"Upgrade" from Summicron to Summilux?
Old 07-28-2019   #1
giganova
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"Upgrade" from Summicron to Summilux?

Hi all --

I have a Summicron 50/2 "Rigid" on one of my M4, which is in excellent condition. But it is rather soft wide open, which limits the usefulness to f/2.8 and beyond, and the coating doesn't do well with stray light. Plus, the minimum focusing distance of 1 meter, I believe, is a limiting factor for portraits.

Would replacing this lens with a Summilux 50/1.4 (non ASPH) be an "upgrade"? One extra stop is good, but I'm not sure whether the optical performance and minimum distance are better.
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Old 07-28-2019   #2
KEVIN-XU 愛 forever
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Summicron 50/2 Rigid is my all-time favorite lens. Never disappoint me. Mine's glass is in near mint condition. I also love my Summilux 50 1.4 pre-asph E46. But if I can only keep one of them, Rigid will always be my first choice.

Leica Leitz Summicron-M 50mm f/2.0 "Rigid" made in 1956 Germany by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr


Sony A7R II + Leica Summicron-M 50mm f/2.0 “Rigid”

Leica Leitz Summicron-M 50mm f/2.0 "Rigid" Test shoots by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

The following photos are all
taken with Leica M10 + Leica Summicron-M 50mm f/2.0 “Rigid”

FIFA World Cup Final. by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

FIFA World Cup Final. by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

FIFA World Cup Final. by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

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NYC street photography by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

NYC street photography by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr
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Old 07-28-2019   #3
raid
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I agree with Kevin regarding the Rigid Summicron. Mine is in mint condition, and I bought a back-up one.

Rigid Summicron:







Taken with my back-up:

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Old 07-28-2019   #4
Erik van Straten
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The Summilux 50mm f/1.4 v1 (serial numbers 16XXXXX-17XXXXX) is very good, better than v2: no barrel distortion. But it goes not closer than 1m and is much bulkier than any 50mm Summicron.

Leica M3, Summilux 50mm f/1.4 v1 (serial number 1702441), 400-2TMY/Adox MCC 110. Full aperture.

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Old 07-28-2019   #5
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I've "upgraded" both the 35mm & 50mm Summicrons to their equivalent Summilux models. While I appreciated having the extra stop, I missed the smaller size and rendering of the f2.0 lenses so much that I bought them both again.


You might have a tech look into your rigid Summicron before you decide that a new lens is the answer? It wasn't in my case!
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Old 07-28-2019   #6
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Most likely, your Summicron has haze in it or it just needs some cleaning.
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Old 07-28-2019   #7
KEVIN-XU 愛 forever
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raid View Post
Most likely, your Summicron has haze in it or it just needs some cleaning.
Agree, definitely worth a careful check.
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Old 07-28-2019   #8
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I had Rigid which was in use for long time on film and digital. It was not shelf queen in appearance, had some play due to worn out, but it was sharp at f2. So, check if it is not RF, before going for larger aperture. It is same optics as DR. It has less focus shift than improved to 0.7 meter V3 and V4. And it is sharper than V3 and V4.
One meter MFD never bothers me on RF. I'm using mobile phone and SLRs for close ups.

To be honest I can't describe old Lux as much bulkier than Rigid. It is not as small as Jupiter-3, which I prefer to Lux, but it is not something I would describe as bulk.
If you like bokeh with swirl, Lux does it. J3 doesn't. One of the reasons I keep J3.
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Old 07-28-2019   #9
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Not sure if this would help but I just think having something with a wider aperture helps in certain situations. Just because you have an f1.4 vs an f2, doesn't mean you'll always shoot wider. Of course, I'm not sure of your shooting style but that's just my personal experience. I have many lenses that are fast according to their film format but I tend to like my subjects in focus and have some relevance to being separate from the background. I've learned as well that stopping these older lenses down a stop or so help its sharpness so that's why I always lean towards a faster lens. Sometimes I see a difference in bokeh with a wider lens but that's a subjective taste.

I just think having a lux with an RF is difficult to nail focus. Never had the two lenses but from my understanding, the rigid suits well with BW film!

