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HELIOS MMZ 44M | Lens Review

Helios 44M (4)


   The Helios MMZ 44M is my second lens in the Helios series of lenses.  I got into these lenses after getting the 44-2.  The 44-2 is a beauty in my opinion so I am wondering how this one would perform.  I freaking love how this lens looks and feels.  This lens was based on the Carl Zeiss Biotar 58mm f/2 42M mount.  The Soviet Union got the rights to produce the lens in the 1940’s.  The lens i own, based on the serial number was made in 1980.  The shots below were taken with a Sony A7C II.  This particular lens was produced at the MMZ (Minsk Mechanical Plant) factory.  That factory was located in Belarus and they made lenses there from the mid 70s to the mid 80’s.


Technical Specifications:

  • Focal Length: 58mm (87mm on APS-C Sensor)
  • Aperture: Range F/2-F/16
  • Mount: M42.  You will need a lens adapter to use this lens.  I used a Fotasy adapter for the images taken for this blog post.
  • Lens Construction: Metal
  • Weight: 250g (20 grams heavier than the 44-2)
  • Filter Thread Size: 49mm

Build Quality:

  • This is a very well made lens made of thick metal with an inner plastic casing.   The lens has 6 elements arranged in 4 groups with 8 aperture blades. It is a little round ball of vintage awesomeness.  


Price for the Money:

  • For the $68 USD i paid on Ebay ($45 for the lens, $20 for shipping and taxes) from Ukraine, I love this thing.  So much so that I have ordered two other 44M made at the KMZ and Belomo factories (stay tuned for those reviews).  


User Experience:

  • This particular lens is for M42 mount cameras so if you dont have one of those then you will need an adapter to use on your system.  All of these lenses are old so they wont work with your camera’s electronics and new features (autofocus, etc)  Manual focus only. Once you get over that and start to shoot you will realize the kind of shot that you get from this lens is super unique.  The colors are special.  That vintage look with the  bookeh it produces from my 44-2 is different and unique.  Check it out below.




The Lens Hooche Verdict

  I love this lens.  The hardest shot to take was Luna the cat and her dark coat.  Tried my best needed better lighting but just had to feature her as she is always up for her photo to be taken.  This is a must add lens to anyone that collects vintage lenses and anyone looking for that vintage look.   If its not your thing stick to the Sony GM’s, The Sigma Arts.  This lens wont get you a detailed shot like those lenses, but it will give you an older-vintage, 70’s, 80’s look, a look you can enjoy with your family and friends and those who love this look (like me 🙂 ).  I love it, and you will too.







Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are Amazon affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, I may earn a small commission, which helps support the maintenance and costs of this website. Thank you for your support! 🙌📸

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