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50 cron APO - “Standard” or retro

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Which version would you buy? Is the retro version worth the extra money?

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If I were to spend that kind of money anyway; YES! Getting both the best and the coolest at the same time... 😁

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The standard one.

It‘s more practical to use and stove away in the a bag. 
Did so with the Summilux, love the look of the retro one, but still went for the standard. Which, btw, still looks gorgeous. 
 

Cheers

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Posted (edited)
32 minutes ago, GMB said:

Which version would you buy? Is the retro version worth the extra money?

"worth" ? It's just look and feel... so a strictly personal value that can be variable from -x to +y... 🙄

(as a definte lover of chrome lenses, me for instance have a fixed "+x" on them... 😉)

Edited by luigi bertolotti

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Posted (edited)

I have no experience with the "retro" version but it has no focus tab IINW. Also a longer focus throw? Sounds logic, otherwise it would be difficult to focus at f/2. Then a slow retro lens i suspect. I have lenses doing the same (50/1.4 v2 eg) so I have nothing against that but thanks no thanks i'll stick to the standard version.

Edited by lct

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Advantages of the "standard" version: it's less expensive, it is smaller overall, and the hood is built in and twists out with a cool and reliable mechanism.  It has a focusing tab.

Disadvantages of the standard version: It has a focusing tab (if you don't like them). The focusing ring aside from the tab is mostly smooth, so if you prefer to focus your lenses by gripping the ring rather than using the tab then in my opinion you will not like the ergonomics of the standard version.  The hood, while convenient and lovely, is pretty short, and I'm skeptical it will be as effective at reducing flare as the larger, longer hood of the retro version.

Advantages of the retro version: it looks great.  The focusing ring is larger in diameter, so even though the throw is identical (I think), the larger diameter makes it easer to precisely focus, like driving a car with a tiny steering wheel versus a large steering wheel.

Disadvantages of the retro version: no built-in hood.  The provided hood is fine—probably more effective at reducing flare than the standard hood—but it is large and clips on.  Clip-in hoods tend to wear scratches into the finish of the lens, if that matters to you.  They are also fussy to install and fussy to take off.

Overall: if you love/hate focusing tabs go standard/retro.  If you think you'll need a hood and don't want to leave the large retro hood on the end of the lens, go standard.  But if you dream about the look of the retro version then you know what you have to do... buy both ;)

 

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standard - I can see justify the smaller price difference for a little twist in the case of the Summilux

On the APO, last time I looked, the difference was greater and I personally dont think it is worth it

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The main difference besides price / looks is for sure weight..I’m guessing the retro version of the APO is around 100g heavier than the regular version right?

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Thanks to all for the helpful responses.  All good points. 

I do not have strong feelings regarding the focus tab.  I have several lenses with a tab and several without. 

It seems to me that, if you have no strong feelings regarding the focus tab, in practical terms, the hood is the biggest difference.  I have 2 lenses with a metal hood attached; the second version MATE and the Noctilux 1.0.  I don't min the hood as such but the fact that you can put a lens cover on when the hood is attached.

However, if I understand correctly, the retro version of the APO Summicron 50 comes with two lens covers.  One that fits the lens without the hood and one that fits the lens with the hood attached. I would be grateful if someone who owns the lens could confirm.

Thanks.

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8 hours ago, luigi bertolotti said:

"worth" ? It's just look and feel... so a strictly personal value that can be variable from -x to +y... 🙄

(as a definte lover of chrome lenses, me for instance have a fixed "+x" on them... 😉)

I admit that my question was wrongly asked.  You are absolutely right that this is a purely personal value as the performance of both is identical.  Also, a rational person would say that the APO is not "worth" the huge premium over the non-APO summicron, which I own and which I think is a wonderful small and super sharp lens that renders beautifully.

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1 hour ago, GMB said:

Thanks to all for the helpful responses.  All good points. 

I do not have strong feelings regarding the focus tab.  I have several lenses with a tab and several without. 

