Best "budget" M lenses.
Old 06-13-2017   #1
Sid836
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Best "budget" M lenses.

If you were not to choose a Summicron, what would be your next option for a sub-600 eur lens no wider than 35mm? I have been using the Elmar 50mm 2.8 (a late 60s one) but I'd like to try something else. I know of the Summicron's performance, but I would like to spend less than 600 for one. What are the options?
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Old 06-13-2017   #2
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Minolta M-Rokkor 40/2.0 in CLE version.
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Old 06-13-2017   #3
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Glad to hear you are shooting the Elmar 50mm f2.8 V1! Im a big fan of it and am trying to keep this thread alive. It would be great if you shared some of your images there

http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...hreadid=125811

As for a lens recommendation, how about a color-skopar 35mm? Or if you don't mind another vintage lens maybe a 50mm f2 Nikkor?
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Old 06-14-2017   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WJJ3 View Post
Glad to hear you are shooting the Elmar 50mm f2.8 V1! Im a big fan of it and am trying to keep this thread alive. It would be great if you shared some of your images there

http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...hreadid=125811

As for a lens recommendation, how about a color-skopar 35mm? Or if you don't mind another vintage lens maybe a 50mm f2 Nikkor?
I love that Elmar too. I don't have nothing against it, but the trouble having changing the aperture when the focus is not locked. Here are a few of these:


A Super Mini


Of old doors gracefully rotten again.


Back seat views...




Kinda lost


Of awkward models...

Quote:
Originally Posted by maddoc View Post
Minolta M-Rokkor 40/2.0 in CLE version.
What framelines do I get on an M4-P? If it is the 50mm ones is it going to be hard framing things accurately?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcfingon View Post
Try the late 90's Elmar-M 50/2.8. I had a 1958 Elmar 50/2.8 and find this one much better, and it works well on my A7S and film Leicas.
It looks nice. I have seen it at prices over 1k on ebay. I can also see some at 600-700. Is this a fair price, or indicative of major flaws (damage, etc)?
That photo looks wonderful. I might go for an Elmar-M if found at a price close to 600.
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Old 06-14-2017   #5
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Great photos! I hope you will keep cranking them out and put them in this thread!

http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...hreadid=125811


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikos72 View Post
I love that Elmar too. I don't have nothing against it, but the trouble having changing the aperture when the focus is not locked. Here are a few of these:


A Super Mini


Of old doors gracefully rotten again.


Back seat views...




Kinda lost


Of awkward models...



What framelines do I get on an M4-P? If it is the 50mm ones is it going to be hard framing things accurately?



It looks nice. I have seen it at prices over 1k on ebay. I can also see some at 600-700. Is this a fair price, or indicative of major flaws (damage, etc)?
That photo looks wonderful. I might go for an Elmar-M if found at a price close to 600.
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Old 06-14-2017   #6
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Another vote for the 1.4/40 Nokton.

The fact it is 40mmand few RF cameras have 40mm frame lines is essentially irrelevant. After a roll of film it pretty easy to know where the image is in the viewfinder and you'll find it is harder to focus than it is to compose.

Enjoy!
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Old 06-17-2017   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daryl J. View Post
Another vote for the 1.4/40 Nokton.

The fact it is 40mmand few RF cameras have 40mm frame lines is essentially irrelevant. After a roll of film it pretty easy to know where the image is in the viewfinder and you'll find it is harder to focus than it is to compose.

Enjoy!
You will also find the left and right edges of the 50mm frame lines correspond to how a negative prints cropped on 8x10 paper. So 40mm lenses are great on the M3 etc. if you wet print your photos.
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Old 06-14-2017   #8
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The 50mm frame lines of my former M4-P (old type with recessed windows) and M4-2 were a good fit, so is my M4 with my 40/2.0 Summicron-C. The 40/2.0 Summicron-C has even better center sharpness than the 40/2.0 M-Rokkor and is great for portraits.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikos72 View Post
What framelines do I get on an M4-P? If it is the 50mm ones is it going to be hard framing things accurately?
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Old 06-14-2017   #9
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You can get a clean collapsible Summicron for below US 500. If the rigid exceeds your budget, the collapsible would be my next choice.

Or one of the Sonnars, Nikkor 50/1.4, Canon 50/1.5 or Opton with Amedeo adapter.

Roland.
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Old 06-13-2017   #10
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the m-rokkor 40/2 is obscenely cheap given its level of performance. i second maddoc's recommendation. it's one of my favorite lenses.
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Old 06-14-2017   #11
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Try the late 90's Elmar-M 50/2.8. I had a 1958 Elmar 50/2.8 and find this one much better, and it works well on my A7S and film Leicas.
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Old 06-14-2017   #12
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Sample pic from above rig. Elmar-M 50 at f4 on Sony A7S.
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Old 06-14-2017   #13
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40mm rokkor or summicron, pretty much the same but the rokkor is usually cheaper. You get a summicron level lens for a decent price
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Old 06-14-2017   #14
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let's see... for under $600 you can usually find the Color Skopar 50mm, Color Skopar 35mm, Zeiss Biogon C 35mm f/2.8, and of course the 40mm Summicron/Rokkor that were already mentioned.
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Old 06-14-2017   #15
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M-Rokkor 2/40
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Old 06-14-2017   #16
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New? 40mm f/1.4 Nokton. Lovely lens and only $449 from the Head Bartender.

