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Thread: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Last lens I want to get for my m9 kit is a 50
    I wish I could afford the 50 summicron but it's more then i want to spend
    So that leaves with the Zeiss planar or leica summarit
    I can buy a used zeiss for 500 or a demo refurb summarit for 1100
    Any advice?

    Thanks

    Steven
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

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    Senior Member thrice's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    I would prefer the size of the Summarit... which is very sharp. Depends if you want the extra 2/3 stop or the small size.

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    Senior Member mathomas's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    At half the cost and all the performance and 2/3 stop more speed, it would be a no-brainer for me. I do have a Planar and find it to be a fine lens.

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    As much as I like the Leica lenses I think 600 € less + 1/2 stop faster I would probably go for the Zeiss.

    However it also depends which other lenses you use. Mixing Zeiss and Leica lenses might lead to images with different signature.

    Another option which I would consider is maybe a CV50/1.5 - I find its nice to have a fast 500m lens.

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    I'd go for the Planar. The CV 50/1.5 is great (I have one), but the close focus limit of 0.9m is troublesome for me.

    As noted before, if size is important the Summarit is smaller than the Planar. How much smaller depends on whether you will have the hood on or not.

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    Senior Member thrice's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    It hasn't been mentioned, but if you can find one the Voigtlander Color-Skopar 50/2.5 is a GREAT lens.

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    Senior Member thrice's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    here is the CV wide open on M9

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Do you have to code the 50 for the m9
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

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    Senior Member thrice's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    you don't have to code most 50's but I coded my 50/2.5 CV on the LTM-M adapter to help with sorting in Lightroom. And as you might be able to tell, I incorrectly manually selected 35mm when I took that shot above because I was using my uncoded 35 lux asph.
    Last edited by thrice; 1st September 2010 at 05:19.

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    The 2/50 Planar ZM is something else on the M8/M9. Very sharp lens, even wide open. All the usual "Zeissisms" for a very reasonable price. You don't have to code it for either camera, but it doesn't hurt - and at least shows your focal length in the EXIF.

    M9 test, wide open at f/2, focus on head:

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    What would i code the zeiss planar as?
    Steven Kornreich
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    I have mine coded as a 2/50 Summicron-M (type IV/V, code 100001).

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Till I got a 50 lux asph I had a 50 voigt 1.5 and a 50 f2 planar hated the voigt and loved the 50 planar. The summarit is noce and small by planar is a great bargain. Though th focus on it sometimes is not in the same league as a leica lens.

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    Member Zlatko Batistich's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Why did you hate the 50 voigt 1.5?

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Thanks everyone,
    I ended up going for the Leica 50 summarit, I found a used one for 875.00 so went for it..
    So I have the 28,35,50, and 75 mm summarit's
    I always wanted to keep my m9 kit as small and light as possible and since I never shoot wide open I didn't need the faster more expensive lenses anyways.

    Steven
    Steven Kornreich
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    ^ A bit late now, but the CV Color Skopars (LTM versions) are great little lenses. They were my choice for ultimate portability. I have the 3,5/28, 2,5/35 and 2,5/50. All three are roughly the same size; which is to say - tiny. Pretty good IQ too, contrasty with nice bokeh even wide open. Finally, they're relatively inexpensive - I got all three for <$1k.

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    I would go for the Zeiss over the Summarit, but you should decide which look you like better. I think the Zeiss is very, very sharp—too sharp for some.

    Also, why not consider a Summicron? You can get one used in between the prices you listed for the Zeiss and the Summarit.

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    Senior Member Leicadoc's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Hands down.
    Planar 50.
    Shot them both.
    BUT, the pre-asph 50 lux is the only 50 I carry now...
    Michael

    Leica and Canon

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Update,
    Well I have been shooting with my 50 Summarit, and so far not as sharp as I had hoped

    hmm, when compared to my 35 summarit, the 35 smokes my 50,
    Not sure what to do, I have been shooting the 50 at 5.6-f8, just not feeling it.
    Not sure if I have a "bad" copy or pilot error which is probably the case.
    I went with the summarit because of it's size and I hardly ever shoot wide open.
    I wonder if I should send the lens to Leica and have them check it out.

