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stephen_lumsden
05-10-2006, 05:40
Hi

I am thinking about getting a Contax II (for coompataibity reasons with my Jupiter 12 lens) thru Henry Scherer. I am told that the Sonnar 1.5 is quite rare and it may be some time in sourcing it. Also is the f1.5, which usually come with the Contax II the pre-war model uncoated, in which case a post war coated Sonnar is better. Also how does the post war coated f2 Sonnar stack up against the f1.5, apart from being a bit slower.

regards

stephen

dexdog
05-10-2006, 06:19
Hi

I am thinking about getting a Contax II (for coompataibity reasons with my Jupiter 12 lens) thru Henry Scherer. I am told that the Sonnar 1.5 is quite rare and it may be some time in sourcing it. Also is the f1.5, which usually come with the Contax II the pre-war model uncoated, in which case a post war coated Sonnar is better. Also how does the post war coated f2 Sonnar stack up against the f1.5, apart from being a bit slower.

regards

stephen

I would not call the 50/1.5 Sonnar rare- eBay usually has a few for sale at any given time. However, if you are having Henry Scherer find a lens for you, finding one up to Henry's exacting standards may take a little while. Nothing against Henry, but he is very selective about buying Contax gear. Rest assured that he will find you a lens in excellent condition. I have had Henry overhaul 6 or 7 of my Contax cameras and about a dozen lenses, and he does oustanding work, nothing short of remarkable.

Yes, the lenses that accompany the Contax II are almost always uncoated, unless you get a rather rare WW2 production lens, in which case the lens will exhibit a blue coating but may or may not carry the red "T" markings. I would recommend the coated post-war Zeiss-Opton or Carl Zeiss 50/1.5 over any uncoated lens. Also, try to get a ZO or CZ lens made in Stuttgart rather than the post-war CZJ lenses from the DDR. The chromed brass lenses from Stuttgart are more nicely made than the aluminum body lenses from the DDR.


WRT a 50/2 vs a 50/1.5, everything I have read suggests that the 50/1.5 is the better performer than the 50/2, although the differences are small, and both lenses have an excellent reputation.

furcafe
05-10-2006, 07:22
Per dexdog/mark's post, the uncoated pre-WWII f/1.5 Sonnar is not rare @ all. Depending on your expectations, the uncoated Sonnars can be surprisingly good so long as you avoid flarey situations, i.e., strong light sources in the frame or just out of the frame. Assuming your Jupiter is within tolerances, you already essentially have a coated f/2 Sonnar, so I would concentrate on getting an uncoated or coated f/1.5 Sonnar if you need the speed. In my experience, the post-WWII, E. German Sonnars are just as good optically as the W. German models (though E. German f/1.5 Sonnars are not common), but they are a step down in build quality (light alloy barrels like the Soviet Jupiters); I believe Scherer has opined that the E. German 8.5cm/2 Sonnar is actually better than the W. German version (optical formula was tweaked whereas the E. German version is the same as the pre-WWII formula). Re: the W. German f/2 Sonnar v. the f/1.5, I've read that the f/1.5 is supposed to be superior @ all the equivalent apertures, but I haven't seen any noticeable differences between the 2.

Hi

I am thinking about getting a Contax II (for coompataibity reasons with my Jupiter 12 lens) thru Henry Scherer. I am told that the Sonnar 1.5 is quite rare and it may be some time in sourcing it. Also is the f1.5, which usually come with the Contax II the pre-war model uncoated, in which case a post war coated Sonnar is better. Also how does the post war coated f2 Sonnar stack up against the f1.5, apart from being a bit slower.

regards

stephen

varjag
05-10-2006, 07:56
Agreeing mostly to furcafe's post, I go thus far as to suggesting coated 1.5 over uncoated, *if* you need speed. An uncoated version has true speed (as opposed to geometrical) up to a stop slower than coated one due to light reflection from air/glass surfaces. To an extent this is compensated by scattering of this light within the lens, which reduces contrast and builds up density in general, but it isn't always desirable.

raid
05-10-2006, 08:03
I have a pre-war Sonnar 50mm/2 in LTM. After getting it shimmed properly and having it cleaned it is a very nice lens for use now. My 50mm side by side tests for 12 50mm lenses showed its peformance to be excellent. Some said that the photos looked "warm" compared to some of the other 50mm lenses.