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Author Topic: Leica Elmarit R 2.8/28mm Vs. Cotax Distagon 28mm/2.8 T*  (Read 7729 times)
ACH DIGITAL
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« on: July 31, 2012, 07:18:48 PM »
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I'm thinking about one of these two lenses for the Nikon D800E with the Leitax adapter. Would like to know if anyone had tried them and wish one would perform better on a high megapixel camera as the D800E.
Leica has several versions of the same and the differences in prices are enormous. The 3ROM vs the E55 is like a thousand dollars.
The prices for the Contax Distagon are more accessible.
WOuld appreciate some recommendations.
ACH
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Antonio Chagin
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marcmccalmont
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« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2012, 08:55:59 PM »
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I don't have a specific answer for you but I have but together a collection of Leica R's for my D800E. If you read Erwin Puts' book on Leica lenses I have found his comments very accurate. I also have sourced used Leica's from George Ohara gohara67@gmail.com and he has a very good knowledge of Leica's. I chose lenses that are optimum stopped down to the f4 - f5.6 range since the diffraction on a 4.8 micron sensel starts showing up there (in practice these lenses are optimum between f5.6 and f8 on the D800E). I also prefer zooms and Put's states the Leica R zooms are as good if not better than the primes. the 28-90R is now my favorite lens!
Marc
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Marc McCalmont
hasselbladfan
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« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2012, 03:06:38 AM »
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I cannot help you with the Contax, but I owned the 28mm (latest version) for many years and it was fabulous.

Extremely sharp and most of the time on my camera. Rarely in the closet.
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ACH DIGITAL
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« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2012, 08:51:10 AM »
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I don't have a specific answer for you but I have but together a collection of Leica R's for my D800E. If you read Erwin Puts' book on Leica lenses I have found his comments very accurate. I also have sourced used Leica's from George Ohara gohara67@gmail.com and he has a very good knowledge of Leica's. I chose lenses that are optimum stopped down to the f4 - f5.6 range since the diffraction on a 4.8 micron sensel starts showing up there (in practice these lenses are optimum between f5.6 and f8 on the D800E). I also prefer zooms and Put's states the Leica R zooms are as good if not better than the primes. the 28-90R is now my favorite lens!
Marc

Mark thanks for the info, sounds very interesting to have the zoom lens if it is that good, even more for traveling light. I'l check via email with Ohara for more details. Do you get any field curvature at all?

Hasselblasfan thanks very much. Do you have the E55 version?

ACH
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Antonio Chagin
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marcmccalmont
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« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2012, 10:36:50 AM »
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Do you get any field curvature at all?

Do you have the E55 version?

ACH

Very little distortion and I have the ROM version. Stunning with the D800E!
Marc
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Marc McCalmont
EinstStein
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« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2012, 10:59:43 AM »
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Slightly off your topic, but i had an experience, R, 24mm or 28mm, not sure which one exactly, that can't put on Canon Eos' full frame. It's rear tube can be lightly hit by the mirror. It might be ok for cropped body, not sure.
Watch that.
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ACH DIGITAL
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« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2012, 02:51:31 PM »
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Soes anyone knows is the 28mm 2.8 Rom that sells for around 500 dolars is good enogh?
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Antonio Chagin
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jjphoto
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« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2012, 06:28:42 PM »
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Slightly off your topic, but i had an experience, R, 24mm or 28mm, not sure which one exactly, that can't put on Canon Eos' full frame. It's rear tube can be lightly hit by the mirror. It might be ok for cropped body, not sure.
Watch that.

The R24 won't work on the Canon FF bodies but works fine on APSC crop bodies. The R28 works fine on FF bodies. I have both so can confirm this.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2012, 06:43:26 PM by jjphoto » Logged
jjphoto
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« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2012, 06:31:12 PM »
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Soes anyone knows is the 28mm 2.8 Rom that sells for around 500 dolars is good enogh?

I haven't used the old R 28 (non E55/built in hood) so can't comment on it's performance but it is a completely different lens to the latest E55.
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jjphoto
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« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2012, 06:42:39 PM »
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I'm thinking about one of these two lenses for the Nikon D800E with the Leitax adapter. Would like to know if anyone had tried them and wish one would perform better on a high megapixel camera as the D800E.
Leica has several versions of the same and the differences in prices are enormous. The 3ROM vs the E55 is like a thousand dollars.
The prices for the Contax Distagon are more accessible.
WOuld appreciate some recommendations.
ACH

I have the R28 E55 and the AE and MM Contax 28/2.8's. The AE and MM Contax lenses are different, yet this seems to be regularly ignored, so you do need to be clear about which lens you are considering. I'm not a fan of the AE because it's edge sharpness is poor compared to the MM. The MM is an excellent lens in many respects and I find I tend to use it instead of the R28 even though the R28 may be sharper but I've never compared them directly. The R28 images have a biting sharpness, especially in the central zone, that I don't often see from other lenses. If you have the money then buy the R28 (E55/latest), if not then buy the Contax 28/2.8 MM (not AE) and you probably won't be any worse off.

