$1.8k: what should I get?
Old 11-12-2017   #1
giganova
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$1.8k: what should I get?

Sold my digital gear, now I have around $1,800 to play with and are contemplating what I should get. My current gear list is:
  • Two M4 in chrome
  • 50/2 Rigid
  • 21/3.4 Super Angulon
  • Two Gossen light meters
  • Metz flash
Shall I replace the 50/2 with a 50/1.4 Summilux?
Shall I replace the 21/3.4 Super Angulon with a 21/2.8 Elmarit?
Shall I get a third M body? Maybe a M6 Titanium?
Shall I get another M4 with a Voiglander 15/4 VII?
Shall I get a Hasselblad?

What would you do?
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Old 11-12-2017   #2
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A different focal length or try a new type of camera. You have two great Leicas with two great lenses.
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Old 11-12-2017   #3
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Get yourself a nice 35 Summicron V3 or v4 and a 90 Summicron from the 60's or 70's. My primary lens kit is the 21 SA 3.4, 35 v1 Summicron, 50 Rigid and 90 Summicron from the 70's. Secondary lenses are 90 v1 elmarit (not tele) and 75 summilux.
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Old 11-12-2017   #4
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Good suggestions!
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Old 11-12-2017   #5
Michiel Fokkema
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I'd book a trip to Venice or Istanbul.
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Old 11-12-2017   #6
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I’d suggest 35mm lens of your liking, and film with the balance.
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Old 11-12-2017   #7
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The 50 Rigid and 21 SA have immense levels of character. I would keep those.


If having "character" lenses is your thing, consider a Voigtlander 35mm Nokton Classic. Single coated if b&w is your preferred medium or multicoated if it is color. Basically think 35mm Summilux V.1 with better ergos and less barrel distortion.

To that add a 1.5/50 C Sonnar from Zeiss.

There is your $1800 and very well spent.

Later, if it would be used, add a 90 such as a 2.8/90 Tele Elmarit M. But between the SA, Rigid, N.C., and Sonnar, the options for incredible 35mm photography are very well and very broadly covered.
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Old 11-12-2017   #8
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35 Summicron
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Ain't no substitute for (square) inches
Old 11-12-2017   #9
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Ain't no substitute for (square) inches

I've said this before, and was criticized for it. But I will say it again. Leicas are wonderful cameras, with superb lenses no doubt. However, you're still putting the image on a 24 x 36mm piece of film.

My answer based on your offered choices is the Hasselblad.
My personal answer is a Rolleiflex 3.5F or 2.8F.
The Fuji 670 folder is modern, and in your price range also.
I bought mine a couple of months ago as a B&H open box demo for $1800. This gives you modern metering with auto exposure.

Hmm - just checked B&H. All of the Fuji GF670 cameras that they had are gone. Amazon has none either (they had one or two from Japan before).

If you insist upon staying with 35mm film and Leica, then buy ONE M4. With lenses I'm very partial to Sonnars, so I'd say the Zeiss 50mm f/1.5 C-Sonnar. That should eat up your budget right there.
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Old 11-12-2017   #10
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35mm Summicron v3 or 35 Summilux pre-ASPH.
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Old 11-12-2017   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michiel Fokkema View Post
I'd book a trip to Venice or Istanbul.
+1 and buy film (destination up to you but.. some place you haven't been)
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Old 11-12-2017   #12
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35mm Summicron v3 or 35 Summilux pre-ASPH.
Or 35 summaron? The chrome will rock on your M4 bodies. Put the rest towards film and you're a happy camper.

Having seen a lot of the photos you post here, I don't think you need a 90mm. Your wide to normal images rock, and a 35mm might just give you a happy balance for going lighter.

I've often thought of a Hasselblad or a Rolleiflex, but as much as I try I can't seem to get along with a waist level finder. I find the waist level finder gets in the way of me and my subject - it forces me to look away from the subject to compose, whereas with the RF I can always face my subject. I've given up trying to like them, and stick with my Leica now. But, if the itch must be scratched, try and borrow one for a week or two before you commit.
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Old 11-12-2017   #13
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Hmm - just checked B&H. All of the Fuji GF670 cameras that they had are gone. Amazon has none either (they had one or two from Japan before).
B&H was sold out, then they had some last winter, then they were gone... I noticed a few weeks ago they were back in stock. Now they're gone again. Who knows, maybe "in stock" means there is only one!
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Old 11-12-2017   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giganova View Post
Shall I get a third M body? Maybe a M6 Titanium?
Get an M6 Titanium body.


Leica M6 Rangefinder Kit by Narsuitus, on Flickr
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Old 11-12-2017   #15
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- the 15mm voigtlander would be fun to try out
- 50/1.5 sonnar would be my pick for a fast 50mm
- or go to the dark side with a nikon and a 58/1.4 voigtlander nokton
- a used but mint 35mm f/1.4 zeiss distagon zm is about $1.8k
- maybe a 28mm elmarit asph to winogrand it out
- have a fling with a nikon s3 2000 or a leica m5
- can't say no to a hassy
- gf670, plaubel makina, mamiya 6, or bronica rf645
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Old 11-12-2017   #16
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Of the listed options, Hasselblad. The other options listed, although fine, are very much "second verse, same as the first." The Hasselblad opens up an entirely new world and point of view that none of the other options comes close to offering. IMO.
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Old 11-12-2017   #17
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If I were you, my choice would be:
- one M4
- 35/2.8 summaron
- 50/2 rigid
- meter
- flash

I don't think that your $1,800 can pay the bill of the list you wrote there, unless you are willing to burn more cash.

