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Astropap

CL lens decision

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I've been renting the CL with the standard zoom and the 55-135mm zoom.  Unfortunately, I haven't had much chance to take them out to shoot because of the weather.  But I can see that the 55-135 lens in really impressive.  The standard is no slouch, but I would like to get a faster lens for indoors.  Not sure if I should get the street kit with the 23mm or get an adapter and get a nice M-mount lens (probably Zeiss).  I found a shop that had the 11-23mm so I ordered it.  I'm sure I won't have any trouble selling it if I decide I don't need it.  😏  I don't have any real concerns about manual focus.  Just looking for some suggestions as to good alternatives to the 23mm, which I might find redundant given that I will have the zoom.  I know it's faster but wondering if a longer focal length might be a better choice.  Lots of good M-alternatives.

Thanks

Amy

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Presuming that the quality is really comparably good (which I believe it is), I'd go for the native lens every time (in this case the 23mm TL) - you have the benefits and the features with none of the drawbacks, unless your looking for something specific (really really fast, really really tiny, particular rendering for example)

Edited by danielfrimley
Typo

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I found 35mm the perfect focal length for my kind of photography (Street photography) and 35mm f1.4 summilux M the perfect lens for my style. I have also a 24mm and in my opinion is quite short for my style. I think the best is to try before buy even if for a couple of shoots. Even if easy to sell is a waste of time go around with a lens not in your "chord"

M

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Not sure you have M lenses, but I assume you don't. The 11-23 and the 23 are different in size and maximum aperture. With my CL, I had the 11-23, the 23 and 35. As per your own requirement, the 23 is very useful indoors and with its AF, it is practically as good as the the Q. the 11-23 is a wonderful walkabout / street lens, as long it is not getting really dark.

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The T 35 1.4 lens is remarkable, perhaps the best native lens of the T system. It’s quite a bit larger than the 23mm but for indoor work you can’t beat the f1.4 speed. You can see on the forum lots of pictures taken with it even with the SL. 

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Both the 23 and 35 TL lenses are awesome, and depending on your shooting style and your subjects, the 23 may not be as redundant as you may think. 

While the CL has impressive high ISO capabilities, I find that if I want to stop motion in marginal light (like when shooting indoor candids) - the 23 prime (or 35mm) is a better choice than one of the zooms.  You can get good exposure in low light with the zooms - but sometimes it’s at the expense of a (too) slow shutter speed.  The aperture when shooting 23mm on that 11-23 zoom isn’t 3.5, so your shots will likely be a few shutter speeds slower than if you’re using a prime, and that maybe won’t freeze motion when you need which may result in blurred images. The AF is also very fast - likely faster than focusing manually, if catching the decisive moment is important as a factor to you compared to the Zeiss.

I was thinking the same as you a while back, about the redundancy of the 23 with the wide zoom (because it worked so well for me in dimly lit cathedrals with still objects) and then I realized (the hard way) that I was much better off with a prime in low light when you shooting people. 

Which of the primes would be best for you depends on your shooting style.  The TL lenses make the CL a fast handling camera.

I hope this is helpful.  Best wishes with your pursuit.

 

Edited by DGP

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I use a Pentax-L 43mm f/1.9 Limited for most of my casual shooting with the CL now. It’s an LTM lens, fitted with LTM->M mount adapter and coded as a ‘Lux 35 ASPH. Superb quality, instantaneous manual focus, small and light. 

Were  I to buy a native lens, likely the APO-Summilux-T 35/1.4 ASPH. But I haven’t seen the need. :)

Edited by ramarren

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I love my CL. It is an amazing camera. I bought it soon after it came out in 2017.  These are my 3 fav lenses in order of preference and usage

1) My Favorite lens is the 23mm f/2.0. It is a fast lens and gives incredibly sharp and beautiful color in my shots. I only wish it was an f/1.4. It is light, small and amazing.

