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Next logical step to replace a 50mm


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Many thanks to all of you! I really mean it! 😀

It really is interesting and helps me a lot to see what you recommend and why - especially your preferred go-to lenses and how you would approach my situation.

The 75 Cron really sounds good but is indeed quite hefty, quite similar to my current 90 Cron III. I don't really mind it, but I currently mostly take it with me when I know that I need it. It could be a different beast all-together once it is my only other lens. I will definitely check the VM ones and the Summarit, since they really are money saver and from what I have seen pretty good as well. Once I see that the spread is too much for me, I could still opt for an 35mm. 

Interestingly enough for me 35mm and 50mm do feel too close. I had this combination for a bit of time and while they of course differ in photographic style, I kind of felt indifferent which lens was mounted. So without having a massive different rendering I kind of like having a bit distance between the focal lengths - e.g. a 75 Lux and a 50 Apo would make sense to me, but 35 APO and 50 APO not. I hope this thought is at least a bit relatable.

Why not indeed go for one safe bet, e.g. the 75 Summarit, 75 Cron or equivalent VM one and get some older lenses in between. Or as @a.noctilux said, try another older 50mm - maybe this change could inspire a new love. Good thing is that with the M10M - artistic aspects aside - I no longer need sub f/2 lenses.

One thing I cannot complain is that by living close to Wetzlar I can always go there and try out what they currently have in their stock. And as @Kl@usW. said - I might need a bit of time to let the fog lift - or tries with different lenses.

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Posted (edited)

I'm in a similar place where I'm doing 90% 28mm and 10% 90mm. 2 50mm and 2 35mm lenses collect dust.

If 28mm feels too wide sometimes maybe a 35 instead? 35mm Summaron to add a "character lens"? LLL 35mm 'cron? For 50 an old Elmar, "rigid" 'cron or even LLL Elcan would be cool options.

Regarding 75 my worry is that you would get something that is a compromise between a 90 and a 50, which does not sound like an improvement if you're not feeling the 50 lately.

Have you considered going wider instead and getting a 21mm?

Edited by burchyk
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Am 4.4.2024 um 20:57 schrieb burchyk:

I'm in a similar place where I'm doing 90% 28mm and 10% 90mm. 2 50mm and 2 35mm lenses collect dust.

If 28mm feels too wide sometimes maybe a 35 instead? 35mm Summaron to add a "character lens"? LLL 35mm 'cron? For 50 an old Elmar, "rigid" 'cron or even LLL Elcan would be cool options.

Regarding 75 my worry is that you would get something that is a compromise between a 90 and a 50, which does not sound like an improvement if you're not feeling the 50 lately.

Have you considered going wider instead and getting a 21mm?

Interesting to hear you're pretty much in the same place. But going to 21mm might be a step too far at the moment, that really is wide and I sometimes feel I am already shoving the lens into someone's face with the 28mm.

But I am with you when it comes to the 75mm question, whether it could be a false expectation that it is the sweet spot between the 90 and the 50. However I did look at my last 50mm shots and I did realise that I constantly cropped them down to around 70mm-80mm. I guess I will try to rent a lens for a day or two and really see whether it fits or not.

And I will definitely look into the 35mm options, I mean, there are so so many possible lenses out there and I kind of like the idea to explore the character lens segment a bit. 

 

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this is so subjective and based on what/where you want to shoot. I read one person in this thread say there's no use for the 50 which is basically a short tele, and I don't agree with that as I've used both my 35 and 50 on street. The 50 is ideal when I'm more in the mood to shoot street portraits and want a little bit of distance from my subjects but then I also like 35 or even 21 when I'm looking to capture more of the environment. Below are examples of first the 50 and then 35 used for street. Personally I have no use of longer than 50, except perhaps in the rare case when I'm shooting portrait. But even then I can do pretty decent portraits with 50 or even 35 when I want a more environmental portrait. As I said, it's really up to what/where you want to shoot.

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Posted (edited)

« The 50mm lens is my life. A certain distance with people. The wide angle shouts, and the 90mm reminds me those ear trumpets that old ladies used to use in the past »
Henri Cartier-Bresson
Photoportraits sans guillemets
Hervé Guibert, Le Monde 10/10/1985
(free translation from French)

Edited by lct
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21mm and 35mm are the sweet spot lenses on a rangefinder, in my experience.

If you need anything longer, you need a different camera! However, asking for lens suggestions is like asking which car you should buy. Only you can decide.

Ernst

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1 hour ago, Ernstk said:

[...] 21mm and 35mm are the sweet spot lenses on a rangefinder, in my experience. If you need anything longer, you need a different camera! [...]

