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TheEyesHaveIt

Street vs Starter Kits?

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What are folks thoughts on the street vs starter kits for the CL? Both cost less than buying individually, the starter being the best “value”, but the street comes with another battery and the grip (not sure I’ll use that). Comes down to the lenses really - I’ve read the 18 is just ok? I owned the Q so was used to the 28mm effective length but I also used a Loxia 35 on my Sony full frame for the majority of my New Zealand trip. Both lengths could work for me (landscape / travel).

And then the other question is I want to grab a second lens eventually - something like a mid-tele (60-90 equivalent). Better to pair with the TL 18 or the TL 23?

Cheers!

chee

Edited by TheEyesHaveIt

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My choice would be for the Street kit with 23mm lens. The 35mm equivalent focal length is perfect for everyday and travel photography. I am currently enjoying using a 50mm Summicron lens via adapter which gives an effective doubling of focal length  compared with the 23mm, very useful for selective framing, portraits and close range subjects.

If you are new to the CL, a third option is the body plus standard zoom lens which is universally popular with users of the camera. Just search among the CL image threads and see what wonderful shots are taken with that versatile lens. Yes, it is a little slow in opening aperture, but with Auto ISO it is not a problem.

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When I bought my CL, I bought an extra battery. I have not needed to change batteries yet. But I have come close several times. To extend battery life, I typically switch off the camera between shots even though there is a power saving mode. Before deciding on which purchasing option to select, think about your style of photography. Would one of the prime kits, including street, suit your needs better or would the kit with the vario lens.

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I would do street kit every time. I bought a kit which consisted of the CL, the 18-56 zoom and then added a grip and a decent small prime, yes the 23. I also got a grip and another battery.

So when I saw the street kit recently I thought it was an excellent set of components. I think you will use the grip, especially if you get a physically bigger lens as its easy to hold the camera with one hand. I personally think the grip is great and finishes off the camera, in terms of ergonomics and looks.

Just my thoughts.....

You will enjoy whichever way you go.

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Thanks all - looks like the street kit is the way to go. I’m trying to avoid getting the zooms (have my Sony for that type of flexibility) - want to keep the CL pretty lean, compact, and force me into a different type of shooting (primes only). Wish there was something wider than the 18 for that end. Hows the performance of M lenses on the CL?

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So for me, I find the CL battery life is just so-so, so I ended up buying additional batteries - and do go through a fully charged battery faster than with the T or TL2 when out for the day traveling or shooting a multi-hour event. 

I love the23mm lens for street photography and group candids.  If that’s your thing, you can’t go wrong there with a f/2 35mm equivalent FOV.   

And, ater I bought the larger 35mm TL lens, I ended up getting the grip which balances the camera and lenses nicely and makes one-handed use a breeze.  

In retrospect, I wish the street kit were available when I made the purchase because it’s a nice discount from the full price of these parts.

The zoom kit is also a great alternative (and relative value) if you’re a more casual shooter. 

Best wishes with your decision. 

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Check out the 11-23 zoom if you want wider than 18mm. It is a stellar lens.

i know you said you don’t like zooms - but this lens really is like having a bag of wide angle primes at your reach.  It is very sharp and works very well even in low light on the CL.

Edited by DGP

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22 hours ago, TheEyesHaveIt said:

but the street comes with another battery and the grip (not sure I’ll use that).

 

It will surprise you to see how much better this camera's ergonomic feel is with the grip. If you add a thumbs-up grip, it gets even better. 

I sure wish the Leica CL Street Kit was an option when I was putting my kit together. I bought the 23mm TL, the handgrip, the body, and spare batteries all separately. Then a month later Leica announces the kit. What is one to do??? 

That 23mm TL is versatile and very lightweight. Perfect for travelling. I love it. 

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I initially bought the CL with 18-56 plus the 23. I later added used 55-135 and 11-23. I later added another CL body and then later added a used 18 and a used 35. I think I will stop there for now. If you buy the 23 kit, you can always add a used 18 for $800 to $900. I personally like the little 18. It is so small and light and I think it takes great shots. FWIW

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2 hours ago, Bill W said:

I initially bought the CL with 18-56 plus the 23. I later added used 55-135 and 11-23. I later added another CL body and then later added a used 18 and a used 35. I think I will stop there for now. If you buy the 23 kit, you can always add a used 18 for $800 to $900. I personally like the little 18. It is so small and light and I think it takes great shots. FWIW

Wow - and I thought *I* was bad about buying more lenses!   Speaking of which (not to hijack the thread, but...)

