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mdroe

From Fujifilm to Leica

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This is my first post on a forum I have enjoyed reading for many years, so thank you in advance for any responses. My grandmother kindly left me some money which my wife has insisted I use to fulfill a life-long aspiration to own Leica (only owned the Minilux Zoom so far).

 

I have always owned less-hefty systems starting with a Contax G2 plus 21, 28, 50, 90, and now Fuji XT-1 and 18-55 14 f2.8 and 52 f1.2. My photography is all available light, landscape, street, portrait, with a developing interest in macro. I want to be able to print in colour and B&W up to A3, and enjoy lenses that do what the human eye can’t; so wide angle of view, shallow depth of field, unusual light.

 

I was once loaned an M8.2 and loved the image quality, so was delighted to recently view and handle the CL with various lenses. I will definitely buy the TL 11-23 and am considering the 60 macro, although I have read the 11-23 is quite useful for macro too. I realise there’s a macro adaptor suited to the TL 23 and TL 18-56 but am not too interested in these lenses.

 

So to my quandary! I LOVED my Fuji 52 f1.2 but sometimes found it too long, so the obvious substitution is the TL 35 f1.4. However it is VERY bulky and I am sorely tempted to buy an M 35 f1.4 or f2, as I found the focus peaking on the CL very easy to use. An M 35 lens might be roughly similar in weight to the TL 35 but it is a small jewel by comparison!

 

So my questions are:

 

- Does the CL focus peaking work well with a M lens in poor light?

- would there be an appreciable difference in A3 image quality between the TL and M 35 lenses?

- if I did decide to buy an M 35 and adaptor, does the sensor on the CL allow me to use the f2 in poor light, or do I need to buy the f1.4?

 

I hope this isn’t too confusing and look forward to any feedback.

 

Matthew

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- focus peaking is vastly overrated. The normal viewfinder and -if needed- focus magnification are far more practical. It works fine, however.

 

- M lenses and TL lenses are certainly different in character  -and size!

, but the TL lenses are more than competitive regarding image quality. Actually I would say they are every bit as good as M lenses in general. Of course the M line offers über-expensive exotic lenses.

 

- My favourite M 35-ish lens on the CL is the Summicron-C 40/2.0  The weaker corners disappear on APS-C, leaving a compact high quality lens. Mint examples are easily found at reasonable prices. Otherwise a used Summicron 35 asph would do just fine.

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low light for street photos ? if so then f1.4 makes quite a big difference.

 

the fuji 56 f1.2 is hard to beat

 

focus peaking only gets you into the ballpark zone..and many times its wrong... its better to magnify the view to confirm and shoot

 

 

would suggest you rent a CL & take a few snaps in daylight & lowlight etc and get them printed before buying the camera

 

 

 

 

 

This is my first post on a forum I have enjoyed reading for many years, so thank you in advance for any responses. My grandmother kindly left me some money which my wife has insisted I use to fulfill a life-long aspiration to own Leica (only owned the Minilux Zoom so far).

I have always owned less-hefty systems starting with a Contax G2 plus 21, 28, 50, 90, and now Fuji XT-1 and 18-55 14 f2.8 and 52 f1.2. My photography is all available light, landscape, street, portrait, with a developing interest in macro. I want to be able to print in colour and B&W up to A3, and enjoy lenses that do what the human eye can’t; so wide angle of view, shallow depth of field, unusual light.

I was once loaned an M8.2 and loved the image quality, so was delighted to recently view and handle the CL with various lenses. I will definitely buy the TL 11-23 and am considering the 60 macro, although I have read the 11-23 is quite useful for macro too. I realise there’s a macro adaptor suited to the TL 23 and TL 18-56 but am not too interested in these lenses.

So to my quandary! I LOVED my Fuji 52 f1.2 but sometimes found it too long, so the obvious substitution is the TL 35 f1.4. However it is VERY bulky and I am sorely tempted to buy an M 35 f1.4 or f2, as I found the focus peaking on the CL very easy to use. An M 35 lens might be roughly similar in weight to the TL 35 but it is a small jewel by comparison!

So my questions are:

- Does the CL focus peaking work well with a M lens in poor light?
- would there be an appreciable difference in A3 image quality between the TL and M 35 lenses?
- if I did decide to buy an M 35 and adaptor, does the sensor on the CL allow me to use the f2 in poor light, or do I need to buy the f1.4?

I hope this isn’t too confusing and look forward to any feedback.

Matthew

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Thanks for the prompt response and could I clarify:

 

- does the normal viewfinder and focus magnification allow focus of M lenses in poor available light (indoor and street at night)?

- will an f2 aperture on the CL produce good quality images in the same poor available light, or would I need f1.4? I loved my f1.2 Fuji prime as it coped with all situations!

 

If f2 is fine then I’m tempted by the 40mm as it’ll hit the sweet spot below 52mm and above 35mm!

 

Mat

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yes the evf should be fine with M lenses in low light

 

like i said, in available light f2 means higher ISO..simple..so i would go with f1.4

 

Thanks for the prompt response and could I clarify:

- does the normal viewfinder and focus magnification allow focus of M lenses in poor available light (indoor and street at night)?
- will an f2 aperture on the CL produce good quality images in the same poor available light, or would I need f1.4? I loved my f1.2 Fuji prime as it coped with all situations!

