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YJLee

Is this lens good or not? (35mm summicron Glow problem)

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Hi.

 

I bought a Summicron 35mm F2.0 Lens (written "Leitz CANADA, 2826***)

But Image quality of that lens has some question.

 

 

Upper Left : F2.0    /    Upper Right : F2.8

Lower Left : F4.0    /    Lower Right : F5.6

 

F2.0 ~ F2.8 center image is good, but outside(periphery) is glow (or halo?)

F4.0 ~ : overall image quality is good.

 

Is this lens good or not?

 

Full-open's glowing is acceptable or not?

 

Plz give your advice.

 

Thanks :-)

 

 

ps) whole image of F2.0

 

Edited by YJLee

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I have an older version, and know it is wide-open good "indoors", that is up to 5 meters, and outside the full opening is very soft. Probably designed as such in the film era. 

 

The image you provide is rather overlit, which makes assesment hard. Is it a crop - it looks like a tele shot? My lens on my leica bodies gives a higher contrast image closed down, very full colors and enough details.

 

Having said that, the images look rather flawed. 

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I have an older version, and know it is wide-open good "indoors", that is up to 5 meters, and outside the full opening is very soft. Probably designed as such in the film era. 

 

The image you provide is rather overlit, which makes assesment hard. Is it a crop - it looks like a tele shot? My lens on my leica bodies gives a higher contrast image closed down, very full colors and enough details.

 

Having said that, the images look rather flawed. 

 

 

Yes, It's crop image of whole image. All image which I uploaded is a crop for comparison.

 

I added image of F2.0 (whole image)

 

Indoor photography also has same defect(or glowing?)..

 

Is it a feature of old lens?

 

Thanks for your advice :-)

Edited by YJLee

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I have an earlier manufactured one, serial 174...  ( mine has the 'goggles'). You could check this website for another comparison: http://www.kenrockwell.com/leica/comparisons/35mm-summicron/sharpness.htm

As with any reviews this one may not necessarily be the one and only, but the images for the 8 element lens are very much what I get with my lens.

 

Your image appears to have been made through a window and at an angle to the glass, so you introduced additional reflections, etc. The leftmost corner subject is quite further than the centre part on which you appear have focussed, so depth of field may be an additional issue, although the whole image is close to, or at, infinity at this distance.

 

At f/2 my lens has that 'glow' and has the low contrast. at f/2.8 the contrast increases substantially. While the 'glow' cannot be removed in processing, the contrast is easy to adjust. I look upon this phenomenon as a bonus (well, sort of)  as I get two types of lenses for the price on one!

 

If very sharp corners are what you want or need with a 35 mm lens, a current (2017) Summicron would fit the bill. I am toying with getting one, but am still rather pleased with using a 1962 lens on my M9 and MP.

Edited by Jean-Michel

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Leica M-9 (sensor changed)

 

thanks for your concerns.

Just making sure lens was shot on the camera with optimised sensor.

 

Overall image looks OK if you can believe small resolution online picture..

 

Stopped down corners look OK, perhaps shooting subject parallel to sensor plane would provide easier means of assessment.

 

Considering complex scenary providing uncropped image for all F stops would be good starting point, as it is corners are in different plane of focus and we don't know what you focused on.

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That glow of highlights, and smearing into the corners at apertures larger than f/5.6, is absolutely normal for the non-ASPH Leica-M 35mm Summicrons. Reduced in the 35mm f/2 ASPH  - for a steep price and much heavier lens!

 

It is a combination of lens aberrations (coma and astigmatism). http://www.handprint.com/ASTRO/IMG/spotdiag.gif

 

The sample below is from a newer 35mm (version 4, 1980 design, serial # 30xxxxx). These are point light sources which make the specific aberrations clearer. The coma smears the point of light into a fan-shape, outwards towards the corner of the picture (upper left), and the astigmatism smears the light sideways into "wings."

 

 

Even if the subject is not tiny bright lights - every "point" outside the central ~8mm of the picture with these lenses will be smeared (or blurred) in the same pattern, more or less, whether it is a tree leaf or branch, or a sun reflection on car chrome which will "glow." Reaching maximum blur right at the corners of the picture and at f/2. Stopping down removes it, as your samples show.

 

Below: As it happens, I just this week re-did this classic comparison of the f/2 corner performance of the 1980 35mm Summicron and the Summicron ASPH (as I was making a trade and had both in my hands at once).

 

Top left corner of the pictures, older Summicron on the left, Summicron ASPH on the right. Again, you can almost see the actual fan-like spreading of the light from a bright point with the non-ASPH lens, and overall the highlights (white wall) bleed or glow or halo into the black parts of the subject camera (reducing contrast and clarity). But even the ASPH still shows subtle hints of angled "wings" on some of the brightest point highlights.