I bought the CL with a 35.   A month later I snagged the last 11-23 Leica Miami had in stock, and THEN a few weeks later picked up a used 55-135.   The wife and I will be traveling in Spain and Portugal the end of April and I want to carry the most flexible set of lens I can, but limited to only TWO.    I'm pretty sold on the 55-135 and am in a quandary over which other lens would be best for architecture, touristy shots etc, but would also work for indoors and evenings.    The 35 is a bit heavy so now I'm debating getting either a 23 or the 18-56.

Based on what I've read in this forum the 18-56 seems to be very flexible but the trade off is that it is rather slow.   So maybe the 23 at f2 would be a better (and lighter) choice.    Your thoughts?   Or just suck it up and go with the 11-23 or the 35 plus the 55-135?   Or maybe rethink the whole thing and go with another combination?

-rich- 

Edited by Ricard0

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I had planned on pulling the trigger on the Street Kit, based on the type of photography I like to do. It checked the boxes with a fast enough lens, the grip (which I like on pretty much any camera) and a spare battery. As it turned out an acquaintance decided to sell her CL body and 18-56 + two spare batteries. Sold! I then found a pre-owned 23mm quite by chance and bought that separately. I think I'm all set unless I discover I'm missing going longer or wider than the 18-56.

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Thanks all - gonna go to the Leica store next weekend probably and handle the CL for myself. There are many benefits to having a zoom for travel (for example, my 24-105 for the Sony), but I rarely just pick up my Sony when leaving the house and don’t like having such a sizeable kit on business / non-photography trips. Hoping the CL will be something I want to take more for that so keeping it compact is a priority. Luckily everything is miniaturized compared to the Sony, but the 18/23 are pretty ideal sizes. Even the Q was a bit heavy for my tastes.

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The 18 is considered the weaker of the lot, though I've personally never owned one. I have, however, owned the 18-56 and would suggest that over the 18 prime simply because it is just as fast at 3.5 and the quality of the lens is really really good. That gives you a tight walkaround kit then I would add the 35 lux for those 'special' moments.

I now own 11-23, 23 Cron, 35 lux, 55-135. I miss the 18-56 as it is really handy, I will get another soon from my buddy, also I would like to add the 60mm macro. I have no desire to have the little pancake 18mm, my buddy owns it and says it is OK but he prefers the 11-23. I also think the extra battery and grip are a must.

The choice Sir is really yours to make. Most of all have fun shooting with whatever kit you decide to go for.

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A "free" spare battery is neither here nor there. A good off-brand one will cost about 25 Euro.

I only have zoom native lenses (18-56 and 55-135), and couldn't be happier. When I want specific fixed focal lengths, I use M mount lenses. For wideangle I will use an M9 and Super-Elmar 18.

As for the handgrip, for me it is love-hate. It blocks the battery/card door and the tripod screw and has to be screwed on and off, which is a pain, OTOH it does improve the handling of the camera, especially if combined with a Thumbie, but then again, that is only relevant for heavier/longer lenses. I only use it with the 55-135 and Summilux 24 M.
As a bonus, it seals a high-risk moisture entrance point in rainy conditions, i.e. the battery door.

For travel  I would use the 18-56 as the core of the system.

For small size I use the Voigtländer Color-Skopar 25.

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I travelled to 23 countries in 2018, took over 5,000 pictures of which I would guess 75% were with the 18-56, 15% with the 35 T 1.4 (indoor, portrait and night use) and 10% with a 21mm M (great street lens where zone focusing can be used) lens I have. For travels the 18-56 is the most versatile by far unless you need long reach. I found the pictures where I wanted longer reach than 85mm equivalent I cropped the image. 

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I don't think anybody needs to worry about the optical quality of that 18-56 ;)  Nor about the DR of the CL, BTW ;)

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Thank you all! Definitely will grab the 18-56 as it is best for travel. Still contemplating the 23 vs 35 for a small fast prime as a companion.

Edited by TheEyesHaveIt

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3 hours ago, TheEyesHaveIt said:

Thank you all! Definitely will grab the 18-56 as it is best for travel. Still contemplating the 23 vs 35 for a small fast prime as a companion.

23mm = small prime (not so fast)

35mm = fast prime (not so small)

I just got the 35mm after using solely the 23mm for a year and they are very different animals. I'd really recommend you physically try them against each other if you can.

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