Jump to content

Jono's Review: Leica Vario Elmarit SL 24-70 f2.8 ASPH


Recommended Posts

Advertisement (gone after registration)

2 hours ago, FrozenInTime said:

Thanks, sounds like a horrible day ... what was it wainwright said about bad weather.

 Gives me confidence the 24-70 + SL2-S can go where a CL + 18-56 dare not.

Was it him who said that there's no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothing! Which was partly true in this case, but I've yet to find a pair of boots which don't leak through the hole at the top where your leg goes in!

Yes - have confidence, and although the lens wasn't mine, the camera was.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 160
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

Here it is, Leica have just announced the new Vario Elmarit SL 24-70 f2.8 ASPH for L mount cameras. It's smaller and 300gm lighter than the 24-90, has a constant f2.8 aperture and is only a little bit more than half the price of it's bigger sibling. Even cheaper if you buy it as a kit with the SL2 or SL2S. Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content. Hallo Gast! Du willst die Bilder sehen? Einfach registrieren oder anmelden! Hello guest! Please register

Hi guys, sorry to hijack Jono's thread but since I do have both the Sigma and Leica lenses with me right now I might share some insights after shooting with both side by side in my living room: The Sigma is a tad sharper wide open in the center, the Leica is sharper in the corners...again only a tad and differences are only visible when zooming in (like 200%). The more you close down the aperture the sharper the Leica gets overall.  On my SL2-S the Leica seem to be metered a bi

To close my own answer  :   My main decision point was, if I want to have standard zoom or not. Main reason is to have a convenient choice for family holidays or other topics where I do not want to carry multiply lenses or change lenses AND want to have variable focal lengths (in good quality, obviously  ). My main lenses are the 35 and 75 summicron-SL as also the 28 Summaron-m. I also have the 24 Sigma and for macro-work the Sigma 105 Art, but especially the Macro normally stays at ho

Posted Images

Before the new lens was announced, the old R zoom 2.8/35-70 was very desirable. But it is a collectors item and almost impossible to get. (Or only for terrible prices).

But now the SL 24-70 makes an excellent impression. I compared the MTFs of both lenses, and the new lens is much better on paper.  So if anybody has the R 2.8/35-70 lens and could make a comparison with the new SL lens would do me/us a great favor. Or if anybody still has some older portrait photos with the R zoom that we could compare with new photos ... I would find this quite interesting.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I compared also with the R 3.5-4.5/28-90 zoom. And because I use 28 mm frequently also with the R 2.8/28 mm v2 prime lens, which is often regarded as one of the top 28mm lenses.

The MTFs of the 28-90 are a lot weaker than the ones for the new lens - especially for the highest frequency. And even the 28mm prime  was no match for the new lens (ok I had to interpolate 24mm and 35mm as there is no MTF diagram for 28mm , but I think this was probably fair enough.). So the new 24-70 has very impressive MTF curves (= is a very sharp and contrasty lens) even compared with some classics that many still use today.

And still the SL 24-90 seems to be even slightly better, this shows the effort that Leica has put into this “default” SL lens.

These comparisons now make the new lens very attractive to me (e.g. for travel), even though it is not of “pure Leica” ancestry.

Edited by caissa
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 weeks later...

Hi,

 

so today I had the chance to test the 24-70 a bit. First of all: It is a nice lens and honestly, I found nothing faulty about it. 

I am thinking of buying this lens for a "non-photographic"-holiday reasoning point of view. It would be the first zoom since a long time. I've also tried the 24-90 at the same time. 

 

First: The weight and size difference is more than would have suspected. In feel, look and haptics there is no difference between the two lenses. Only the focus-ring is a bit more loose on the 24-70, of course both a by wire. 

The lens-hood of the 24-70 is much, much nicer. 

 

Optically I saw now big differences, both a very good. It's size and 2.8 vs. 70 vs. 90 - nothing wrong with either lens. 

 

No buy yet, still thinking.

 

Cheers

Daniel

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/12/2021 at 1:08 PM, Daniel C.1975 said:

Hi,

 

so today I had the chance to test the 24-70 a bit. First of all: It is a nice lens and honestly, I found nothing faulty about it. 

I am thinking of buying this lens for a "non-photographic"-holiday reasoning point of view. It would be the first zoom since a long time. I've also tried the 24-90 at the same time. 

 

First: The weight and size difference is more than would have suspected. In feel, look and haptics there is no difference between the two lenses. Only the focus-ring is a bit more loose on the 24-70, of course both a by wire. 

The lens-hood of the 24-70 is much, much nicer. 

 

Optically I saw now big differences, both a very good. It's size and 2.8 vs. 70 vs. 90 - nothing wrong with either lens. 

 

No buy yet, still thinking.