2) I also carry the 60mm f/2.8 macro. This is because I enjoy taking closes ups. It delivers sharp and beautiful color both as a macro as well as a mid tele.

3) 35mm f/1.4.  I have found this to be an incredible lens. It is fast and super sharp - it is the best lens of the pack. But it is heavy and big, so it stays home more than it should. I also bought a Voigtlander 35mm f/1.4 to compare with this lens, as it is so much smaller.  I thought it took great photos until I compared them side by side with the Leica 35mm. Then it was no comparison. The Leica 35mm is amazing. I can see why many people on this blog say its the best lens in the CL/TL system.

So now all my other CL lens stay home: 18mm f/2.8. This was my first lens when I bought the CL.  I decided it was not fast enough, so I acquired the 23mm and have not touched this lens since;  18mm-56mm zoom  I still prefer the 23mm and using my legs to zoom; 55mm-135mm zoom - don't seem to pull this out much after getting the 60mm macro.  This is a very nice lens, and I look forward to using it. I have taken it only when I go on vacation. 

Bottom line... If I did it all over again, I would only buy the 23mm and the 60mm, mainly because of what I have chosen to travel with and the type of photography that I enjoy.

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For much less than buying TL 18 + 23 + 18-56 + 55-135. You should have bought a Q that serves as a fast 28mm f/1.7 and as well as a nice 35mm (after crop 15MP f/2.1 FF equivalent, faster than Summicron-TL 23 FF equivalent f/3) 

2 cameras, which are easier to switch focal length and they both share the same batteries. That you can get cheap with Panasonic version or super cheap with Sigma one. 

Then pair the CL with APO-Macro-TL 60  😌

Q & CL are made for each other  ❤️ They both share same IQ, easy to mix and match  

 

I had excellent 11-23mm, but in the end I prefer to use Q as my widest focal length. 

APO-TL 55-135mm vs APO-Macro-TL 60mm in the end I prefer the close up ability of 60mm instead of the 135mm reach at 1m minimum focus distance.

So I sold both 11-23 and 55-135mm 

 

Don’t see the point of 18-56, the Q serves as all around camera. 

 

But I love Summilux-TL 35mm my most use TL lens. Paired with the Q it is perfect. 

 

For very light weight. I just pack T + Elmarit-TL 2.8/18 & CL + Summarit-M 2.4/50. Awesome couple for so light. Excellent in good light. 

Edited by nicci78

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Lots of interesting experiences here and I appreciate the input.  I had the Q.  I'm trading it for the CL.  The fixed lens didn't do it for me and I don't want to have to carry 2 cameras.  Still haven't decided but I appreciate your responses.  

 

Amy

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4 hours ago, Astropap said:

Lots of interesting experiences here and I appreciate the input.  I had the Q.  I'm trading it for the CL.  The fixed lens didn't do it for me and I don't want to have to carry 2 cameras.  Still haven't decided but I appreciate your responses.  

 

Amy

I did the same thing... sold Q for the CL.

As a walkaround, I find the CL with the 23 is great. And with the ability to switch lenses, it's a much more versatile setup.

 

 

Edited by Donzo98

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7 hours ago, Astropap said:

Lots of interesting experiences here and I appreciate the input.  I had the Q.  I'm trading it for the CL.  The fixed lens didn't do it for me and I don't want to have to carry 2 cameras.  Still haven't decided but I appreciate your responses.  

 

Amy

Yes. I did not mention above... I started with the Q also. Am about to sell it since I have not used it much after getting the CL.  I really like the CL + 23mm (35mm equivalent). The Q is a lovely camera, but I just love the 35mm over the 28mm focal length. I suspect that if the Q had a 35mm on it, I would have used it more. Sure, you can crop the Q to a 35mm, but you lose MP. I carried 2 cameras for a while as nicci78 suggested above. I used the Q and paired my CL with the 35mm f/1.4 But now that I have had all my gear for more than a year, when I look back and reflect on what I actually take with me, I tend to bring the CL + 23mm + 60 mm macro with me almost everywhere I go. I find that combo gives me the most flexibility and coverage. 