Hopefully me rambling gave you some insight.
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Old 07-28-2019   #10
KEVIN-XU 愛 forever
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By the way, my Summicron Rigid is spot on with Leica M10. You need to make sure your copy doesn't have focus shift issue.

My Summilux Pre-a had front focus issue. I cannot get sharp images with this lens. After it been adjusted by DAG, it's now a very sharp lens.
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Old 07-28-2019   #11
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The Rigid Summicron is a high resolution lens. I have compared many 50mm lenses in past years, and the Rigid Cron was one of the top performers.
I do not have the 50 Lux, but I have the 35 Lux and the 75 Lux.
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Old 07-28-2019   #12
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I have the DR version..
My experience..

Great on film..
Not so great on digital..
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Old 07-28-2019   #13
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I have a DR. It does really well on m 4/3 cameras. It is a very high resolution lens. It does not mount on the8 or M9 without having it modified.
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Old 07-28-2019   #14
taffy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KEVIN-XU 愛 forever View Post
Summicron 50/2 Rigid is my all-time favorite lens. Never disappoint me. Mine's glass is in near mint condition. I also love my Summilux 50 1.4 pre-asph E46. But if I can only keep one of them, Rigid will always be my first choice.

Leica Leitz Summicron-M 50mm f/2.0 "Rigid" made in 1956 Germany by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr


Sony A7R II + Leica Summicron-M 50mm f/2.0 “Rigid”

Leica Leitz Summicron-M 50mm f/2.0 "Rigid" Test shoots by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

The following photos are all
taken with Leica M10 + Leica Summicron-M 50mm f/2.0 “Rigid”

FIFA World Cup Final. by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

FIFA World Cup Final. by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

FIFA World Cup Final. by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

NYC street photography by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

NYC street photography by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr

NYC street photography by Kevin-Xu, on Flickr


I love the shots and their character, Kevin!


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Old 07-28-2019   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raid View Post
Most likely, your Summicron has haze in it or it just needs some cleaning.
No haze, everything looks perfect. Here's are two examples from my Rigid. Does it look OK to you? I find it a bit soft. But maybe my scanner is slightly out of focus?


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Old 07-28-2019   #16
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G I would suspect the scanner before the lens.
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Old 07-28-2019   #17
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Check your RF.
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Old 07-28-2019   #18
KEVIN-XU 愛 forever
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I love the shots and their character, Kevin!


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Yeah, that's the reason why I love my Summicron Rigid so much. It amazed me every time I use it. I like its sharpness and resolution when wide open. I like its rendering, bokeh. And I also like its low contrast, which gives me a lot of room to tune the color.
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Old 07-28-2019   #19
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Originally Posted by KEVIN-XU 愛 forever View Post
Yeah, that's the reason why I love my Summicron Rigid so much. It amazed me every time I use it. I like its sharpness and resolution when wide open. I like its rendering, bokeh. And I also like its low contrast, which gives me a lot of room to tune the color.
It is boring lens on bw film, flat and nothing else.
But it is different lens on C-41. The lens with rendering.
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Old 07-28-2019   #20
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Originally Posted by Ko.Fe. View Post
It is boring lens on bw film, flat and nothing else.
But it is different lens on C-41. The lens with rendering.
not sure if lens variations affected here, but i like the rigid both for color and bw.
agree with you on the color, very much like what seen on old movies.
i sold it eventually just keep my 35mm lens.
may be one day i will buy it back a 50mm lens.

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Old 07-28-2019   #21
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Originally Posted by Ko.Fe. View Post
It is boring lens on bw film, flat and nothing else.
But it is different lens on C-41. The lens with rendering.
Funny, I never cared much for the color from these legacy lenses, though B&W looks unique to me. Maybe you need to tweet in post to resuscitate
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Old 07-28-2019   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giganova View Post
Hi all --

I have a Summicron 50/2 "Rigid" on one of my M4, which is in excellent condition. But it is rather soft wide open, which limits the usefulness to f/2.8 and beyond, and the coating doesn't do well with stray light.
I'm wondering if it could be a slight focusing error, which may be covered by the increased depth of field at f/2.8. Maybe that could be checked before changing lenses.
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Old 07-28-2019   #23
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For minimum hassle, just get the ZM Planar.
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