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Leica S lenses on L-Mount cameras


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Thanks Scott, I know about the CL.

Maybe the bajonet on the smaller and lighter APS-C camera isn't strong enough for the relatively heavy S lenses.

Or maybe there's not enough power on board to drive the big glass elements of the S lenses.

Or maybe Leica thinks it's too much trouble to write the software for this, who knows?

What I'm saying is that I'd be interested in being able to use my S lenses on the upcoming Panasonic and/or Sigma with the Leica S to L adapter.

And I know I'm not the only S lens owner who'd like to see this made possible.

IMO, it would be a good thing for L-mount 'openness' marketing too.

Edited by peterv
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Since the L-mount controls/protocols are a part of the L-mount consortium, I would expect the S-lenses (with the dedicated Leica adapter) to be compatible with forthcoming FF L-bodies. Actually, S-shooters use/may use FF L-bodies as back-up for - or a more technically advanced alternative to - their main S-system in their daily work. So S-lenses on FF L-bodies seems obvious for me (besides the fact that I am into the S-lenses myself :rolleyes:...). 

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I agree it seems obvious, all the L-mount protocols should be the same, be it Panasonic, Sigma or Leica. Once the S lens speak is translated to L-Mount speak through the S to L adapter, all L-Mount cameras should be able to talk to S Mount lenses. But who knows for sure, it's electronics ...

I just hope that it will become reality.

Edited by peterv
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  • 2 weeks later...

For sure it seems all logical on a technical point of view. As a S user I too would like to back it up with the new  Pana SR1 f.i. But as a firmware can  block the use of the S-lenses easily I suppose the marketing strategy will most likely be the critical step. If Leica wants their (beloved) S users to only be able to use L cameras as back-up then we'll be, you know what...

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Advertisement (gone after registration)

If you understand how the DFD Technology works, you’ll understand that for the lens to be optimized it’s database must be in the camera’s AF firmware.

Panasonic has openly listed Leica SL lenses into their S1R list of usable lenses but I did not see S lenses. It might work but certainly not as fast if it were not part of the AF algorithm design.

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On 11/18/2018 at 5:32 PM, peterv said:

Thanks Scott, I know about the CL.

Maybe the bajonet on the smaller and lighter APS-C camera isn't strong enough for the relatively heavy S lenses.

Or maybe there's not enough power on board to drive the big glass elements of the S lenses.

Or maybe Leica thinks it's too much trouble to write the software for this, who knows?

What I'm saying is that I'd be interested in being able to use my S lenses on the upcoming Panasonic and/or Sigma with the Leica S to L adapter.

And I know I'm not the only S lens owner who'd like to see this made possible.

IMO, it would be a good thing for L-mount 'openness' marketing too.

The reason is simple: medium format lenses are not optimized for a frame size this small. Leica cares about performance of its lenses more than anything. I am even surprised that they made an SL adapter :)

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The difference between Leica S medium format size and regular 35mm is not really that drastic..given how sharp the S lenses are in the center, there is no reason that they would not work beautifully on 35mm...certainly much better than most adapted lenses from other MF systems or 30 year old Canon FD lenses etc. I agree, however, that we may not see this option, but if not, it will be primarily to protect Leica. After all, if you can get a Panasonic S1R with 47mp, more than the S007, there is certainly a demographic who might look at that as a backup or even a replacement for an S at 1/5th or less the cost. I am sure using S lenses might not be ideal ergonomically, but having immediate access to, for example, the 120mm macro or 30-90 zoom might be extremely useful. In terms of a backup, assuming both used S lenses equally well, I would much rather have a 47mp Panasonic S1R instead of a several year old 24mp Leica SL...I imagine I am not alone. This goes double if Panasonic really gives it a professional video solution.

Edited by Stuart Richardson
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  • 5 weeks later...
On 1/4/2019 at 4:34 PM, Stuart Richardson said:

The difference between Leica S medium format size and regular 35mm is not really that drastic..given how sharp the S lenses are in the center, there is no reason that they would not work beautifully on 35mm...certainly much better than most adapted lenses from other MF systems or 30 year old Canon FD lenses etc. I agree, however, that we may not see this option, but if not, it will be primarily to protect Leica. After all, if you can get a Panasonic S1R with 47mp, more than the S007, there is certainly a demographic who might look at that as a backup or even a replacement for an S at 1/5th or less the cost. I am sure using S lenses might not be ideal ergonomically, but having immediate access to, for example, the 120mm macro or 30-90 zoom might be extremely useful. In terms of a backup, assuming both used S lenses equally well, I would much rather have a 47mp Panasonic S1R instead of a several year old 24mp Leica SL...I imagine I am not alone. This goes double if Panasonic really gives it a professional video solution.

I was referring to the APS-C situation. There it is drastic enough.

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At this point I do not even care if they have AF...of course I would prefer it, but aperture control would be great, and at worse, a dummy adapter could still be very useful for certain use cases (video, tripod work, work in studio with macro or artwork reproduction...the 120mm APO Macro is exceptional for this work, and I would be happy to bolt it on to the S1R to get a 187mp with one of the best lenses ever made). But the fact that the S adapter L shows a black screen on the CL and T bodies is disheartening. I hope that it does not behave the same on the S1 and S1R. 

Edited by Stuart Richardson
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  • 2 weeks later...

I just got my S1 and I am able to control aperture on my S35 and S70 via the Leica S-Adapter L.

AF does not work, but the moment you turn the focusing ring the camera punches in automatically.

The AF issue is definitely software and not power, as when I power on the camera with the lens attached it does its normal focus rack (like it does on the S body). 

ps. I also posted this info on the S forum.

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