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View Poll Results: One lens to rule them all
35mm Summicron ASPH 29 53.70%
50mm Summilux ASPH 25 46.30%
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And One lens to rule them all
Old 12-18-2016   #1
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And One lens to rule them all

Hi folks

I know it's been asked to death, but if you had one lens to choose for the Leica M system, which would it be?

I am debating between
  1. 35mm Summicron ASPH or pre-ASPH
  2. 50mm Summilux ASPH or pre-ASPH

I know the differences in focal length, performance, etc. But, I just cannot make up my mind. The 35mm helps me in that environment style, but I love the 50 to keep my focus. I know I am messed up. Maybe it's my head that needs a changing.
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Old 12-18-2016   #2
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I am a 9o% of the time 35 person and my one & only is cron asph.....
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Old 12-18-2016   #3
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50AA.

I have and love the rendering of the 50 Lux ASPH when in the sweet spot of camera to subject to background distances... But it's also a somewhat quirky lens with respect to off-center subject placement and nailing focus at wide apertures. Part of this seems to be complicated by somewhat wavy field curvature that makes focus placement with any non-EVF camera to be somewhat tricky.

The 50AA seems to have some of the Lux ASPH rendering in a more predictable, better behaved optical design.
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Old 12-18-2016   #4
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That's a tough call but if I absolutely had to, I guess I would get the very best and fastest 35mm I could. Pre-asph for me as I like the classic look (film shooter) . Most versatile length I would say.

You didn't say whether for film or digital, not sure if it matters.
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Old 12-18-2016   #5
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I have never been a big fan of the 50mm focal length. The 35mm is my preferred focal length. However, I also prefer the f/1.4 Summilux to the f/2 Summicron.
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Old 12-18-2016   #6
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Questions about which lens to buy have been asked numerous times before. Are you asking which lens is best or something else? My first thought is which focal length best suites the way you work. - jim
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Old 12-18-2016   #7
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If I'm not mistaken, for the price of 50 ASPH you could get Summicron 35 v3 and Summilux 50 v1. I don't think what both will be well behind of the Pre-ASPH.
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Old 12-18-2016   #8
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On one hand you ask which lens you should get among 4 lenses but your poll has only 2 choices. Me thinks the wine was too strong tonight?
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Old 12-18-2016   #9
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I have a Leica, M4-2, but am not normally a RF sort of person. I prefer SLR's. That said, a RF with a fast fifty would be a great stealth camera, even if you cannot zone focus as easy as with a 35.
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Old 12-18-2016   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chromacomaphoto View Post
That's a tough call but if I absolutely had to, I guess I would get the very best and fastest 35mm I could. Pre-asph for me as I like the classic look (film shooter) . Most versatile length I would say.

You didn't say whether for film or digital, not sure if it matters.
film film film.. only film
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Old 12-18-2016   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kshapero View Post
On one hand you ask which lens you should get among 4 lenses but your poll has only 2 choices. Me thinks the wine was too strong tonight?
I bunched all versions of the lenses under one heading. sacrilege.
I know
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Old 12-18-2016   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rscheffler View Post
50AA.



The 50AA seems to have some of the Lux ASPH rendering in a more predictable, better behaved optical design.
What's 50AA? I am lost when it comes to acronyms, not under AAAAA (American Association Against Acronym Abuse)
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Old 12-18-2016   #13
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If the lens is going on a Titanium M6 with 0.72 finder, a 35mm is the logical choice

P.S. Why not keep the Canon 35/2?
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Old 12-18-2016   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barnwulf View Post
Questions about which lens to buy have been asked numerous times before. Are you asking which lens is best or something else? My first thought is which focal length best suites the way you work. - jim
I don't shoot it for work, i.e. I don't make money out of it.

I shoot for the love of shooting and developing film. I realise that the ASPH coatings bring in more contrast? But, having said that, I liked the results from a recent roll of double XX I shot with a 35 ASPH Summicron (on loan). hence the poll.
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Old 12-18-2016   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonmanjiro View Post
If the lens is going on a Titanium M6 with 0.72 finder, a 35mm is the logical choice

P.S. Why not keep the Canon 35/2?
It is going on the Titanium with the 0.72 The camera turns heads.

The Canon is giving me super inconsistent results. The focus keeps shifting, but the results look OK on digital.
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Old 12-18-2016   #16
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+1 for 35mm Summilux (but an ASPH version)
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Old 12-18-2016   #17
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Quote:
But, I just cannot make up my mind.
Can't understand this kind of thread. How can the opinion of others be possibly relevant for a lens that YOU will use?
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Old 12-18-2016   #18
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I had all four lenses in your poll. Also the 35/1.4 Asph (not in the poll). Each one had its own advantages, that's what made choosing hard. In the end, for me, the best combo was 50/1.4 Asph. and 35/1.4 Asph. and I haven't changed anything the last 5-6 years. (Nor do I plan to.) Between the two, the 50mm is better in technical terms (distortion,veiling flare etc.) But don't let this decide the matter for you. The focal lengths are close but sufficiently different to impact the style of photography you do. See what you want to do, and what photographs of others you like best and which focal length better serves this. Let that decide which lens you go for.

