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cpclee

in praise of the 50/2.8 Elmar-M (1994 - 2007)

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Just picked up a mint copy of this lens in silver chrome. Erwin Puts is right that this lens captures amazing details (which he attributes to the small number of lens elements used, 4). I also like how the slightly gentler overall contrast at the widest apertures (at least in comparison with newest lenses from Leica) allows smooth tonal gradations to come through and is quite a plus for portraits.

 

The silver chrome version is not really lighter than the Summicron in black, and fully extended it seems to be about the same length as well. So to me the size / weight benefits aren't really that major. But it is a jewel to handle and I like the aperture click stops and feel of the focusing ring more than I did the Summicron (latest version).

 

It's a bargain on the used market and I highly recommend it.

 

The attached portraits were shot with a Ricoh GXR with the A12 M mount module at ISO 1600.

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Lovely portraits and they do indeed show what the Elmar-M 2.8/50mm is capable of. I like the small volume of an M body with this lens and its results are amazing. To be honest I also find the old version, the Elmar 2.8/50mm still a fascinating lens.

Lex

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Great picture and a great lens, my black copy is noticeably lighter. It's wonderful right the way through to f8 (I don't ever feel the need to stop down beyond f8 and usually stop at f5.6 with all of my lenses)

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Those kids would make any lens look good - great portraits. I agree about lens and was keen to find a chrome version like you as those in the know say the build quality is better (than the black version).

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I 'heard' that but my black copy has been flawless, super smooth focus and very light. I have heard the same thing banded around about the 35 ASPH and the 50 Summilux ASPH. No good reason why they should be better as far as I can see

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I 'heard' that but my black copy has been flawless, super smooth focus and very light. I have heard the same thing banded around about the 35 ASPH and the 50 Summilux ASPH. No good reason why they should be better as far as I can see

 

I agree, all my black lens feel fine. It is probably just because chrome are heavier they are perceived to be better built. I just fancied chrome.

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I'm reminded that until recently, Leica's silver chrome lenses are made of brass while the black lenses are anodized aluminum. That might explain the difference in feel.

 

This is the first silver chrome lens I have so I unable to speak in more general terms.

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Those kids would make any lens look good - great portraits. I agree about lens and was keen to find a chrome version like you as those in the know say the build quality is better (than the black version).

 

The build quality of black and chrome Leica lenses is the same. The materials (metal) used are different (aluminum vs brass), the heavier materials used for the latter helps some people erroneously claim better build quality. The choice of material used has to do with the finish rather than build quality. Or in other words, you're getting a high quality product, with equal build quality (the expected life of the product) regardless of the color. The color choice is a personal preference, nothing more. For what it's worth, I like chrome (and/or) steel grey Leica products more than black.

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...I agree about lens and was keen to find a chrome version like you as those in the know say the build quality is better (than the black version).

Don't know what those in the know do know but i own both versions and the build quality of the black 11831 is the same as that of the silver 11824 for M6J at least. My favorite 50 in good light anyway. I like much Summicrons and Summiluxes for different reasons but i bring always an Elmar in my bag.

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I had my copy CLA'd and coded by Malcolm Taylor who said they can show movement with the mount (if your copy shows movement at the end of the lens it shouldnt) and the mount is the problem, cured by using an older lubricant and a CLA.

 

It was super smooth when it came back and I had tried a number of lenses befor I bought mine that did show movement and my copy was good when I bought. Malcolm said most show movement if old and benefit from a CLA. He was also working on a permanent mount mod for this lens.

Edited by IWC Doppel

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Tthere is very little to profile for. My version of LR4 has not got a profile for any Leica lens. I doubt that 5 is different.

Edited by jaapv

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Tthere is very little to profile for. My version of LR4 has not got a profile for any Leica lens. I doubt that 5 is different.

 

LR4 has profiles for some Leica lenses (like the latest/last 90mm Elmarit-M).

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Tthere is very little to profile for. My version of LR4 has not got a profile for any Leica lens. I doubt that 5 is different.

 

You're right, LR5 has only profils for later lenses.

I try to choose a profile that comes close to the lenses used.

Often however, one will see only minor differences, when using a predetermined profile.

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LR4 has profiles for some Leica lenses (like the latest/last 90mm Elmarit-M).

Probably different versions, mine does not even list Leica as a brand. I only found out now; I consider it a bit of a dud feature anyway.

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Probably different versions, mine does not even list Leica as a brand. I only found out now; I consider it a bit of a dud feature anyway.

 

Probably true. I've whatever the latest updated version of LR4 is- dunno the number. As far as the profiles are concerned, I don't use them (mainly because I remember them after I'm done editing!). I only found out about them when one of my lenses kinda went crazy with the color shifts (Italian flag), and was looking for a quick fix (the profile for the lens was marginally, just about at the limit of what's noticeable, better).

/applications/core/interface/imageproxy/imageproxy.php?img=http://img.tapatalk.com/d/13/09/03/adyzehun.jpg&key=0c2258b519e57a5e236fa459a8e3bbea83c08ebd84ed7db3ef9fc7822f8af904">*

 

*The photo of the Leica camera is NOT mine.

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...

 

The list of profiles of LR 5 seems to be the same as that of LR4.

For the lens of this thread, the Elmar 2.8 - 50 mm, 2nd Edition, I take the profile of the Summarit 2.5 - 50 mm und suggest, it would make no sense to produce an own profile for the Elmar because of too low deviations.

 

But what about old uncoatet screw-lenses, for example Elmar 3.5 - 50 mm, Elmar 4.0 - 90 mm or early coated wide-angle lenses like Super-Angulon 4.0 - 21 mm or Summaron 5.6 - 28 mm? Which profiles could best fit?

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The list of profiles of LR 5 seems to be the same as that of LR4.

 

In the interest of clarity, the list (screen capture) I provided is from LR4.

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I had my copy CLA'd and coded by Malcolm Taylor who said they can show movement with the mount (if your copy shows movement at the end of the lens it shouldnt) and the mount is the problem, cured by using an older lubricant and a CLA.

 

I have the same experience... movement in focus barrell, successful CLA for a while... however, movement in focus barrell is soon back. No movement in front in the "extended" end part of the lens. My only Leica lens with such a movement. But so what, learned to live with it... and just love the size of the lens and how it renders (even if bokeh can be disturbing). Best value in its very own way!

 

I keep the silver version.

 

Stein

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