Jump to content

Leica 24-90 - does it make sense on the SL2-S???


Recommended Posts

Advertisement (gone after registration)

Hi,

As the SL2-S has "only" 24 MP the question is: does it make sense to get the 24-90 for it or is the 24-70 more then enough for 24 MP.

Will I get any benefit of the 24-90 on the SL2-S or do I really need the SL2 to get the best out of the lens?

I know the 24-90 was introduced with the original SL (601) which had 24 MP.......

Link to post
Share on other sites

MP would have little to do with it for me. The 24-90 is said to be slightly better optically.

Range, weight, size, and price are the differentiators. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
vor 22 Minuten schrieb LD_50:

Range, weight, size, and price are the differentiators. 

1 x plus (range) and 3 x minus - not the best advice for the 24-90.....

Link to post
Share on other sites

Both lenses are plenty sharp for 24MP and far way beyond, which are most lenses today anyway. But they render pictures differently at given focal lengths. And the 24-90 is said to be sharper in the corners. If you are a landscape photographer, a better corner sharpness might be worth the higher price tag. If you're after portraits bokeh, the rendering of faces and skin tone, dimensionality might be vital to you. And lastly, the essential factor for a lens purchase is the motivation it creates to go out and shoot. 

I own the 24-90 and can say that the motivational factor is very high for me. The 24-90 is impeccably made, a joy to touch and work. At 35mm to 50mm, it shows a distinct dimensionality with an organic focus roll-off (which, of course, goes well above and beyond the 35mm-50mm bracket). It's tack sharp at any f-stop and focal length until it hits diffraction. There are no weak spots. It shows hardly any flares and is colour-wise on the warmer side, which I like. It indeed does have a character in a modern interpretation. Like most Leica lenses, all of that comes with a high build quality, long life and good resale value.

I'd rent both and then decide after a few days of shooting and working with the pictures. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
vor 16 Minuten schrieb hansvons:

I own the 24-90 and can say that the motivational factor is very high for me.

Thank you

You use it with the SL2 or SL2-S?

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, i-Leica said:

1 x plus (range) and 3 x minus - not the best advice for the 24-90.....

I don’t see those attributes as equally weighted. I would choose the 24-90. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, i-Leica said:

even for the SL2-S?

Yes.

What we perceive as more detail in an image is more than just absolute resolution. The idea that lenses out-resolve sensors is a nice idea in marketing terms but flawed in many ways as that's just not how the human brain works. We're mostly much more sensitive to contrast, acutance, aberrations and colour than we are to absolute detail. It is entirely possible for us to perceive an image that has more contrast and less absolute information as more detailed and sharper than a lower contrast image with more absolute detail. Especially if the subject is of a type we find familiar (faces, foliage, etc).

All else being equal, any improvement in the imaging chain will increase our perceived resolution of an image. Since the 24-90 has more even detail across the frame than the 24-70 you'll likely perceive the 24-90 image as having more resolution. And your perception might be different to mine. Which is sharper? A lens with a very sharp center but softer corners or one slightly softer in the center but with much sharper corners? And will that perception change with different subjects? Finally do you really want the absolute sharpest, highest resolving lens? What about blur? Falloff? Colour rendition? CA control? If you shoot a beautiful woman close with an ultra sharp lens, you better remove some detail if you don't want a slap in the face... :)

Mind you, you might need to have two images side by side to see any difference and without the 24-90 as a reference than the 24-70 will look spectacular. And all in all both are fantastic lenses.

I would choose the 24-90 because I prefer the way it draws, not because it's sharper. And it's not as sharp at 90mm as it is at 50mm anyway, so there's that....

Gordon

Link to post
Share on other sites

@i-Leica havent you made those transition/reflexions already? 😅.... think I read that somewhere already.

It was the "flagship" launch zoom - and only - lens back when Leica introduced their 24MP SL601, which was the most expensive FF Leica you could buy (((no limited gold + zebra leather M edition cameras, I don't talk about you))). It was a very risky move for such a small brand with so many traditionalist customers so they really had to go all out. And it shows.

If you can afford a "perishable" digital camera, then I least go for the lenses you truly want along.... (even tho you could argue an SL lens is perishable when pitted against eternal M lenses)... this is where the smart buy is.

 

Crazy to think 5 years later you can get the most advanced Leica hybrid camera as the cheapest FF Leica you can buy. (SL2s). That's cool! Pair it with a second hand 24-90 and a bright prime somewhere in the middle (35-40-50) M or L mount... and there you have it. With SL2s you could skip the bright prime entirely even.

