What to do with a Summicron?

Discussion in 'Film Camera Forum' started by pdh, Feb 18, 2012.

  1. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    The experience of using my 35mm Summicron for the SiJ challenge did lead to my realising that the angle of view on m4/3 doesn't really suit my eye ... or at least, only for occasional use.
    So it's occurred to me that, as I am unlikely to ever be able to use it on an M9 (though I haven't checked the lottery draw tonight ...), it might be fun to use it on a film camera ... now, as M bodies still cost way way beyond what I'm able to afford at the moment, but a Leica CL can be had for in the region of £200-£250 (which is affordable if I say it quickly), I'm wondering about that option ... suitable Bessas and Ikons are also out of financial reach, by the way ...

    as I am not one of the initiates of the mysteries of framelines and viewfinder magnification and whatnot, I wondered if there are significant problems or disadvantages to using the 35mm on a CL ... ?

    advice and suggestions gratefully received
     
  2. stillshunter

    stillshunter Super Moderator Emeritus

    Nov 5, 2010
    Down Under
    Real Name:
    Mark
    What a shame! When I first read the title I thought "Easy done...send it to me and I'll send you the PL 25mm Summilux...Simple!" :thumbup: But you're talking about using it on film. So I'm with you here mate.

    Assuming it's an M-mount bayonet then with a 35mm lens you have heaps to choose from in the film RF world - barring the M3 and Bessa R3 - most all else in Leica and Voigtlander fits (frame lines wise) as well as the new Ikon. Essentially it's going to come down to what else you want to use with the body. Wider lenses - Bessa R4 will give you 21-50mm. Longer lenses - R2 will give you 35-90. Then you'll have to decide the level of automation you want...all manual go an M2, a little more help the R2M or R4M or Leica M4 or M6, or a lot of automation just get the Ikon or the R2A or R4A.

    P.S., from what I've read in my research so far, best to avoid the Leica CL (or even the Minolta CLE) as a shooter. Apparently, repairs are super costly on not doable with the lack of parts on the market. So best leave the inflated prices for the collector's market. I've heard much the same about the Hexar RF too.
     
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  3. ajramirez

    ajramirez SC All-Pro S.C. Charter Member Subscribing Member

    Jul 9, 2010
    Caguas, Puerto Rico
    Real Name:
    Antonio
    I don't know about the British market, but in the US you can get generally get Bessas for less than a usable CL would go for. I paid $425 for a mint condition R2a. I would expect an R2 to be obtainable for less than that

    Having said that, the Bessa R2a is a wonderful camera and IMO an alternative you should consider, as it will be significantly newer than any CL. Additionally, I believe the CL does not have finder lines for 35mm lenses.

    Cheers,

    Antonio
     
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  4. Duane Pandorf

    Duane Pandorf SC Top Veteran

    868
    Apr 25, 2011
    Western NC
    You should send it to me so I can evaluate what the 35mm does on my GXR ; ).
     
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  5. BillN

    BillN SC Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 25, 2010
    S W France
    Real Name:
    Bill
    Paul - I also find that I prefer 36 x 24 - or 3 x 2 if you like

    The M8 is the "most affordable" digital way was to get back to 35mm - even with the 1.3 x crop

    I paid £1,200 for mine, used, with few shutter actions with still one year warranty remaining - I expect to have to pay another £1,000 even 5 years or so for a Leica service - and with that they return it "as new" - but maybe I'll be lucky and it will last 10 years without any "structural" problems - (cosmetics do not really worry me)
     
  6. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    Thanks for the responses ... there are indeed lots of suitable cameras available, but as I've said, almost all are ruled out for reasons of cost ... if the lens were a LTM of course I could make do perfectly well with a £40 Zorki, but it is an M-mount .... I think I shall keep my eyes open for a bargain CL or Bessa R2, but I don't hold out much hope ...
     
  7. kathyh

    kathyh SC Top Veteran S.C. Charter Member

    734
    Jul 13, 2010
    Ottawa, Canada
    Real Name:
    Kathy
    I have both a CL and a 35mm Summicron. I just put it on the CL and it seems to work fine. You can see frame lines and focus. Whether they are the correct frame lines, I don't know. Good luck on your search.
     
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  8. grebeman

    grebeman Old Codgers Group S.C. Charter Member

    Jul 13, 2010
    South Brent, south Devon (UK)
    Real Name:
    Barrie
    Kathy,

    My experience, some time ago, of a 35mm lens on a Minolta CLE is that the field covered by the lens is equal to, or even slightly beyond the absolute edges of the viewfinder. The frame lines you see are those for the 40mm lens.

