View Poll Results: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon/Minolta?

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  • Yes, they are the best lenses around.

    165 36.34%
  • No, I think the Nikon/Canon/Minolta ones are better

    29 6.39%
  • No, don't think there is a difference. The non-Leicas are just as good

    79 17.40%
  • They might be, but I probably can't tell the difference anyway.

    181 39.87%
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Thread: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

  1. #41

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    If leica lenses are too expensive to buy, should consider contax's range of carl zeiss lenses, cheaper by a lot, and affordable to the Canon or Nikon users too.

  2. #42

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    If we are talking about eons ago - Leica and the Zeiss rules the pack in lens design and coating. However, in these times most of the lens makers out there be it the Nikons, Canon, and Minolta generally will have very decent lenses (Pro-range not the consumer range).

    Still what basically sets the Leicas apart are their performance wide open. This is where they will excel over their Japanese counterparts. When you stopped the lenses down to f5.6 - f8 they will all perform uniformly well.

    That being the case, is it worth to pay that much a premium over Leica glass? To each his own I would say. But it is a fact that Leica lenses and bodies (M series at least) do hold their value pretty well so that even years down the road you can still get back pretty much what you pay for it and some times get more! Just take a look at the prices of the (Leica M3 and M4).

    BTW, Leica resale prices have gone down recently - I recently picked up a MINT M6 + Summicron 50/2 for $2800 from Ebay. I know that it's still expensive but compared to what Leica was a couple of years back. It's still have come down a lot.

    Just my 2 cents worth.

  3. #43
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    Originally posted by xplorer2

    Still what basically sets the Leicas apart are their performance wide open. This is where they will excel over their Japanese counterparts. When you stopped the lenses down to f5.6 - f8 they will all perform uniformly well.
    yup the wide open performance is very evident from my own personal experiences. i think most pple don't dispute this point...

    however older generation of Leica lenses no longer have as much advantage over the newest and latest Japanese lenses, and in some cases actually lose out in sharpness.

    Case in point is the older (1970s i think) 90mm f2 (pre-aspherical) summicron. At f2, it's not as good as a newer 70-200L at 90mm end, at f2.8. of course f2 is a whole stop faster.....

    the newer (1998?) 90mm f2 ASPH is however phenomenal. unfortunately so is the price!


    That being the case, is it worth to pay that much a premium over Leica glass? To each his own I would say
    THIS is the point that is always being hotly debated....


    BTW, Leica resale prices have gone down recently - I recently picked up a MINT M6 + Summicron 50/2 for $2800 from Ebay. I know that it's still expensive but compared to what Leica was a couple of years back. It's still have come down a lot.

    Just my 2 cents worth.
    oh good. another fellow M owner
    hey i think u got a very good price for your M6 + 50 summicron!

    btw i think the drop in resale price of the classic M6 has more to do with the release of the new Leica MP than anything. After the hype over the MP is over, you will realise that M6 resale prices will slowly increase again, simply because you can no longer buy one anymore
    David Teo
    View my work and blog at http://www.5stonesphoto.com/blog

  4. #44
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    For the amount u pay for these "superior" ang moh brand lenses, they better perform better than the Jap ones.

  5. #45
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    woah you dig up a one year old thread

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by zekai
    woah you dig up a one year old thread

    LOL!
    "I want to have the best camera in the world and shoot XMMs."

  7. #47

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    haha 1 year old thread, not bad wor.

    anyway hor, this is wat i feel lor, leica have been beri well known for consistency lor. u can always buy a leica and know it will be sharp even wide open. jap brands not that great, in the past most of them produce cheapo prime lens which where awful wide open.

    but i think over the years manufacturing gets alot better liao, difference in optical performance between leica and higher end jap lens should not have much difference. i dun think much people will be able to tell any difference of spherical aberation lesser than 1/8 wave.

    but when it comes to functions, the japs seem to have the upper hand now. today's jap lens all so advance, got usm/af-s and vr/is. dunno if leica ever going to add those technology into it's lens.

    ~MooEy~

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by MooEy
    haha 1 year old thread, not bad wor.

    anyway hor, this is wat i feel lor, leica have been beri well known for consistency lor. u can always buy a leica and know it will be sharp even wide open. jap brands not that great, in the past most of them produce cheapo prime lens which where awful wide open.

    but i think over the years manufacturing gets alot better liao, difference in optical performance between leica and higher end jap lens should not have much difference. i dun think much people will be able to tell any difference of spherical aberation lesser than 1/8 wave.

    but when it comes to functions, the japs seem to have the upper hand now. today's jap lens all so advance, got usm/af-s and vr/is. dunno if leica ever going to add those technology into it's lens.

    ~MooEy~
    Do you really need all those electronics gimmicks? Sometimes simpicity is what people wanted.
    Do you have enough of those USM/AFS/VR???? Or you need them to built a camera when mount on the tripod will hunt for the best scene and take it all by itself? Is that the best state of technology?

  9. #49

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    the attack of ckiang has returned !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Objection !!!

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by KSeet
    Hmm..interesting thread..

    Does anyone recommend the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ1?

    Hahahaha..... that's funny... but true hor... it also uses a Leica lens....

  11. #51

    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    Quote Originally Posted by ckiang View Post
    Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    Or Minolta for that matter.

    Or is it just a fad that they are sharper, more contrasty, etc?

