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eev776

90mm M lenses which to buy Summicron f2 VS. Summarit f2.4

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I'm planing to purchase 90mm M lens to use on my Leica CL, which going to become 135mm on APSC sensor.

I can't decide which one to buy 90mm Summicron f2 (used) or Summarit f2.4 (new)?

I'll be using this lens mostly for landscape, architecture photography.

Please share your experiences and suggestions?

 

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5 hours ago, eev776 said:

I'm planing to purchase 90mm M lens to use on my Leica CL, which going to become 135mm on APSC sensor.

I can't decide which one to buy 90mm Summicron f2 (used) or Summarit f2.4 (new)?

I'll be using this lens mostly for landscape, architecture photography.

Please share your experiences and suggestions?

 

For landscapes IMO the 90mm APO Summicron ASPH is probably without question the best of the 90mm lenses in the M line, with no visible distortion.  If you find a good used one, then this is your best choice.  Another very good lens to consider is the discontinued 90mm f2.8 Elmarit, which is probably positioned between the Summarit and Summicron. It's built like a tank and delivers good IQ.

I have both lenses. I've used the 90mm Elmarit more, and for years on the M8, M9, M10 and on the CL, it makes for a light package. The Summicron is slightly heavier and bigger. With the Elmarit on the CL, I find that you often need to boost contrast in PP.  No experience with the Summarit f2.4. 

 

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3 hours ago, michali said:

For landscapes IMO the 90mm APO Summicron ASPH is probably without question the best of the 90mm lenses in the M line, with no visible distortion.  If you find a good used one, then this is your best choice.  Another very good lens to consider is the discontinued 90mm f2.8 Elmarit, which is probably positioned between the Summarit and Summicron. It's built like a tank and delivers good IQ.

I have both lenses. I've used the 90mm Elmarit more, and for years on the M8, M9, M10 and on the CL, it makes for a light package. The Summicron is slightly heavier and bigger. With the Elmarit on the CL, I find that you often need to boost contrast in PP.  No experience with the Summarit f2.4. 

 

 Thanks for detailed reply Mike!

Looks like APO Summicron 90mm is the one to go with, I see on reviews that build quality of Summarit f2.4 is not greatest. I thought a lot of 90mm f2.8 Elmarit, great lens but no 6 bit coding and love Summicron's f2!

BTW great photos on your website! 

Edited by eev776

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You mean Summicron 90/2 v1, v2, v3 or 90/2 apo? If it is the apo it is more expensive than the Summarit 90/2.4. Agree with what michali said above but beware that the apo is significantly bulkier and heavier than the 90/2.4. I have the latter too and it works well on the digital CL. Its MFD is 0.9m vs 1m for the 90/2 apo. For use on the CL i would prefer the latter if i did not need f/2 due to the size of the apo essentially.

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You should definitely consider the Elmarit! OK... only 2,8, but smaller than the cron and in my eyes ¨transparent¨ or so clean & nice in its drawing. And a nice built in hood.

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9 hours ago, eev776 said:

 Thanks for detailed reply Mike!

Looks like APO Summicron 90mm is the one to go with, I see on reviews that build quality of Summarit f2.4 is not greatest. I thought a lot of 90mm f2.8 Elmarit, great lens but no 6 bit coding and love Summicron's f2!

BTW great photos on your website! 

Thank you.  Here's an image I took a few days ago with the CL & 90mm Elmarit  f2.8  - ISO100 f4 @  1/40s.  Romeo watching birds from my study.......he's only allowed to watch!

I've hand coded my lens and it is recognised on the M10, CL & SL2.

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48 minutes ago, michali said:

Thank you.  Here's an image I took a few days ago with the CL & 90mm Elmarit  f2.8  - ISO100 f4 @  1/40s.  Romeo watching birds from my study.......he's only allowed to watch!

I've hand coded my lens and it is recognised on the M10, CL & SL2.

Great photo! So you guys recommend on getting 90mm Elmarit  f2.8, rather than Summarit f2.4?

So why not 90mm Summicron f2, let's say they all costs the same?

I haven't experienced those lenses myself yet, I'm going to try all of them at Leica store this weekend.

