Leica Trip to Seoul

asiafish

All-Pro
Aug 9, 2013
Bakersfield, CA
Andrew
So I leave tomorrow evening for 9 days in Seoul. This is a non-photography trip, but I do want to create a photo book as it is my father-in-law's 80th birthday. Seoul is extremely hot and humid, and I've had heat stroke before, so I will not be carrying a big heavy camera bag around.

So my question is, do I try and go really minimal and just bring the X 113 and a bunch of extra batteries and cards? This is the lightest, works in any lighting and while not wide enough or long enough to cover everything, is usually close enough. It will also force me to not worry about gear because I just won't have any.

Second option is to bring the M-E with a 50mm lens (don't think I'll need a 90) and also bring the X for 35mm and to use as a backup or to pass off to others so I can be in some pictures. The X is very light and can easily be passed around, but with my M-E I can turn this non photo trip into a photo trip and still not really annoy everyone else fussing with a bag of tricks. The M-E with 50 Cron is extremely useful in most lighting (the X is even better in super-low light), has no focus shift worth worrying about and with its modern Leica coatings is quite flare-resistant, and its a lot more solidly built than my Sonnars.

Another option is X Vario and M-E with a 50mm, using the M-E for lower light and the X Vario for everything else. M-E isn't as good as X for low-light so I would probably bring the 5cm f/1.5 Sonnar or Jupiter 3 instead of the 50 Cron to get that extra stop. The Sonnars aren't as well-built as the 50 Cron, but I get an extra stop in low light which the M-E needs when I don't have my X. The X Vario really does everything except low light and shallow depth of field.

Final option is X Vario and X 113, as both share the same batteries. This gives me versatility using the X Vario for everything with good light and the X indoors or in the evening, but I lose the real shallow depth of field and that CCD magic I get with the M-E, not to mention that Sonnar look.

As with every trip, I'm pulling my hair out before leaving, but will have a blast with whatever I end up taking and not really worry much about what I left behind. Currently leaning toward X and M-E/50 Cron combo with no extra lenses.
 

VINCETAN

Top Veteran
Aug 19, 2013
I find that if I really wanted to enjoy the trip, I bring the minimum amount of equipment and the easiest to use. In my case, it is the Nikon V1 with a 10mm f2.8 lens. Nothing to think about and lots more time to enjoy the place and people. A photographic trip is a different story, bring lots of equipment, tinker with it, think about how to shoot, what to shoot, etc. Miss conversing with people since I will be focus on looking for great photo opportunity.

Just my 2 cents.
 

asiafish

All-Pro
Aug 9, 2013
Bakersfield, CA
Andrew
I find that if I really wanted to enjoy the trip, I bring the minimum amount of equipment and the easiest to use. In my case, it is the Nikon V1 with a 10mm f2.8 lens. Nothing to think about and lots more time to enjoy the place and people. A photographic trip is a different story, bring lots of equipment, tinker with it, think about how to shoot, what to shoot, etc. Miss conversing with people since I will be focus on looking for great photo opportunity.

Just my 2 cents.
So thats a vote for just the X.
 
D

dalethorn

Guest
The X Vario would give the greatest flexibility if f3.5 is OK, otherwise the faster X might be better...
 

BrianS

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
I would end up with the M9 and J-3 or uncoated Sonnar, and the little EPL2 with it's flash and 17/2.8. So that would be the M-E with a Sonnar for speed and rendition, X for other. Your J-3 is very good, and the coating does give a little edge on speed.

I suspect you will be doing some portraits, and nothing beats a Sonnar.
 

asiafish

All-Pro
Aug 9, 2013
Bakersfield, CA
Andrew
I would end up with the M9 and J-3 or uncoated Sonnar, and the little EPL2 with it's flash and 17/2.8. So that would be the M-E with a Sonnar for speed and rendition, X for other. Your J-3 is very good, and the coating does give a little edge on speed.

I suspect you will be doing some portraits, and nothing beats a Sonnar.
The X is already packed and ready to go with EVF, extra cards, charger (Korean plug adapter) and three batteries. The M-E currently has the Summicron on it, but yes there will be portraits and nothing beats a Sonnar.

Question on focus shift (if you still have your notes on my J3). It is accurate at MFD wide-open, but I recall you mentioning a certain distance at which I should stop down to f/2. At f/8 everything is perfect at any distance, but wide-open I don't want to blow it as I won't be reviewing on the computer and as we all know the M-E (M9) LCD is nowhere near adequate to check critical focus.
 

BrianS

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
You need to stop down to F2 for 7m and beyond. I test the J-3's at minimum focus at F1.5, and at 5m at F1.5. Distance shots vary from lens to lens, most are best at infinity between F2 and F2.8. I recall yours being best at F2- it was one of my Cherry-Picked J-3's.
 

asiafish

All-Pro
Aug 9, 2013
Bakersfield, CA
Andrew
You need to stop down to F2 for 7m and beyond. I test the J-3's at minimum focus at F1.5, and at 5m at F1.5. Distance shots vary from lens to lens, most are best at infinity between F2 and F2.8. I recall yours being best at F2- it was one of my Cherry-Picked J-3's.
It is definitely a good one. I think I'll take it, its been neglected since I got the '37, and it has much smoother focusing than my real Sonnar.
 

asiafish

All-Pro
Aug 9, 2013
Bakersfield, CA
Andrew
On the way to the airport and so glad my adult daughter can play chauffeur.

Anyway, brought the X 113 and the M-E with the Jupiter 3 mounted. I stashed a few Leica lenses in my carry on, but will only use the. If I get an actual photo day.
 

asiafish

All-Pro
Aug 9, 2013
Bakersfield, CA
Andrew
Yeah, this is actually the first time I've shot it in color. Not sure which is better, the J3 or the Sonnar. And I thought I liked these on the Monochrom, on the M-E they bring out a whole other level of awesome.
 

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