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90mm Elmarit Versions


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For the 90mm Elmarit M lenses, I have read that there are versions II, III, and IV, and another post highly recommended ver. IV. I cannot find how to determine which version of lens that is being sold. Is there a list by serial number or year? Thanks for the info, I am new to the forum.

Any opinions on the versions III and IV?

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The frist 90mm Elmarit was introduced in 1959. Then came the Tele-Elmarit (fat) in 1965. This was replaced in 1973 by a new Tele-Elmarit (thin). In 1989 the thin Tele-Elmarit was replaced by the Elmarit-M (11807).

As this makes four 90/2.8 lenses I guess v IV is the last one. Production of them stopped shortly after the Summarit 90/2.5 was launched.


I have the Elmarit-M and had the thin Tele-Elmarit. The latter is a fine lens for travel as it is compact and light, somewhat prone to flaring wide open and needs a good hood.


The Elmarit-M is a stellar lens and the one I would pick. I have no personal experience with the 90mm Summarit, but the shots I have seen from it shows it to be a fine lens too.





Edited by cbretteville
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Welcome to the Forum!


The Wiki (top right on every forum page) has lots of info. Here's the page with all M lenses. There are lists of serial numbers under each lens's page.


I only have experience with the Elmarit-M and find it to be a very good lens. Extremely good actually. Lovely colour rendition, plenty sharp from wide open and flare-proof. It's not very heavy (i have the black version) and not very big. Since I use film I've sometimes felt the need for a slightly faster lens and have considered the Summicron pre-asph which is basically the same size and weight.


This is an interesting thread. Erwin Puts called the Elmarit-M one of the very best lenses ever produced by Leica in this focal length, easily surpassing the 90 Summicron pre-asph (another Mandler-designed lens). Only the current Summicron 90 APO Asph is better corrected. That one is at least twice the price of what the Elmarit-M and the pre-asph sell for. And the APO Asph is quite a lot heavier and larger, too.

Edited by philipus
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