Strange to read this after half century of photography with 50mm and longer focal length lenses but it is a matter of tastes as usual 😎

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9 minutes ago, lct said:

Strange to read this after half century of photography with 50mm and longer focal length lenses but it is a matter of tastes as usual 😎

Not really. Sometimes outmoded ideas take a long time to disappear.

But as I said 'Only you can decide'.

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Posted (edited)
58 minutes ago, Ernstk said:

[...] outmoded ideas take a long time to disappear [...]

I seem to have heard this since the seventies at least but rangefinders are still in great shape and i hope i can find 50mm, 75mm, 90mm and 135mm M lenses for the rest of my life. BTW for those unable or unwilling to use RF cameras with such lenses, LV and EVF are a welcome solution.

Edited by lct
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22 minutes ago, lct said:

I seem to have heard this since the seventies at least but rangefinders are still in great shape and i hope i can find 50mm, 75mm, 90mm and 135mm M lenses for the rest of my life. BTW for those unable or unwilling to use RF cameras with such lenses, LV and EVF are a welcome solution.

Rangefinders are just perfect. Rangefinders with long lenses do make me laugh.

It's a personal view but I think that LV and poor EVFs kill the whole experience.

Ernst

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Why not a 40mm? It will close the gap even more with your 90mm compared to a 35mm, while at the same time being wider than 50. It will also complement better your 28mm than a 35mm. 
Voigltlander has 3 different 40mm lenses in M mount. 

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So many choices! Personally, I bought the M system (M11) specifically to have a small 90mm lens such as the macro Elmar which, ironically, I’m still not able to afford. My other camera is a Q2 so my first M lens was a 50mm Summicron because I wanted a focal length different enough from 28mm to test which I liked best. I’ve since bought a CV 35mm Nokton f1.5 to see whether 35mm works for me. I’ve still no idea! 

For day to day use I never change lenses when out shooting. I just use whatever is on the lens and that seems to work for me. I do a fair amount of landscape photography and my intention is to get the 90mm is to use it when the camera is on a tripod to get a very different picture compared to a 28 or 35. 

My 50mm is my least used lens - I gravitate towards the Q2 (28mm) or the 35mm on the M11. I’m thinking of selling my 50mm to help me afford a 90mm in which case my 2 lens kit would be 35 and 90. 

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Posted (edited)

I don't have anything longer than 50mm to provide helpful context but I don't find my 35 can substitute for any of my 50's. I don't believe I'd use a longer lens enough to justify the cost and weight but when I did have a Canon set up the 85/1.8 was simply a joy to use for portraits but it was an SLR, where the lens produced a view-finder filling image and although focus accuracy required some attention it wasn't too hard. I'm not sure I'd want a 90mm with a small FOV in the viewfinder and I don't know how easy it would be to achieve focus accuracy with the rangefinder. Anyhow, my contribution to the OP is that a 50mm is not needed if you are happy without it.  If you get the itch down the road, there are non-Leica lenses that are worth considering such as Zeiss (Sonar, Planar).

Out of interest, what happened to that lovely 50 Lux E46 that you had (they're not that cheap anymore) ?

Edited by Mr.Prime
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I have the Summicron 50/2, Elmarit 90/2.8, Biogon 35/2, Elmarit 28/2.8 ASPH, Summicron 35/2 ASPH, Summarit 75/2.5 and Super Elmar 21/3.4, purchased in this order. As you can see I couldn't really make up my mind on the focal lengths so I went with less expensive alternatives instead, most of them used.

Your needs are most likely different than mine, but my usage pattern of the above is:

- Summicron 35/2 ASPH - more than 60% of all pictures

- Summicron 50/2 - about 30%, growing during the last few years

- All other lenses less than 6% each

Initially I thought that I would use the 75 more, but the focal length is quite near the 50 and the framelines are really a bit confusing. But if you are interested in this focal length I would really recommend the Summarit.

 

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Again, thanks for all your input and recommendations. I really appreciate all the effort you put into helping me to make the "right" decision.

I actually tested quite the amount of lenses in the past days and I ended up with a 50mm Summicron V5 fresh from a Leica service. And honestly, it just felt right and it is glued to my M10M since I got it.

I also tried the 35/75 combo, but it did feel very awkward and it reminded me why I sold the 35mm Summilux I once had. But from all lenses I tested the most interesting lens was the 50mm 1.5 which I now really consider getting - just for fun.

PS: My 50mm Lux suffered from the rear lens separation issue and is beyond a reasonable repair as it was already quite heavily used anyway. A friend of mine is still using it, but it starts to show on the images.

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