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Digital Leica M8 / M8.2 / M9 / M-E /Mono / M10 aka "M" Discussions about the Leica M8 /M 8.2 / M9 / M9-P/ M-E / M Monochrom / M10 aka "M": Leica digital M mount rangefinder cameras. Naming the new digital M the "Leica M" is VERY unfortunate as it will only confuse newbies with other Leica M cameras of the the past. Happily there is room for confusion with only the past 59 years of Leica M production ... since Leica introduced the Leica M system in 1953. All Hail for the Leica Marketing Department learning Leica M history!

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Kristian Dowling Compares fast normals on Steve Huff
Old 01-07-2013   #1
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Kristian Dowling Compares fast normals on Steve Huff

Noctilux 50mm f.95, 50mm f1, 50mm f1.2
Hexanon 60mm f1.2 v1, 60mm f1.2 v2
Some beautiful Models and a great photographer. Makes a nice article!

http://www.stevehuffphoto.com/2013/0...stian-dowling/
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Old 01-07-2013   #2
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First time I've ever seen images with the original Hexanon 60mm. They look really beautiful. I think overall from these samples of all the lenses it has the nicest render wide open for portraits. Would like to see some images at f1.4-f4. Just from curiosity though not as an assessment to make a purchase. I'll never find one or even be able to afford one if I did.
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Old 01-07-2013   #3
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I think I'm the only one not impressed with the Hexanons.

And I wonder how he decides on the street prices. By the way, the street price on my Summar is now $6500. It has remarkable rendering, contrast, and flare resistance. Really.

I found the f1.2 noctilux to be kinda funky. Center 1/3 pretty sharp, but an almost instant falloff in resolution outside of that area. With most older lenses things change gradually across the frame. It still had this characteristic to some extent till f4. It is resistant to flare, even better than the f1 noctilux.

If it were me, I'd get the f1 noctilux (when I'm in the mood for the funk) and f1.4 summilux asph and still have some cash left over.
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Old 01-07-2013   #4
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I regret not buying a Noct f1 i tried out a few years back but only because of the fourfold value increase.
To my eye they all get in the way of the photograph, you look at the shallow dof and swirls of background before you think about the subject, i've always thought of them as being very Nigel Tufnel.
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Old 01-07-2013   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by f16sunshine View Post
Noctilux 50mm f.95, 50mm f1, 50mm f1.2
Hexanon 60mm f1.2 v1, 60mm f1.2 v2
Some beautiful Models and a great photographer. Makes a nice article!

http://www.stevehuffphoto.com/2013/0...stian-dowling/
Interesting ... thanks for the link.

Wish they had included one of the more affordable high speed lenses (50/1.1 Nokton, Canon S 50/1.2).
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Old 01-07-2013   #6
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Thanks for sharing. Sight, will have to do with Jupiter 50/1,5 :-)
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Old 01-07-2013   #7
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I wanted a Noctilux for the longest time, but after this test, as well as some other examples I've been observing, I'd rather have sharpness over how creamy the bokeh can get.

The images in the test look alright to me. I seem partial to the f1 noctilux results more.
Even then, I'm not all excited about it. I agree with Raid that the 1.4 is better suited. To me it is a good compromise between both worlds. I have been loving my 35 summilux.

Although lately, perhaps it's just not my style to blow out the background as much as possible.
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Old 01-07-2013   #8
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Thanks for sharing Andy, an overall interesting comparison BUT :
In order to evaluate lenses with such a shallow DOF for "sharpness" i.e. accurate focus on a particular camera especially digital, lenses and camera need to be matched/adjusted.
My 1/50 wasn't really focusing properly all that well on my M9. I was never doing some serious evaluation before on film but on digital you just play around and you discover that it is off a bit (back focus). After the adjustment (and 6bit coding) it is spot on.
I see that you won't adjust (or aren't allowed) a whole set of lenses for testing purposes but then he needs to ommit a "sharpness ranking".
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Old 01-07-2013   #9
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A rather unique comparison of some sought-after lenses but I would not go that far and "rate" the tested copies for performance like sharpness, contrast etc. because there is always the possibility of sample variation and human error when trying to focus. Especially when using a sensor-equipped camera as recording medium slightest mis-alignments have a much larger impact then on film.