    Any suggestions??

    Steven
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Here is a sample. I don't know maybe I am going blind...
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

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    Senior Member CharlesK's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Definitely the ZM 50 Planar. This is an excellent lens in every way, truly in the lineup of zeiss. I have not tried the 50 Summarit, so I cannot make the comparison. Having the 50 Summilux Asph, the ZM 50 Planar is a great compliment. It is light, very easy to focus and has excellent rendering IMO.

    Here is a shot very recently with the ZM 50/2 Planar.

    Charles Kalnins
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    http://kalnins.zenfolio.com

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    The 50 Summarit "suffers" from focus shift as shown in Sean Reid's review of the lens. I guess this is the reason your shots are not sharp. (the 50 Planar does not)
    Leica MP, Leica M9P, Summilux 35/1.4 FLE, Summilux 50/1.4 ASPH
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/feier/ My 500px

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    So let me ge this straight.
    Focus shift is when I have the camera focused, but when I change the F stop, this can screw up the focus?
    I assume then I need to figure out which f stops are sharp when the range finder shows I am in focus??
    Can this "focus shift" be fixed at leica?
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

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    Senior Member mathomas's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Quote Originally Posted by kuau View Post
    So let me ge this straight.
    Focus shift is when I have the camera focused, but when I change the F stop, this can screw up the focus?
    I assume then I need to figure out which f stops are sharp when the range finder shows I am in focus??
    Can this "focus shift" be fixed at leica?
    Yeah, that's your standard focus shift. Pretty easy to test with a ruler. This is the first I've heard of the 50mm Summarit having shift (not denying the other poster's claim, or Sean Reid's). Focus shift is pretty bothersome -- I returned a 50mm Nokton f/1.5 for having shift (supposedly very uncommon for this lens), and then, oddly, bought a Sonnar .

    My Zeiss Planar has been dead reliable, focus-wise. But I use the Sonnar for its beautiful rendering (it's adjusted for best focus at f/1.5, and I pretty much shoot it either wide open, or really stopped down).

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    I have decided to send my 50 in to be checked out. Is there anywhere else I can send the lens into besides USA leica? What about 3rd repair centers?
    Any recommendations?

    Steven
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

  26. #26
    Eisemann
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    You might want to consider a 50 Elmar 2.8. I am very happy with mine and do not think that you can do much better in a less than 2.0 fifty. They can be obtained in mint-condition for ~$700

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    Senior Member mathomas's Avatar
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Quote Originally Posted by Eisemann View Post
    You might want to consider a 50 Elmar 2.8. I am very happy with mine and do not think that you can do much better in a less than 2.0 fifty. They can be obtained in mint-condition for ~$700
    From the images I've seen, this is very good advice. If you like small, it's hard to get much smaller.

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    actually, for $1,100 (likely less), you could get a mint cron 50, most recent version. i'd recommend that approach ... but, then again, you'd be without a warranty that way ...

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    I hated the 50 1.5 nokton lots of purple fringing. It was very muddy Sean Ried might say low contrast I say mud. 3d look was more like 1d look. I had two of them so this is off of two samples.

  30. #30
    Photon
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Always this battle between the eye and the wallet...

    As for me, I recently decided to go for a new 'nd shiny Zeiss Planar. It's a great allrounder, fast, very affordable, gives great colours, enough depth, surprisingly beautiful bokeh and is sharper than my razor.

    This has to do (and actually will do) until I have saved up again for the real thing (O Lux, O My...).

