Leica The Leica IIIC with 50mm f:2 Summar. SOOC results.

JensM

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Got the results in from the first roll through the Grandfathers LeicaIII/50 f:2 Summar, and these are SOOC straight from the lab, via their scanner. All shot on the same roll of Kodak Ultramax 400, using the "Sunny 16" as a stepping off point. Not that the lens goes to closes down to 16, its aperture scale ends at 12,5, so some gut feelings was used as well as higher mathematics, with grain galore.

Leica IIIC Summar 50-2.jpgLeica IIIC Summar 50.jpgLeica IIIC Summar 50-4.jpgLeica IIIC Summar 50-3.jpg

I managed to open the camera, thinking I had rewound the entire film, but no such dice. So parts of it is proper ruined, and some has a certain amount of light-haze going on, not sure what the proper term is in English for that, in Norwegian it is "Sløret", so light-haze will do.

General take on the shooting experience is that it is somewhat clunky, which may stem from me being a rather larger sized fellow with ample sized hands and a huge head, the entire camera fits in my hand lengthwise and I can close my fingers around parts as well. The rangefinder is rather miniscule and my eyesight isnt what it used to be, but I managed to nail some sort of focus all around. The Sunny 16 rule with applied maths seems to work decently enough as does the camera and lens. There may be a certain haze going on in the lens, even if it is said to be less than stellar in applying contrast. How much of that, that is lens haze, light haze or F-Upping of the shutterspeeds is to be decided. It certainly is not crisp, in any regular sense of the word, but overall I find the pictures to have some sort of "charm" for the lack of a better world.

I will get another roll of colour film to run through it and take care of fully rewinding it the next time around. Probably a 200 ASA one, as the grain of the 400 is rather much.

Overall, its was not a bad experience, shooting a 100% manual camera. I think it is at least 30 years since I last did that and either of the two I shot with some regularity then, had the support of a light meter. (Rollei 35 and Olympus OM-1N).
 
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I think only the ones with the flowers and the deck chair are a little under exposed.
And yeah, I'm pretty sure the "Leica Glow" is caused by a bit of haze in the SUMMAR, not totally unexpected after their 90-year long life.
But apart from that the results look like how I expected the lens to perform.

Toward the end of the 1930s, Leitz designed the SUMMITAR in order to improve on the SUMMAR design. This eventually evolved into the SUMMICRON.
 
It's never a quick process, but once you get familiar with it and how to use it, in the right light and creatively used (already a lot of hoops to jump through), then this lens displays a truckload of what some people refer to as "glow". And even then you've got to like it; it's a subjective thing which I could understand is not a big deal at all to most people. But some pay three grand for a Summilux 35mm pre asph just to do that whereas this lens does the same thing and arguably better. Coincidentally I've been using it over the last week or so and generally love it, probably because you can render images which can't be replicated by today's modern lenses, the kind where it's impossible to tell when it was taken (ie, five weeks ago or five decades ago) which all adds to the fun. Instant results isn't the thing here, patience and familiarity is the key to getting the best out of the lens. But you'll never be bored.
 
That front element likes to collect a lot of side/stray light as well, which certainly has an impact on blooming and contrast. As I mentioned before a hood is (always) a good idea. :)


Similar setup with Kodak Ektar and a FIKUS hood, taken some 14 years ago in Pilsen. (admittedly a poor scan)
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Exactly, just a little blooming, low shadow detail.

Interesting to see these graves of Dutch forced labourers at Osterhof Friedhof. Particularly sad to read those dating from after VE-Day.
 
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