I would like to have seen some sample photos taken at night though. The Noctilux 50/1.0 is really good in resolving shadow details (especially using color-film) in dim light and it would be nice to see how the other lenses compare.
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Old 01-07-2013   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeL View Post

And I wonder how he decides on the street prices. By the way, the street price on my Summar is now $6500. It has remarkable rendering, contrast, and flare resistance. Really.
I think that "street price" of > $12k is way over the top - given that recent ones have sold for $8k (which is shocking enough). Maybe he plans on selling one, and that will be his eBay BIN price!
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Old 01-07-2013   #11
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Does anyone here own the Nokton and uses it on an M9 or Monochrom? I've been sitting on the fence about buying one, as the Noctilux is out of reach at the moment (spent all my $$$ on the Monochrom!).

Regardless of its more affordable price, is it a good lens?
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Old 01-07-2013   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gdi View Post

In think that "street price" of > $12k is way over the top - given that recent ones have sold for $8k (which is shocking enough). Maybe he plans on selling one, and that will be his eBay BIN price!
The v1 60mm f1.2 has sold recently at over $12K. I think that is what was being referred to. This is a unique chance to see all these high performance pieces in a side by side comparison. Prices are determined by Rarity vs demand nothing more.
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Old 01-07-2013   #13
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He was always wrong with his "noctilux f1.0 being a one-trick pony" assertion. He had a lemon and tried so hard to make it the truth. And about Yanidel being "responsible for raising the price of the Konica"? No. No way.

IMO, he is trying too hard to push that konica. I'd never pay more then 3-4000$ for it. Fake cult status, Imo.

I really like the noctilux f1.2!
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Old 01-07-2013   #14
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as an eager admirer of the Noctilux series.....the pictures of the Noctilux F1.2 blew me away in that comparison. Very cool.
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Old 01-07-2013   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by f16sunshine View Post
The v1 60mm f1.2 has sold recently at over $12K. I think that is what was being referred to. This is a unique chance to see all these high performance pieces in a side by side comparison. Prices are determined by Rarity vs demand nothing more.
No, he clearly states that the first version has a "street price" of over $13000 and the newer is over $12000. And there is only one thing that determines "street price" - and that is what someone e will actually pay.

Also, he refers to the Noctilux 1.0 as the "dream lens", of course the true Dream Lens is the Canon 0.95!
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Old 01-07-2013   #16
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1.2 Noctilux easier to produce than the 1.0?? That guy needs to get his facts straight. The 1.0 Noctilux replaced the 1.2 one because the aspherical elements of the 1.2 lenses had to be hand-ground and were nearly impossible to produce.
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Old 01-07-2013   #17
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Interesting to see two exotic M9s in the mix.

I personally like the Noct 1 and 0.95. Regrettably neither are in my future. I can't bring myself to pay that for a lens. I've thought about the Canon 1.2 which would do all I need, especially in B&W.

Its fun to look at these "tests".
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Old 01-08-2013   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaapv View Post
1.2 Noctilux easier to produce than the 1.0?? That guy needs to get his facts straight. The 1.0 Noctilux replaced the 1.2 one because the aspherical elements of the 1.2 lenses had to be hand-ground and were nearly impossible to produce.
did he say that? pfffft!

many other factual errors as well...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Clint Troy View Post
He was always wrong with his "noctilux f1.0 being a one-trick pony" assertion. He had a lemon and tried so hard to make it the truth. And about Yanidel being "responsible for raising the price of the Konica"? No. No way.

IMO, he is trying too hard to push that konica. I'd never pay more then 3-4000$ for it. Fake cult status, Imo.

I really like the noctilux f1.2!
Yanick really did quite a bit to do with raising awareness (and prices) of the Konica. i used to go out shooting with him and got to play with it. whilst i liked it a lot, i didn't have the 2-3K it was going for then (and already had an E58 f/1 that i wasn't letting go of). the prices have gone into the obscene range and i agree that it really was brought into awareness by Yanidel, but more so by his Paris shooting.

the f/1, btw, is most definitely not a one-trick pony. i find f/2.8 one of its magic apertures (very sharp, very 3D) and have often shot with it stopped down even further as i have taken it as my one-and-only 50mm on trips. it has never disappointed me!

he has his dates wrong on the years for the f/1.2 and the f/1 as well. i know because i've researched a lot as i have one of the first 200 E58 f/1's (1975)... the glass on this one is definitely different and its character is somewhere between the f/1 and the f/1.2, a true gem (bought for less than 3K back then).