    Warmest,

    Ton

    www.tonvanmourik.com

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    focus shift will have no impact on landscape type scenes at f5.6 etc. I miiiiight show in closer in shots at f4 or so. If your lens is not very sharp with distant scenes at middle apertures the problem lies elsewhere. FWIW users of the 50 summarit report it is insanely sharp and that the focus shift is rarely visible with 3d subjects in real usage. Certainly not with landscapes focused at sensible distances.

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Recently picked up a 50 planar. For the M9. Tried the 50 cron type 2, 50 hex f2, 50 heliar... The planar is hands down my favorite. It is gentle on skin, yet sharp with fantastic colors. I'll try to add some photos from my flickr account but I'm on my iPad and I'm not sure this

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/feros-f...n/photostream/
    Last edited by rchisholm; 30th October 2010 at 14:46. Reason: Trying to manage photo

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Quote Originally Posted by turtle View Post
    focus shift will have no impact on landscape type scenes at f5.6 etc. I miiiiight show in closer in shots at f4 or so.
    Ditto on this. Focus shift on a 50mm at infinity focusing shouldn't be visible. Even at minimum focus distance, I'd be surprised if focus shift was a problem at f/8.

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    FWIW I had a 75 summarit that went back to leica because it would only focus accurately at min focus and infinity. As you progressed towards mid distance focus the error got so bad it was about 6 feet out of focus at 15 ft. Might be that this 50 summarit has also been put together, erm, shall we say less than optimally!

  35. #35
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Steven, sorry to hear you're unhappy with your Summarit-M 50 mm. However due to the nature and the touchiness of the rangefinder coupling between camera and lens, you can have bad luck with the focus adjustment with any lens, in particular when purchased from second-hand. For example, I got a used Summicron-M 90 mm lens just recently, and the seller told me he had this lens adjusted to his M camera only a few months before. On my camera however it was totally off so it was unusable. It's off to Leica Customer Service right now.

    Regarding focus shift—all lenses that have an aperture also have some focus shift. Some more, some less; depends on the lens design. It cannot be fixed. Fast lenses typically suffer more from it than lenses with moderate speeds, and wide-angles more than telephoto lenses. The Leica Summarit-M 50 mm 1:2.5 lens also has some focus shift (as has any lens) but it's so small it's hard to detect and absolutely no issue in real life (as with most lenses).

    Generally, the Leica Summarit-M line of lenses is often under-appreciated. They're damn fine lenses at (for Leica) good prices. In particular the Summarit-M 35 mm is a real gem which I prefer over the Summicron-M 35 mm Asph. Also the Summarit-M 50 mm is really good; it's just on par with the Summicron-M 50 mm, at about 1/2 f-stop less speed and at a much nicer price and in a really small package (almost pancake-like). Got mine from eBay for only 650.00. The 50 mm Summarit's particular strength is the incredibly smooth and natural rendition of things just slightly out of focus. In this regard it is better than the Summilux-M 50 mm Asph, so I prefer the Summarit whenever 'lux speed is not required (and it seldom is).

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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    For $1100, you can get a mint most recent version cron 50mm. I always think it's odd when folks spend so much on a body and then "settle" for lower quality lenses. I would strongly recommend a mint cron over a refurb summarit. Pardon my candor.

  37. #37
    01af
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Quote Originally Posted by ramosa View Post
    I always think it's odd when folks spend so much on a body and then "settle" for lower quality lenses. I would strongly recommend a mint Summicron over a refurb Summarit.
    You are badly misguided when you think of a current Summarit-M as a lower-quality lens.

  38. #38
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    Quote Originally Posted by kuau View Post
    ...Any suggestions??
    Just one. Get the Planar.

    "The Planar is a no-brainer."

  39. #39
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    Re: Zeiss 50 planar or leica 50 summarit

    When you put a voigt on a m9 or m8 sooner or later the flaws come out The Zeiss palnar is a great lens on an m8 or m9. Mechanically not up to Leica standards but optically a killer lens.

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