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shirubadanieru

Your favorite Leica vintage lenses?

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Hi everyone, 

I was wondering what are your favorite Leica vintage lenses (ie anything between 1940s~80s). I have an M9 and waiting on the new MM, and I feel both of these cameras are a perfect fit for vintage lenses. My all time favorite lens is the v1 summicron 35mm f2 8 elements, and I'm looking to get one more lens for the other body (either another 35mm or 50mm). Would love to hear what are some of the vintage lenses people in this forum love and recommend : )

Thank you!

Edited by shirubadanieru

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The mainstream production of Leica lenses started in 1925. My favourite is the 5cm Summar from the 1930s.

William

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If you like 35mm, you should try the modest Summaron 3.5/3.5cm or 2.8/35mm.

With Monochrom, in my use the Summaron/Elmar kit can't be bettered.

For me those Summaron complete very well the "8 element" Summicron 35mm.

Anyway, each lens (mainly 35mm which I use some brands from f/1.4 to f/4 ) can perform well, just try to know the lens.

 

As side note, now I would use (as only 35mm lens) the newer Summarit-M 2.5/35mm with "better coating" and lovely "class/classic" renderings.

(this one will become "vintage" soon 😇 ...replaced by the asph. 2.4 some years ago)

Edited by a.noctilux

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I’m currently having my two 35/2.8 Summarons refurbished at Kantō Camera. When they return, one is going on an M2, and the other on a BP M4. 

I don’t think I’ll be removing them often ... certainly not for a different 35. 

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@Mute-on kanto camera, nice! I have a lens with them too, great service but it does take too long :( I've been waiting for 4 months now. 
Summaron 35mm is great too, I had it before but couldn't justify keeping it over the 8 elements, although price / performance wise the Summaron is the better choice for sure. 

@a.noctilux thank you! what about the 50mm f2.5 summarit? Have you tried it? 

@willeica never tried that one, but i love the collapsible summicron 50mm which is, I'm told, similar to the summar?

I always wondered about the elmar 35mm f3.5, and 50mm f3.5. Can't really find too many reviews online, in case anyone has them would love to hear your thoughts :) 

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Summarit-M lenses are my "classic choice" now,

begining with "some skeptical thoughts" with the 2.5/50mm, I do love it a lot when using for a while (I do use/have other 50mm of course, a couple of dozens made from 1930 to 2016 ),

Then came 2.5/35mm and last is 2.5/75mm waiting to complete with 2.5/90mm, all second hand purchases.

Elmar 3.5/50mm made from 1926 to 1962 can be have for cheap, but beware of lens elements conditions, also true for Summar 5cm with their soft glass.

My Monochrom kit is Elmar/Summaron 35/50/90 :

 

SOOGZ can be necessary to srew-in E39 colored filters that I use,

A36 filters are scarce and I don't have "all colors I need"

 

Other lovely lenses are to discover, collapsible Summicron 50mm.

Another classic LTM lens comes from Canon, here 1.4/50 very nice, but now the 1.2/50 is prefered for their "lovely flaws" wide open.

 

Edited by a.noctilux

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1 hour ago, shirubadanieru said:

never tried that one, but i love the collapsible summicron 50mm which is, I'm told, similar to the summar?

The Summicron gives 'better' sharpness, but the Summar gives much more 'artistic' effects. It is a matter of taste.

William

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Mine is the 40mm Summicron-C 1:2.0 which came with the Leica CL (also a vintage item by now). I use this with many different cameras, among them the Sony NEX-5N and both Leica CLs (the vintage one and the modern one, that is). This lens "just works".

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My last advice is to try them all 😇.

Some may work, some not really, but you can say

"Now I know which one (or ones) for me ".

Just begin with the one you can buy now, then other ones (with pleasure of course).

 

To have some ideas which one (s) can be candidate (s),

have a look in this rich thread "older glass"

 

Don't forget that old lenses can be difficult to use,

my example here is with M10 + Summaron 3.5/3.5cm LTM (not artistic picture ! )

I love the pastel and gentle rendering but some may find "not enough contrast" that is true

 

 

Edited by a.noctilux

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27 minutes ago, a.noctilux said:

My last advice is to try them all 😇.

Some may work, some not really, but you can say

"Now I know which one (or ones) for me ".

Just begin with the one you can buy now, then other ones (with pleasure of course).

 

To have some ideas which one (s) can be candidate (s),

have a look in this rich thread "older glass"

 

Don't forget that old lenses can be difficult to use,

my example here is with M10 + Summaron 3.5/3.5cm LTM (not artistic picture ! )

I love the pastel and gentle rendering but some may find "not enough contrast" that is true

 

 

Hi 

I am not that into the really older lenses. But when both a Elmar 50 3.5 ¨mint¨ (no haze) and complete with metal hood & cap and also a Summaron 35 3.5 also ¨mint¨ (except some haze visible from behind) with metal hood, cap and the 36-39mm adapter came for sale in my hometown at a total price for both of euro 700,-, I could not resist.

Immediate findings, however, is that the 50 has a rather disturbing drawing (just do not get to like it...), while the 35 so far looks very pleasant (nice & soft). A very nice addition to my 35 cron v4 and 35 lux pre-fle. See what you mean about lack of contrast, but it is so relaxed... And suddenly the cron v4 looks big... 😉

PS; Now I am uncertain about removing the haze (CLA in Germany) in the 35 or not... could I destroy the softness which I like?

 

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15 hours ago, shirubadanieru said:

I was wondering what are your favorite Leica vintage lenses (ie anything between 1940s~80s)

Why restrict the age of the lens to after 1940?  I have a number of vintage lenses from pre-1940 such as the 50/3.5 Red Scale Elmar that are wonderful and amongst my favourites. You'll find plenty of pictures from vintage lenses if you spend a little time browsing through the forum's "The view through older glass" thread.

My favourite of all my vintage lenses is my 1945 Carl Zeiss Jena 50/2 Sonnar that produces pictures with a dreamy, low-contrast 'vintage' look.  Below is an example of what I mean.

Pete.

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Probably the cheapest vintage Leica lens available...the 135mm f4.5 Hektor.  M240

 

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My favorite right now is a 1935 coated Summar. Sharp in the center, plenty of character wide open, and surprisingly good contrast.  Looks cool, too. 

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Super-Angulon 21 is awesome on Monochrom! Otherwise I also really like the Summaron 35 f3.5 (also really nice on Monochrom).

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Leitz only? OK... You have greater chances to get troubled lens if it is vintage. Comparing to some other non Leitz lenses.

I had v4 ELC Summicron and it was best lens for color on M-E (M9 sensor). Swapped to III, because V4 has plastic parts not available anymore.

 

The only time I saw Mandler vibes it was on darkroom gelatin silver prints, BTW.

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There is something special using vintage lenses on modern digital sensors (other than on dedicated film cameras of course!). Took this one a few days ago with my Leica 50/1.5 Summarit LTM lens with extension tube mounted on my Sony A7R. 

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On 12/15/2019 at 3:48 PM, farnz said:

My favourite of all my vintage lenses is ...

Oops, I missed that it has to be a Leica lens previously.

In that case it's the 73/1.9 Hektor.

Pete.

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