 

Cheers

Daniel

This is helpful. I've tried most of the standard zooms, but haven't gotten my hands on the Leica 24-70 yet. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 weeks later...
On 5/17/2021 at 9:02 AM, jonoslack said:

if I didn't have it either of them there would be a decision to be made as to which mid-range zoom to choose (Leica 24-90, Sigma 24-70, Leica 24-70) .

Jono, which of these would you select and why?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

Advertisement (gone after registration)

To close my own answer ;) :

 

My main decision point was, if I want to have standard zoom or not. Main reason is to have a convenient choice for family holidays or other topics where I do not want to carry multiply lenses or change lenses AND want to have variable focal lengths (in good quality, obviously ;) ). My main lenses are the 35 and 75 summicron-SL as also the 28 Summaron-m. I also have the 24 Sigma and for macro-work the Sigma 105 Art, but especially the Macro normally stays at home. 

I've tested the 24-70 against the 24-90 some weeks a ago and still did not come to a conclusion. Image quality wise it is more or less a wash. 

So now, after a few weeks of pondering I came to the conclusion to give the standard zoom a try. Due to size and price and limited availability of used 24-90s I've talked myself into the 24-70 and went yesterday to may local Leica-store to make me a birthday present. But, as you all know: The devil is a busy, busy squirrel, and so the store had a used 24-90 in near perfect condition for a very fair price (3.500 Euro) and a one year guarantee.

So here I was, the clever fool. Trying back and fourth, and back again. The nicer and lighter lens is the 24-70. So it was constant 2.8 vs. 20mm more range and possibly a bit more robust Image stabilization, but larger size and a used lens which is roughly a whooping 1.000 bucks more expensive than the new one.

Conscience said: New and saving 1.000 bucks and have the lighter one.. 

But in the end I've decided to go for the 24-90.

Why: 

- Both lenses are bulky compared to an m or the summicron-sl lens - so if you walk with a single lens, it's not that huge of a different between the 24-70 and 24-90.

- Depreciation: If I realize, that zooming was a nice try, but I want to ditch the lens again, I assume the loss of money on an already used bought 24-90 vs. a newly bought 24-70 will be less

- I wanted to have a single convenient lens, and I know that I will start to think to also carry something longer in addition when using the 24-70 (I know, not very logical based on my base lens kit..) - So I decided, if convenience is the decisive factor, I go for the full blow

- I like using manual focus override. Means,  after focusing I turn the focus-ring, my camera jumps into magnification (my set up) and I re-adjust (I do this not very often, but want to have it on hand when needed). The focus ring of the 24-70 (i've tried 3) is super light to spin and therefore while holding and shooting, I every now and then accidentally turned the focus ring by a fraction and the viewfinder jumped into magnification-mode. The 24-90 focus ring is much more damped and therefore not so easy to turn accidentally. 

- Focus was a tiny bit more snappy on the 24-90. You also feel nothing when the lens is focusing. The 24-70 is also super fast and silent, but you can feel stuff moving and stopping inside when the lens is focusing. I assume that there is more mass to be moved in the 24-70. Again, no decisive factor. Just realized it and wanted to mention it

 

Both lenses are very good, and still after the purchase I was not 100% sure :D But at least, yesterday on my birthday-bbq my daughter used my SL2s with the 24-90 and it was very convenient to have a zoom for her and the first results I've seen do look really good. Currently no buyers remorse, and I think I've made the right decision. And for my pure family holiday (not photo-holiday) in August I will only take the 24-90 and the 28-summaron and will then see if I will be happy or have a constant "oh!-I-should-have-brought-my-summicrons"-nagging :D

 

I might buy the 24-70 lens hood. I've tried it on the 24-90 and it just looks so much less intrusive and massive with that lens hood. 

 

 

Cheers

Edited by Daniel C.1975
Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Daniel C.1975 said:

might buy the 24-70 lens hood. I've tried it on the 24-90 and it just looks so much less intrusive and massive with that lens hood. 

Interesting summary!

The original 24-90 lens hood reminds me of those small matte boxes of Super 16mm zooms back in the day. Very cinéma vérité like, and somewhat French. I'm not fond of these cut-away designed modern lens hoods you get today with Canon and the likes. Plus, reflections do come from the sides too. That's the reason why proper matte boxes never have such a shape. Let the Leica be a Leica in all it uniqueness. YMMV, of course.

Link to post
Share on other sites
vor 14 Stunden schrieb Lins-Barroso:

I have the SL 24-90, but it is very heavy and a monster when we are walking on the streets: quality Mde in Germany.

24 -70 is lighter, less bulky, 2,8, half the price and it is still a LEICA.

2 different animals.

So I ordered mine.

 

 

Very reasonable thoughts. As you can see in my above post, it also was a tight call for. If someone would be able to talk to the employee at Leica Munich, he would hear the story about this so very indecisive guy changing the two lenses back and forth, stopping, coming back .... 😂😂

Do you plan to keep both lenses or is it a ‚only one will stay‘-call?

