which lens to take and normal lens shoot out

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by bruce_erickson|1, Jun 18, 2010.

  1. You have a Leica M7 and and a choice of 3 lenses: 35mm cron, 50mm cron, and 75mm cron all f/2.0. You are going on a 6 day trip and can only take one of the lenses and camera. There will be some people (relatives) and some scenics (but not the "vast vista" sort) to make pictures of. Those are the game rules. Which lens would you take? I'm inclined to take the 50mm.
    There is now a Kodachrome contest. How about a normal lens shoot-out? The only rules: (1) Use only a normal lens for the camera. (2) No cropping. (3) No fancy screwing around or "cheating" with photoshop.
  2. SCL


    I'd vote for the 35mm as the most versatile overall lens, but I know lots of people prefer the 50. I'd forget the 75 in any case.
  3. 35mm - though I don't understand why you can't take all three lenses on a 6-day trip.
  4. 35mm too. I love the 35mm Summicron.
  5. 35mm too. I love the 35mm Summicron.
  6. Another vote for the 35mm focal range. However, I would bring the whole kit myself. What if something happens to the one lens you choose to bring?
  7. I'd take the 35mm.
  8. There is now a Kodachrome contest. How about a normal lens shoot-out? The only rules: (1) Use only a normal lens for the camera. (2) No cropping. (3) No fancy screwing around or "cheating" with photoshop.​
    Every normal (50mm?) lens Leica ever made has different, but redeeming qualities. The characteristic look or rendering of one lens may lend itself perhaps to one subject better than another, or one look better than another. All these lens qualities depend upon lens design, glass formula, and lens coatings. I hope you are not suggesting a boring sharpness contest between various Leica lenses. There is far more to a pleasant image than acuity.
    My favorite 50mm lens is the Leica Summitar f2. Astonishing perspective, almost three dimensional. Sherry Krauter turned me on to this lens. I must admit to having been skeptical initially, but now I am a believer.
  9. I used to be a 50mm fan, but just before I bought the Summicron 35! :) Go for the 35!
  10. A vote for the 50mm cron. It's fun to go back to the "normal" focal length lens and see just how versatile it can be.
  11. A vote for the 50mm cron. It's fun to go back to the "normal" focal length lens and see just how versatile it can be.
  12. Well, I guess I'll go by the majority vote and take the 35 cron. I could take one other lens but I was trying to keep things simple--don't like to lug stuff around airports and I had one of those "simplify, simplify" urges one gets from time to time coupled with the idea that if one can't make an interesting image with a normal lens, then perhaps one should give up photography. If I do take one other lens with the 35 lens, then it will be the 75. I am not suggesting a boring sharpness contest, only an image making contest.
  13. 35mm, but I'd opt for a Summilux<g>.
  14. I recently did a 10 day trip and brought the M7, M9, 25, 35 and 75mm lenses. I basically used the 35mm on the M9 90% of the time. I only shot one roll with the M7, and maybe 2-3 shots with the 25 and 10-15 with the 75. Anyway, that was just my trip, which involved a lot of heat and walking around, so lots of times I just took the m9 and 35 so I would not have to carry the rest...
  15. I went to NY for a week and just took a 35mm, worked out really good. A few years ago I would have said the 50, but now I rarely use it though it's a good lens. I prefer 35mm for all around. Talking about Sumicron f2.0
  16. If I could have only one it would be the 50. Some of my best photos were taken with a 50 - either the Elmar or the Summicron. My choice for a trip would be the 35, 50 and 90.
  17. I seem to have similar experiences to most of you. I too have brought camera(s) and many lenses but would wind up using just one lens and camera for much more than half the shots. My only (weak) complaint about wide angle lenses is that often they take in too much and the image looks busy. I don't like to crop if I can help it so if an image looks right from a certain position but my lens is taking in too much and I don't have a longer lens, then too bad. Going closer to the subject will often change the perspective in a negative way. However, a 35mm lens is not that wide. In any case I have decided to bring the 75 too. Probably won't use it.
  18. Take the 50mm. Be Different
  19. Honestly, I don't know why this question ever arises from photographers with any experience. Surely you know your own shooting style and which focal length suits you best.
