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Noctilux alternatives

Andrea Lotti , Nov 02, 2007; 05:12 p.m.

Hi everybody. I've seen some pictures from a Leica Noctilux 50 f1 and loved them, but I don't have the money for it, can anyone suggest some alternatives (Leica or others). I don't mind for speed or focal length, but for the 'fingerprint' of the images i.e. color rendition, bokeh and contrast.



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Eric Demolli , Nov 02, 2007; 05:21 p.m.

Are you looking for a rangefinder lens ? If not the Rokkor 58mm f/1.2 for Minolta MF SLR maybe a good alternative.

Andrea Lotti , Nov 02, 2007; 05:23 p.m.

I have a Leica M5, but I can consider also SLR, thank for the advice.

Eric Demolli , Nov 02, 2007; 05:30 p.m.

I like the old Takumar 50mm f/1.4 too I don't if they have look you're seeking but many are yellow and the oldest are really radioactive.

Here is what I got from a yellow and radioactive one.

Attachment: Rui.jpg

Leon F , Nov 02, 2007; 05:33 p.m.

Hi Andrea, don't be fooled into believing that Leica glass would have a "fingerprint" or "glow" that other lenses don't have. Technically speaking, this fingerptint or glow is nothing more than uncorrected spherical abberation, not unique for Leica- glass. It's true that it can look asthetically pleasing but other factors are more important imo. How large will you be printing? Look for a lens that will be sharp in the corners and one that is reasonably sharp when shooting wide open. Another point, which you brought up, speed, depends on what film speeds you are going to shoot. What I mean to say is, do you really need f/1? I once owned a f/2.8 50 mm Elmar and did just fine shooting 100 iso film under normal light. Depth of field was ok at least. When light levels drop, simply shoot a higher iso- film or boost up the iso of your digicam. Unless you really need to shoot at f/1, the Noctilux is simply a "prestige- lens" to me. In the 1950's, and 60's, great photographs were made with f/ 3.5 max. aperture lenses. The third point, focal length, depends all on personal taste and what you intend to shoot, so how can you say you don't care about focal length? Figure out for yourself what need artistically and technically and buy the best your money can buy. Good luck friend!

Stephen Lewis , Nov 02, 2007; 05:38 p.m.

There's always the Canon 50mm f0.95, but it is hard to find in a Leica mount, and expensive to have somebody do the conversion. Also, it should be calibrated to your camera. Attached is a shot of the one I used to own. FWIW I like the Noctilux better, but it was a good alternative for several years.

Canon 50mm/f0.95

David Carson , Nov 02, 2007; 05:49 p.m.

I have a noct, and a diana camera comes closest (I have one of those too). I recognize the irony of this statement.

The nice thing about the leica/noct combo is it is reliable. The diana is not. It would be funny to chop off the diana lens and somehow stick it on a leica...or any 35mm camera.

You might try a pinhole-to-35mm adaptor too.

Eric Demolli , Nov 02, 2007; 05:57 p.m.

I've read again. "I don't mind for speed or focal length" and you have a Leica M5. Cosina-Voïgtlander Ultron 35 f/1.7.

Attachment: RRRT-021-small.jpg

Eric Demolli , Nov 02, 2007; 05:59 p.m.

Another sample.

Eric Demolli , Nov 02, 2007; 06:12 p.m.

A color sample.

Attachment: A07A_0152.jpg

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