Who wanted the Leica-made 75 f/2?

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Someone was hoping for a Leica-made 75mm f/2. Bob Todrick? Bob Fleischman? Actually, I want one too!

Anyway HERE IT IS!

Yeah, I know, it's in R-mount, but you can always get some of those cameraquest adapters. And since it's an ultra-rare collectible, the cost of getting a focusing cam hand-machined to couple to an M-6 rangefinder will be a mere pittance compared to buying the lens itself. IF you can find one of the 25 or so ever made.

But at any rate, this means Leica has a design already on the books and ready to manufacture. My only question now is: will it's image quality be closer to the ELCAN 180 f/3.4, or the ELCAN 50 f/2?

-- Andy Piper (apidens@denver.infi.net), November 14, 2001


It looks like my Elmarit 2.8/90mm !!

-- Salvatore Reitano (reitanosalvatore@hotmail.com), November 14, 2001.

Andy, it was me! But I'm glad to hear I'm not alone here. A 2.8/75 would do, too.

-- Michael Kastner (kastner@zedat.fu-berlin.de), November 14, 2001.

The page you point to says it was made in the "mid-60s". I don't remember a Leicaflex in the mid 60s. Am I remembering wrong?

-- Michael Darnton (mdarnton@hotmail.com), November 15, 2001.

>>>The page you point to says it was made in the "mid-60s". I don't remember a Leicaflex in the mid 60s. Am I remembering wrong? <<<

The original Leicaflex was first made in 1964, and the Leicaflex SL which IMHO is much more useful than the original Leicaflex was first made in 1968. So, yes there were Leicaflex cameras in the mid-1960s.

-- (telyt@earthlink.net), November 15, 2001.

There was a 75/2.4 APO Elmarit-M lens prototyped. A small number of production samples were also made though it never reached actual production. That and the equally rare M 1.4x converter occasionally turn up on eBay, maybe once a year or so.


-- John Collier (jbcollier@powersurfr.com), November 15, 2001.

This lens was ultimately transformed into the 90mm Summicron - in fact the mount looks identical to the Summicron I had.

-- Robin Smith (smith_robin@hotmail.com), November 15, 2001.


There is a 75mm f/2.5 lens for the M. Voigtlander makes it. It's a LTM but with a M adapter it will work.

-- Tony Oresteen (aoresteen@lsqgroup.com), November 15, 2001.

Wait a minute, Michael, it was ME! Well, maybe you said it too. Actually, the one shown might even make a nice addition to my R- system. Though I think a 75 f/2 would be optimum on the M6 for weight and balance reasons.

-- Bob Fleischman (RFXMAIL@prodigy.net), November 15, 2001.

"There was a 75/2.4 APO Elmarit-M lens prototyped"

John, what year was that 75 prototyped? i.e. are we talking about a pretty modern lens upto modern Leica performance standards?

If its small, I'd love to get one-assuming I can afford it. I love the 75/2.5 Voigtlander Cosina lens that I have for its size. Without the hood, its very comparable to the Summicron 50.

-- Mani Sitaraman (bindumani@pacific.net.sg), November 15, 2001.

John, I didn't know there was a 1.4 converter. I wonder which set of frame lines it brought up. 1.4x would transform a 35 into a 50; and a 50 into a 70, which would be useable with the 75mm framelines (sort of). Which lenses was it meant to be used with?

Mani, since John says the 75mm f/2.4 was a prototype, I imagine it costs so much that the only way to get one would be for us all to get together and time-share it--like a vacation condominium!

-- Bob Fleischman (RFXMAIL@prodigy.net), November 15, 2001.

RE: the M teleconverter - Steve Gandy mentions this in talking about the 90 Tele-Elmarit. Apparently around 1974 Leica's idea was to save bucks by dropping the 135 from the lineup and offering a 1.4 or 1.5 converter for the 90s, for which the TE was designed. In this event it would bring up the 35/135 pair. Ultimately the idea was dropped (90TE quality wide open? Or was there just too much play with two focusing interfaces (lens-convertor and convertor-camera)).