Quote:
Originally Posted by maddoc View Post
A rather unique comparison of some sought-after lenses but I would not go that far and "rate" the tested copies for performance like sharpness, contrast etc. because there is always the possibility of sample variation and human error when trying to focus. Especially when using a sensor-equipped camera as recording medium slightest mis-alignments have a much larger impact then on film.

I would like to have seen some sample photos taken at night though. The Noctilux 50/1.0 is really good in resolving shadow details (especially using color-film) in dim light and it would be nice to see how the other lenses compare.
i agree with all above, especially regarding night shooting... i find it pointless to compare these über-fast lenses during the day. these lenses where meant to be brought out at night and, imo, it is then that they really shine -- or fail.
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Old 01-08-2013   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icebear View Post
Thanks for sharing Andy, an overall interesting comparison BUT :
In order to evaluate lenses with such a shallow DOF for "sharpness" i.e. accurate focus on a particular camera especially digital, lenses and camera need to be matched/adjusted.
My 1/50 wasn't really focusing properly all that well on my M9. I was never doing some serious evaluation before on film but on digital you just play around and you discover that it is off a bit (back focus). After the adjustment (and 6bit coding) it is spot on.
I see that you won't adjust (or aren't allowed) a whole set of lenses for testing purposes but then he needs to ommit a "sharpness ranking".
Bingo. The eye crops clearly show these lenses are not focused at the same distance - look at the skin detail and especially the reflections in the woman's cornea - they are all over the place. On film I am pretty sure this would be a non-issue but with digital... of course pixel peeping is different to the "look" of the entire image but when it comes to lenses with such extremely shallow DOF it may well have subtle effects visible in a large print.
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Old 01-08-2013   #20
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I had the good fortune to buy a Noctilux E58 f/1.0 recently for a great price.

I love the look wide open and stopped down. More than one trick for this pony.
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Old 01-08-2013   #21
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Originally Posted by Vince Lupo View Post
Does anyone here own the Nokton and uses it on an M9 or Monochrom?
Regardless of its more affordable price, is it a good lens?
Just on M8/R-D1 and a bit on film. It's a good lens where speed may be needed, but there are much better lenses for general use.

The Nokton exhibits focus shift and noticeable field curvature, there are aberrations resulting in colour seepage, glow/halos, and there is flare. It vignettes some even on M8. And it's a big lens. On the other hand, there are no distortion problems. The resolution is certainly passable, suffers more at close focus. Borders are soft at larger apertures (1.1-1.4), but the overall image quality improves a lot when slightly stopping down (and we are stopping down from 1.1 here, not from 2.0-2.8 like with many other lenses).

If I had full frame digital M, I would be using this lens more (and then, if not satisfied possibly sell it). With crop, it's very much a specialty lens for me and in that sense quite a pricey lens to have. But I do like it enough to keep it.
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Old 01-08-2013   #22
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from the article:
Quote:
Unlike it’s older brother it was designed with modern lens design, optimized for excellent sharpness and contrast at wide apertures. This lens was made famous by street photographer Yanick Delafoge http://www.yanidel.net. I always say “pictures sell lenses” and Yanick’s amazing street pictures from his travels around the world have single handedly raised the value of this lens from $3k to $7k+ in a matter of a few years. According to Yanick, this lens is the sharpest standard lens at f/1.4, and from my own experience owning this lens, I would be confident agreeing with him.
Remember where you learnt about it first: at RFF!
Yanidel was/is a member here and his terrific article with photos on the L-Hexanon 1.2/60mm with the M8 caused quite a stir with interested RFF members when it was published.

Man, I wish I had dug deeper and bought me a 60mm when they still were three grand...
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Old 01-08-2013   #23
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The outlook from his terrace fits his lens setup (photo 1)

*g*

I am not sure I would buy these lenses even if I could afford them. Well, actually I can afford maybe one of them, but why would I...

This is maybe just me, but I do not really see the point in lenses like that, when there are decent 1.2 and 1.1 alternatives out there for 10% to 5% of these prices. But then, it is a hobby and I have friends who think I am crazy for spending more than € 500,-- on a camera (body only, that does not even come with a big zoom).

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Old 01-08-2013   #24
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Am I the only one who doesn't find these lenses "normal"?
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Old 01-08-2013   #25
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Am I the only one who doesn't find these lenses "normal"?
if you like to shoot in the dark, they are.
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