Reviews

Som Berthiot Flor 50mm F1.5 Lens

Som Berthiot was one of the most famous French lens manufacturer in the 20th Century and it competed with Angenieux in making Cine lenses. In 1964, SOM Berthiot merged with OPL and became SOPELEM.

Som Berthiot made series of famous lenses named:

  • Flor
  • Angulor
  • Olor
  • Cinor 

The Som Berthiot Flor 50mm F1.5 produces extraordinary colours with excellent sharpness and renders with oil painting brush style for its out of focus areas. The Lens offers Som Berthiot signature look with strong French romantic mood. It is a Legend among Cine Lenses and rarely seen or found, even more so than it’s already extremely rare little brother the Som Berthiot Flor 55mm F1.5 Lens. 

 

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Som Berthiot 50mm F0.95 Rank Taylor Hobson Monital

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Som Berthiot was one of the most famous French lens manufacturer in the 20th Century and it competed with Angenieux in making Cine lenses. In 1964, SOM Berthiot merged with OPL and became SOPELEM.

The Som Berthiot 50mm F0.95 is one of the most mysterious and anticipated cine lens. They were finished in either Chrome or Black Chrome and produced under series named Cinor, Rank Taylor Hobson and Monital. Som Berthiot named their lens “Cinor” and made the same lens for Taylor Hobson named “Sopelem Monital” 

The Som Berthiot 50mm F0.95 produces extremely creamy bokeh when shooting wide open with high sharpness at the same time. The Lens is a myth and a legend, which is extremely rarely seen and fetches astonishing prices at auctions.

 

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Dallmeyer Speed Anastigmat 2inch 50mm F1.5 Lens

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Dallmeyer is an English Lens Company made by J.H. Dallmeyer. Their cinematic lenses are famous for its out of focus rendering and oil-painting quality bokeh. Dallmeyer can be graded from Kinematogrph, Super-Six, Dallac, Speed and Septac. This is Speed, which falls between Dallmeyer most well known Super-Six and Highest graded Septac.

The Speed is in fact even rarely seen than both and it is a mix of characteristics from the Super-Six and Septac. The Lens renders with oil painting style but integrated with swirl bokeh background, which makes the rendering truly unique and one of a kind.

 

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Angenieux P2 100mm F2.5 Lens

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The extremely rare Angenieux P2 100mm F2.5, the little brother to the ultra rare Angenieux S3 100mm F2 and even less frequently available on the market. If you don’t have the big budget of $50,000+ for the Angenieux S3, then the Angenieux P2 is a great alternative at one third of the price.

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Nikkor-O CRT 55mm F1.2

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The Nikkor-O 55mm f/1.2 CRT lens was produced in the early 1970's by Nikon to take photos of oscilloscope screens. This very rare speciality lens was made for industrial use to record faint cathode-screen traces and came with a long Leica Thread mount. It can be mounted on any Nikon camera with the LF adapter and a restricted focusing range is achieved by rotating it in the adapter. Alternatively, it can be modified by a master technician and converted to Leica M mount to be used on Leica Rangefinders.

The uniqueness of Nikkor-O CRT 55mm f/1.2 lens is not because of its curvature as used in monitoring CRTs but how incredibly sharp and good it is at resolving images. Once converted to Leica M Mount, the unique character is completely presented through its motion-like bokeh provides a sense of movement for still images.


Specifications

Lens Mount: M39


Production Year: 1970s


Construction: 8 Elements / 6 Groups


Diaphragm: 13 Aperture Blades


Maximum / Minimum Aperture:  F1.2 - F11


Closet Focusing Distance: ~1m


Filter Size: 52mm


Weight: 260g

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Doo3 

Doo3 

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Nikkor P.C 8.5cm F2 LTM

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The Nikkor-P.C 8.5cm f/2 was a significant lens introduced by Nikon. The medium telephoto lens was introduced in 1953 as Nikon’s first attempt at this focal length. The lens is based on the popular Zeiss Sonnar design and It was one of their best selling lens. The Nikkor 8.5cm f/2 was competing against likes of Leica and Canon with similar focal length offerings. The size advantage and smooth rendering makes the Nikkor stands out from the rest of the competition.  

