Verdict On VC 50 mm F1 Noct.?

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by ron_breeze|2, Dec 26, 2009.

  1. Haven't heard much about the VC 50 mm F1 Noct. and have noticed it is selling new out of Hong Kong for less than $900. The price on it, when new. was around $1,200 and there seemed to be a lot of excitement but I haven't read any reviews of it and haven't read about anyone raving about its results. I was interested in this lens at first but decided to wait for the shrink wrap to come off and read what users pro and con experienced with it. So what about this lens the good, the bad, the ugly?
  2. i think abrahamson seems to love it
    i would so love to afford one!
  3. The f1.1 Nokton is much discussed at
    It looks like a very useful lens for the money if you need more than f1.4.
  4. i was also wondering about this, esp. what kind of signature this has, more like a nokton 35mm f1.4, or a noctilux?
  5. I read the abrahamson review when the lens first came out and nothing against Tom but I believe he has a connection to Voigtlander Cosina and I didn't think his images were very good. I'm more interested in hearing from users since then both current owners and those who bought and sold it.
  6. Ron,
    Tom A knows Mr Kobayashi, but also knew Walter Mandler. Those who know Tom personally, would agree that he doesn't have any axe to grind, but merely wants to provide a balanced view.
    Best wishes,
    Cheltenham, UK
  7. Hi Charlie,
    I wasn't suggesting any problems between the two Charlie and I do read his reviews but I want to hear from others who currently use or have used the lens. Let's not turn this into a finger pointing thread defending Tom as that is not my intent.
  8. The same thing happened to the price of the 35/1.2 Nokton after it came out. I bought one of the first lenses from Gandy and paid over $1100 for it. Within one year it was about 1/3 cheaper. You pay more to be one of the first. I don't think there is anything sinister in the marketing. It's a good lens. I would love to buy a 50/1.1 but I would need to sell something first.
  9. I have written and will say again the the Nokton is a great lens wide open and at mid-f-stops. I am hoping that some day Viewfinder will published my piece on using the Nokton on the M8.
    How does it compare to the the $10.000 Noctilux? Wouldn't know. Can only say the latter is faster 3/4 of a stop and weighs around 750 grams. The Nokton is a carry around lens and an ultra-fast optical compromise at f1.1. It is 1/10th of the Nocti's price and only weighs around 450 grams.
    I think the build quality is good. It hasn't fallen apart on me yet.
  10. being a 2 month old user, I had decided to make this Nokton my main M lenses right from the first roll I made with it, and it just grow on me everyday, I love it.
    I won't compare it with the Noctilux or even the Summilux, the only other 50mm M lenses I ever used was a Summicron DR, Konica M50/2 and a Nokton 50/1.5
    Weight - no scientific comparision, but I don't find it much more heavier than the other 3 I've tried
    Size - it is huge, but it ergonomically better than the other 3 in my hand, your mileage may vary. It block a bit of the finder, but after a few rolls I got used to it.
    PQ - I'm not addict to Bokeh, but nothing in the OOF bother me so far, wide open is sharp as hell, backing off to f1.4, f2, f2.8, it is comparable to the other 3, contrast are between the DR (the lower) and Konica (the higher), possibly sharper than all three, color is a bit warmer than the Nokton 50/1.5, which I prefer much much better.
    if used properly, i will sure give you the 3D-ish image and the so call Leica glow, not as glowy though but some of that has to do with flare which the Nokton doesn't.
    see my samples for yourself >
  11. Thank you Alex and Walter your feedback was what I was looking for. Walter the images you posted on Flikr provided an excellent example of what the lens is capable of. It looks like a good investment to me at this point. Thanks again.
  12. oh, Thanks you indeed Ron :) I think you have to love your lenses (and camera) to make a good picture,and somehow it just doesn't happen when I have a Leitz glass on my M2 lol
    Or I should say, quoting Tom A, it's a lens that do what I want it to do, and they way I want it.
    Not sure why you mention pricing in HK, indeed the price is a lot more lower than in Japan or in anywhere else, it worth every penny!
  13. Have had mine for almost 2 weeks so far and no complaints.
  14. Thanks John, nice photos especially the wine glass that has the nice OOF background. This is an interesting article that compares the CV to the Leitz F1 Leica Noctilux F1 vs Nokton 1.1 | STEVE HUFF PHOTOS if anyone is interested. One of the features about the Leitz that most users seem to like is that swirly bokeh the lens produces. I personally don't like that look and prefer the CV bokeh sans the swirly effect.
  15. Ron, it's a question of preference, but the Bokeh on the VC f1.1 seems to me to be much like some older Nikon lenses (from the late 80s, I don't know how the more recent ones behave) or some medium format lenses, with too much "Nisen" (I think that is the word for the double line OOF Bokeh effects, very evident in John's second picture of the series), which I find quite bothersome. On the other hand, less than a thousand dollars for this type of lens is rare and it is thus very special. Few can afford the new Leica F1. Neither seems close in terms of natural looking OOF Bokeh to the performance of the great Summicron f2 35mm lens from the Leitz Midland factory, or from Leica Solms before that lens was replaced by the Aspherical, which, although of higher performance has poorer Bokeh.
  16. Brilliant picture John, brilliant!

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