    Regards
    CK
    OMG, i m thinking of getting LCA+ n Holga, I must b from the wrong planet.

    Nowadays the gap between japanese n german makes are small,
    there are other factors, like automation, better metering etc.
    well if canon is good enuff for george lepp or arthur morris, should b alrite for mi.

  12. #52

    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    Two questions for you:

    1. Define "outperform". Hint: It's should not be just lpm or contrast.

    2. Does it really matter? That is: Are you going to switch to Leica based on our "comments"?

    If you want reliable "scientific" and "objective" evidence, you should go look at the MTF charts and optical design diagrams and really understand them. Asking for "comments" here gets you nothing except lots of pro and anti-Leica camps slugging it out.


    Quote Originally Posted by ckiang View Post
    Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    Or Minolta for that matter.

    Or is it just a fad that they are sharper, more contrasty, etc?

    Regards
    CK

  13. #53

    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    Quote Originally Posted by casey4355 View Post
    OMG, i m thinking of getting LCA+ n Holga, I must b from the wrong planet.

    Nowadays the gap between japanese n german makes are small,
    there are other factors, like automation, better metering etc.
    well if canon is good enuff for george lepp or arthur morris, should b alrite for mi.
    Plus factor for german cams, impress the client. Priceless.

  14. #54
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    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    I've used Leica and Contax for over 40 years and Nikon for 30. MHO, FWIW...


    1. Leica lenses are consistently superb performers, from one lens to the next.
    2. Leica lenses are consistent in their 'look'. This is hard to define, but a 35 Summicron has the same 'look' as a 28 Summicron or a 75 Summicron. This is no mean feat, because it lets you forget about which lenses are great-looking, and which are just decent. You cannot say this of Nikon and Canon primes, even L- lenses.
    3. Shooting wide open, there is simply no contest. At F1.4, F2 Leica lenses perform and deliver results similar to other manufacturers lenses stopped down to F4, F5.6. This is what gives Leica bragging rights to this day as an optical company; not the long lived and very nicely made M cameras.

  15. #55

    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    wah..this thread really old

    anyway...right now i can only afford voigtlander cosina lens.. leica summicron 28 f/2.8 still some way off

  16. #56
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    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    My personal experience. I had a Nikon system, a Leica R system, a Contax G2 system and other small compacts. Both the Leica R and the Nikon systems (save my first camera a Nikkormat FTn + 50mm f2) have been sold as I no longer have much time to shoot.

    For ease of use, the Nikon system (or the Canon) are the best. If I were a pro, I would use either one. To my customers, as long as they get the photo they want, it does not matter how it is taken and neither do they want to know. My favourite Nikon lenses are the 20mm f2.8 AIS, 55mm f3.5 micro, and AFS80-200mm f2.8. The most disappointing was the 400mm f2.8 AFI.

    For the R Leicas, all the lenses are very good to fabulous. The fabulous ones are te 15mm f3.5, the 19mm f2.8, the 100mm f2.8 APO and the 280mm f4.

    The difference can only be seen when you blow them up, the larger the better. And when I scan them in, the photos taken with a Leica look more 'real' especially in the shadow areas where they have more detail.

    The Contax is better than the Nikon but not quite there with the Leica.

    The best photos I have seen from a photographer was an Australian Chinese pastor at the Botanic Gardens 10 years ago. He had a body with 3 lenses that cost him a total of S$200. The photos all came out with a reddish/purplish cast like my 30 year-old Vivitar 135mm. But the mood and the feel of the photos (4R max) was out of this world.

    For a lousy photographer like me, the Leica gives me an advantage, slightly better photos with 'nicer' more 'real' colours. A few favourites, all on Leicas, are on my walls except one shot on the Nikon 55mm f3.5.

    I am no longer willing to lug all these equipment along especially when I travel. The FX01 with all its limitations suit me fine, but sometimes I wished I had a DSLR along for enlargements. But much as I like the Leicas, I cannot see myself with another bag of cameras, even an M or for that matter a DSLR.

    But to me the Leicas rock (or they used to)!!

  17. #57

    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    wah someone really searched a 2004 thread and dug it out... lolx...

  18. #58

    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    Quote Originally Posted by zhangyb View Post
    wah someone really searched a 2004 thread and dug it out... lolx...
    eh...its a march 2002 thread

  19. #59
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    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    Quote Originally Posted by YSLee View Post
    COSINA VOIGTLANDER!!!
    Yeah !!!! Or the old Cosina lenses ....... I have a few .............
    Nikomi Canpen Zenten :eek:
    Not exactly 100% Natural but definitely the closest you can get to it

  20. #60
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    Default Re: Do you think Leica lenses outperform the top end lenses from Nikon/Canon?

    Quote Originally Posted by waileong View Post
    Two questions for you:

    1. Define "outperform". Hint: It's should not be just lpm or contrast.

    2. Does it really matter? That is: Are you going to switch to Leica based on our "comments"?

    If you want reliable "scientific" and "objective" evidence, you should go look at the MTF charts and optical design diagrams and really understand them. Asking for "comments" here gets you nothing except lots of pro and anti-Leica camps slugging it out.

    You see, to the purists, a lot of things cannot be scientifically measured. There is always such a thing as, "more 3D look" , or "something I can't explain, but the photos just look nicer, or lifelike", etc.

    But do still want to own a Leica if I have the chance and the money to spare.

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