Recurrent dreams about a red dot
So I don't NEED it. And I have a rangefinder setup I'm OK with, 50-35-21 but all of it is screwmount.
But I keep thinking about it. I want to experience the system. I want to use it. But I don't want to lose money on it.
Do summicrons generally have compatibility issues with bessas? The two lenses I've been eyeing the most are 35 and 50mm 'crons
What's a good resource to read up on them?
What kind of rangefinder system do you have and how do you like it? How would you change it?
If you didn't knock your camera around too much, would you be happy with a bessa and a summicron?
Bokeh and contrast matter more than sharpness. Do you find newer APO designs to render highlights worse?
Do you have one you want to get rid of?
I've had two 35s, an original and a IV. I liked using them both, great lenses, easy to use. I preferred the original version. A more solid feel and build. I used them with a m3 ss and a m5. Used a brightline finder on the 3.
I don't have specific help on your issues, but I do have some overall advice: don't stress about it: if you want one and can buy it, just get it. I broke down a few years ago and got an M4 and some lenses because I knew I would not lose money on them and I just wanted to try it out. I used it for a few years and actually made money on the kit as a whole. So I was able to use it free! This is the beauty of Leica, Hasselblad, etc: the pricing is very stable and you have to overpay up front to really screw up!
I got rid of mine because it made me nervous walking around w/ thousands of dollars in 35 mm equipment when my much cheaper Nikon delivered what I consider to be about equal results. Decided to spend big bucks on larger formats.
Just do it. You can always dump it.
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I totally agree with the above. Right now Leica prices are rather stable, maybe even going up a little, so if you have the money to buy one I say go for it. If you decide it has no real advantage or if you just simply don't like it you can always sell it and get your money back provided you don't totally bang it up.
For my part, I own a Bessa R3A, an M3, and a digital M9 (we won't talk about that last one...)
I admit I tend to take the Bessa out more than the Leica M3 for a variety of reasons:
1) I like the 40mm focal length when just photographing random street scenes and the R3A has the frame lines for it. It's slightly wider than 50mm but not really "wide" if that makes any sense at all.
2) I don't care nearly as much about the Bessa getting beat up. If I'm traveling by plane and the airline looses my luggage I'm not going to flip out about the loss my Bessa. I can easily buy them brand new for cheap.
3) I find it easier to load film in the Bessa as it has your standard hinged back door.
That being said, overall I would say the Bessa is an inferior camera. I've had to adjust the rangefinder on mine several times as it seems to get out of wack pretty easy. Thankfully its easy to do yourself. I would also say the rangefinder length means you need to stick with wide-ish lenses. I attempted to use a 90mm on my R3A once and hardly any of it was in focus unless I stopped down to at least f/8.
I've never had any capability issues with my Bessa. I use both screw mount and M-mount lenses on it just fine.
I am a Pentax guy (Spotmatic) that bought a Leica M6TTL new sometime in 98 or 99. Since then the Spotmatic has left (worn out after decades of use) but the Leica still is here. Would I buy it again over another 35mm, maybe, but I would not lose any sleep over it if I did not have it. My favorite camera is my very old Rollei 35 with Sonnar 40mm-f2.8, equal to image quality of my M6 with Summicron 50mm-f2.0.
I have used both the 35 and 50 Summicrons in the past but I don't have them anymore. I replaced the 35 "red dot" with a "blue dot" Zeiss Biogon. Pretty incredible lens. Almost too good if that is possible. The 50 was replaced with a Hexanon, then that was replaced with a converted 50mm Pentax-M f/1.4 lens which is just fantastic, although it focuses the wrong way. I have some Contax Sonnars that fit with an adapter which also focus the wrong way. I am pretty happy with the 35mm Biogon and the 50mm Pentax and use those two lenses most of the time on a Hexar RF and a M3.
As far as losing money on a Leica lens, I don't think that is possible. They have been increasing in price the last few years and I doubt that trend will diminish. Most lenses are two to three times the price they were just a few years ago. Camera bodies have remained about the same though.
Recurrent dreams about a red dot
My MP black 0.85 has skyrocketed in value. Got it used in Mint- condition from Tamarkin in NY for about $1850 5-6 years ago. When seen in that config they go for quite a bit more...
Originally Posted by Patrick Robert James
Agree on the 35/2 Biogon. Love mine. I have 3 Contax SLR bodies and a slew of Zeiss glass, plus a Contax G2 set up and all the non-zooms but the 16 as well. That said no will ever tear the 50/2 Summcron DR from my hands! Favorite lens ever....well along side the 45/2 Planar for the G2. :-)
Yeah... and then I read this and wonder if I should bother, research, hunt it down, test it, assemble a kit. I might be better off just shooting instead.
Originally Posted by Chris Lange
Don't get me wrong, I love gear and I want to own one. And I can put the money into the gear.
But I want to see a quantitative step in quality besides sharpness. Either contrast or bokeh.
I didn't get enough samples from all the variants of summicrons, but the ones I've seen render background circle of confusion in a less than neutral way.
In regards to contrast - I keep hearing zeiss has more contrast, and it's also cheaper and it's easy to find a used ZM biogon which was manufactured recently by CV. Choices choices...