  20. Take the 35mm if you are inside most of the time and/or don't plan on doing individual portraits. The 35mm allows you to get more into the frame without having to move back. I find it serves well as the only lens.
    Take the 50mm if you know that you are outdoors and/or plan to do individual portraits. You can move back and forth outside to frame the shot.
  21. The 35mm.
  22. Hmmm - not the 75mm.
  23. my vote....35mm 'cron, although i'd be inclined to take the 75mm as well.
    as for the 'normal' lens, my 75mm 'lux is a 'normal' lens. please clarify as to whether you mean a 50mm lens.
  24. Normal is too normal (ie boring...)
    I'm a portrait guy, so I'd take the 75mm first.
    And I'd find a way to sneak in the 35mm also!
  25. Let's all forget the normal lens contest. By normoal for I mean the 50mm lens for 135 cameras.
  26. If I expect to shoot anything under a roof, the 35. If I want to use it mainly outdoors, 50.
  27. A 50mm is a miracle lens. Able to look both wide or tele at different times so yeah, take the 50.
    Or, take all all three and forget all this 'I can take only one lens' business. Your a Photographer! You can take what you doggone please.
  28. Or, take all all three and forget all this 'I can take only one lens' business. Your a Photographer! You can take what you doggone please.​
    Amen, John.
  29. 50. On a previous thread on 35 v 50 (yeah there was one) one wise contributor agreed that the 35 was great on holiday and would get more in, but for walks around home there seemed not to be so much worth getting in, so he preferred the 50. Bill Pierce rediscovered the 50 when he and a mate swapped cameras to have a photograph of themselves on their own film, and the other guy had this marvellous short telephoto lens - the 50. Pierce moved to the 50 after that and loves the focal length. This forum is very 'street' so you have to decide for yourself whether the 35 is what suits you or not. It's also interesting that photographers with more than one version of a particular focal length are more likely, from what I have seen, to have 3 or 4 50s and maybe only 1 or at most 2 35s. I'll often take the 35 for its compactness or the increased depth of field or the slight tolerance of a slower shutter speed, but for pure preference I think it will be the 50 for one lens only.
  30. I carry 2 M's with me on most occasions, one has the 50 mounted to it, and the other a 35. Surprisingly, I find I'm using the 50 quite a bit more.
    The narrower depth of field and wider angle make the 35 very convenient for quick shots which get everything in the frame, but I find the 50 more useful for shots where I want more detail. And in some situations I don't like to get "in-your-face" close to the subject.
  31. Without a doubt the 50. If I want a wide I take my 21mm and 28mm lenses.
  32. While I carry an M body and 35mm, 50mm and 75mm lenses with me, I find that I use the 75mm far more often than I use the other two. It's a good lens for environmental portraits, long enough to focus in on a face, short enough to include some surroundings and to focus even at short range. It's also compact and not too heavy. The main drawback is shallow depth of field, requiring careful focusing. The other two focal lengths are also flexible and useful, but the 75mm delivers better results for me more often. As usual, YMMV.
  33. 50mm,of course....
  34. A while ago, I had the same urge and took just a M6 +50mm on a weekend trip to Paris.
    I found to my surprise really, that it was not wide enough all round scenic shots and it was a bit frustrating.
    Try using your feet for framing when you are on the top deck of an open top tourist bus or a bateau mouche :-0)
    If I did the one lens thing again it would definitely be the 35mm.
    I have often taken several lenses on a holiday/trip and came back having only used the 35mm.
  35. Depends on your point of view (really). Some of us see wide, some closer in. Me - wide. Manyyears ago I sold the Nikon and a bunch of lenses for a used M2 and a 35 'cron. Shot with that lens and camera only for about 20 years. Couldn't have been happier.
  36. Jose Angel stated the best practical criterium!
    Maybe throw out the zippo and the cigarettes and drop in a lens and more film... ;-)
  37. rowlett

    rowlett Moderator

    i think I'd pick the 35/2, but remember that it is still a wide-angle lens, and your pictures with it will show the wide-angle characteristics. If you're a purist, then, I'd pick the 50/2. Between those two, it's a tough choice, really.

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