produced from the worst glass quality. Currently, Jupiter-21A is very hard to find on sale. And besides, good optical performance is also a big collection value.
Jupiter-21A 4/200 Specs
Focal length: 200mm
Aperture: f/ 4 — f/ 22
Weight (gr): 740
Length (mm): 150
Filter Ø (mm.): 58
Aperture blades: 10
Min. Focus distance (m.): 1.7
Jupiter-21A 4/200 Handling and Mechanics
For the 200mm telephoto lens and aperture, f / 4 Jupiter-21A has good dimensions. It is not heavy, not big. It a pleasure to use. It is convenient to shooting people; it does not attract so much attention, such as modern tele zooms having large dimensions. The lens is solidly assembled, metal barrel, wide focusing ring does not Rubbered. There are scales of focus and depth of field.
The focus ring is rotated 270 degrees and allows convenient focusing on the subjects. When you rotate, the ring back of the lens is extended by 34 mm.
The lens has an interesting preset aperture mechanism. Two rings. One to set the aperture value, and the second — to close the aperture to a value set by the first ring. Such retro mechanism also occurs on the lens Tair-11. In general, this mechanism is not very convenient to use.
In this example, the aperture preset is set to "8" (white dot), and
the diaphragm is closed to the same value (red dot).
Aperture has 10 blackened blades—smooth adjustment, which is convenient for capture video. To set the lens on my Nikon camera, I use a KP-A/H mount.
There is also a retractable lens hood, which extends to 32mm.
Hood has a dense course itself that does not add up. It's comfortable.
Jupiter-21A with an extended lens hood on the camera. On the hood
is a yellow sign of the USSR quality.
Jupiter-21A 4/200 Samples
All examples are shooted on Nikon D3100. RAW export, a little exposure adjustment.
Jupiter-21A 4/200 Sharpness
The lens has good sharpness already at a wide-open aperture. At the close of the sharpness is increased. In practice, I do not close the aperture more than f / 8. And in 90% of cases, use the lens wide open and feels no discomfort with the focus and sharpness.
f/ 4 Among the shortcomings can be noted that there are chromatic aberrations at wide open in certain subjects.
Jupiter-21A 4/200 Character and Bokeh
The lens has a nice character. The sharp, and at the same time the pleasant.
Lovely Sonnar bokeh.
In this case, the lens is good for artistic photography.
Jupiter-21A 4/200 Contrast and Color Render
The lens has a good color render and contrast.
Sometimes seen leaving in small green shades in the portraits, it is easy to correct in the editor.
The backlight does not keep perfect, but still coping with it better than some Soviet single-coated lenses. In backlight and strong side, light lenses can catch flare and can distort colors.
Hood significantly helps in this, but not always.
Jupiter-21A 4/200 is a good Soviet telephoto lens. Interests in their design and artistic performance. Real collector's rarity. Please find it in our time and good condition a rarity.