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New 50mm lens hunt
Old 03-04-2019   #1
AlexBG
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New 50mm lens hunt

I've been shooting my m3 for a few years as well as cycling through a host of other cameras and lenses and now am pretty sure of what I need in a film camera. I'm going to be getting a konica hexar rf and need a lens to go with it. I have a canon serenar 50mm 1.8, jupiter 8, summaron 35 2.8 and elmar so have a lot of what i would say are classic rendering lenses.

Now I would like to match the hexar with a modern rendering 50mm. Leica lenses are out of my price range, roughly £600, last year when I was looking at the top of my list was a zeiss 50mm f2 but there seems to be a lot of new lenses being made and probably a lot that I have missed so wanted to ask. Would like my new lens to be sharpish wide open, modern rendering, faster than f2, would like peoples opinions.

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Old 03-05-2019   #2
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A Hexanon 50mm f2 would overwhelmingly be my choice for a Hexar RF. It is f2, not faster than f2, but it is my favourite M mount 50mm and it's made for the RF.







The Hexanon 50mm f1.2 costs more than £600 and is fantastic too.

I have tried or own almost every M mount 50mm lens made, and all the faster than f2 lenses with modern renderings have flaws serious enough for me to have passed them on, but I found the 2018 Voigtlander 50/1.2 Nokton M Aspherical the best. The contrast is lower than Leica ASPH lenses, probably deliberately to avoid the lens having a lot of focus shift in a design without a floating element. I like it, but I've never tried it on a Hexar RF. I found it had some odd field curvature and coma, but tolerance of the effects of these in photos is a personal thing. I don't have any edited photos I took with it to show, unfortunately.

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Old 03-05-2019   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexBG View Post
modern rendering, faster than f2, would like peoples opinions.

Thanks
Hi, sounds like you have some fun 50s already. I would venture a guess that the only lens in your budget that meets the above criteria would be the CV LTM Nokton 50/1.5 with an M mount adapter. Can’t think of anything else modern and faster than f2 for 600 quid 🤔
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Old 03-05-2019   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Freakscene View Post
A Hexanon 50mm f2 would overwhelmingly be my choice for a Hexar RF.







Marty
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Old 03-05-2019   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WJJ3 View Post
I would venture a guess that the only lens in your budget that meets the above criteria would be the CV LTM Nokton 50/1.5 with an M mount adapter.
Possibly also the M-mount Nokton 50/1.5?! Not sure about UK prices, but locally its cheaper than 600 quid.
https://www.mapcamera.com/item/4530076130432
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Old 03-05-2019   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonmanjiro View Post
Possibly also the M-mount Nokton 50/1.5?! Not sure about UK prices, but locally its cheaper than 600 quid.
https://www.mapcamera.com/item/4530076130432
Woah! Didn’t realize the M mount is that in expensive. Stop tempting me Jon! 😂
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Old 03-05-2019   #7
Erik van Straten
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Try also the LTM Voigtländer Color Skopar 50mm f/2.5. Balances very nice on the M3. The image quality is superb.

Leica M3, Vogtländer Color Skopar 50mm f/2.5, 400-2TMY, printed on Adox MCC 110.

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Old 03-05-2019   #8
Ko.Fe.
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10USD Industar 69 LD will do same image, same quality as above.

But OP is asking for faster than f2 lens. The only "cheap" and known to be good in OP price range lens I know would be Nokton 50 1.5 in LTM, used.
Here is 50 1.1 7a, but I'm not sure if it ever gets sharp in the corners.
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Old 03-05-2019   #9
Erik van Straten
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ko.Fe. View Post
10USD Industar 69 LD will do same image, same quality as above.
Yes, but the Industar is only f/3.5.

I did not know that the OP was asking for faster than f/2. But for true mechanical, ergonomical and optical quality the Color Skopar is the best.

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Old 03-05-2019   #10
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The nokton 1.5 is a good choice, how does that compared to the Zeiss zm f1.5 and f2?
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Old 03-05-2019   #11
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It is aspsherical lens. Planar and Sonnar are not.
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Old 03-05-2019   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erik van Straten View Post
Yes, but the Industar is only f/3.5.

I did not know that the OP was asking for faster than f/2. But for true mechanical, ergonomical and optical quality the Color Skopar is the best.

Erik.
61 LD is not f3.5. OP was not asking about ergonomics, but for faster than f2 lens with modern character.
It is hard not to get OK pictures as Skopar does with maximum f2.5.

I highly recommend always read and understand OP before posting. But nobody is perfect.
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Old 03-05-2019   #13
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I think these days, unless you are buying new from the factory to increase your chances (and even then no guarantees), you just have to try different lenses until you find one that gives you what you want.

I can praise my lens all I want while trying to sell it, but you might look for another quality, and don't know how I have treated it.
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Old 03-05-2019   #14
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Nokton 1.5 for sure... taking into account your criteria.
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Old 03-05-2019   #15
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Why are the screw mount Noktons cheaper? Are they older?
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Old 03-05-2019   #16
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Older, doesn't focus as close. The M-mount version also benefits from some tweaks to the optical formula.
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Old 03-05-2019   #17
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How does the 1.5 compare to the new 1.2?
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Old 03-05-2019   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexBG View Post
How does the 1.5 compare to the new 1.2?
It's about a half stop slower. *duck-n-run*

From the shots posted here and flickr, the Nokton 1.5 makes lovely images. Sadly, the copy I purchased had focus shift issues. No one else seems to have these, so I'm guessing I just got a bum copy. I sent it back and spent a lot more money for a Summilux pre-asph. No focus shift but it's arguably not any "better" than the Nokton overall and has a modest amount of distortion too. It's all a trade-off and honestly, I'm still looking for "my" fast 50 too.