 

24-90 @28 mm

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/7/2021 at 12:52 AM, FlashGordonPhotography said:

Yes.

What we perceive as more detail in an image is more than just absolute resolution. The idea that lenses out-resolve sensors is a nice idea in marketing terms but flawed in many ways as that's just not how the human brain works. We're mostly much more sensitive to contrast, acutance, aberrations and colour than we are to absolute detail. It is entirely possible for us to perceive an image that has more contrast and less absolute information as more detailed and sharper than a lower contrast image with more absolute detail. Especially if the subject is of a type we find familiar (faces, foliage, etc).

All else being equal, any improvement in the imaging chain will increase our perceived resolution of an image. Since the 24-90 has more even detail across the frame than the 24-70 you'll likely perceive the 24-90 image as having more resolution. And your perception might be different to mine. Which is sharper? A lens with a very sharp center but softer corners or one slightly softer in the center but with much sharper corners? And will that perception change with different subjects? Finally do you really want the absolute sharpest, highest resolving lens? What about blur? Falloff? Colour rendition? CA control? If you shoot a beautiful woman close with an ultra sharp lens, you better remove some detail if you don't want a slap in the face... :)

Mind you, you might need to have two images side by side to see any difference and without the 24-90 as a reference than the 24-70 will look spectacular. And all in all both are fantastic lenses.

I would choose the 24-90 because I prefer the way it draws, not because it's sharper. And it's not as sharp at 90mm as it is at 50mm anyway, so there's that....

Gordon

I mostly agree, Gordon. Much of the confusion arises from the ambiguity of the wordds "resolution" and "sharpness".

To begin with, the resolution of a lens is a completely different thing from the resolution of a sensor.
On a lens it is the ability to differentiate between two lines as a given density. Thus it varies not only with the distance of the lines but also with the contast between the lines, giving a value expressed in lp/mm (line pairs per mm at a certain pre-defined contrast.
On a sensor it is simply the number of pixels. The number of pixels does not determine the acuity of the sensor - that is given by the sensor architecture, the filter stack, the microlenses, the amount of crosstalk, sensor and electronic noise, etc. 

Thus it is not possible for one to outresolve the other, as the two resolutions are completely different properties.


The we come to "sharpness". This is not primarily determined by the amount of detail - i.e. resolution- , it a subjective concept mostly influenced by contrast and acuity. This means that it is not a useful parameter for comparing lenses, sensors, or any other part of the image  making process.  Change the subject and you change the sharpness. Change the contrast and you change the sharpness. Change the acuity of the sensor and you change the sharpness. Change the resolution of the sensor and not much will happen..

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll start by mentioning that I own none of these lenses at the moment, though I'm finally getting around to seeing the wisdom of picking up one of them. Perhaps, you'll find my thinking useful. 

First of all,  if you're truly anal about 'sharpness', or lpm if you prefer, you buy the primes, not the zooms. The primes are simply at a different level. One goes to zooms for their added practicality, not acuity. All these lenses (you don't mention which 24-70s are in play) are more than acceptable for the sizes I print at from the samples I've examined. 

Personally, I'm leaning toward the 24-90 for several reasons.  YMMV, but subjectively I find the output from the 24-90 to be more pleasing than any of the 24-70s. There is a gentler contrast level and tone that reminds me of the longer primes, which I happen to highly value. Second, there is the practicality of added reach. I see the 24-90, particularly in conjunction with the SL2, as a single lens solution for those times when space and weight are of greater concern. Finally,  in my case, I've bought into the L-Mount, expect to be shooting with it up to the bitter end and therefore my estate will be worrying about selling my lenses off, not me. I.e. I expect to have this lens for at least another generation of two of bodies and so the cost differential is less of an issue. Given I expect to hold the lens long term, build quality becomes more of an issue... though one could buy two to four of the possible 24-70s for the cost of a single new 24-90mm, so perhaps build quality is a non-issue given cost of replacement.

OTOH, I also own the Lumix 70-200mm F2.8 and shortly the Sigma 14-24 (trading my 16-35mm Lumix, a lens I never fully bonded with), so from a system perspective, with a 24-70mm I achieve full coverage and shed a not insignificant 2/3rds of a pound.  The combo of these three gives one consistent access to F2.8 across the board. And again, any of the available 24-70s are substantially cheaper than the 24-90. 

