vario elmar 35-70 f3.5 : LUSENET : Leica Photography : One Thread

Dear Leica friends, I am looking for a zoom lens for my LEICAFLEX sl2. I found a vario elmar 35-70 f3.5 last version (german version) just like new, at a good price. What do you think about that lens... I was said that the earlier versions were not very good. Thanks and best regards. Michel

-- michel vandeput (, March 13, 2002


Suggest you visit It has a good review on the two versions of the lens. What's a good price?

-- Tom (, March 13, 2002.

For the SL2 you have 4 choices: the 35-70/3.5 (1st or 2nd versions) are both Minolta lenses by design, although the v.2 was made in Germany and is better constructed; the 28-70/3.5-4.5 v.1 (3-cam)which is a Sigma lens made to resemble the R lenses cosmetics; several Angenieux lenses (good but expensive and the later ones are very plasticky despite their expense); and a Sigma 28-85/3.5-4.5 (3cam) which can still be found used for usually around $150 or less. Personally I would consider looking for one of those, as it is the only one priced on a level with its heritage. Otherwise you're paying hefty premiums for lenses that were not designed or (except the v.2 35-70)built by Leica.

Optically the 35-70/3.5 is a good performing Minolta lens with a rather paltry close-focusing distance of 1m.

-- Jay (, March 13, 2002.

This lens, the E67, has some structural redesign over the earlier (E60, made in Japan) version, but also shares the same optical formula. So the results are comparable. Unfortunately, the E67 lens, which was made in Germany, is overpriced and costs much more than the E60, and for that matter may cost as much as a new (or slightly used) 35-70mm/4 lens. So, if you can get the E60 for about $500, it's worth it. If the E67 lens is approaching $1000, then don't buy it and definitely get the 35-70/4 lens.

-- Barbano (, March 14, 2002.

Thanks for all, I will buy the vario elmar 35-70 f3.5 last version at 600$. Michel

-- michel vandeput (, March 15, 2002.

I had the German 35-70 and found it to be excellent optically; excellent but without the treasured Leica glow. It also wobbled a bit. Peter

-- Peter McDonough (, March 17, 2002.

I've owned the 35-70 E60 lens for fifteen years. It's a good lens, versatile, durable, etc. Color and contrast are good, and absolutely no flare. It works well wide open. It's been a workhorse lens. Incidentally, about 5 years ago, I compared it against the Nikon 35- 70/2.8. The E60 was impressively better. The biggest drawback of this lens, is that its closest focusing distance is about 1 meter. The E67 lens has the identical OPTICAL design except that the front element does not rotate. I've read some threads, about flare on this lens as well, but have no personal experience. I believe it's way overpriced because it's made in Germany. Optical performance should be identical. I've considered upgrading to the new f4 lens, primarily due to the closer focusing distance(which is about 1 foot, I think?). At 3-4 times the price of the E60 lens, I would not expect significantly better performance from the F4 lens in spite of what you might read. I'll probably buy the F4 once my E60 dies, because I like zooms, even though fixed focal lenghts are slightly better. However, if I could get the E60 for $400, I'd buy it. If you can buy it for $400, buy it. You'll be happy with the lens.

-- Barbano (, April 04, 2002.

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