    Barrie
     
  9. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    An update

    Rather to my surprise, I have managed to bag a Bessa R2a within budget (from a private seller on eBay); as it's my birthday shortly, and I am also going to be in the vicinity of a camera shop which I know has a 2nd-hand M9-P, and I have poor impulse-control ... I thought it a good idea to go for the Bessa and short-circuit my doing anything stupid ... :biggrin:

    ... so within the next few days I would hope to both make a return to film, and to make a first foray into the rangefinder world ... it's probably 30 years since I bought black & white film,
    I vaguely remember using Ilford HPsomething, and I just found some contact sheets which seem to be Tri-X (scans of the only prints extant from that sheet are here https://www.photographerslounge.org/f22/trip-back-time-2767/#post26931) ...

    Bearing in mind that I'll probably be making a hash of exposure for the first few rolls, and as I'll be sending it to a lab for processing anyway, any advice about a nice forgiving and readily available stock ?
     
  10. chromatin64

    chromatin64 SC Veteran

    289
    Apr 26, 2011
    A Leekist in York, UK
    Ilford and Fuji both produce B&W fillum that can be C41 processed i.e processed in your high street colour lab so don't need sending away. (Ilford = XP2 Super; Fuji = Neopan 400CN).

    Kodak used to make a similar fillum - BW400CN - but I'm not sure if it's still produced since the company went belly-up.
     
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  11. grebeman

    grebeman Old Codgers Group S.C. Charter Member

    Jul 13, 2010
    South Brent, south Devon (UK)
    Real Name:
    Barrie
    Paul,

    I've been using HP5, so the standard old fashioned panchromatic black and white film. However the Ilford fact sheet for XP2 SUPER claims it has a wide exposure tolerance, 50 iso to 800 iso with normal development for that wide speed range, so it would sound to be the way to go, quite tolerant of even moderate exposure errors.

    I might have a problem with my recently acquired Bessa R, a strange crescent shaped area of film fogging when held at a particular angle to the light. I'm awaiting a response from my supplier tomorrow. In the meantime I'm wondering if my water supply, local spring water, isn't giving me problems with home developing (suspended particles and high pH value). My old haunts in and around Plymouth had clean town mains and low pH levels.

    Given that, and if my Bessa can be made good in some way, I might well go the XP2 SUPER route when my current stock of HP5 is used up.

    Barrie
     
  12. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    thanks Barrie (and Russ).

    I saw you'd found a problem in the other thread Barrie, which is a disappointment - but given where you purchased it I expect it'll get sorted out .. of course now I'm vaguely nervous about the R2a, and if there is a difficulty it might have been easier to get resolved with a dealer than a private individual ...
     
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  13. grebeman

    grebeman Old Codgers Group S.C. Charter Member

    Jul 13, 2010
    South Brent, south Devon (UK)
    Real Name:
    Barrie
    Paul,

    I think after the R the build quality improved significantly when they went to M mount lenses. This fogging has only appeared on 3 frames on one roll and one frame on a second roll. I'm pretty sure that the camera had never had a roll of film through it until I started a few days ago, so I don't think it's as a result of wear and tear. It's a quality control problem at build which would have been found out in the early days had film been put through it.

    Barrie
     
  14. ajramirez

    ajramirez SC All-Pro S.C. Charter Member Subscribing Member

    Jul 9, 2010
    Caguas, Puerto Rico
    Real Name:
    Antonio
    +1 on the Ilford XP2 Super recommendation. It's a beautiful film. Kodak still does make the BW400CN and it's superb as well. All of my recent posts on the Fun with Film Cameras thread have been with either film.

    I'm not sure if Neopan 400 is a C41 film. I could be wrong, but I do not think it is.

    Cheers,

    Antonio
     
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  15. ajramirez

    ajramirez SC All-Pro S.C. Charter Member Subscribing Member

    Jul 9, 2010
    Caguas, Puerto Rico
    Real Name:
    Antonio
    No need to fret, Paul. The R2a is a nicely put together camera. Mine has worked like a charm.

    Cheers,

    Antonio
     
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  16. grebeman

    grebeman Old Codgers Group S.C. Charter Member

    Jul 13, 2010
    South Brent, south Devon (UK)
    Real Name:
    Barrie
    I think you'll find Neopan 400 is a panchromatic black and white film processed in D 76 and the like, Neopan 400CN is a C 41 processed film, but only available in the UK and Japan. In the UK it's actually made for Fuji by Ilford and is supposedly much finer grained than Ilfords XP2 SUPER.

    Barrie
     
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  17. ajramirez

    ajramirez SC All-Pro S.C. Charter Member Subscribing Member

    Jul 9, 2010
    Caguas, Puerto Rico
    Real Name:
    Antonio
    Thank you very much for the clarification.

    Cheers,

    Antonio
     
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  18. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    Just had an email from the seller, to say she's chucking in a few rolls of film she just found in the 'fridge ...
     
  19. Isoterica

    Isoterica SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 6, 2011
    Have you tried KEH? They stand behind their sales if you are concerned about ebay.
     
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  20. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    Thanks Kristen, but I am in the UK (so buying from KEH would incur shipping costs as well as import duty and VAT) ... and I have already completed the sale !