Leica New Voigtländer 35mm lenses

Location
Switzerland
Real Name
Matt

For those who read German, Voigtländer Germany already has write-ups on all new releases:


I'm posting this here because the new 35mm Utron f/2 II and the 35mm APO-Lanthar f/2 are real interest; the latter is also available for Sony E mount.

I'm glad to see that the Ultron II is just a cosmetic overhaul - or option, rather - and doesn't bring anything new to the table optically. No additional GAS for me. However, for the Leica traditionalist crowd, this is big: The new lens sports - a focusing tab!

As things stand, the APO-Lanthar is big, but not massive. If it performs anything like its 50mm brother, it'll be a hard lens to resist ... Of course, the same is true for the 35mm version. This may shape up to be a major entry on the market for people who crave the best possible technical IQ in 35mm land - at less than a third of the bulk of the coveted 35mm behemoths out there.

M.
 

mike3996

Hall of Famer
Location
Finland
But is this lens on my shortlist? Not really, no. :)

For approximately the same money and size and weight, 35 f/1.2 would be my choice definitely.

But ultimately I wish to carry less so the more imperfect f/1.4, f/2 and f/2.5 options from Leica and Cosina are more than enough for me.
 
Location
Switzerland
Real Name
Matt
Yeah this is juicy stuff.

Leica fans over at LUF have been long wanting Leica to design and release an APO-Summicron-M 35mm and now Cosina beat them to it, with an expected price difference of 8x.
Well, Leica *have* designed a 35mm APO - for the L mount. But I agree that it's kind of a gap in Leica's line-up. And given what the 50mm APO-Lanthar delivers, this is very probably another case of 1/8th of the price for 95% of the performance (which is the usual ratio - sometimes, performance is even better ...).

Funnily enough, while I wouldn't usually be able to forgo such an offering, I already own the Zeiss Distagon 35mm f/1.4 ZM ... That's a lens to end all longing for a fabulous 35mm in M land with its gorgeous results and extremely high IQ, but it *is* bulky, and the APO will doubtlessly be better corrected still.

But is this lens on my shortlist? Not really, no. :)

For approximately the same money and size and weight, 35 f/1.2 would be my choice definitely.

But ultimately I wish to carry less so the more imperfect f/1.4, f/2 and f/2.5 options from Leica and Cosina are more than enough for me.

Owning the 50mm f/1.2, I can say that it is a nice lens and a good performer, but nowhere near as optically perfect as the Distagon f/1.4. Still, having looked into it thoroughly just recently, I can say that it's a desirable lens, and one I'll keep. The 35mm f/1.2 III seems to be of the same ilk, and their best version yet. So yes, I can see where you're coming from. Just keep in mind that lenses of this weight and size also have their downsides. My Distagon doesn't see a lot of use ... (but I have shot some of my most loved images with it).

M.
 

rayvonn

Hall of Famer
Location
London
for the Leica traditionalist crowd, this is big: The new lens sports - a focusing tab!
Well yeah - serious stuff Matt! Actually I’ve never used a RF without a focus tab, maybe there’s little difference.

I don’t think there is a bad Voigt. I’ve seen one or two m43 users complain about the 10mm lens but even then I’d only believe it if I saw it.
 
Location
Switzerland
Real Name
Matt
Well yeah - serious stuff Matt! Actually I’ve never used a RF without a focus tab, maybe there’s little difference.
I like (or even prefer) focusing tabs myself as well, but the semi-religious demand for them is not something I can understand. The first version of the Ultron has a small "focusing stick" that works very well (and could be removed). All that said, the understated look of the new Ultron II has a certain appeal for me: The less it shouts, "I'm a classic lens", the better. But I don't mind the Ultron's look as is ...

That said, a Voigtländer lens I use *a lot* and love dearly is the old 28mm f/2 Ultron I use on my M8 - and the new lens looks a lot like that one, minus the pleasantly understated hood, but at about half the size ... nice. So, swapping the two versions might be an option, because the optics are a known quantity and frankly very good (not Summicron good, but close - certainly sharp, but not quite as well corrected).

For all the reasons stated, this lens might become quite a success for Voigtländer ... I know I really love the results my version delivers, I already like the handling, and only the Zeiss Biogon C prevents it from being my most used M mount 35mm ...

M.
 
Location
Switzerland
Real Name
Matt
Good think I'm a Fifties Guy.

The 50/2 APO-Lanthar is amazing, I suspect the 35/2 APO-Lanthar will be as well.
Yeah, it's worse for me - I *am* a 35mm guy! And the 50mm APO-Lanthar keeps beckoning - especially since I'm less than satisfied with the Summicron-M (tested it out again yesterday - it's nice, but not convincing for its price and fame).

However ... I am lucky to own two very different and very well-performing lenses (for their respective type): the Voigtländer Nokton 50mm f/1.2 is a strong performer at medium-to-small apertures (f/2 to f/11) and nice enough wide open, and the Nikon Z 50mm f/1.8 S punches way above its class ... I don't *need* the 50mm APO-Lanthar, nor the 35mm - heck, I own the Zeiss Distagon 35mm f/1.4! Now, how to hold on to that thought ...

In earnest, it's great to know that these lenses are available (or will be, soon): It helps justifying the M mount bodies even more. That said, I hope I can escape without any major purchases at this time - too much is in flux, I had better wait before making any further decisions. This might change in the next couple of months - we'll see ...

M.
 
Location
Sydney, NSW, Australia
Real Name
Alan
Yeah, it's worse for me - I *am* a 35mm guy! And the 50mm APO-Lanthar keeps beckoning - especially since I'm less than satisfied with the Summicron-M (tested it out again yesterday - it's nice, but not convincing for its price and fame).

However ... I am lucky to own two very different and very well-performing lenses (for their respective type): the Voigtländer Nokton 50mm f/1.2 is a strong performer at medium-to-small apertures (f/2 to f/11) and nice enough wide open, and the Nikon Z 50mm f/1.8 S punches way above its class ... I don't *need* the 50mm APO-Lanthar, nor the 35mm - heck, I own the Zeiss Distagon 35mm f/1.4! Now, how to hold on to that thought ...

In earnest, it's great to know that these lenses are available (or will be, soon): It helps justifying the M mount bodies even more. That said, I hope I can escape without any major purchases at this time - too much is in flux, I had better wait before making any further decisions. This might change in the next couple of months - we'll see ...

M.
👍🏻
 

rayvonn

Hall of Famer
Location
London
And now as I understand it, there’s a new APO Summicron 35mm lens about be announced, if not already available, one can only imagine the cost of that if cost is a consideration to you. But it’ll be interesting to see how the Voigt measures up to it. The way things are atm, I wouldn’t be surprised if the ‘gap’ is negligible or if there is any difference at all.
 
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Location
Switzerland
Real Name
Matt
The new APO Summicron will launch at a price of $8200. Go figure ... However, as with the 50mm APO, it's really tiny compared to the Voigtländers. Do I care? Not at that difference in price - and definitely not as far as performance is concerned: The Voigtländer APO-Lanthars are all spectacular, and I'd be very surprised if the 35mm was off the mark in this respect. The Leica *can't* be nine times better in that case, if at all - we're talking minute differences at that kind of level ... lenses like these are so close to ideal it's irrelevant (though I'd certainly not accept any optical issues from the Leica lens, that's for sure).

However, at the moment (and always counting on my Zeiss Distagon to keep me safe), it's the 50mm I'm seriously lusting after. But: repetitia non placent ...

M.
 
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