Then again, maybe there've been two such attempts - and doesn't someone here have a 2x Komura converter?

-- Andy Piper (apidens@denver.infi.net), November 15, 2001.

I should have said the "thin" TE was designed with the 1.5 converter in mind.

-- Andy Piper (apidens@denver.infi.net), November 15, 2001.

Always check your facts - sheesh. Oh, well - I was only a decade off.

"1.5x Leica Teleconverter: Unfortunately this is an almost unknown ultra rare prototype. I am including it here in the hope that if enough of you email Leica, perhaps they will be convinced there is indeed a market for it. Leitz Canada produced a prototype RF coupled 1.5x Teleconverter in the 1980's. Estimated production 10. The idea was to discontinue the 135 lens, and replace it with the 90 and a 1.5 Teleconverter. The 135 lived on, the Teleconverter died."

. Credit to Steve Gandy/cameraquest.com

-- Andy Piper (apidens@denver.infi.net), November 15, 2001.

75mm F:2 Elcan-R has quite good, painting like color rendition. Even by close inspection with an eyepiece, the lens gives no visible color fringes in the image. Definitely a good lens for enlargements.

By physical inspection of the lens, I am of the opinion that it is a double Gauss design. It is similar to the old 90mm Summicron-R is size and has a double-collapsing telescopic shade like the early 90mm Elmarit-R. An interesting aspect of the lens was that to the unaided eye, it looks like it is uncoated. This might be due to use of quartz and flourite lens elements for use in the UV spectrum.

If you come across an example of this lens for sale, beware of the fact that the glass might be hazy. I do not know if it can be cleaned and by who. It is a two cam lens.

-- Tugrulbey Kiryaman (tkiryama@stevens-tech.edu), January 24, 2002.

For what I know, the 75mm F:2 Elcan-R is an apochromatic lens; and its performance is close that of 180mm F:3.4 Elcan-R. The 180mm F:3.4 Elcan-R is physically identical to a two cam 180mm F:3.4 Apo-Telyt-R. In my experience, its performance is somewhat better than 180mm F:3.4 Apo-Telyt-R, either due to production variation or that the Elcan is more carefully made.

The M-mount 50mm F:2 Elcan is a four element cost cutting design with lower performance that the 50mm Summicron-M.

There is also a 50mm F:2 Elcan for microfilm work, which does not have a focusing mount and has a double Gauss design with a thin meniscus in between, like the 35mm Summilux-M.

A similar case is the 75mm F:2 Elcan with no focusing mount. I have been told that it was a medium format aerial lens. It is big, and looks like a double Gauss design.

-- Tugrulbey Kiryaman (tkiryama@stevens-tech.edu), January 24, 2002.

John C. mentioned the 75/2.4 Leica M Elcan apochromatic lens (prototype). To say that it's rare is an understatement. In all of my years as a user/collector (or perhaps more appropriately collector/user), I have never seen one for sale. There are prototypes and there are prototypes!

I have seen a number of Leica prototype lens (often with a sepcial seven digit serial number starting with 0s (eg., 0000365). Most of these are prototypes for testing and evaluation of lenses that were eventually offered for sale (eg., 35/2.0 8-element Summicron, 90/2.0 SOOZI Wetzlar prototype, 180/3.4 Apo-Elcan-R (a prototype of the 180/3.4 Apo-Elmarit-R, probably the most common prototype lens, there's one up for sale on eBay now)).

Prototypes for lenses that were never sold, like the 75 mm apo-M (and R too), a huge 250/2.5 Hektor screw mount, the 66/2.0 Elcan-M are much rare than those for lenses that were sold to the public. You can expect to pay an awful lot of money if one of these types of lenses actually surfaces.

Why did they never commercially produce the 75/2.4 apo-M? I would think that a lens of this type and relatively small size (there is one pictured in Lager V II) with apochromatic correction would be very saleable.

-- Eliot (erosen@lij.edu), January 24, 2002.

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