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Landiah

Experience with 50 APO on film?

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Does anyone here have experience with this combo? I have a 50 summicron v5 but am tempted by the pull of the APO. I primarily shoot film, will i see any difference?

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I have both. The 50APO is marvellous and definitely better then the  Summicron v5. But you can only see it with the Monochrom-M. In my opinion the 50APO is for film not necessary. If you want to buy a Monochrom (1, 2 or 3rd Version) the Apo will be your choice.

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I have the lens, and I am using it with Leica M-A. I can say honestly that I would choose 50’lux if I were not seeking for the edge-to-edge sharpness. The difference is quite small between those 50’crons in terms of technical aspect. Yet the character of 50’APO is considerably unique. As result, no need to splurge.

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I guess no APO for me.  😔

Odeon, I have seen some of your photos with the 50 APO and M-A and that is actually one of the things that inspired by desire for the combo. If there really is no noticeable difference perhaps I will go for the lux. 

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9 minutes ago, Landiah said:

I guess no APO for me.  😔

Odeon, I have seen some of your photos with the 50 APO and M-A and that is actually one of the things that inspired by desire for the combo. If there really is no noticeable difference perhaps I will go for the lux. 

I had 50'lux, and I sold it before I got 50'APO. I was to expect that the 50'APO made my photos more distinctive. But the opposite is truth...

50'APO offers impressive micro-contrast, cutting-edge technology on paper, and background isolation from the subject. I never argue the quality of 50'APO. On the other hand, 50'lux has more distinctive character, lesser sharpness, more overall contrast, and one extra stop... The last one, the extra stop, would be life saving while using film. I have to say that one will be surely more pleased with 50'lux if she or he captures only film.

You are probably about to ask me why I am still using 50'APO... The answer is that I would like to see the horizon while shooting in Adox CMS II, Cinestill 50D, or something else which offers great resolving power. No need to use 50'APO if you desire to choose Tri-X, HP5+, an so on. Another reason for me would be emotional engagement to 50'APO.

Leica M240 + 50'lux

Leica M-A + Adox CMS 20 II + 50'APO

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I have used the 50 APO with my M7 using Pan F+ and Acros 100.

I get drum scans done for prints to 30”x20”.

I think I can see the benefit of the APO for edge to edge sharpness at all apertures, and the benefit of its very flat field which is good for landscapes when i compare it to my 50 v5 .....the HUGE CAVEAT here is that my v5 was potentially a very poor copy, given it had a lot of veiling flare (low contrast in middle of image in many lighting scenes) and it had an enormous field curvature (for a landscape .... the middle of the image at infinity was sharp; the edges at infinity were completely blurred; and the edges just a metre away were razor sharp!).

Does anyone else’s v5 do that?

Hence I found the APO more “reliable” for many subjects due to knowing that it has a flat field for landscapes, and it’s tack sharp at any aperture. It also has very high acuity.

Again - it could be that my v5 was just a terrible copy, and this exacerbated the difference I see.

Regardless, from a purely tactile experience, the APO is among the nicest handling lenses I’ve ever used ....solid, dense, precise, lovely weighting to the focus ring, lovely lens hood.

It might not be relevant to you, but it’s also very “future proof” for the much higher megapixel cameras now coming out of Leica (M10 Monochrom; SL2; ....), and there I think one does more readily see a larger difference, not just resolution but also less purple fringing etc.

So the APO is technically pretty perfect within the M range. Whether it makes more “beautiful” images is a separate question to consider though!

 

Edited by Jon Warwick

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Shiva is dead wrong.

@benqui and @Ernest use the 50APO extensively with film and the characteristics of the lens definitely come through.  

Everything that the 50 APO is vs the other 50mm Leica lens comes through on film.

Whether it makes sense to pay full price for a 50mm to just use it on film is entirely subjective. 

I would not.  But you are not me.  If you have the budget and/or can get a great deal on one (which is the case for one of my friends) and can visualize how you would use it to up your game and achieve certain results, I could be persuaded that you are not crazy.