 

I've used the older lens for year and loved it. But one shouldn't plan to shoot corner-to-corner-sharp landscapes with it @ f/2, unless one wants that "Leica Glow."

 

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That glow of highlights, and smearing into the corners at apertures larger than f/5.6, is absolutely normal for the non-ASPH Leica-M 35mm Summicrons. Reduced in the 35mm f/2 ASPH  - for a steep price and much heavier lens!

 

It is a combination of lens aberrations (coma and astigmatism). http://www.handprint.com/ASTRO/IMG/spotdiag.gif

 

The sample below is from a newer 35mm (version 4, 1980 design, serial # 30xxxxx). These are point light sources which make the specific aberrations clearer. The coma smears the point of light into a fan-shape, outwards towards the corner of the picture (upper left), and the astigmatism smears the light sideways into "wings."

 

35aberr.jpg

 

Even if the subject is not tiny bright lights - every "point" outside the central ~8mm of the picture with these lenses will be smeared (or blurred) in the same pattern, more or less, whether it is a tree leaf or branch, or a sun reflection on car chrome which will "glow." Reaching maximum blur right at the corners of the picture and at f/2. Stopping down removes it, as your samples show.

 

Below: As it happens, I just this week re-did this classic comparison of the f/2 corner performance of the 1980 35mm Summicron and the Summicron ASPH (as I was making a trade and had both in my hands at once).

 

Top left corner of the pictures, older Summicron on the left, Summicron ASPH on the right. Again, you can almost see the actual fan-like spreading of the light from a bright point with the non-ASPH lens, and overall the highlights (white wall) bleed or glow or halo into the black parts of the subject camera (reducing contrast and clarity). But even the ASPH still shows subtle hints of angled "wings" on some of the brightest point highlights.

 

I've used the older lens for year and loved it. But one shouldn't plan to shoot corner-to-corner-sharp landscapes with it @ f/2, unless one wants that "Leica Glow."

 

35abcompare.jpg

 

 

Thank you for your detailed opinion.

I appreciated your comment with good pictures.

 

I agree that the low sharpness of corner is sum of coma and other aberrations.

I knew that old lens had a low sharpness at the corner side.

 

But I can't decide "Is this real performance of 35mm Lens?"

 

You and other's opinion is very helpful to me.

Thanks :-)

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Just making sure lens was shot on the camera with optimised sensor.

 

Overall image looks OK if you can believe small resolution online picture..

 

Stopped down corners look OK, perhaps shooting subject parallel to sensor plane would provide easier means of assessment.

 

Considering complex scenary providing uncropped image for all F stops would be good starting point, as it is corners are in different plane of focus and we don't know what you focused on.

 

Yes, You're right,

 

If I want to compare center and corner fairly, I should take the picture of something on a line (in a plane like builing's wall)

Thank you for your good advice.

 

After your comment, I tried to take picture of my book shelf on the wall.

The result is similar (in my view, it's same..)

 

(I can't find upload the image file at the 'quote')

 

I'll take plane image for the fair comparison, I'll upload and ask once more.

 

Thanks :-)

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@YJLee,

First of all welcome to the forum!  I hope you will enjoy your time here.  Given the serial number of your lens, it was made in 1977.  That means it is a version 3 copy of the 35mm Summicron.  You will find a review of the 35 Summicron v.3 here:  http://www.35mmc.com/19/09/2015/the-leica-35mm-summicron-v3/ and here http://www.adammarelliphoto.com/2011/01/35mm-summicron-f-2-0/

 

The v.3 35 Summicron is a very good lens and has established a good reputation over the years since its launch in 1977.  It is normal for lenses of this era and many other later lenses to produce a sharper, higher contrast image at f/5.6 or f/8 than at f/2 or f/2.8, with a loss of sharpenss at the outer areas of the image near the frame lines; that's just the nature of the beast.  Also bear in mind that your M9 will reveal the shortcomings of any lens much more so than a film M will, especially when you zoom in on a tiny section of the image. 

 

JMHO, but a v.3 35 Summicron is a keeper; it is a good all around 35mm lens for the M camera.  Given its age, a CLA (Clean, Lubricate and Adjust) may be a good idea for your lens.  If you want to have that done, Sherry Krauter and DAG Camera Repair are two of the best when it comes to the repair and service of Leica M cameras and lenses.

 

Hope this helps...

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Unless you see fog inside,  something is wrong and I would return it.  Fog might be cleaned, but perhaps not. 

 

look through lens with pen light or better yet,  a keychain light on the other side.   If not clear,  that is source of problem.  If clear,  then it was taken apart and not reassembled properly.   Likely Impossible to repair at reasonable cost  if this is issue.

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