Quote:
Originally Posted by giganova View Post
Sold my digital gear, now I have around $1,800 to play with and are contemplating what I should get. My current gear list is:
  • Two M4 in chrome
  • 50/2 Rigid
  • 21/3.4 Super Angulon
  • Two Gossen light meters
  • Metz flash
Shall I replace the 50/2 with a 50/1.4 Summilux?
Shall I replace the 21/3.4 Super Angulon with a 21/2.8 Elmarit?
Shall I get a third M body? Maybe a M6 Titanium?
Shall I get another M4 with a Voiglander 15/4 VII?
Shall I get a Hasselblad?

What would you do?
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Old 11-12-2017   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giganova View Post
Sold my digital gear, now I have around $1,800 to play with and are contemplating what I should get. My current gear list is:
  • Two M4 in chrome
  • 50/2 Rigid
  • 21/3.4 Super Angulon
  • Two Gossen light meters
  • Metz flash
Shall I replace the 50/2 with a 50/1.4 Summilux?
Shall I replace the 21/3.4 Super Angulon with a 21/2.8 Elmarit?
Shall I get a third M body? Maybe a M6 Titanium?
Shall I get another M4 with a Voiglander 15/4 VII?
Shall I get a Hasselblad?

What would you do?
You already have two 35mm cameras, so get a 120 film camera and step up to decent image quality.
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Old 11-12-2017   #19
Daryl J.
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The Hass is a good suggestion too.
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Old 11-12-2017   #20
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Shall I replace the 50/2 with a 50/1.4 Summilux?

--keep the Rigid but go faster as an addition, like a CV 1,1/50 v.II

Shall I replace the 21/3.4 Super Angulon with a 21/2.8 Elmarit?

--Why? The oldster focuses closer. Sharp enough. If your need something for an M6; CV 4,5/21

Shall I get a third M body? Maybe a M6 Titanium?

--A plain M6/7, maybe with a .58 or .85 finder, are more interesting. The 'Titanium' in Titanium M6 is just paint, after all.

Shall I get another M4 with a Voiglander 15/4 VII?

--Meterless M is nostalgic, romantic fun. One is enough. In addition, lots of real estate to cover with a 15. Fun, for the 3 times a year you'll use it. Can get a V.II pretty cheaply, though. The VF is probably more expensive that the lens itself.

Shall I get a Hasselblad?
--The mirror slap will send a shudder down your spine.



--Probably even more after all the answers here

What would you do?

--buy 1.5 troy ounces of gold instead with that $1800
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Old 11-12-2017   #21
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I think silver or platinum are probably even better bets than gold at the moment, as they are so undervalued relative to gold. But, you can never go wrong with a gold 1 oz American Eagle or Canadian Maple Leaf.
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Old 11-12-2017   #22
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Keep it coming, I'm still undecided what to do. I'm not really a 35mm kind of guy. In fact, I just sold a 35mm Summaron because I never used it.

Getting a Hasselblad is tempting, but I'm not sure if I want to get into a different format at this point. Hassis are slow and loud and I am not sure if that fits my style of shooting, plus I needed a new scanner, etc.

If I get a new M lens, then I'd probably get a new M body, too, because I never change lenses. It doesn't fit my shooting style because changing lenses is too slow; I'm mostly doing social documentary black & white photography in sometimes sketchy situations, so there's no time to change lenses. If I need another focal length, I just grab another M body handing from my shoulder or I quickly pull it out of the open bag.
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Old 11-12-2017   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiemchacsu View Post
If I were you, my choice would be:
- one M4
- 35/2.8 summaron
- 50/2 rigid
- meter
- flash

I don't think that your $1,800 can pay the bill of the list you wrote there, unless you are willing to burn more cash.
I second this. If you find a minty 35/2 Summicron Type 1 - get that instead.
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Old 11-12-2017   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giganova View Post
Keep it coming, I'm still undecided what to do. I'm not really a 35mm kind of guy. In fact, I just sold a 35mm Summaron because I never used it.

Getting a Hasselblad is tempting, but I'm not sure if I want to get into a different format at this point. Hassis are slow and loud and I am not sure if that fits my style of shooting, plus I needed a new scanner, etc.

If I get a new M lens, then I'd probably get a new M body, too, because I never change lenses. It doesn't fit my shooting style because changing lenses is too slow; I'm mostly doing social documentary black & white photography in sometimes sketchy situations, so there's no time to change lenses. If I need another focal length, I just grab another M body handing from my shoulder or I quickly pull it out of the open bag.