Edited by eev776

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If you are shooting landscape or architecture then you will probably be using smaller rather than larger apertures. All the lenses mentioned will work well at smaller apertures and will deliver excellent images. Given this I would probably go for the Summarit, quite simply because it is likely to suffer from flare the least. The Elmarit-M is also a good choice but you need to check any you find out well because of the potentiality for wear/damage due to age.

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I like much the Elmarit-M 90/2.8 v2 as well but i find it too bulky on the CL. I prefer compact lenses on this body like the favorite Macro-Elmar-M 90/4 or the inexpensive Elmar-C 90/4 and M-Rokkor 90/4 for Minolta CLE. Couple of snaps with the former on the CL below. 
As for comparing Summarit 90/2.4 to Elmarit 90/2.8 v2, the former has a bit more micro contrast but is somewhat softer at edges and corners below f/5.6. It is not a problem on crop bodies like the digital CL though.
Full size: 
https://tinyurl.com/w5mznph
https://tinyurl.com/v96vo36

 

 

Edited by lct

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Summarit lenses (I have the 75) are great performers and nicely compact… but it's someway true that their build quality isn't up to classic lenses : the Elmarit M 90 is another matter...but on a CL imho it's anyway a bulky item, while a Summarit looks more "right-sized".

 

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2 minutes ago, jaeger said:

will f/2 become f/3.4 and f/2.8 become f/4 on APC sensor?

Fortunately not. :)

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The Summarit lenses get panned and people love the Elmarit but much of this is internet wisdom. Erwin Puts rates the Summarit as the superior choice of the two. This will be based on actual measurements. In any case, either lens will be of sufficient quality. I wouldn't get the Summicron due to cost, size, filter diameter (prefer 39 or 46 mm), and minimum focus but they are my priorities.

I would also prefer a new lens covered by warranty, which is lighter in weight and was designed to reduce flare, than I would a lens which ended production in 2008. However, and as above, each to their own.

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Since I know someone will ask about it. Erwin Puts here: "Compared with the Elmarit-M 2.8/90mm the Summarit 90 is the better option and offers a wider aperture and smoother handling. The Summarit delivers excellent performance in a very compact size and is one on my favorite lenses for general photography."

It's easy to miss in the text but the full article is here: https://photo.imx.nl/leica/lenses/page86.html

It's about all of the Summarit lenses. At the time they were the 2.5 versions. However, these are optically the same as the 2.4 versions, so the comments are still applicable.

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Amongst a collection of 11 M lenses, Summiluxes, Summicrons, Elmarits and vintage f1.5 Summarit, I have 2 modern Summarits, a 35mm f2.5 and a 75mm f2.5. I like their image rendering, especially on the Monochrom.  

My issue with these 2 lenses is build quality, they both suffer from loose/rattling lens barrels. Don't know if this has been addressed in the newer f2.4 versions. 

Edited by michali

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16 minutes ago, michali said:

Amongst a collection of 11 M lenses, Summiluxes, Summicrons, Elmarits and vintage f1.5 Summarit, I have 2 modern Summarits, a 35mm f2.5 and a 75mm f2.5. I like their image rendering, especially on the Monochrom.  

My issue with these 2 lenses is build quality, they both suffer from loose/rattling lens barrels. Don't know if this has been addressed in the newer f2.4 versions. 

People also complain about loose elements on the 28mm Summicron, rattles in the 35mm and 50mm ASPH Summiluxes and so on. Personally the only Leica lens that ever gave me grief was a 35mm 2.8 Summaron. However, that was an old lens and I was riding my pushbike around the Himalaya with it in a pannier. It was foolish of me to take a vintage lens on such a trip. Otherwise, I haven't had a problem with any Leica lens. It's part of the reason i like them in the first place. This also extends to the 2x Summarit lenses I currently have. I really enjoy the lens caps and handling of the Summarit lenses too. The 35mm in particular. I'd similarly take a 50mm summarit over the current Summicron in a heart beat. They're great lenses. By the way, I have subsequently taken Summarit lenses on similar bike trips and they've held up perfectly! How does a lens barrel become loose anyway? Seems to me that if the barrel is loose then all the lenses would fall out.

