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40mm on the M - what am I not getting?


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Interesting use of the word "compel" in this context.   I've never owned or used the CV 40/1.2 so I'm not in a position to compare the two.  I borrowed a friend's CV 40/1.4 for a few weeks and felt that its out of focus areas were harsher than I like and didn't appeal to me but famously the CV lenses are subject to copy variation.  That said, any 40/1.4 and 40/2.8 will be such different lenses, 2.5 stop faster for a start, that a comparison would need to be carefully done and probably best at

Fascinating video. I've learnt that 40mm is not as wide as a 35mm lens but it is a bit wider than a 50mm lens.

Q. what am I not getting?   A: framelines.    Sorry to state the obvious but it is relevant.

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The 40mm is the best choice if it's the only lens as some p&s in the past decades.

Leica released one with very nice Summarit-M 2.4/40

Original CL was with 40mm/90mm.

 

And later released "Zero Replica" with historical 50mm Anastigmat that I love also.

 

 

For M I used Summicron-C 40mm but prefered...

Minolta CLE with it's 40mm as it has 40mm frame lines.

Edited by a.noctilux
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You do realize that theres best 50mm and best 35mm videos, too ? From the exact same guy. This is all very tongue in cheek.

 

 

 

Also a 40mm is just a slightly tighter 35mm; jusst pick one of those, since theres a lot more choices around. Unless you have a specific 40mm lens in mind of which you really love the rendering.

 

And yes no 40mm framelines on Leica M.

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Of course here is difference between 35, 40 and 50. Just as 21, 24 and 28 are very different lenses.

But 40mm feels closer to 50mm to me... 

 

I used 40mm lens on film and digital M. The only Leica camera I have where it was accurate is M-E. It is known issue with M9 line to have not accurate 35 framelines. And it is known solution to get it fixed by using of 40mm lens.

On film M it was not 35 and not 50. Very different from what I was framing with M3 and different from 35 frames on another M.

I sold it because it was no use lens on film M cameras and because 40 is not wide enough, yet not tele enough as 50mm is for me. 

 

Here is Bessa R3M with 40mm frames. And where are millions of cameras made with this focal length. Smena was made in many millions. And many other old film simple cameras.

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In practical outcomes the 40mm offers no observable qualitative difference to ether 35mm or 50mm. It does have the rangefinder disadvantage of not fitting into the frame lines. Personally, I find it an oddball, a  disadvantage in all respects.

.

Edited by pico
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I didn't watch the video.

But I know that if you are fussy about composition, you won't be happy with 40mm lenses due to the lack of framelines on M cameras.

If you consider them as a "tight 50" or a "lose 35" (the latter is easier), then it's easier and boils down to whether you like the lenses or not.

 

The Summicron and the Rokkor are basically the same lens, small, light and IQ is more than adequate - and not just on film. They can be found relatively easily in good condition at reasonable prices. I'd go for one of these if you are curious about the 40mm focal length.

 

If you feel more adventurous (and are patient), here are a few more:

- the Rollei 40/2.8 is an excellent, relatively recent lens - and it's a Sonnar

- if you are after a vintage look, I like the Zuiko 40/2.8 from the early 50's: it's tiny, surprisingly sharp and is the only lens made by Olympus in LTM if I'm not mistaken

- and while we are at it, there also the Pentax 43/1.9 'Limited' (modern but fairly large compared to the others) and the older Chiyoko (Minolta) Super-Rokkor 45/2.8 (another 1950's lens) that also come in LTM and have quirky focal lengths in the 35-50mm range...

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Thanks for the replies. I’m watching prices and keen to try it. I have the M-E so am pleased to hear framing is more accurate.

 

I’m a firm 35 and 50 shooter, but want to broaden my vocabulary with the subject. Let’s see.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I had CLE version of Minolta Rokkor 40 f2, which is same as Summicron 40, but takes normal filters and supposed to be multi-coated. Very small lens, build for easy and quick handling.

On M-E it wasn't as good as my Summarit-M 35 2.5 and Summicron 50 v4 on colors, but was as sharp as Summicron. 

Voigtlander recently came with new 40 1.2. Aspherical, no focus shift and not as heavy as 35 1.2. Those lenses are sharp wide open on M9 series sensor.

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40mm lenses work fine with classical framelines, i.e. set to be accurate at 0.7m or 1m (unlike 2m with M8.2, M240 or M10), because they fit well 35mm framelines at long to medium distance, better so than 35mm lenses themselves to my view. The flange of the lens can be filed easily to bring up 35mm framelines if needed. IQ wise both Summicron-C 40/2 and Rokkor 40/2 are close to Summicron 35/2 v3 but are less expensive than the latter. Great tiny lenses indeed. Only cons are softness at f/2 on edges and corners and focus knob for those preferring focus tab or no focus aid. Also beware that Summicron-C 40/2 has not the same filter thread as that of M lenses and that its Leitz accessories (12518 rubber hood, 14191 hood cap, 5.5 Series filters) are not inexpensive on the s/h market. 

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I have been using the 40mm M-Rokkor for some time as my 'daily carry' lens.  Love the small size and a focal length that seems to click with the way I see.

 

I'm trying a little time with the Zeiss C-Biogon ZM 35/2.8 as an alternative (with proper frame lines) to see if it sits better with me.  My normal 35mm is a ZM Distagon 1.5, but that's too big and heavy for daily carry.

 

Time will tell...

 

Michael

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I use 40 summicron-c on M240 as lightweight option. It also turns my M240 into a 50megapixel camera by stitching three vertical shots for 28mm FOV. This lens is sharp from 2.8 below and scary sharp across frame at f8.

 

What I don't like? Shooting into the Sun. It has not so good sunstar (at least my copy) and some odd looking flare with Sun in the frame.

 

I like this lens more on Sony APS-C since it makes a very light combo to compliment my M240 with a wide lens. At some point it will live in my future CL.

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On the M9, I've always found the 40mm matching the 35mm framelines better. You'll have to modify the 40mm lens mount though. 

 

40mm is also usually more compact than the 35mm or 50mm lenses with the same maximum aperture. 

 

Unless you are strictly against cropping in PP or scans, small differences in the angle of view between neighbourinig focal lenses don't matter that much in most cases. If you shoot with a 35mm and crop it a bit in pp, you get a 40mm field of view already. 

Edited by Rus
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I didn't watch the video.

But I know that if you are fussy about composition, you won't be happy with 40mm lenses due to the lack of framelines on M cameras.

If you consider them as a "tight 50" or a "lose 35" (the latter is easier), then it's easier and boils down to whether you like the lenses or not.

 

The Summicron and the Rokkor are basically the same lens, small, light and IQ is more than adequate - and not just on film. They can be found relatively easily in good condition at reasonable prices. I'd go for one of these if you are curious about the 40mm focal length.

 

If you feel more adventurous (and are patient), here are a few more:

- the Rollei 40/2.8 is an excellent, relatively recent lens - and it's a Sonnar

- if you are after a vintage look, I like the Zuiko 40/2.8 from the early 50's: it's tiny, surprisingly sharp and is the only lens made by Olympus in LTM if I'm not mistaken

- and while we are at it, there also the Pentax 43/1.9 'Limited' (modern but fairly large compared to the others) and the older Chiyoko (Minolta) Super-Rokkor 45/2.8 (another 1950's lens) that also come in LTM and have quirky focal lengths in the 35-50mm range...

 

 

Don't you mean a "loose 50" and a "tight 35" ?

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