 

Lens Version

Chrome Barrel

  1. Nikon S
  2. Contax
  3. Leica Screw Mount

Black Barrel

  1. Nikon S
  2. Leica Screw Mount (Rare)


Specifications

Lens Mount: Nikon S | Contax | LTM


Production Year: 1953


LTM Mount


Construction: 5 Elements / 3 Groups


Diaphragm: 10 Aperture Blades


Maximum / Minimum Aperture:  F2 - F32


Closet Focusing Distance: 1m


Filter Size: 48mm


Weight: 425g

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Rollei Planar 80mm F2.8 HFT LTM

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In 2002, Rollei made the commercial decision to commission an improved version of the Cosina-Voigtlander Bessa R2. This was known as the Rollei 35, which includes a reproduction of their three most successful lenses:

 

1) The 40mm f/2.8 Sonnar that had incorporated the original compact Rollei 35S

2) The improved 80mm f/2.8 Planar with HFT coating as used on the Rollei GX/FX Medium Format Camera

3) The 50mm f/1.8 Planar as used on the Rollei 35 series of SLRs, which never made into actual production.


The Rollei Planar 80mm f/2.8 was designed by Carl Zeiss and made in Germany by Rollei of Braunschweig. This 80mm lens is based on the design of the famous twin lens Rolleiflex 2.8GX/FX TLR, which is an amazingly sharp and high resolution performance lens.

 

Despite being marketed as an Leica M mount or Rollei M RM mount lens, this lens is actually a Leica screw mount lens sold with an LTM to M adaptor. Therefore, it can be mounted on earlier screw mount cameras as well. Unlike the Rollei Sonnar 40mm f/2.8 HFT, which had an option of an external 40mm viewfinder, there is no external 80mm viewfinder by Rollei for this lens.


Specifications


Lens Mount: L39 | LTM


Production Year: 2003


LTM Mount


Construction: 5 Elements / 4 Groups


Diaphragm: 10 Aperture Blades


Maximum / Minimum Aperture:  F2.8 - F22


Closet Focusing Distance: 1.2m


Dimension: 55mm X 73.5mm (90mm with Hood)


Filter Size: 43mm


Weight: 475g

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Angenieux S3 75mm F1.8 Lens

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Angénieux is a French optics company in Paris founded by Pierre Angenieux in 1935. It has manufactured lenses for still and movie cameras, and also for military applications. 

The Angenieux Type S3 Lenses are the rarest and most expensive offered by Angénieux Paris. The Angenieux S3 75mm F1.8 is arguably more rare and better portrait performer than the Amazing Angenieux S3 100mm F2. It is the Holy Grail of Angenieux Lenses due to its insane rarity but also it’s magical rendering, thus demands astronomical prices in the current market.

What’s so magical about the Angenieux S3? It combines the best of both worlds, the sharpness and charmastic rendering from the Angenieux S5 & P1, with slight hint of the magical glow from the S21. The bokeh is very unique with a swirly character and is extremely smooth.

 

Specifications

Lens Mount: Leica M


Format: 35mm | 120mm (Covers Medium Format)


Focusing: Manual Focus (MF)


Diaphragm: 12 Blades


Maximum Aperture: F1.8


Minimum Aperture: F22


Closet Focusing Distance: ~0.8m


Filter Size: 49.5mm

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Futura Freiburg BR. Frilon 50mm F1.5 Lens

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The Frilon Freiburg BR. Frilon 50mm F1.5 Lens was produced briefly in the Freiburg Factory Germany during the 1950s and it was the Fastest of all the Standard FL Lenses available for Futura 35mm Cameras.

The Futura 50mm F1.5 lenses have a unique M34 mount with the focussing mechanism part of the camera body rather than on the lens. There were a few examples available in Leica M39 Screw Mount and the rest could be modified to be used on Leica M Cameras.

It is a Rare Cine Lens due to its short production run and Seldomly Seen on the Market. 

 

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Dallmeyer Septac Anastigmat 2inch 50mm F1.5 Lens

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Dallmeyer Pre-Septac Anastigmat 50mm f/1.5

Dallmeyer is an English Lens Company made by J.H. Dallmeyer. Their cinematic lenses are famous for its out of focus rendering and oil-painting quality bokeh. The Septac Lens composition is Seven elements in Four groups with Double Gauss Type Glass Design. Due to its extremely limited numbers that generally demands astronomical prices on the market.

