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35mm 1.4 Summilux pre-asph


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With all of this MFD talk I went and measured my 1966 Canadian 35mm v1 Pre-ASPH #2166xxx (which has v1 glass but housed in a very early v2 brass infinity lock lens body) and found the MFD to be .781 from shutter plane to point of focus. The focus ring on the lens barrel goes quite a bit past the 3 foot mark (see pic). This is an all original non-goggle lens and the weight (without hood) is 185g.

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Edited by RMF
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Why would MFD be lower on some versions? I would assume that there is a trade-off with image quality whereby it reduces if you go much below 1 metre. While it seems conceivable that the early versions had some slight differences in formulation due to different glass types, and which allowed closer focussing, Graham's example of two almost contemporary German copies with different MFDs seems puzzling.

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8 minutes ago, sinjun said:

Why would MFD be lower on some versions? I would assume that there is a trade-off with image quality whereby it reduces if you go much below 1 metre. While it seems conceivable that the early versions had some slight differences in formulation due to different glass types, and which allowed closer focussing, Graham's example of two almost contemporary German copies with different MFDs seems puzzling.

I agree, it does seem a little strange. I double checked by black copy today and it is exactly 0.75 to the sensor.  

The fact it's such an exact number would certainly indicate it's by design rather than variation for this copy at least. it would be interesting to know of Germany copies above this serial # 

Edited by grahamc
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There are some performance differences but only due to calibration.  The Titan is softer at 1.4 & 2, they are head to head at 2.8 and then the Titanium is sharper throughout the rest of the aperture range, in fact incredibly sharp.  

But since I have a 35:1.4 v1 serviced by DAG that shows exactly the same performance pattern versus the Titan, I put these differences down only to technician/user preferences regarding which F-stop range they optimised the calibration for .     

Also seeing this side by side begs the question that when we hear of users trashing a lens because it was "too soft at xx aperture" (usually wide open in the case of this particular lens), I wonder what a simple adjustment to better accommodate their shooting preferences could perhaps do.  

(It should also be said that in real world I've been very happy with either at any aperture).
 

Edited by grahamc
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2 hours ago, grahamc said:

But since I have a 35:1.4 v1 serviced by DAG that shows exactly the same performance pattern versus the Titan, I put these differences down only to technician/user preferences regarding which F-stop range they optimised the calibration for .    

An interesting point. You see people making categorical statements about the varying characteristics of the different versions (I've seen it said more than once that the titanium is sharperst wide open) and I've always suspected that the received wisdom is based on something of a mythology which has grown up from individual assessments which aren't universally applicable. Your idea sounds plausible.

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1 hour ago, sinjun said:

An interesting point. You see people making categorical statements about the varying characteristics of the different versions (I've seen it said more than once that the titanium is sharperst wide open) and I've always suspected that the received wisdom is based on something of a mythology which has grown up from individual assessments which aren't universally applicable. Your idea sounds plausible.

Yep, I believe so although am no expert.  Certainly in conversation with my Leica approved service centre here we have talked about optimising certain lenses for use at certain apertures. Logic would suggest that this would mean a compromise in performance at other apertures.  So it makes sense to me.

These aren't big differences, of course but seeing 2 lenses side by side in a controlled environment and pixcel peeping, it's apparent.   Both being Germany and the same year I presume a technician could adjust these lenses to perform identically, practically speaking. 

So my guess that these variations (in healthy lenses anyway) are as much to do with servicing and calibration than some of the folklore you read online regarding batches/year of manufacture .  Unless you are talking decades apart of course, where factors such as coating changes (relevant for the Germany v2 lenses versus earlier Canadian) probably come into play that I presume do impact other measures of performance and personal preferences (contrast, flare).   Or of course other well-known changes such as the glass used in v1 'steel rim' and not in subsequent versions .

But aside from that, like you I'm unsure that we can accurately attribute characteristics to a whole batch of lenses, on account of trying a lens that may have had anywhere between 30-60 years (depending on which 'batch' we are discussing at the time) of service since leaving the factory .    And to conclude from that one test lens that the said batch is widely different from the next batch of 1000 that left the same factory a year later is surely lacking sound scientific basis, to say the least . 


 

Edited by grahamc
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MP & Portra 400. @ 1.4

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MP & 35:1.4v2 , Tri-X

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Edited by grahamc
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On 10/5/2022 at 12:31 PM, grahamc said:

Back to images.  35:1.4 v2 (Germany Titanium, if it matters ☺️) @ 1.4 
MP & Portra 400. 

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This is the kind of images that makes one want a copy. 😂 I love the quality that seems to associate with Leica glass where the bokeh retained a lot of contrast and saturation, giving the impression of rich tone to the entire frame, making the context of the background still relevant. To each its own of course but it's one of the unique character of Leica glass that I always drawn into.

Edited by Casey Jefferson
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7 hours ago, Casey Jefferson said:

This is the kind of images that makes one want a copy. 😂 I love the quality that seems to associate with Leica glass where the bokeh retained a lot of contrast and saturation, giving the impression of rich tone to the entire frame, making the context of the background still relevant. To each its own of course but it's one of the unique character of Leica glass that I always drawn into.

Thanks very much Casey. I was really happy with this image 

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On 10/1/2022 at 7:46 PM, RMF said:

With all of this MFD talk I went and measured my 1966 Canadian 35mm v1 Pre-ASPH #2166xxx (which has v1 glass but housed in a very early v2 brass infinity lock lens body) and found the MFD to be .781 from shutter plane to point of focus. The focus ring on the lens barrel goes quite a bit past the 3 foot mark (see pic). This is an all original non-goggle lens and the weight (without hood) is 185g.

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My Canadian v2, 2221XXX with infinity lock and the new glass formula, focuses to 0.85m.

Ernst

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I'm working my way through this inspiring thread and already, at page 26, I'm smitten and looking for 35mm Summilux pre-a to buy.  (I actually owned one years ago but foolishly sold it.) Here is my question.  Does anyone know if the pesky problem of some (though perhaps not most) Canadian copies of this lens not working on digital Ms also a problem for the the M11?  I am wondering if the particular shroud complication would be irrelevant on the M11 with its newer metering setup.   I would use the lens mostly on my film Ms, but occasionally on the M11 too.  

Thank you.  

tim

 

 

Edited by hydet
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1 hour ago, hydet said:

I'm working my way through this inspiring thread and already, at page 26, I'm smitten and looking for 35mm Summilux pre-a to buy.  (I actually owned one years ago but foolishly sold it.) Here is my question.  Does anyone know if the pesky problem of some (though perhaps not most) Canadian copies of this lens not working on digital Ms also a problem for the the M11?  I am wondering if the particular shroud complication would be irrelevant on the M11 with its newer metering setup.   I would use the lens mostly on my film Ms, but occasionally on the M11 too.  

Thank you.  

tim

 

 

The rear shroud mechanical issue was affecting the M8 and M9 versions , not the more recent digital Ms.  

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