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Old 12-19-2016   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by naruto View Post
It is going on the Titanium with the 0.72 The camera turns heads.

The Canon is giving me super inconsistent results. The focus keeps shifting, but the results look OK on digital.
A titanium M6! This changes everything!

The question is actually wrong, it should read: "Should I get the matching titanium 35 pre-asph summilux or sell the titanium M6 and get a black one instead?"

The titanium M6 deserves the titanium 35 pre-asph summilux, it's the ONLY choice
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Old 12-19-2016   #20
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one lens = 35 cron asph
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Old 12-19-2016   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BernardL View Post
Can't understand this kind of thread. How can the opinion of others be possibly relevant for a lens that YOU will use?
since we are community of rangefinder aficionados I found it might help to crowdsource an opinion

Quote:
Originally Posted by telenous View Post
See what you want to do, and what photographs of others you like best and which focal length better serves this. Let that decide which lens you go for.
.
I am partial towards the 35 in most cases. But, I might have an offer on a 50 Lux which is too tempting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelwj View Post
A titanium M6! This changes everything!

The question is actually wrong, it should read: "Should I get the matching titanium 35 pre-asph summilux or sell the titanium M6 and get a black one instead?"

The titanium M6 deserves the titanium 35 pre-asph summilux, it's the ONLY choice
HAHA. Yes. That is the one I should actually get if I can ever find one in the wild.
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Old 12-19-2016   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelwj View Post
The titanium M6 deserves the titanium 35 pre-asph summilux, it's the ONLY choice
Not so fast!!! The titanium Summicron 35mm ASPH looks pretty damn sexy too


https://www.mapcamera.com/item/3000007360852
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Old 12-19-2016   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonmanjiro View Post
Not so fast!!! The titanium Summicron 35mm ASPH looks pretty damn sexy too


https://www.mapcamera.com/item/3000007360852
I confess I had forgotten about that one, I suppose it is acceptable but it really should be mated to the later bodies, the M6 is a bit early for the ASPH
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Old 12-19-2016   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danielsterno View Post
I am a 9o% of the time 35 person and my one & only is cron asph.....


Quite similar my case. 98% 35mm and my only 35mm lens is the King of Bokeh or whatever you call it.
The remained 2% is accounted for 90/2


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Old 12-19-2016   #25
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Eh, go cheap and get a $35 Jupiter-12.
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Old 12-19-2016   #26
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For decades it was my 35 pre-aspheric Summilux. Nowadays it's at least as often my 1,5/50 Zeiss C-Sonnar. I'd hate to have to choose between the two. Fortunately I don't have to. Imaginary or hypothetical or plainly meaningless choices are the bane of countless threads.

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Old 12-19-2016   #27
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35/1.4 ZM rules all.

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Old 12-19-2016   #28
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Prefer the 35mm focal length to the 50mm, but not a fan of that particular 35mm lens. IMHO it renders too heavy, especially in B&W. Love the B&W rendering of the 50mm Cron ASPH, but not a big fan of the focal length.
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Old 12-19-2016   #29
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Super tough question.

I have the 35 ASPH, and 50 pre-ASPH.

Depends which is your favourite focal length. I shot too much of 50 at uni that when I discovered 35, it was like WOW I love this lens and I loved my photos better.

I use my 35 more than 50 so that's just me.

Just get your fav in ASPH, and the other in pre-ASPH, although I heard all the 35 summicrons are excellent regardless.
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Old 12-19-2016   #30
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35mm vs. 50mm? I've always been able to crop a picture but never expand it. 'Nuff said!
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Old 12-19-2016   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelwj View Post
I confess I had forgotten about that one, I suppose it is acceptable but it really should be mated to the later bodies, the M6 is a bit early for the ASPH
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonmanjiro View Post
Not so fast!!! The titanium Summicron 35mm ASPH looks pretty damn sexy too


https://www.mapcamera.com/item/3000007360852
sheesh you guys. stop clouding my judgement.

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Recently, we were all agreeing that — as long as the owner/user is a heterosexual cisgender male — only BP is a «chick magnet».

So, obviously, titanium is only for people who decided to live completely chaste, I hope...
BP is over-rated. also, my rig is under a half-case. heterosexual points for style.
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Old 12-19-2016   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks View Post
For decades it was my 35 pre-aspheric Summilux. Nowadays it's at least as often my 1,5/50 Zeiss C-Sonnar. I'd hate to have to choose between the two. Fortunately I don't have to. Imaginary or hypothetical or plainly meaningless choices are the bane of countless threads.