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5 hours ago, Mark T said:

Since I know someone will ask about it. Erwin Puts here: "Compared with the Elmarit-M 2.8/90mm the Summarit 90 is the better option and offers a wider aperture and smoother handling. The Summarit delivers excellent performance in a very compact size and is one on my favorite lenses for general photography."

It's easy to miss in the text but the full article is here: https://photo.imx.nl/leica/lenses/page86.html

It's about all of the Summarit lenses. At the time they were the 2.5 versions. However, these are optically the same as the 2.4 versions, so the comments are still applicable.

Interesting article, thanks for sharing.

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Of note: The 90mm Summarits (both f/2.5-f/2.4) are a reworking of the old 1980 non-APO 90mm Summicron-M optical formula, with some aspects of the 90mm Elmarit-R/M (1981/1991) thrown in (if one allows for splitting the second element into two cemented elements). And reveals a mix of both those designs' behavior, with some specific improvements (less of a dip in MTF at about 12-15mm out from the image center, lighter weight), but still showing a certain amount of mostly-red color fringing (longitudinal chromatic aberration) in slightly-out-of-focus areas - esp. at f/2.5.

At distances beyond 2 meters/6.6 feet or so, the APO-Summicron-M ASPH (ASMA) will be the walk-away winner for clarity and color control.

Either current lens mentioned in the original post, lacking the floating element of the 75mm ASMA, suffers a bit in close-up use.

(Despite the same branding, the 90 Summarits are rather different from the 75mm Summarits, which are a simplified reworking of the 75 APO-Summicron ASPH, less the floating elements and ASPH surface).

I say this as someone who just bought a used f/2.5 Summarit 90mm, after careful review of both my own pictures from all the types mention so far over the years (less the f/4 lenses) and also the construction diagrams and MTF charts. The Summarit is not "the best" 90mm - but it is a competent and fitting replacement for the 30/40-year-old non-APO Summicron/Elmarits (splitting the difference of the maximum apertures - and even the names!) - a nice "tip of the hat" from Peter Karbe to those Walter Mandler designs and their look.

For me it does the trick. YMMV.

Edited by adan

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4 hours ago, Mark T said:

People also complain about loose elements on the 28mm Summicron, rattles in the 35mm and 50mm ASPH Summiluxes and so on. Personally the only Leica lens that ever gave me grief was a 35mm 2.8 Summaron. However, that was an old lens and I was riding my pushbike around the Himalaya with it in a pannier. It was foolish of me to take a vintage lens on such a trip. Otherwise, I haven't had a problem with any Leica lens. It's part of the reason i like them in the first place. This also extends to the 2x Summarit lenses I currently have. I really enjoy the lens caps and handling of the Summarit lenses too. The 35mm in particular. I'd similarly take a 50mm summarit over the current Summicron in a heart beat. They're great lenses. By the way, I have subsequently taken Summarit lenses on similar bike trips and they've held up perfectly! How does a lens barrel become loose anyway? Seems to me that if the barrel is loose then all the lenses would fall out.

In a collection of  19  M, R, TL & SL lenses, the only 2 Leica lenses that I've had an issue with build quality are the 2 Summarits. It's a common complaint with the modern f2.5 Summarits, I have no experience with the f2.4 vers.

There's lateral movement of the focusing barrel, it doesn't affect IQ, fact is there shouldn't be that kind of movement and rattling.

 

 

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8 hours ago, michali said:

In a collection of  19  M, R, TL & SL lenses, the only 2 Leica lenses that I've had an issue with build quality are the 2 Summarits. It's a common complaint with the modern f2.5 Summarits, I have no experience with the f2.4 vers.

There's lateral movement of the focusing barrel, it doesn't affect IQ, fact is there shouldn't be that kind of movement and rattling.

 

 

+1:  exactly the same on my 75 2,5 : fixed with success 3 years ago (for free), now the play is quietly re-appearing… as above said, not a great issue… but I keep my opinion that is not such a smart design… :huh: and I'm mot an high workload photographer… why my Summilux 50 of 1963 (just an example) is still so rock solid ?   B)

Edited by luigi bertolotti

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