Jump to content

Using Leica R lens at M machines


Recommended Posts

Advertisement (gone after registration)

Where I live, there are many Lieca R lenses for sale but not many M lenses available. I saw there is an adaptor for Leica R lenses in order to use M bayonet machines.

 

I see variety of R lenses(tele objective, zoom etc.) with very good price range.

 

Does it worth to use Leica R-M converter? Does anyone tried and can you share the result.

 

BR,

Tekin

Link to post
Share on other sites

They work fine as long as you can figure how to focus and frame. Start with the wide angles, use a yard stick or meter stick or knotted string to measure distance and put a wide finder in the aux shoe.

 

Get a bigger bag because the lenses are larger. Maybe you could scare up one of the old

rangefinder accessories that mounted top of the original Leica cameras in 1925. That will free you from the string concept.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello Tekin,

 

Welcome to the Forum.

 

You might also consider adding an SL or R body along w/ that adapter R to M. These lenses work very nicely as reflex lenses & all Leitz/Leica SL/R bodies are perfectly usable as film cameras. The R8 & R9 can also be used as digital cameras if you can find a discontinued DMR back. There are also other brand cameras, adapters, etc which allow you to use these lenses in various manners both film & digital. Some of these lenses, as w/ some older M lenses, are considered quite good or better by contemporary standards.

 

Many members of this Forum use SLR photography in a complementary manner w/ RFDR photography. Specific lenses or situations determining which is preferable. 1 or the other is sometimes not as versatile as the 2 can be when they are working together.

 

Some lenses are equally usable w/ both systems if you have the appropriate adapters.

 

Best Regards,

 

Michael

Edited by Michael Geschlecht
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have one of those adapters, and you do have to scale focus by estimate or measurement for general use. That means it works best with wide angles, stopped down a bit where the DOF hides focus errors. I've had some nice results with a 24mm.

It also works well with a Visoflex on the M9 for macro work. I can even use my R bellows unit that way.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Advertisement (gone after registration)

Hello Again Tekin,

 

Points of clarification:

 

When using various R to M adapters there is NO connection between the rangefinder section of the M's combined range/viewfinder & the R lens's focussing system. When you turn the focusing ring on the R lens it does NOT in any way connect w/ the focusing system in the M body.

 

Turning the focussing ring on the lens DOES focus the lens to the distance indicated on the lens.

 

The viewfinder is just showing whatever frame(s) the adapter ring is designed to bring up. If the adapter ring you are using does not key any of the frame/frame sets the camera's default frame(s) appear.

 

The rangefinder mechanism in the M body is NOT operating while there is an R to M adapter attached whether or not there is a lens in that adapter & whether or not the lens is being focussed.

 

The lens in use on the adapter has NO effect on which frameline appears. You may activate the frame selector w/ your finger & bring any frame in the M into view. You MUST keep your finger in that position to hold the image of the frame chosen by you in the viewfinder.

 

Even when the frameline appearing in the viewfinder matches the lens in the adapter it is an approximation of what the lens is capturing which is NOT corrected automatically for parallax as you focus the lens in the R to M adapter.

 

Even when you are using range/viewfinder lenses which are coupled to the M camera's range/viewfinder the field of view shown under most circumstances is an approximation of the scene being captured corrected for parallax.

 

Best Regards,

 

Michael

Edited by Michael Geschlecht
Link to post
Share on other sites

Tekin,

 

Please take Michael's advice and get an SLR body if you get Leica R lenses.

 

In my opinion, paying what is still a good bit of money for R glass and then scale focusing on a rangefinder is a recipe for frustration and a waste of money. You are losing the best aspects of both systems. Why would you spend all that money for a rangefinder body and not even use the rangefinder!? Similarly, you would spend all that money for a Leica R lens and not even be able to focus it correctly? Leica lenses command a premium because they are high performing when wide open. Don't stop down just to get focus and waste that.

If you can't afford most Leica M glass (that's ok, I can't either), you have lots of options:

 

1) Voigtlander M-mount lenses. They aren't Leica, but they will give you much better results than Leica R glass on an M body because they are made for and focus with the rangefinder.

 

2) Zeiss ZM lenses. Same as Voigtlander in #1 except that performance rivals Leica.

 

3) Older Leica lenses. The old Elmars and Summarits, etc are awesome. Don't think that just because they are old that they are no good. My 50/1.5 Summarit is one of my favorite lenses and was $200.

 

4) Leica R glass on a Leica R body. Do your research; Leica R bodies are great. I have an R3 and and R8 with motordrive. Both awesome. Snobby collectors don't like Minolta and Leica working together on bodies. Whatever. That just means the price/performance ratio is even higher for the rest of us!

