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Thread: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

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    Senior Member sjg284's Avatar
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    Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    Now that I find myself in the possession of an M-240..
    I contemplate getting a telephoto/telephoto zoom for those odd opportunities I need the reach or want to do some close-ups.

    I don't own any SLR system, so I come to the table with a clean slate.
    I am drawn to trying Leica R & Contax Zeiss lenses, and was hoping some people out there would have experience with this combination.

    The 135mm/180mm Leica Elmarit or Zeiss Sonnars are certainly interesting. How do these compare?

    There are also many 70~80 to 200~210 mm zooms from both companies, though with mixed reviews and minimal info available. Which are the good ones under $1000?

    Any recommendations or sample photos would be great!
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    steve

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    I just bought the Vario-Elmar 80-200 f/4 for use with the M240. Paid Eur 1030; you may be able to get it more cheaply. The zoom is reasonably compact, handles well on the camera and performs well fully open.

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    I own just about any R lens that exists and some in duplicates. All of them perform nicely on the M especially with the EVF.

    The 180/2.8 is one of my favorites due to its small size (length) versus the 80-200 zoom. Also it can take the 2x APO extender.

    Another 180 that is very sharp at infinity is the APO 180/3.4. The small diameter makes it almost feel like an M lens.

    Longer R teles get very pricey rapidly and hinge on collector status by many which tends to keep the prices high.

    The nicest all around zoom to me is the 28-90 which will also take the APO 2x extender with very little image degradation. PM me if you have further questions.

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    The 180/2.8 Apo seems like a very nice lens but the second hand prices on ebay are just ridiculous, compared to the 80-200/f4 zoom. As for the 3.4/180 Apo-telyt, I used it for a while on a Pentax K-5 with a Leitax mount. It is great at infinity, as algrove says, but not so convincing at closer distances. Another lens that's sitting on my desk now is the Angenieux Apo 180/2.3 in Leica R mount. Haven't had a chance to test it yet but it is quite short and not very heavy.

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    Given the minimal use I make of anything longer than 75mm..
    I was leaning towards the following 3 or similar.
    They also have the advantage of being under 800g in weight, and under $500 in cost.
    Zeiss 80-200mm f/4 Vario-Sonnar
    Zeiss 180mm f2.8 Sonnar
    Leica 180mm f4 Elmar

    Leica Elmar I know I can buy ELPROs for to do a bit of close up work too.
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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    The R 75-210 is a nice zoom in that it has one ring for zoom and focus like the old Nikkor 80-200 had. Not pricey at all and works well.

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    A couple of months ago I got hold of an Voigtlander Apo-Lanthar 180/4 made by Cosina. This one happens to be in M42 mount, but that doesn't matter for my uses. I would rate it as second only to the Apo-Elmarit, it is tiny in comparison, and also focusses much closer. Compared with the Apo-Telyt f/3.4, it also performs extremely well at close distances. They are more than $500, but can occasionally be found for under $1000. There is some talk that Cosina might make another run of this and the 125.

    The other longer lens I have that performs outstandingly is the 280/4 Apo Telyt, but the prices are now rather extreme.

    The 180 Apo-Lanthar is reasonably easy to use on the M240, but the 280 Apo Telyt is a bit too heavy and awkward. IBIS is really needed for this sort of thing and therefore both lenses get more use on my Olympus EM-5's.

    Henning

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    For completeness..
    I went with the Zeiss C/Y Vario-Sonnar 80-200/4 .. using a $40 ebay adapter. q
    Quite a steal for what you get.

    The close focus is very good for the focal length


    And I've been happy with the colors


    And Sonnar style bokeh



    More samples - Flickr Search: zeissvariosonnar80200mmf4

    And a Flickr group I started - Flickr: The Zeiss C/Y Glass on Leica bodies Pool

    Hope that's helpful to anyone debating similar questions.
    I did find the EVF to be nearly required at this focal length range of course.
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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    Could you please be more explicit on precisely which eBay adapter you purchased for those of us contemplating a similar purchase. Who makes it and where can we buy it? Thanks.

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    Sure thing.
    eBay seller: rainbowimaging
    item: Adapter for Contax Yashica C/Y lens to Leica M LM M6 M5

    Specifically this listing (though I'm sure it will age out shortly): Adapter for Contax Yashica C Y Lens to Leica M LM M6 M5 | eBay

    One thing of note is that the lens does focus PAST infinity.
    Annoying, but once I realized.. not a big deal.
    From what I read this is pretty common, even on more expensive adapters, so I'm not upgrading.
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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    Thanks as that can come in handy.

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    The Leica R 180mm APO F/2.8 is exceptional on the M.
    Home page: www.aphotovid.com

    Check out my gear blog!

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    I'm waiting for my Nikon to M adapter to arrive (in about 2 weeks or less) and will report back on the performance of the Zeiss 135 APO on the M

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Gough View Post
    The Leica R 180mm APO F/2.8 is exceptional on the M.
    Ditto the Leica APO Telyt-R 280mm f4.0. Eye-popping images but very demanding in terms of focus and tripod. Focus is tough with rapid movement because of the slithery OVF but works fine with landscape, etc. It's heavy.

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    Re: Leica M-240 and the telephoto opportunities..

    A very versatile tele is the R APO 70-180 even more so than the 105-280 as it is sharper than the latter. The 350 R is also interesting as is the R 500 mirror and if you want old and long the 400/6.8 is dead sharp and so easy to use its slide focus mechanism.

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