It seems to me that, if you have no strong feelings regarding the focus tab, in practical terms, the hood is the biggest difference.  I have 2 lenses with a metal hood attached; the second version MATE and the Noctilux 1.0.  I don't min the hood as such but the fact that you can put a lens cover on when the hood is attached.

However, if I understand correctly, the retro version of the APO Summicron 50 comes with two lens covers.  One that fits the lens without the hood and one that fits the lens with the hood attached. I would be grateful if someone who owns the lens could confirm.

Thanks.

I can confirm- the retro 50 APO in black chrome comes with a metal lens cap that can be used without the hood, as well as a larger plastic cap that can be used when the hood is attached..

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Here’s a video demonstrating the hood and caps....

I prefer this version to the standard version for several reasons.  For me, the compactness of the standard version places the aperture ring and focus tab too close together and precludes use of a fully knurled focus ring as with the special edition.  I like having two distinct rings with good spacing. Further, on three separate samples of the standard model that I held, all had ridiculously loose aperture rings, an all too common annoyance with various recent Leica M lens releases.  This is fixable by Leica or third party, but who wants a service from the start?  And the special edition feels more substantial in hand due to the more robust materials.  The trade off is the lack of nifty retractable hood, but my guess is that the larger accessory hood is more effective regarding potential flare.  IQ, of course, is otherwise the same.

I was fortunate to buy a new black chrome version for less than the cost of a new standard version, and before tariff related price increases, so cost wasn’t an issue.  

Jeff

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8 minutes ago, Milan_S said:

50 APO LHSA Version in Black Paint

 

 

Agree, except for the price.

Jeff

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On 6/3/2020 at 7:44 AM, shirubadanieru said:

The main difference besides price / looks is for sure weight..I’m guessing the retro version of the APO is around 100g heavier than the regular version right?

Having owned both the standard silver and black anodized 50 APO lenses and the limited edition black chrome 50 APO and shot with the LHSA black paint brass version there are many reasons to prefer the black chrome and LHSA brass versions over the standard black or silver alloy models. First being the black chrome is manufactured from brass vs aluminum in the standard version, which in practice completely eliminates the often very soft and light indents of the aperture ring, second the focus ring on the black chrome or the LHSA black paint and silver anodized brass lenses is noticeably smoother and just feels more precise and buttery. The machined from brass black chrome and LHSA lenses also are more robust in use as the brass knurling of the aperture and focus rings stands up much better in use to potential damage whereas the alloy versions can be marred and damaged with a simple bump. The detachable hood for the brass versions is machined also from solid brass and the fit is impeccable plus it offers more flare protection than the twist out standard hood and last the lens caps are also machined from solid brass with such a precise fit. All in all if one is going to keep the 50 APO lens they buy then do I believe that over time, years, the solid brass black chrome or LHSA lenses with stand the test of time better both in function and how much more durable they will be. Without question I believe the brass lenses are very much worth the premium. 

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29 minutes ago, GMB said:

Again thanks for the good comments.  I ordered the black chrome. Should arrive next week and should be a perfect match with the M10M that I am expecting today. 

Now I only have to get one of these straps  https://rocknrollstraps.com/shop/camera-straps/rock-n-roll-m-straps/rock-n-roll-m10-strap-limited-edition/

Good choice on the lens - maybe look at one of these:

https://www.harrybenz.com/shop/the-monochrome

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2 hours ago, GMB said:

Nice stuff but too complicated to ship to Europe. May be next time I am in Canada.

I'm in the UK and have ordered a different item, not this Monochrom strap.  Really super quality - everything is handmade to order.  Ships with tracking number and lead times usually around 8 weeks, but worth the wait.

I do like the Rock n Roll straps as well.  I have the Black Is Black (on my M10-D) and Monochrom (on my M10-M), plus a red Napa and a couple of now redundant Rope straps!  I have far too many straps 🙂

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