 

5) A Canon 5D classic should be ~$1000 USD or less. (5D Mark II is even nicer) With a Leica R to EOS adapter and a Ee-S focusing screen, you have a full-frame digital back for your R glass. Careful with the wide angles; you can research which lenses have the potential to hit the mirror.

 

6) R8/R9 with a DMR for your Leica R lenses. DMRs are like $4000+ used for 10mp. If you have that kind of money, forget the DMR and just buy the Leica M lens you wanted in the first place. If you do want a DMR after all, go for it; you don't need us for advice at that point -- the files that come out of that thing are unbelievable. But, $4000.....

 

Good luck!

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 years later...

Here’s an example: APO-Elmarit 180mm R on the M10, with R to M adapter.

Of course this is just a small file, but I can tell you, the colors work great on my M10 with this beautiful lens.

And BTW, this photo was taken handheld. Thus far I hardly had any movement blur with this combination.

 

I don’t want to say that a Canon 5D is not the best choice for using R lenses in itself, I once did that too. But for me there are not more than 4 really interesting R lenses, which a very special draw that cannot be found in the M park. I would not give up the handyness and compactness of the M system for those 4 lenses: Elmarit 60, APO Macro Elmarit 100, this 180 and the 280mm latest. There are more very interesting lenses in the R park but they are less unique and can be found more or less in the M park.

Edited by otto.f
Link to post
Share on other sites

The 60mm Macro Elmarit-R has been a really worthwhile addition on my M240.  A quick hand-held test shot:-

 

Not too bad as a general walk-about lens either...

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 years later...
1 hour ago, Harvard Kiwi said:

I'm about to bid on a closing auction for a 135mm f2.8 R lens for my M10. The price is pretty good assuming the other 20 something watchers don't drive up the price at the last minute. 

I hope I'm doing the right thing🤞

Did you get it, was it local to you?

Gary

Link to post
Share on other sites

@gbealnz Hi Gary, I hope you are keeping safe. It's good to see another fellow Kiwi. I'm in Wellington and so is the seller. I bought it off TradeMe for $279 and it appears to be in excellent condition.

I took a risk and watched the auction until it expired then asked the seller for a fixed price offer and got another $20 off the start bid price. There were 29 watchers so it all worked out well for me and I hope he is happy to get a quick sale too.

I just bought an adapter as well from overseas and figure it will be a couple of weeks before I am able to get either. 

I see you have a few R lenses in your collection.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Was that Pete? That's the name of the guy I bought it from. I see he had 3 R lenses for sale as well as an M240. I hope he isn't exiting Leica systems all together as I always hope that I'll bump into a fellow Leica shooter as I wander the streets.

I've only ever met one in the wild while doing some night street photography, but he was only visiting from Europe. We had a good half-hour chat about lenses and travel, and it was a really enjoyable experience. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Yes, Pete, an old friend. No, not exiting the system, he updated his M, and I think is just trimming his R lenses a bit.

I'd like his M240, but it's a bit more than I want to spend at the moment. Plus I have enough gear anyway.

Edited by gbealnz
Corrected text
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 weeks later...

@gbealnz I received my lens from Pete this week (my R-M adapter arrived on the same day!) and hope to catch up with him in-person at some stage. I've only managed to shoot it in my apartment which isn't ideal for a 135mm but I like the bokeh. Have you received the M240 yet?

Shooting a big R lens on an M body is a bit heavier but certainly not too difficult. My Visioflex 020 has been essential in gaining critical focus due to the lack of rangefinder coupling. Overall, I'm very happy with this set up and will consider other R lenses. The 50mm Summicron version 2 appeals to me (and is lighter than an M Summilux) but I really want to stick with my rangefinder at that focal length so I'll probably pass. Still, it's a nice cheap way to shoot Leica glass and it's a bonus having a Mandler designed lens from what many consider to be Leica's lens heyday!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have used my R lenses on digital M bodies with the Live View feature using the Leica R Adapter M, on my film M with a Rayqual mount adapter (has an interesting feature in that when you fit it, it sets the rangefinder in the M body to indicate 6' distance, so you can use that as a baseline for setting the focus scale on the lens), and on Sony A7, Panasonic GX9, Olympus E-M1, Leica SL, and Leica CL mirrorless EVF cameras (the latter two using a two-adapter stack of Leica M Adapter L and R Adapter M). I also use them on my Hasselblad 907x with a Fotodiox Pro Leica R to Hasselblad X adapter. 

These are all terrific lenses and I'll use them whenever I can... :) Using them on a film M is perhaps the most difficult case, due to the lack of focusing support. 

G

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...