Dallmeyer can be graded from Kinematogrph, Super-Six, Dallac, Speed and Septac. This belongs to the “Pre-Series,” which is before everything and the earliest Septac. This is much rarer than Septac and offers better rendering with oil-painting style bokeh. The lens been uncoated, making it perhaps the Rarest Dallmeyer Lens.

 

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Dallmeyer Super-Six 2inch 50mm F1.9 Lens

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Dallmeyer is an English Lens Company made by J.H. Dallmeyer. Their cinematic lenses are famous for its out of focus rendering and oil-painting quality bokeh.

Due to its limited production numbers that demands very high prices on the market. It’s cine lenses can be graded from the following series: Kinematogrph, Super-Six, Dallac, Speed and Septac, which is the ultimate and the rarest. However, Dallmeyer is most well-known for its Super-Six series, which offers strong 3D image quality, unique colour rendering, swirly and oil-painting like bokeh.

Although Dallmeyer Super-Six 50mm f1.9 is famous as the standard lens of Witness Camera which has been manufactured by the British Ilford Corporation, the Lens shown here is very early production lens that is later converted to Leica mount. The Lens composition is Six elements in Four groups with Double Gauss Type Glass Design. They were made with extremely expensive rare earth elements that earned them the name “Super Six.”

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Dallmeyer Super-Six 3inch 76mm F1.9 Lens

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Dallmeyer is an English Lens Company made by J.H. Dallmeyer. Their cinematic lenses are famous for its out of focus rendering and oil-painting quality bokeh.

Due to its limited production numbers that demands very high prices on the market. It’s cine lenses can be graded from the following series: Kinematogrph, Super-Six, Dallac, Speed and Septac, which is the ultimate and the rarest. However, Dallmeyer is most well-known for its Super-Six series, which offers strong 3D image quality, unique colour rendering, swirly and oil-painting like bokeh.

There are significant differences in image quality and price between each series. Also within each series there are both coated and uncoated versions, with the recognisable “DC” Dallmeyer Coating but uncoated versions are generally more rare and collectible.

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Angenieux Type P1 90mm F1.8 Lens

Angenieux Type P1 90mm f/1.8

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Angénieux is a French optics company in Paris founded by Pierre Angenieux in 1935. It has manufactured lenses for still and movie cameras, and also for military applications.

The Angenieux 90mm F1.8 Type P1 is a famous portrait lens made by Angénieux between 1950 to 1961 and available in A1 or A2 models. The lens is well-known for its extreme high resolution, exceptional smooth bokeh and romantic colour rendering.


Specifications

Lens Mount:

M39 | M42 | Exakta | Rectaflex


Production Year: 1950


Construction:

5 Elements / 4 Groups


Diaphragm: 12 Blades


Maximum Aperture: F1.8


Minimum Aperture: F22


Closet Focusing Distance: 1m


Filter Size: 56mm


Weight: 380g

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Konica Hexanon 60mm F1.2 Lens (Compared with Konica 50mm F1.2)

Konica Hexanon 60mm F1.2 LTM 

The Konica Hexanon 60mm F1.2 has always been one of my dream lenses. It is a very rare lens with a limited production number of only 800 units worldwide. The unique focal length of 60mm with a large aperture of f/1.2 making this lens very special, which is the only 60mm f/1.2 lens ever made for any rangefinder cameras.

The Konica Hexanon 60mm F1.2 lens is offered in the original version with L-Mount back in 1955 or the revised modern version with LTM Mount in 1999. Both versions can be easily adapted to Leica M or other mounts using the right adapter.

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Build Quality

The build quality of the Konica Hexanon 60mm f/1.2 lens is excellent and on par with some of Leica lenses. The build quality is very similar to its little brother, the Konica Hexanon 50mm F1.2 lens but it is finished in matte black paint barrel with a chrome front rim.

The Konica Hexanon 60mm f/1.2 lens is relatively smaller size and light weight compared to other similar ultra fast lenses. The lens weights almost the same as the Konica Hexanon 50mm F1.2 at just over 400 grams for such large aperture lens. The focus ring feels buttery smooth when turning and the aperture ring clicks solidly in place with half stop increments.

 

Image Quality

The Image Quality of Konica Hexanon 60mm f/1.2 is nothing short of amazing. The lens produces medium to high contrast, excellent colour saturation with very smooth and pleasant bokeh. When shooting wide open, it is extremely sharp with great three dimensional image pop.

