Review and Photo example of the MR-TELYT-R 500mm F8 telephoto mirror (reflection type) lens for the Leica R.

Table of Contents


  • MR-TELYT-R 500mm F8 Photo example (using EOS-1DsMK3)


MR-TELYT 500 is a reflective telephoto lens designed by Walter Mandler of Germany and manufactured by Minolta of Japan. According to information on the overseas Leica-Forum Wiki, 3,800 were made between 1980 and 1996.

Although it is sold under the Leica brand, there is no particular difference in performance or image quality from other mirror lenses. Due to the long focal length of 500mm, if you use this lens on a body without image stabilization, the image in the viewfinder will shake so much that you will feel sick.
Mirror lenses that have a focal length of 500mm and weigh only 750g are highly portable, but people have different preferences regarding the donut blur that occurs with mirror lenses. I don’t dislike it, but I do think it gets boring after taking a few pictures.

Accessories include a leather case, hood, and filter.
The hood is screw-in, and compared to TAMRON’s 500mm hood, which has the same mirror lens, the MR-TELYT 500mm hood is only about 1/3 the length of the TAMRON hood, making it feel very short.
The filter is screwed onto the rear of the lens and is usually fitted with a colorless protective filter. In addition, yellow, orange, and blue color filters are included in the leather case. These color filters will probably never be used in a digital camera.

I have seen the used market price of this lens range from 80,000 yen to 150,000 yen.
The average price of other companies’ mirror lenses with a focal length of 500 mm is between 10,000 yen and 50,000 yen, so unless you want to complete your R lens, this lens probably won’t be the one you’ll choose.
The hand-held lens has 3 cams and can be used with R-type Leica cameras except Leica Flex/SL/SL2 (film cameras). I have never seen a lens other than 3 cam on the used market, and I would like to know if this lens can be modified with ROM, but I can’t find any information. I’ve never seen a mirror lens ROM type on eBay either.

The photo shows the camera attached to an R8 with a DMR attached, but when this photo was taken, the DMR was already broken and it was impossible to use the MR-TELYT 500mm with the DMR. It’s a shame that we couldn’t keep a live shot of 500*1.38=690mm.

Konica Minolta, the successor company of Minolta that manufactured this lens, seems to still have business with Leica, and is said to be supplying lenses for the L mount alliance. I sometimes imagine that they would sell the autofocus mirror lenses they supplied to the L-Mount Alliance, but I think the possibility is extremely low due to the lack of demand for mirror lenses.


Focal length(mm)500
Max aperture8
Min aperture8Fixed Aperture
Lens Construction5elements in 5groups
Min distance(m)4
Lens length(mm)121
Max diameter(mm)87
Filter Size(mm)77
Release date1980
Production numbers3,800

Reference links


  • 2024.02.11:Update article
  • 2022.02.01:First draft

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