35mm Summicron-R Lens

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I just saw a mint-condition 35mm Summicron-R (2nd version) in the local store that I am interested in. I read from Ghester Sartorius' book on "Identifying Leica Lenses" that the 2nd version (code 11115) is for R bodies only. Can it be used on SL/SL2 body? Thanks for the help!

-- Cing-Dao Kan (cdkan@yahoo.com), April 11, 2002

Answers

Yes it can. It needs three cams to work the metering properly.

-- Robin Smith (smith_robin@hotmail.com), April 11, 2002.

The 35 Summicron-R gets no respect fron Irwin Puts but I think it is one of the best 35mm slr lenses made. It is sharp, clear and contrasty without being harsh and has a very nice neutral color. I think it probably matches about the second or third Summicron-M. I nearly always get great pictures with this lens. I had a picture of one of the orange antique streetcars in San Francisco on my desk. A friend who uses Nikon AF couldn't stop looking at it and talking about how sharp and clear and how good the color was. By M standards this lens is usually a bargain. Good luck!

-- Don (wgpinc@yahoo.com), April 11, 2002.

I think it is one of the best 35mm slr lenses made. It is sharp, clear and contrasty without being harsh and has a very nice neutral color

Also virtually free of flare, even with extreme brightness range (i.e., sun/deep shadow) in the photo.

-- Douglas Herr (telyt@earthlink.net), April 11, 2002.


The 11115 is 3-cam and will work on SL/SL2. The 11116 is 3rd-cam (R- cam) only and will not meter on SL/SL2. Outwardly the two versions look identical and the catalog number does not appear on the lens. You need to look at the rear mount. If there are two shiny-chrome tapered metal tabs 180-degrees across from each other just inside the bayonet flange, it will work on the SL/SL2. If the only things you see between the rear element and the bayonet mount are the diaphragm lever and a small black metal tab with a step between the higher and lower part, then it will meter only on R bodies from R3 on.

-- Jay (infinitydt@aol.com), April 11, 2002.

Is there any performance difference between the 3-cam and 3d-cam?

-- dave yoder (lists@daveyoder.com), April 11, 2002.


Anybody have an opinion of the relative merits of this lens versus the earlier Canadian version?

Adam

-- adam g. lang (aglang@hotmail.com), April 11, 2002.


Is there any performance difference between the 3-cam and 3d-cam?

Only when metering with a Leicaflex :)

Anybody have an opinion of the relative merits of this lens versus the earlier Canadian version?

Optically I don't know. The Canadian version is quite a bit heftier, uses Series VII filters instead of E55, and has a lose-able lens hood (vs. the later version's built-in hood).

-- Douglas Herr (telyt@earthlink.net), April 11, 2002.


What an informative thread. I have been put off by Puts' comments (Puts' off?), and fell more encouraged to try one after reading this tonight. Brian Bowers, by the way, in the Leica Lens Book, did not find it necessary to be negative about the 35,, Summicron-R. He reviewed it favorably.

Now, if a person were going to get either a 28mm Elmarit-R or 35mm Summicron-R, but not both, which should it be from a quality standpoint?

-- Bob Fleischman (RFXMAIL@prodigy.net), April 11, 2002.


Bob, I am not an expert on lens testing so in lay terms I would characterize the 28mm Elmarit ROM as "crisp" and the 35mm Summicron ROM as "smooth". Both have brilliant colors you would expect from Leica. I believe the 28mm is a newer design thus explaining the higher contrast.

-- ray tai (razerx@netvigator.com), April 11, 2002.

Cin-Dao Kan says "I read from Ghester Sartorius' book on "Identifying Leica Lenses" that the 2nd version (code 11115) is for R bodies only. Can it be used on SL/SL2 body?".

If your lens is "FOR LEICA R ONLY" you CANNOT use it on SL/SL2 body.

Ciao, Domenico

-- (Giandom@comune.re.it), April 12, 2002.



I'm surprised anybody is saying anything mediocre about the 35mm 'cron. I have always heard it is a legendary lens that is perhaps the best of all 35's. I have the 3-cam and it's great. I took it in for a repair though and the leica guy said something about my model being 20 years old, that's why I wonder about its optical performace compared to the 3d cam.

-- dave yoder (lists@daveyoder.com), April 12, 2002.

Erwin does not say rude things about this lens in his book at least. It is roughly equivalent, give or take, to the pre-ASPH 35mm 'cron for the M. That is my experience too. A little soft at the corners at full apertures to 2.8, but lovely imaging characteristics. The older Summicron R is also good, but much heavier and not as good with flare control. The current 35mm R is a very nice lens indeed and focusses wonderfully close. Probably not as good on paper as the current 35mm ASPH. Its only minus is that is very pricey new. The solution is to buy it s/h. The 28 Elmarit-R (current)is snappier perhaps at 2.8 than the 'cron-R at f2.8, but it is difficult to reliably tell apart. For a comparison: is the 28mm Elmarit-M (current) or 28mm Summicron-M better than the pre-ASPH 35mm? You tell me. There is this kind of a difference between the two lenses (28mm Elmarit-R and 35mm R 'cron). I do sometimes wonder where people get hold of their ideas about lenses performance as it often seems to bear no relation to experience so often and is just wild rumor.

-- Robin Smith (smith_robin@hotmail.com), April 12, 2002.

I want to thank everyone helped on the subject. I brought the Summicron 35mm-R and have done few test rolls (both print and slide films) since then. This is an excellent lens!! It performed very well in all apertures as well as close-up and infinity distances. It resists flare extremely well, while producing some beautiful and delicate tonality on Kodakchrome K25 slides, which are easier to be scanned. I really enjoy using this lens its a keeper. Thank you all!

-- Cing-Dao Kan (cdkan@yahoo.com), May 05, 2002.

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