But Andrey says (1) he wants the camera only for wide-angle work (which means the viewfinder will be irrelevant) and (2) he wants a fast lens, which requires a big lens.
Originally Posted by PhotoJim
Andrey: For a body, I would recommend a Leica screwmount. You can find a working Leica IIIa for maybe $300. You cannot find a better or more compact body for your purposes.
For lenses, your only economical option is the 28mm f/1.9 Voigtlander Ultron -- a highly-regarded lens, rangefinder-coupled, that can be purchased for under $500. You will have to buy, also, an auxiliary 28mm viewfinder but that will be true for any lens in the range you are contemplating.
Good luck with it.
A Contax G2 body can be had for about 300-400, and the 21mm with viewfinder for about 700. My 21mm has been permanently glued on since I got it. Had I known, I would've just bought the body and this lens.
This is an interesting thread because...
... I believe it applies to a broad base of 35mm shooters. I agree that RF is the only way to go with focal lengths below 50mm. The lens choices are huge. If money were no object, here's what I would get:
15mm f/2.8 Zeiss Distagon ZM
21mm f/2.8 Leitz Elmarit-M Asph.
24mm f/2.8 Leitz Elmarit-M Asph.
28mm f/2.0 Leitz Summicron-M Asph.
35mm f/1.4 Leitz Summilux-M Asph.
Now that you're about $19,000.00 lighter you'll be ready for any wide-angle situation.
Oh, wait a minute....you'll still need an M-Body!
Now, let's get serious:
35mm f/2.0 Canon (screw-mount last version with black knurled focus ring)
So, nobody made an 24 or a 20mm at f/2?
That 28mm ultron looks interesting. How good/bad is it wide open?
There is Zuiko 21/2 for Olympus OM but not sure about it's quality (and it goes for cca 1000$ because people are using it on their Canons as there is nothing like it). But it's not a RF lens.
28/1.9 Ultron vs 28/2 Summicron - here is what Puts has to say about it - http://www.imx.nl/photo/voigtlander/..._lenses_u.html
If 2.8 is ok, many other choices there - leica and zeiss being the best followed by m-hexanon.
as for 35-40mm, if you want 1.4, good image quality wide open and nice bokeh, you have basically only 35/1.4 summilux asph there. if you don't need good bokeh, 35/40 noktons are fraction of the price and not that much worse in all other aspects. If f2 is good enough, Zeiss Biogon 35/2 is (imho) on par with summicron asph and significantly cheaper. Also M-Hexanons and UC-Hexanons there being very good.
In 21 or 25mm focals, I would get Zeiss there too. Cheaper option would be probably Kobalux (sold under many different names).
Leica and Hexanon lenses have best build quality, Zeiss worse and CV the worst (but still much better than most plastic lenses Canon produces these days).
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As I shoot a 21 often, I am curious why you think you need f2? Is it for low light? (I don't mean this snidely -- I'm really curious. I have a CV 21/4, which has been enough for me. Every once in a while I think of trading up to the Zeiss, but I don't really think I need either the extra stop of the f2.8 version or the improved performance of the f4.5 version.)
Originally Posted by Andrey
The 28/1.8 is very well thought of, but I have never used it, because I like smaller lenses. I would check Flickr for examples wide open.
I thought the 28mm F1.8 was dropped from the line up a few months ago.
I know when the Bessa distributor sent me new pricing earlier this week because of the launch of the 35 F1.4 the new pricing had a number of lenses missing ... including the 28.
Back to the question at hand... I would get the Zeiss 18mm and 25mm myself.... the 15mm is great because it's fast but it's too big. The 18mm is large but still fine. The 25mm is a real gem.
Well, I have a 17-40 f/4 zoom which at the very least has acceptable quality wide open if I'm not shooting architecture. So getting a 20-24mm f/4 lens will directly overlap what I have already.
Originally Posted by lns
Also, I can have an OK 20/2.8 in any SLR setup. I was hoping that since the lenses for RF don't have to be retrofocus anymore, someone would make an f/2
I understand 2.8 is sensible, but that zeiss is a biogon and not a distagon, which loses major brownie points. And ideally I'd want a significant difference from the run of mill SLR setup.
Well, if I were shooting architecture, I would go with Zeiss's 21/4.5, which is significantly better than the run of the mill SLR setup because it has so little distortion. You can look on the Zeiss website for MTF charts of all their lenses. I don't know the difference between a biogon and a distagon. I would say, though, that you are getting a lot of recommendations for Zeiss lenses, including from me.
I can see why you don't want to overlap what you already have. I have always understood that people prefer rangefinders for wide angle shooting because of lower distortion and sharper images. It's apparently to do with the distance of the lens from the film. So there may be benefits of going wide angle with a rangefinder that have nothing to do with the lens's maximum aperture. (I have no personal experience, never going wider than a 28mm on an SLR.) In addition, a rangefinder has other benefits over an SLR in some situations: for example, the lenses are smaller and there is no mirror slap.
On the other hand, if you already have a set-up you're comfortable with on an SLR, maybe that's enough. I just use rangefinders for wide-angle 35mm photography because that's what I have.
Andrey, I have been thinking through your querty, because your criteria are so specific, for reasons you have articulated well. You say you want an RF lens that is "unique with no equivalents for SLRs." But you didn't say why, and I've been puzzling over the why. And I've come up with a why, and it might not be your why, but it is motivating me to consider the same lens options.
I shoot portraits. I've never much been engaged by wide-angle lenses because the vast DOF doesn't fit with the way I want my subjects to pop from the background. BUT if I had a 28mm Ultron with a 1.9 maximum aperture, then I could shoot it wide-open, and kill off some of the DOF in the image. That would make a wide-angle lens interesting to me, for my purposes.
This is an interesting thread. Thank you for starting it.