Anyone considering buying Leica R needs to do their research and understand what they are buying as there are many minor variations which often MAKE NO DIFFERENCE (ie ROM, 3 Cam or R Cam) and then there are different versions of the same lens in which case you are talking about a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT LENS! The old and new R28's are completely different lenses.

As an aside, I tend to use an Olympus 28/2 and I leave the Contax and Leica at home most of the time. I prefer it's drawing style, being a little on the funky side, yet it's still sharp wide open.
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wildlightphoto
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« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2012, 09:03:54 PM »
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Anyone considering buying Leica R needs to do their research and understand what they are buying as there are many minor variations which often MAKE NO DIFFERENCE (ie ROM, 3 Cam or R Cam) and then there are different versions of the same lens in which case you are talking about a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT LENS! The old and new R28's are completely different lenses.

+1

An old version can be updated to ROM, and a ROM lens can be converted to 3-cam.  If you are not using the lens on a Leica-R body the metering cams mean very little.
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ACH DIGITAL
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« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2012, 09:16:28 PM »
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Well I think i'm going to take my time on this. Thanks for all the good tips.
Ach
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Antonio Chagin
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stevesanacore
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« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2012, 08:28:41 PM »
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If you can get a hold of Erwin Puts book "the Leica Compendium" it will explain all the details of every Leica lens up to that point. I think he has a newer version too. I used it when I purchased a collection of Leica R's for my Canons. You can track each version by serial number, so it is very clear which lens is which. I can also say first hand that they are fantastic optics. He has a website that used to have his first book downloadable as a PDF.

Hope this helps.
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We don't know what we don't know.
ACH DIGITAL
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« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2012, 10:24:48 PM »
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Thanks Steve. Thanks to all for the great help. It's a tough decision I think.
ACH
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Antonio Chagin
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Mokum
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« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2012, 08:28:02 AM »
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I have a »Leitaxed« Distagon 2.8/28, a magnificent lens. Mounted on my full-frame Canon I use it quite a lot for town- & landscape photos.
Stopped down to 4.0 ~ 5.6 centre sharpness is just unbelievable, gently easing off towards the edges. Bokeh is beautiful.
If you're looking for the magic words »Made in Germany« you're not in luck: both the AE- & the MM-version were only built in Japan.
To the best of my knowledge both versions are optically identical; at least I've never come across any hard evidence (that is: documentation from Zeiss) to suggest otherwise.
Both the AE- & MM-version can be »Leitaxed«, but mounting a MM-adapter is easier (an arguably more solid, with 4 screws to the outer-rim of the lens).
MM-versions of the Distagon 28 have serial-numbers >6.800.00 and the »22« marking on the aperture-ring is green (white on the AE-version).

I've never owned or used either of the 2 Elmarits.
What I do know is that the Elmarit-2nd-version (with built-in, rectangular lens-hood) has »floating elements«, so close-up performance should be superior. But then again, the combination of the concepts »wide-angle« and »close-up« is, at least to me, not that obvious.
An Elmarit-II costs 4 to 5 (!) times as much as a Distagon.
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ACH DIGITAL
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« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2012, 08:43:32 AM »
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Thanks Mokum,

Interesting information. What I'm not steel very clear is if the Leica NON E55 is good enough. I mean prior to floating element. Thanks all.

ACH
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Antonio Chagin
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jaapb
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« Reply #16 on: August 15, 2012, 04:03:02 PM »
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Both the AE- & MM-version can be »Leitaxed«, but mounting a MM-adapter is easier (an arguably more solid, with 4 screws to the outer-rim of the lens).
Please note that only MM C/Y Zeiss lenses can be "Leitaxed" for Nikon mount.

If you are in the market for a 28mm manual prime you might also consider Nikon's own 28mm f2.8 AIS (not the series E), rock solid and a stellar lens on the D800 still to be obtained new from B&H or used from eBay. I picked up a perfect copy cheaply from eBay.

Jaap
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ACH DIGITAL
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« Reply #17 on: August 20, 2012, 03:37:24 PM »
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Hi Jaap,

Can you post a NEF taken with the D800 and the Nikon 28mm 2.8 AIS I like to see the detail and corners. Thanks.
ACH
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Antonio Chagin
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jaapb
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« Reply #18 on: August 21, 2012, 01:44:20 AM »
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Hi Antonio,

I ll post a sample later, meanwhile here is a comparison table. On a scale of 100 the Leica scores 83.2 the Nikon 81.5 and the Distagon 79.8.

Jaap
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jaapb
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« Reply #19 on: August 22, 2012, 06:53:48 AM »
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Can you post a NEF taken with the D800 and the Nikon 28mm 2.8 AIS I like to see the detail and corners. Thanks.
ACH
Antonio,

By no means am I a lens tester, but I tried to make some uninspiring shots of a wall to also demonstrate that the distortion is relative low.
I made 3 exposures at f 2.8, 5.6 and 11 and showing fullframe, center and bottom left 100% crop. No edits in Lr 4.1  except capture sharpening; amount 55, radius 0.8, detail 45 and mask 35, no noise reduction and vignet correction applied. I exported from Lr to jpg 100% quality, filesize 950K, 72dpi and sharpened for screen.
Hope this helps.

Jaap
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