Used? 50mm f/1.5 Nokton screw-mount with a VC M-mount adapter.
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Old 06-14-2017   #17
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Are the 40mm Summicron/Rokkor the same thing? If it was to chose one of them which one is the better?
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Old 06-14-2017   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikos72 View Post
Are the 40mm Summicron/Rokkor the same thing? If it was to chose one of them which one is the better?
http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...d.php?t=101932
http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...ad.php?t=51331
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Old 06-14-2017   #19
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Another vote for the 40mm M-Rokkor.

How about a screw mount lens? There are all kinds available.

I am sure some are better than others (since the thread did say "best"), but on a budget its hard to beat something like a Jupiter-8.

For something outside of the box, how about a Super-Rokkor 45mm?

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Old 06-14-2017   #20
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I'd go for the M-Rokkor 40 as well. My copy is sharper than my Summicron 50 v4 in the central 2/3 of the image... Actually, I need to buy a second copy of the lens - the barrel is a bit wobbly and my local repairguy did not know how to fix it.
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Old 06-14-2017   #21
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summicron c-40 as mentioned .
you can get a used zeiss planar 50 - a bargain .
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Old 06-14-2017   #22
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My own experience is very limited but I'm happy with a CV 35mm f2.5 PII and for a 52mm f2.8, I paid all of $12, shipping included for a I-61 out of Latvia, a little loosey goosey in the focus feel but otherwise with a cheap HK adapter it works just fine on my M4-2.

Don't know whether this comes under the title 'budget' or should just be called 'cheap'.
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Old 06-14-2017   #23
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CV 35mm 1.4, 1.7 or 2.5 used
CV 50mm 1.5 used
Zeiss 35mm C-Biogon 2.8 used
CV 75mm 2.5 used
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Old 06-14-2017   #24
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Quote:
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CV 50mm 1.5 used
Have you tried using this lens with your Fuji X cameras? Is CA a big issue?
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Old 06-14-2017   #25
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Lots of options, just be aware that older glass will often have haze and/or 'cleaning marks' which can reduce contrast.

Summitar is very under rated, if you can find one with nice glass, although they require oddball filters.

Collapsible Summicron if you can find one similarly without cleaning marks/haze, the early ones are radioactive and command a higher price, so hunt for a later production

Canon 50/1.8 and 1.4, they are prone to haze so shop carefully, as well as the Canon 50/1.5, Nikkor 50/2, and 1.4 (latter three all Sonnars.)
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Old 06-14-2017   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by splitimageview View Post
Lots of options, just be aware that older glass will often have haze and/or 'cleaning marks' which can reduce contrast.

Summitar is very under rated, if you can find one with nice glass, although they require oddball filters.

Collapsible Summicron if you can find one similarly without cleaning marks/haze, the early ones are radioactive and command a higher price, so hunt for a later production

Canon 50/1.8 and 1.4, they are prone to haze so shop carefully, as well as the Canon 50/1.5, Nikkor 50/2, and 1.4 (latter three all Sonnars.)
Constrast reduction isn't necessarily a bad thing, it depends on the effect/kind of photo you are after.


Totally agree about Summitar. Not really that expensive and small collapsive package. Real challenge is to find one with optimal glass condition (no fungus, haze, scratches), although, based on my experiences, most haze can be removed and brought back to working condition (owned 3 of them, 2 of them with haze that where cleaned by me, 3th one pristine condition). Be aware though, Summitar bokeh is very particular, some people love it (me) and some people hate it. I think its great for classical looking portrait and scene where you want to add a dreamy like effect.


Best regards


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Old 06-14-2017   #27
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1951 hex blade Summitar, coated

Early Summitars are uncoated, 10 blades


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Old 06-14-2017   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by splitimageview View Post
1951 hex blade Summitar, coated

Early Summitars are uncoated, 10 blades


Excellent one! Two drawbacks for me with it though; is it screw mount only, does its aperture rotate the lens barrel when not locked at infinity? The later one is of the reasons I'd like something different to my Elmar.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maddoc View Post
The 50mm frame lines of my former M4-P (old type with recessed windows) and M4-2 were a good fit, so is my M4 with my 40/2.0 Summicron-C. The 40/2.0 Summicron-C has even better center sharpness than the 40/2.0 M-Rokkor and is great for portraits.