So, how to decide? Outside of any personal preferences regarding rendering, if you're in the system for the short term and are concerned about cost/resale, personally, I'd go for the Sigma or a clean used 24-90L.  If weight, construction and the peace of mind of having a native solution were more important, then the Leica 24-70L might be the right compromise. But assuming you expect your tenure in the L-system to last years, not months and/or cost is less of an issue, IMO the decision isn't around acuity.  It more comes down to type of shooting you expect to do, how many lenses you're willing to schlep around and how much you value having a single lens solution with extra reach (something perhaps more important at 24MPx than 47) over the added speed on the long end and less weight on the shoulder. 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Tailwagger said:

I'll start by mentioning that I own none of these lenses at the moment, though I'm finally getting around to seeing the wisdom of picking up one of them. Perhaps, you'll find my thinking useful. 

First of all,  if you're truly anal about 'sharpness', or lpm if you prefer, you buy the primes, not the zooms. The primes are simply at a different level. One goes to zooms for their added practicality, not acuity. All these lenses (you don't mention which 24-70s are in play) are more than acceptable for the sizes I print at from the samples I've examined. 

Personally, I'm leaning toward the 24-90 for several reasons.  YMMV, but subjectively I find the output from the 24-90 to be more pleasing than any of the 24-70s. There is a gentler contrast level and tone that reminds me of the longer primes, which I happen to highly value. Second, there is the practicality of added reach. I see the 24-90, particularly in conjunction with the SL2, as a single lens solution for those times when space and weight are of greater concern. Finally,  in my case, I've bought into the L-Mount, expect to be shooting with it up to the bitter end and therefore my estate will be worrying about selling my lenses off, not me. I.e. I expect to have this lens for at least another generation of two of bodies and so the cost differential is less of an issue. Given I expect to hold the lens long term, build quality becomes more of an issue... though one could buy two to four of the possible 24-70s for the cost of a single new 24-90mm, so perhaps build quality is a non-issue given cost of replacement.

OTOH, I also own the Lumix 70-200mm F2.8 and shortly the Sigma 14-24 (trading my 16-35mm Lumix, a lens I never fully bonded with), so from a system perspective, with a 24-70mm I achieve full coverage and shed a not insignificant 2/3rds of a pound.  The combo of these three gives one consistent access to F2.8 across the board. And again, any of the available 24-70s are substantially cheaper than the 24-90. 

So, how to decide? Outside of any personal preferences regarding rendering, if you're in the system for the short term and are concerned about cost/resale, personally, I'd go for the Sigma or a clean used 24-90L.  If weight, construction and the peace of mind of having a native solution were more important, then the Leica 24-70L might be the right compromise. But assuming you expect your tenure in the L-system to last years, not months and/or cost is less of an issue, IMO the decision isn't around acuity.  It more comes down to type of shooting you expect to do, how many lenses you're willing to schlep around and how much you value having a single lens solution with extra reach (something perhaps more important at 24MPx than 47) over the added speed on the long end and less weight on the shoulder. 

 

 

Just remember that the 24-90 is a good lens, but 90mm is the week point of this lens, so 24-70 is fine too. I like the rendering of the 24-90. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

By weak you mean "slightly lesser than astonishing" by Leica standard 😁 . It's certainly on par with my ex Elmarit-M 90 (last version) and that was a very sharp, very clean and beautifuly rendering lens. AF certainly makes for an easier life at 90mm if you come from M background, too.

 

TBH the --ever-so-slight--- weakening of performance at 90 will mostly show on flat targets like brick walls under test conditions. On 90mil subjects (if such things exist) like portraits and other subject isolation compositions, it is at worst a non-existing issue.... and at best a benefit for human skin.


Non human portrait-en-pied @90. Click on for details to get crisper ;)

Edited by Slender
Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, i-Leica said:

@ Tailwagger

Would like to know which one you choose? I assume you have the SL2?

Yep, today it's an SL2.  Tomorrow, who knows?  If the SL3 went to 60MPx or so, but the SL2-S bumped to 36MPx, in all likelihood, the way I feel now, I'd probably go for the lower res version for, I assume, its reduced noise and increased DR advantage over its bigger brother.  For the sizes I print to, 36MPx is enough overkill to afford sufficient cropping with little concern. 

My personal mantra when it comes to purchasing optics is, 'bodies come and go, but lenses are forever'.  Since moving to shooting Leica back in the M240 era, I've sold off three previous Leica bodies, having landed on my current M10-R/SL2 setup.  In that same span, I purchased 19 lenses for M and L mount of which I've only sold one as I didn't care for its rendering. I fully expect to own an SL3, god willing, an SL4.   In the end, I suspect I'd be happy with either lens, it likely will come down to whether or not I run across a really nice used copy of the 24-90mm before I simply crack and buy the 24-70mm.  Could be a while, but I'll let you know. And of course, do report back on your decision.

 

 

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...