Cheers,

R.
my choice is the one I plan to stick with for rest of my years *famous last words*.

Quote:
Originally Posted by splitimageview View Post
35/1.4 ZM rules all.

But... the size.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sara View Post

I use my 35 more than 50 so that's just me.

Just get your fav in ASPH, and the other in pre-ASPH, although I heard all the 35 summicrons are excellent regardless.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spavinaw View Post
35mm vs. 50mm? I've always been able to crop a picture but never expand it. 'Nuff said!

Two lenses are out of the question now. So, it's most likely the 35.
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Old 12-19-2016   #33
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Two lenses are out of the question now. So, it's most likely the 35.
For the cost of either of those lenses, you can get 2 great lenses that dont start with the letter L. Just something to consider...

If you know you're only ever going to want one lens ever, then sure, go for a 35mm. But for me, that just didnt work, for a variety of reasons. The complement to a 35 is usually thought to be a 21/24 and a 75. While I do like 21 a lot, it's usually just a bit too wide for me when just walking around in new places and I end up cropping it more than i like.

I've never used a 75 and I could probably get along with it ok but I get the impression from my experience with 50 and 85/90mm's that it's just a little too tight for me walking around on a daily basis. In my shooting, I've also found 35 is can be both too tight and not tight enough for me.

So with this all said, it's up to you to know what focal lengths will work for how and what you shoot. For me, if I was in your position, and since I know that 1 lens only doesnt totally work for me long term, I'd go for the 1 lens that would have the complementing focal lengths that I know would also work, so 50mm. (so I can then get a 28mm) Or you could do it the other way around and get the 28mm first, but most people already have one of those in their pocket as a cell phone.
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Old 12-19-2016   #34
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Quit kidding yourself. There'll never be just one lens.
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Old 12-19-2016   #35
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Originally Posted by pechelman View Post
For the cost of either of those lenses, you can get 2 great lenses that dont start with the letter L. Just something to consider...
This. VM 35/1.7 and Nokton 50/1.5 (or 1.1 if you don't mind size). Technically better than the pre-asph lenses on your list. Close enough to the aspherical ones to make no difference in practice. And you'll still be far away from the price of a 50 lux asph, you could add a 3rd lens (75, 90 or 21 ?).

If you really only want one lens, get a 35. You can always crop a 35 to 50, but not the other way around.

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Old 12-19-2016   #36
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Quit kidding yourself. There'll never be just one lens.
Not forever, anyway.

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Old 12-19-2016   #37
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If it's "one lens to rule them all, and in the darkness bind them" then surely it has to be a Noctilux.

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Old 12-19-2016   #38
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hmmnnn - the VMs from CV get you a lot of lens for the money. Unparalleled really.

With your stipulations in mind though (1 lens , film, size,etc) I would choose the 35 pre-asph.

Then spend the next decade looking for the Ti version ;-)

Have fun!
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Old 12-19-2016   #39
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If it was a gun to my head? 35 Cron. All of versions have +/- but at the end of the day the audience that matters cannot tell the difference. Don't let the poseurs tell you otherwise. Even though I picked the 35, the 50 is my preferred view (I feel the 28/50 pair is greater than a single 35). My first Leica twenty years ago was an M6 and a 35 Cron. If I was told I had to have a single setup today, that choice would still be the same.

But for you? It's hard to say because you have a single image posted on Flickr and it's of a camera. So, I looked at the images you "Faved" and I'd definitely say a 50mm, without a doubt. Even the MF images seem to be of normal FOV. Crowdsourcing, as you had suggested one of the reasons for this post (hasn't there been 1,000 of these exact posts before?) will probably give you answers that will distract, leaving you pondering into an old of age where your eyesight will be failing. Ask people that KNOW you, know what you shoot and can provide insightful feedback.

When all else fails; pick one and roll with it. If it's not feeling right you can always take the other route.
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Old 12-19-2016   #40
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If it's "one lens to rule them all, and in the darkness bind them" then surely it has to be a Noctilux.

Cheers,

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmilkins View Post

Then spend the next decade looking for the Ti version ;-)

Have fun!
haha. I could start an investment fund for the Ti version I suppose.

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But for you? It's hard to say because you have a single image posted on Flickr and it's of a camera. So, I looked at the images you "Faved" and I'd definitely say a 50mm, without a doubt. Even the MF images seem to be of normal FOV. ...
When all else fails; pick one and roll with it. If it's not feeling right you can always take the other route.
Thanks. This is the kind of feedback that I expected. Something which I perhaps could not see myself.

I love the 35 only because it allows me to take such shots in a crowded street in India.



Well, I suppose the 50 could have made the framing tighter. hmm
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