The CL + 23mm is what I use 70% or 80% of the time.

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Me too

23mm as only lens adding 11-23 and 18-56 if out and about with a bag.

Various m mounts for specific tasks only 

Would like to try the 35 but I suspect the 23 would win out from field of view/convenience considerations and probably the 18 though super convenient would lose out from field of view, have used both zooms at 18 and not really me

 

Edited by huwm

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I would have liked a Q if it had a longer focal length lens ... 43 to 55 mm ... rather than 28 or even 35. I had the X113 with the 35mm equivalent lens on it and loved it, but I tend to want a slightly longer focal length most of the time. 

I've been on a wide jag for a while with the CL (it is an amazing machine fitted with the Super-Elmar-R 15mm f/3.5), but my most used lenses on it so far have been the R28/2.8, Pentax-L 43/1.9 Ltd, and R50/1.4. I use adapted lenses (R and M) exclusively with it, to this time. It is becoming, for me, my ideal Leica "go anywhere, do anything with confidence" camera. 

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17 hours ago, ramarren said:

I would have liked a Q if it had a longer focal length lens ... 43 to 55 mm ... rather than 28 or even 35. I had the X113 with the 35mm equivalent lens on it and loved it, but I tend to want a slightly longer focal length most of the time. 

I've been on a wide jag for a while with the CL (it is an amazing machine fitted with the Super-Elmar-R 15mm f/3.5), but my most used lenses on it so far have been the R28/2.8, Pentax-L 43/1.9 Ltd, and R50/1.4. I use adapted lenses (R and M) exclusively with it, to this time. It is becoming, for me, my ideal Leica "go anywhere, do anything with confidence" camera. 

same for me , a Q with a 50mm summicron or summilux , or even better 43mm but it will never happen

Edited by siangue

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On 2/11/2019 at 8:51 PM, ramarren said:

I use a Pentax-L 43mm f/1.9 Limited for most of my casual shooting with the CL now. It’s an LTM lens, fitted with LTM->M mount adapter and coded as a ‘Lux 35 ASPH. Superb quality, instantaneous manual focus, small and light. 

Were  I to buy a native lens, likely the APO-Summilux-T 35/1.4 ASPH. But I haven’t seen the need. :)

Interesting.  Any idea how the IQ of this lens compares with the current version with the Pentax K mount?

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1 hour ago, Astropap said:

Interesting.  Any idea how the IQ of this lens compares with the current version with the Pentax K mount?

The Pentax-L 43 and Pentax-FA 43 f/1.9 Limited lenses are optically identical. The only difference is the lens mount.

The SLR model was my favorite lens when I had Pentax K10D and *ist-DS DSLRs, but it has a very short, very light focusing helicoid designed for the AF drive and isn't very easy to focus accurately when used as an adapted lens. The LTM mount version has a superb focusing feel that is a perfect match to any Leica RF or EVF camera, with the one caveat that it only focuses down to 1m rather than about 0.5m like the SLR version.

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Thanks.  I have a Pentax KP and was thinking of ordering the adapter to try out some of the K-mount lenses I have on the CL.  Probably not worth the expense though.  Where did you pick up that Pentax?

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If you already have the M Adapter L, you can get a Pentax K to Leica M adapter pretty inexpensively. Fotodiox and RayQual are quality makes. Some of the Pentax SLR lenses are very nice and work trying. 

The Pentax-L 43mm Limited was a very special production lens. They made only about 2000 of them (800 or so in Silver, the others in Black) with a matched finder and sold them new in Japan only. I'd wanted one for a long time, but they usually sell for $1000-1400 complete. However, a mint example without the finder or the box for about $700 popped up a half a year ago and I nabbed it. It came from a vendor in Japan I've done business with before. 

It's a terrific lens, one of the best performers in the focal length I've ever seen, and fits the CL beautifully. :)

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