What about a MD with a 12 or 15 Voigtlander?
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Old 11-12-2017   #25
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Yeah, I thought about an MD+15mm Voigtlander combo, too.
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Old 11-12-2017   #26
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Grab it from the bag and you're ready to shoot.
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Old 11-12-2017   #27
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If the environment is so dodgy, then why use expensive Leica cameras?

Why not just a simple fixed lens RF camera such as the Konica Auto S2? Since you never change lenses, there is no need for an interchangable lens camera.

If it's even dodgier, you could even go less expensive with Russian gear, such as a FED 2 with its Industar 50mm lens. Then save some of the money and put it towards a nice Glock with ammo, and a concealed carry license. That should take care of the dodgy environment.

Going back to the medium format discussion, if medium format SLRs are not for you, then consider the Fuji 645S. It's small, folds up, and has lever wind. They had weak bellows when first introduced, but Frank Marshman can change and generally upgrade the camera to be stronger when getting it overhauled. Mine didn't need a new bellows (I think it had been replaced by a previous owner), so the overhaul was only $123. I sent it in because the PC flash socket wasn't working, and the finder was hazy. It's built in meter is very accurate. The frameline actually will contract as you focus closer, as well as correct for parallax. This is something that Leica never managed to squeeze into their viewfinder.
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Old 11-12-2017   #28
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I would take 1800 and get a medium format kit that suits your needs. You could grab a decent MF setup and still have $ for a used Nokton 35 1.4. As much as I love my Leicas, medium format offers me more diversity than any new lens or 35mm body will give me.

A Mamiya c330 with lenses is under 800$
Autocord about $250
Hasselblad 500cm w a pair of lenses about $1200

Rolleiflex if you wanna spend some coin. Lots of nice options that produce better images than any 35mm will allow you.
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Old 11-13-2017   #29
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If you've just sold your digital gear, you may want to consider a really nice scanner. A Coolscan 8000ED or something along those lines.
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Old 11-13-2017   #30
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How about a Voigtlander R4M or R4A for the 21mm lens?

Then a high end compact camera like the Nikon 35ti, Contax T2 or Ricoh GR1/s/v for the days you want to travel light.
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Old 11-13-2017   #31
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A good pair of shoes, a couple of books and a ticket for a nice and interesting journey. Travel, travel, travel

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Old 11-13-2017   #32
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How about just holding on to the $1800 for another day?
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Old 11-13-2017   #33
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Like the RF experience with a good 35mm set and some money to burn?
What about a Mamiya 7 (or 7 II) kit?
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Old 11-13-2017   #34
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Film and a plane ticket.

Isn't that what you bought your Leicas for in the first place?
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Old 11-13-2017   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FujiLove View Post
I agree with this sentiment, but it's no good if you don't have a camera!
Did you read the opening post? Yer man already has a brace of M4s with a lens (and meter) for each.

giganova: Load up on drugs and booze and let your inner Hunter S. Thompson guide you.
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Old 11-13-2017   #36
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I'll add to the pile of people suggesting you use it to travel and take photos with the cameras you've already got.
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Old 11-13-2017   #37
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if MF, then Makina 67(0), much nicer to carry around than a Mamiya 6/7 or a Hassi, kind of a Contax T3 in medium format

Was also on the route to add (again) an M to my 35mm gear, skipped it and will buy now a Makina 670.

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Old 11-13-2017   #38
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Perhaps he already travels, already saves money, and he is just wanting to try different gear with the money he got from selling gear?

I'm not a huge fan of traveling to photograph... weird right? I tend to do a lot better photographing in the place I live where I can revisit places and learn from my mistakes. Get to really know a place. Of course I do travel and I do photograph, but it is secondary to my traveling.

I think the medium format suggestion is a good one, but only if you think you will carry it and use it.
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Old 11-13-2017   #39
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Quote:
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... I never change lenses. It doesn't fit my shooting style because changing lenses is too slow; I'm mostly doing social documentary black & white photography in sometimes sketchy situations, so there's no time to change lenses. If I need another focal length, I just grab another M body handing from my shoulder or I quickly pull it out of the open bag.
Here is what I actually do when I am in a situation similar to yours.

I normally shoot with my one Leica M6 body and three lenses (21, 35, 90mm).

However, when I am in a situation where I do not have time to change lenses, I also carry equipment from my backup rangefinder system (two Contax G1 bodies with 21, 28, 45, and 90mm lenses) which cost less than $1800.

For example, if I am primarily shooting with my M6 with a 35mm lens, I can quickly pull one Contax body with a 21mm out of the open bag or a second Contax body with a 90 mm lens out of the open bag.

If I am primarily shooting with my M6 with a 21mm lens, I can quickly pull one Contax body with a 28mm or a 45mm out of the open bag or a second Contax body with a 90 mm lens out of the open bag.


Contax G1 by Narsuitus, on Flickr
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Old 11-13-2017   #40
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I agree, regarding the Hasselblad...but a Makina 67 is, "nicer to carry around", than a Mamiya 6???

In what way?.
Simply because its much thinner when the lens is not extracted, somehow much more comfortable to carry in a small thin shoulder bag than a Mamiya or even a SLR with lens attached, at least for me, despite the extra weight.

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