 

BTW: There is another positive point for the 24-90. It‘s so big, that suddenly the summicron-sl lenses are tiny and light, even for a former m-User ;) 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Am 13.7.2021 um 23:44 schrieb hansvons:

Interesting summary!

The original 24-90 lens hood reminds me of those small matte boxes of Super 16mm zooms back in the day. Very cinéma vérité like, and somewhat French. I'm not fond of these cut-away designed modern lens hoods you get today with Canon and the likes. Plus, reflections do come from the sides too. That's the reason why proper matte boxes never have such a shape. Let the Leica be a Leica in all it uniqueness. YMMV, of course.

Update: I meanwhile got used to the lens hood and kind of like it. So I will keep the original lenshood and  save the bugs for something more meaningful, like a 82mm Polarizer ... which is damn expensive 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/18/2021 at 8:59 AM, Daniel C.1975 said:

Update: I meanwhile got used to the lens hood and kind of like it. So I will keep the original lenshood and  save the bugs for something more meaningful, like a 82mm Polarizer ... which is damn expensive 

I think you'll get used to the lens too.  And trust me - the extra reach of the 24-90 is a real winner.  I used to have Canon, and the 24-70 / 70-200  combo is nowhere near as flexible as the 24-90 / 90-280.

Enjoy!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Some are saying "why pay more for cosmetics?" but I think it is more than that. For example the difference between metal casing and plastic is about materials, assembly and construction rather than how it looks.. Then there is quality control, auto-focussing motor, quality of weatherproofing etc. If you value the lens and want to use it for years these things might be worth the extra. I've owned many lenses that performed fine out of the box but deteriorated  with a year or two use and it was usually the construction quality that was the culprit not the optics. Leica lenses  do need servicing sometimes , but I think they are overall  better built. That's one of the things you are paying for. Great that we have a choice because you can buy according to your budget and both the Sigma and Leica options can give great results.Not the same thing I know but If you look at what the Swiss are charging for wristwatches these days the Leica 24-70  looks like a real bargain.

Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Simone_DF said:

Do you realize that, in case your Sigma breaks for whatever reason, you can buy a second one and still save some money over the regular price of the Leica lens?

Of course, in fact I think I could buy 4 of my Sigma 14-24 for the price of the Leica 16-35! but I'm not sure that's necessarily the best reason for buying a lens. 

Best

Jono

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I love the denial we see every time Leica release a co-badged product.

I don't think Leica have built a factory in Japan so I guess we must accept that this lens isn't made by Leica. Given that it's optically the same design as the Sigma lens, it would be logical to assume that it's made by Sigma (that said maybe Sigma outsource their production and they're made by Kyocera or similar).

Now, Sigma are a great brand and I'm sure take much pride in their work and products. I don't expect that they will make their lenses a bit rubbish to satisfy those who think Leica's should be better made. I don't think that they can somehow up their game on the Leica assembly line. I would be amazed if the attention to detail was any different for each lens.

The Leica has a different barrel design and hood and will probably be made in much lower quantities, and they're paying someone else to make it for them, so pretty much enough to explain a difference in retail price.

Leica have partnered with Sigma before, some R lenses were Sigma opticals. The R lenses were much much more expensive than the Sigma versions then too. Sigma would sell huge quantities with various lens mounts whereas the Leica lens would only work on a Leica. Lower volume, higher cost.

Buy the Leica lens if you want a lens that says Leica on the front, and matches the styling etc. The photos in Jono's review show that it's a very capable lens.

The problem for Leica is that when they do release something more 'affordable' it's seen as cheap quality and most refuse to beleive anything else (see Summarit M lenses).

Edited by earleygallery
Link to post
Share on other sites
vor 9 Stunden schrieb earleygallery:

......

Buy the Leica lens if you want a lens that says Leica on the front, and matches the styling etc. The photos in Jono's review show that it's a very capable lens.

The problem for Leica is that when they do release something more 'affordable' it's seen as cheap quality and most refuse to beleive anything else (see Summarit M lenses).

The Summarit lenses are a very good example. I know from own experiece that the M-Summarits are very good lenses.

Thats why I also tried to make my own opinion about the new 24-70mm lens and so far I believe it is a very good lens. Jonos review also helped.

I did some very quick shots/comparisons between the 24-70 and the 24-90, Pana 21-60 and Pana 24-105 just to get a first impression.

My first impression was:24-70 allmost as good as 24-90, 24-70 better than 24-105 and 21-60. In regards of sharpness, specially corners and CA.

On the other side I gain f2.8 for the range up to 70mm, and I find the size weight difference enough to make the body-lens combo feel more portable.

I will keep the 24-90 for now, because I see occasions where the range up to 90mm is quite usefull.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...