If f2 is fine then I’m tempted by the 40mm as it’ll hit the sweet spot below 52mm and above 35mm!

Mat

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Thank you frame-it and yes the Fujifilm 52 1.2 is a beauty.

 

Do you happen to know where I can rent a CL and lenses (I’m based in the U.K.)? I’ve searched but not found anywhere yet.

 

Mat

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am sure the UK forum members would know

 

definitely print some images at A3 before deciding to buy

 

 

 

Thank you frame-it and yes the Fujifilm 52 1.2 is a beauty.

Do you happen to know where I can rent a CL and lenses (I’m based in the U.K.)? I’ve searched but not found anywhere yet.

Mat

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yes the evf should be fine with M lenses in low light

 

like i said, in available light f2 means higher ISO..simple..so i would go with f1.4

But - the CL is very good at high ISO, so no problems there. I don't even hesitate to do night photography with the 18-56. IMO if one does not really need the faster lens for subject separation (after all, this is APS-C), a Summilux is a waste of money.

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sure

but why go above ISO 3200 if one has a choice not to

 

 

But - the CL is very good at high ISO, so no problems there. I don't even hesitate to do night photography with the 18-56.

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In that case I would go for the Nokton 40 -1.2 and use the price difference to buy another lens - or finance a little photo trip.

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Remember that f/1.4 is only one stop more light than f/2. That means that instead of ISO 800 with the f/1.4, you use ISO 1600 with the f/2. This is not a big deal: the CL's sensor produces very clean results up to ISO 6400. I've had no problems even in dismal light with an f/2.8 maximum aperture lens.

 

The CL EVF performs brilliantly in very dim light ... I find no trouble at all focusing critically even in light that I can barely see in with my naked eye.

 

I only use M and R lenses (mostly R).

 

I find focus peaking to be most useful in bright light when the EVF is least visible because it is competing with bright light all around me. In such circumstances, I'm usually stopped down a bit anyway and the coarser focusing accuracy of the peaking is quite satisfactory for getting a good sharp image without any problems. When I go to wider apertures, and the light levels dim, focus magnification is the best aid to nailing critical focus, particularly with short focal length lenses. With 50mm and longer focal length lenses, I often don't need it either.

 

The CL is a fine camera, I'm glad I went for one. It is a fine camera for all around use in its own right, and is a very nice complement to my M-D 262 as well, with versatility and capabilities that fill in for what the M-D is not best at. Overall, as a body, it's about the same size and a little lighter than the M-D too, and I can use the same bags, etc, to carry either. Makes for a great, complete kit for me.

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Thank you frame-it and yes the Fujifilm 52 1.2 is a beauty.

 

Do you happen to know where I can rent a CL and lenses (I’m based in the U.K.)? I’ve searched but not found anywhere yet.

 

Mat

I doubt you can hire them in the UK as a matter of course. It seems to be common practice in the US, but not so here, unless you know a local dealer willing to lend you one. Pro Centre hire out S, SL and the Q, but not the CL.

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Thank you everyone for your feedback and discussion. I now appreciate the CL EVF can provide for accurate focus of M lenses in ploor light, and images of good quality in poor light at f2 although of course f1.4 gives more flexibility (and shallower DOF). Leica will be running a workshop at a UK camera shop in October which I have decided to attend, as an M10 and CL will be available with various lenses and hopefully an L to M adaptor.

 

Once again thanks,

 

Matthew

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Thank you frame-it and yes the Fujifilm 52 1.2 is a beauty.

 

Do you happen to know where I can rent a CL and lenses (I’m based in the U.K.)? I’ve searched but not found anywhere yet.

 

Mat

 

Leica Mayfair (and probably other Leica stores in the UK) have a scheme where you pay £80 to take the camera out for the weekend, including one or two lenses, case, charger etc.  If you decide to purchase it the £80 goes towards the purchase cost.  If not, you've paid £80 for the rental.

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As good as the Fuji 56mm is, I urge you not to completely discount the 60mm macro. Yes there's 2 stops of difference but the 60mm is an EPIC lens from both a resolution and rendering standpoint. I love fast glass but really don't miss the extra when using the 60mm, which I use in tandem with the 35, when I need the speed. And due to the smaller body (than the XPro2) the mass is actually quite similar. The 60 is stunning.

 

If you must have speed the new 50mm CV f1.2 looks to be the lens to beat.

 

Gordon

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Thank you Gordon, although I have to say my Fujifilm 56 f1.2 often forced me to step back and lose a shot or not get the shot. Hence my interest in a 35 f1.4 for low light shallow DOF with the subject at 2-4m (DOF is 7-28cm with the 56 and 18-74 with the TL 35 f1.4).

 

Actually based on all the comments I’m moving towards the TL 11-23, M 35 f1.4(or f2), and TL 60 as my CL kit. This would fulfil all my needs including a small discrete lens for low light candid photography. Think I’ll trial the TL 1.4, M 1.4 and M 2 on a CL body to learn what the differences are in practise. It would also give me an M lens to try on a used M body some day!

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Personally I would prefer the Zeiss 1.4/35 over the Summilux. It renders a bit more transparant. 

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You will only wrest my Summilux 35mm f/1.4 v2 from my cold, dead hands ...

... but I don't tend to use it on the CL that much. Love it on the M:

 

Leica M-P + Summilux 35mm f/1.4 (v2)

ISO 200 @ f/2 @ 1/90

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