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View Poll Results: Which wideangle finder is better
Original KMZ 20mm Russar finder 1 7.69%
CV 21mm finder for Skopar 8 61.54%
GF 21mm finder for Contax G 1 7.69%
other (post some details, please) 3 23.08%
Voters: 13. You may not vote on this poll

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20mm finder
Old 08-01-2018   #1
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20mm finder

I've got a MR-2 Russar 20/5,6 recently and now I'm looking for a proper finder. The options are: the original Russar 20mm finder with parallax, the CV Skopar 21mm finder with permanent parallax marks and the Contax GF 21mm finder with a wacky crosshair. All three roughly cost the same $150 with delivery. Which one is better? The original one is too huge to my mind. I'm also thinking to use a temporary solution — the lomo fisheye finder (masked to a rectangle) that costs almost nothing.

From what I can see from pictures, the CV 21 is the nicest one.

I've never held in my arms neither of these, so could you share your experience of using these finders.
Leica IIIf and a bunch of FSU LTMs, a Kiev-2, some film SLRs and a Sony NEX

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Old 08-01-2018   #2
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Hi, I haven't used the Russar 20mm finder, but I have used the plastic CV 21mm finder, the modern Zeiss 21mm finder, and the Leica 12002 21mm finder. I prefer the Leica finder because it has the best eye relief out of those three that I tried.

Good luck on your hunt!
Happy Shooting!

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Old 08-01-2018   #3
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The Contax 21mm finder is the only one I have ever used or needed.
I use it on my Contax and my Leica M6.

Contax G1 with 21mm Zeiss by Narsuitus, on Flickr
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Old 08-01-2018   #4
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I like the Zeiss best but use the Contax most often.
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Old 08-01-2018   #5
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I have the Cosina Voigländer in metal and its great.
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Old 08-01-2018   #6
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In my opinion the modern Zeiss is the very best finder you can get from any manufacturer of any era. I've owned both the 21mm and 25mm. They are probably good enough to be used to expose film. Incredible clarity and the least distortion of any comparable wide angle finder.
That said, they are just so expensive and now I use a CV 21mm finder.

Phil Forrest
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Old 08-01-2018   #7
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I forgot to mention I also have, and use, the Cosina one and the Leica finder. I just like the Contax and can't really give a good reason except for the rubber ring around the eyepiece which protects my glasses. The rounded shape is also nice because it's less prone to snagging on my camera bag.
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Old 08-01-2018   #8
Carey M
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The original KMZ finder is not a very elegant solution, imo. Portrudes a bit too much and the square-ish shape makes it a bit awkward in the camera bag. The view is serviceable, but not great. It does the job.
Analogue at heart.
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Old 08-01-2018   #9
Carlos Cruz
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I am using mamiya 43 mm finder on my m240, it's the only finder I can secure to the hotshoe.
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Old 08-01-2018   #10
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I have the KMZ finder but I don't have the Russar lens. It works well. I never pay attention to having specific finders. I just need to know what the lens is roughly covering.
- Raid

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Old 08-01-2018   #11
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I had the Zeiss at one time and I think it’s the best wide angle finder. I foolishly traded it for something that I thought I wanted at the time. I now have the metal CV 21/25 combo finder and it’s good enough for my needs since I am not a heavy 21mm shooter. If I were a heavy 21mm shooter, I would definitely save my pennies and get the Zeiss.
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Old 08-01-2018   #12
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I have the Zeiss 21mm finder which is the best viewfinder I have ever used, it seems to be brighter than the real world, little distortion and generally a joy to use. Too bloody expensive though. I've bought decent cameras for less....

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Old 08-03-2018   #13
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I've used the CV 21 (both the plastic and metal versions), the Contax, and the Leica skboo and Leica 12013 and found none of them entirely satisfactory. The plastic CV finder fell off my camera and into a river under a glacier, which partly is the finder's fault as it, like all the others except the Leica 12013 has no lock mechanism. The metal CV 21 with a little gaffer's tape on the bottom held on reasonably well but water got inside it. The Contax seemed better sealed against water - at least I never had a problem with it though I used it in the same conditions as the CV one and for at least as long but it has a plastic foot that wasn't up to the strain of being more or less permanently mounted on my camera -- I use the 21 an awful lot. It broke off and is no more. So now I have the 12013 which is huge and worse optically than the Contax but does lock on and has held up pretty well. The screws attaching the finder to the base worked loose but I tightened them back up and used a bit of loctite and it's held up ok. Of course the fact that the finder is staying intact and holding on suggests that the strain that caused the screws to become loose and the Contax finder to break has just been transferred somewhere else like the shoe or the camera top plate but they've held up so far. The Leica skboo worked ok but was nothing special and was expensive. I'd like to get the Zeiss one -- I've never heard a bad word about it. But it is expensive
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Old 08-03-2018   #14
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The Leica, the Zeiss or the Contax are all very fine. I still have the Leica one. Not compact by any means is the Frankenfinder, the most accurate and nicest of all. The tri-finder from Leica is a tunnel, no frame lines, and the one I had fell apart.
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