I am sure that Marc and Rog would be happy to provide some examples here if you would like - although be ready to be persuaded!  

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19 hours ago, A miller said:

Shiva is dead wrong.

@benqui and @Ernest use the 50APO extensively with film and the characteristics of the lens definitely come through.  

Everything that the 50 APO is vs the other 50mm Leica lens comes through on film.

Whether it makes sense to pay full price for a 50mm to just use it on film is entirely subjective. 

I would not.  But you are not me.  If you have the budget and/or can get a great deal on one (which is the case for one of my friends) and can visualize how you would use it to up your game and achieve certain results, I could be persuaded that you are not crazy.

I am sure that Marc and Rog would be happy to provide some examples here if you would like - although be ready to be persuaded!  

I would love to see some examples, I hope they would be kind enough to share some examples. I’ve already seemed to persuade myself. 

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31 minutes ago, Landiah said:

I would love to see some examples

+1

After adding a film Leica to my bag, I've lost interest in premium glass. B&W films I use offer (my rough estimate) an equivalent of maybe 12MP resolution, some even less, and zone focusing requires me to shoot at f/5.6 or smaller, so out-of-focus areas look very similar across all lenses. My $400 Voightlander is absolutely kicking ass and I doubt if even a Summarit is worth it's price on film, thinking about sticking to Voightlander lenses for my film photography.

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@A millerthanks a lot Adam. I agree in many points with you. I do not think that the Apo 50 is too clean for analog. I use it as an everyday lens analog and on the MM1. On the MM1 it is razor sharp but I like the performance of the lens as well for analog M cameras. With a Porta 400 or an Tmax 400 it is my lens for portraits. If I had to choose only one lens, it would be my choice. Small, easy to handle, great performance.

To be honest, I do not know whether there is a visible difference to the other Summicrons, but maybe you can try one for a weekend to see whether the lens harmonizes with your style of photography.

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Thanks, Adam, for strapping me into this pony. Well, out of the starting gate, you know I am not a techy who speaks the language of optical designs, pixel performance, and the like. I enjoy the technical conversation, but it's really out of my wheelhouse. I just leave it up to Leica and work with it. I have only three Leicas: M3, M-A, and M246. I favor the current 50mm, particularly the silver LHSA flavor, but love the Summilux-M ASPH. Black Chrome and the DR Summicron, all having the classic knurled focusing ring. I am not so concerned about "clinically sharp" lapidary precision; Peter Karbe delivered on the APO and the BC, which he says is also an APO, so I have the freedom to use these tools any way that works. What works? I am challenged by color itself, as in color field expressionism, so my work many times plays with the notion of photography and the artifact. Sometimes, I construct a collage of images, some intentionally out of focus or motion-blurred, contrasted with in-focus images or just blocks of color. In focus, out of focus, blurred--and then, there is grain, analog grain--toxic grain, as in ADOX Color Implosion. It blows apart, like the ending of Antonioni's Zabriskie Point! It's like a Seurat pointillist painting, like Antonioni's Blow-Up. I crave Fuji Natura, also. There's E100 and Portra 400 and 800, then Rollei Redbird because it's unreal. Color fields can be dream fields, too. And I have no hesitation mixing digital M246 in my diptych constructions. Blasphemy? What works. Throw in some JCH StreetPan 400. After all this dancing around, cut to the chase. It's the image(s) in service of an idea, and the APO gets me there, mixing, constructing color on the palette. I hate that ADOX Color Implosion and Fuji Natura 1600 have been discontinued. It slows me down, doesn't it? I have posted many APO color field constructions on the Diptychs and Triptychs thread under Photo Forum, Other.

This is actually constructed with two images on ADOX Color Implosion.

Maybe No
M-A APO 50 ADOX Color Implosion

Edited by Ernest

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18%
M-A APO-Summicron-M 50 E100

Color homage to black-and-white film.

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Pending
M-A APO-Summicron-M 50 & M246  ADOX Color Implosion & Fuji Natura
An exercise in early cinema.

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