I feel like narrowing to these two. Is the difference in sharpness notable? Are these lenses more prone to problems like haze than the usual?
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Old 06-14-2017   #29
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Excellent one! Two drawbacks for me with it though; is it screw mount only, does its aperture rotate the lens barrel when not locked at infinity? The later one is of the reasons I'd like something different to my Elmar.
Screw mount really is no different than M mount, with the exception of close focus of 1m vs. later 0.7m on many M bayonet lenses. As long as one uses a quality LTM adapter.

Moving the aperture on my old uncoated copy does not rotate the lens barrel, and this is even though the aperture ring is not all that smooth. It could use a relube. Glass on this one is the cleanest I've ever seen on such an old lens (1940.)
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Old 06-14-2017   #30
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Originally Posted by splitimageview View Post
1951 hex blade Summitar, coated

Early Summitars are uncoated, 10 blades
Nice shot!! I had a uncoated summitar long ago and it was nearly unusable bc of flare. Any light source even remotely in frame and everything was lost
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Old 06-14-2017   #31
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Is this a 50mm conversation?

There are real bargains to be found in the longer focal lengths, right at the the other end of the scale the Mandler designed 135mm Tele Elmar is an exceptional lens that sells for small money bearing in mind what it is.

The 90mm Elmar is another excellent performer and surely the cheapest Leitz lens around.

However I guess these are not what the OP is looking for but they shouldn't be forgotten.
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Old 06-14-2017   #32
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If you want a 35, either the Zeiss 2.8 or the LTM Voightlander 1.7 with an adapter. The 90 Elmars, especially the older ones, are silly cheap. So are the ones with the Minolta brand made for the CLE - that's an Elmar with a different name on it. There's a 90 collapsible M Elmar in the classified for $189.

Last edited by presspass : 06-14-2017 at 10:27. Reason: addition
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Old 06-14-2017   #33
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A second hand Zeiss Biogon 35mm (either one).
I've owned both the f2/35mm and f2.8/35mm..... both are excellent.
The CLE f2/40mm is also excellent and handles nicer than the biogons.
The Biogons have some special magic. That zeiss look.
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Old 06-14-2017   #34
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My 1950 Summitar is coated and 10-blade. The Summitar is a lovely lens. It was only made in LTM, I belive, but I have an adapted and so can use it both with my Leica II and my M bodies.

Nikos, I'm not sure I understand your other question. The aperture ring does not turn the lens barrel.

And, sure, it can flare even when coated


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Incidentally the Summitar unscrews in a few places so it is possible to clean several inside elements (carefully).

For a longer lens the suggestion of the 135 Tele Elmar is good. For a 35mm I would have picked the CV Skopar. I stupidly sold mine a few years ago. It's superb.

br
Philip

Quote:
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Two drawbacks for me with it though; is it screw mount only, does its aperture rotate the lens barrel when not locked at infinity? The later one is of the reasons I'd like something different to my Elmar.
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Old 06-14-2017   #35
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That Elmar looks like a winner. I've used it in the past, but only for color.
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Old 06-14-2017   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikos72 View Post
Excellent one! Two drawbacks for me with it though; is it screw mount only, does its aperture rotate the lens barrel when not locked at infinity? The later one is of the reasons I'd like something different to my Elmar.
Adjusting the aperture on mine will turn the lens too, but its not a deal breaker for me. I upgraded from the f3.5 Elmar where you have to point your camera at yourself, squint and use your fingernail to adjust the aperture

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That Elmar looks like a winner. I've used it in the past, but only for color.
Agree! The Elmar 50mm f2.8 V1 is great!
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Old 06-14-2017   #37
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A fog-free Canon 50/1.8 offers highest price-performance ratio. Every bit Summicron quality.
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Old 06-14-2017   #38
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The cv 50 2.5. & my fave the late '50s summaron 35 2.8
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Old 06-14-2017   #39
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The CV 50/2.5 Skopar is excellent, but not available new -- you'll have to hunt around for a second-hand lens.

The M-Rokkor 40/2 is great as well, and (oddly) probably easier to find than the 50/2.5 Skopar. There are 2 versions, very similar: The older one for the CL is single-coated and slightly more robustly built. The newer one for the CLE is multi-coated and a bit lighter weight. Both take 40.5mm filters. (The 40/2 Summicron-C takes an odd Series 5.5 filter size, but I've heard it's also an excellent lens.)
Filing down the frame-line actuator lug to bring up the 35mm frame lines is an easy modification -- Don Goldberg charged me something like $30 to do it. (Since the frame lines cover about 10-15% more than the FOV of their intended lens, the 35mm frame lines match the FOV of a 40mm lens pretty well -- you just don't have the same framing leeway as with a 35mm lens.)

If you want a fast lens, you should be able to get a used CV 50/1.5 M-mount lens for under 600 euros, but that's a much bigger lens than the aforementioned two.
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Old 06-14-2017   #40
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Voigtlander 35/f2.5 Color Skopar is hard to beat for the price - lovely combination of size, price and really nice rendering.

Likewise, the VM 50/f1.5 is fantastic.


35mm Color Skopar


50mm Nokton
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