I will echo oftheherd: ultimately, you'll end up trying something and deciding, for yourself, whether it works once you've seen the results you get. All the advice, chatter, and images from others won't avoid the process of trial and error, nor (in my experience) make it appreciably shorter either.
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Old 03-05-2019   #19
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I'm not sure if the Canon 50mm f/1.4 LTM would be modern-rendering enough compared to the Canon Serenar 50mm f/1.8 that you already have, but it is a bit faster if that's what you're after. I find it to be decently sharp wide open, and can be had for well under your £600 budget. This thread has 10+ pages of image samples for your perusal:
https://www.rangefinderforum.com/for...ad.php?t=86792
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Old 03-05-2019   #20
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I thought I wanted something faster than f/2 but have been very satisfied with the 50/2.5 Voigtlander, particularly as films have improved.
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Old 03-05-2019   #21
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Anything I'm leaving out?

Voigtlander 50/1.5 Nokton
Voigtlander 50/1.1 Nokton (the new f/1.2 if you can stretch your budget)
Zeiss 50/1.5 C Sonnar
7artisans 50/1.1
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Old 03-05-2019   #22
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Am liking my recent-bought 50 f/2 ZM Planar of any of my 50's now, small & light like a Summicron, set it to infinity and everything in the landscape field falls in sharp focus from ~f/11-ish to f/22 (beyond ~25 feet or so) but that's why I bought/kept it for my own uses (used cost <$600 USD Feb. 2019). It's also exc. open at f/2 and sharp all across the range from f/2-f/22 (yes f/22 is good).

Now this is on a Nikon Z6 and I have no idea how this lens does w/film (but getting curious now to put the Tri-x in the fridge to the test). May find you don't need faster than f/2 with this one, all personal pref's of course, good luck. (got mine from Japan in less than a week from e /bay).
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Old 03-05-2019   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aizan View Post
Anything I'm leaving out?

Voigtlander 50/1.5 Nokton
Voigtlander 50/1.1 Nokton (the new f/1.2 if you can stretch your budget)
Zeiss 50/1.5 C Sonnar
7artisans 50/1.1
Looks like a pretty complete list to me, at least for lenses that you can buy brand new (that aren't Leica). I'm not sure if that's a requirement for the OP.
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Old 03-05-2019   #24
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I have the Nokton 50 1.5 and the Sonnar C 50 1.5. If you can live with focus shift, I really love the Sonnar. IQ is unique enough and most importantly to me, it’s a lot smaller than the Nokton. Both are fantastic and will serve you well.
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Old 03-05-2019   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexBG View Post
... price range, roughly £600... Would like my new lens to be sharpish wide open, modern rendering, faster than f2
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexBG View Post
The nokton 1.5 is a good choice, how does that compared to the Zeiss zm f1.5 and f2?
Neither Zeiss lens meets ALL of your original criteria. Neither do the f1.1 and f1.2 Noktons.

The CV 50/1.5 Nokton does.

Keeping all of your other requirements but allowing f2, then the Zeiss Planar and Hex-M would be on top of the list.
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Old 03-05-2019   #26
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get...a...Sonnar...
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Old 03-05-2019   #27
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The Zeiss Planar T* 50mm f2 ZM lens is outstanding! While I have faster lenses this f2 has never failed to impress me.





It can be sharp too!


You get a lot of bang for the buck with this lens.

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Old 03-05-2019   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richardHaw View Post
get...a...Sonnar...
Nikkor-H.C 5cm f/2 LTM!
or Canon 50mm f/1.5 LTM for speed!
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Old 03-06-2019   #29
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maybe jupiter 3 - sonnar always look modern if you get sharp example...
and of course that 7artisans lens but it seems like it is a bit bigger size...
or first version of nokton f1.5 ltn
(and if u stumble upon heliar f2 ltm- that one looks so lovely!)
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Old 03-06-2019   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aizan View Post
Anything I'm leaving out?

Voigtlander 50/1.5 Nokton
Voigtlander 50/1.1 Nokton (the new f/1.2 if you can stretch your budget)
Zeiss 50/1.5 C Sonnar
7artisans 50/1.1
These were what I was looking at including the zeiss f2, have ordered the Norton 1.5 now, did a lot of looking at Flickr and other sites and reviews of it last night, seems perfect for what I want. Have to see how the size is on the hexar.
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Old 03-07-2019   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dourbalistar View Post
Nikkor-H.C 5cm f/2 LTM!
or Canon 50mm f/1.5 LTM for speed!
Nikkors! because of the close-focus
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Old 03-07-2019   #32
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Nikkors! because of the close-focus
The close focus ability of the Nikkors is a nice feature, but in practice, I think it works better adapted on digital cameras with live view. Are there any RF cameras that have rangefinder focus coupling in the close focus range of the Nikkors? Short of that (no pun intended), I believe you'd have to manually measure to achieve accurate focus.
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Old 03-07-2019   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dourbalistar View Post
The close focus ability of the Nikkors is a nice feature, but in practice, I think it works better adapted on digital cameras with live view. Are there any RF cameras that have rangefinder focus coupling in the close focus range of the Nikkors? Short of that (no pun intended), I believe you'd have to manually measure to achieve accurate focus.
When I shoot my 5cm f2 Nikkor-H I make sure my strap is adjusted so I can measure 45cm to my subject. This technique requires some practice, but works alright for MFD shooting.
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Old 03-07-2019   #34
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When I shoot my 5cm f2 Nikkor-H I make sure my strap is adjusted so I can measure 45cm to my subject. This technique requires some practice, but works alright for MFD shooting.
Interesting technique, I may have to try that! I know the Olympus XA4's wrist strap is designed for measuring minimum focus distance shooting, but never occurred to me to do the same for other lenses. Thanks for the tip!
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