This Lens has Dual Characters

1) Under Normal or Not Ideal Lighting Conditions: It renders just like the Konica Hexanon 50mm F1.2 Lens with similar signature especially in low light or cloudy environment.

2) Under Great or Ideal Lighting Conditions: It renders like Oil Painting with vivid colours and extremely pleasant background under sunny or well-lit environment.

 

Specifications

Lens Mount: L39 | LTM


Production Year: 1955 | 1999


LTM Mount


Construction: 7 Elements / 6 Groups


Diaphragm: 10 Aperture Blades


Maximum / Minimum Aperture:  F1.2 - F16


Closet Focusing Distance: 0.8m


Filter Size: 58mm


Weight: 410g

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The Full Set Includes:

  • Konica Hexanon 60mm F/1.2 LTM
  • Chrome Auxiliary Viewfinder (KONICA 60)
  • Chrome Konica UV Filter
  • Black Vented Lens Hood (KONICA HEXANON 1.2/60 JAPAN)
  • Black Front Cap and Rear Cap (HEXANON)
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Angenieux Type S5 50mm f/1.5 Lens

Angenieux Type S5 50mm F1.5 

This is the Overview of the rarer version of the Angenieux S5 50mm f/1.5 Lens named the Kodak Cine Ekton 50mm f/1.5 Lens made by Angénieux, which essentially has very similar optical qualities to the regular Angenieux S5.

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Angénieux Paris are famous for their still and cine lenses and some of them are traded at extremely high prices. The Type S5 tends to be most popular in the Angenieux Type S lineup, which it is crowned with the Double Gauss Optical configuration. That is the reason why the Angenieux 50mm f/1.5 Type S5 lens is so expensive and very difficult to obtain.

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The Angenieux 50mm f/1.5 Type S5 Lens comes in different versions and all can be modified to Leica M mount to cover full frame. Once converted, the lens can be used on Leica Rangefinders as a all-purpose 50mm lens, which is capable of handling strong glare or shoot in low-light conditions. The Angenieux S5 50mm f/1.5 lens produces extremely high resolution and saturated colour images.

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Rendering

  • Produces “Movie-Like” Images
  • Original Cinematic Effects
  • Smooth and Unique Bokeh
  • High Contrast
  • Rich Colour Saturation
  • Film Grain Qualities (Night Scenes)
  • One-of-Kind Cine Lens
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Kodak Cine Ekton 50mm f/1.5 Lens Gallery

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Kodak Ekton 50mm f/1.5 Lens

Kodak Cine Lens Made By Angenieux

My Pathway to Document this Incredibly Rare Cine Lens (Regular Update)

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Kodak Cine Ekton 50mm f/1.5 lens is the ultra rare “Kodak” edition of the Angenieux Type S5 50mm f/1.5 lens. It is the Kodak Cine Lens Made By Angenieux Paris. This Cine Lens produces cinematic rendering with strong movie mood and rich colour saturation. It offers even better bokeh and colour tone than the normal Angenieux S5.

The Kodak Ekton produces incredibly sharp images when shooting wide open just like modern aspherical lenses and renders film like qualities under extreme low light conditions.

 

Rendering:

  • Produces “Movie-Like” Images
  • Original Cinematic Effects
  • Smooth and Unique Bokeh
  • High Contrast
  • Rich Colour Saturation
  • Film Grain Qualities (Night Scenes)
  • One-of-Kind Cine Lens

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Angenieux M1 50mm F0.95 Lens

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Angenieux is a French cinematic optics manufacturer founded in 1936. It has made lenses for still and movie cameras, and for military applications.

The ultra fast Angenieux 50mm F0.95 movie camera lens has increasing popularity in the past decade through the adaptability of cine lenses onto new digital camera systems including conversion to use on Leica M.

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Comparable Lenses

Canon 50mm F0.95 (1961)

Schneider Xenon 50mm F0.95 (1970)

Leica Noctilux 50mm F1 (1975)

Leica Noctilux 50mm F0.95 (2008)


Rendering

The Angenieux 50mm F0.95 was originally designed as a Cine lens and it does not fully cover the 35mm full frame. It offers signature Angenieux colour and bokeh, which is vividly romantic with a strong movie mood. It is sharp wide open as all other pre-aspherical ultra fast lenses without visible glow or prone to flares. The lens produces medium contrast with high cinematic rendering.

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Modification

The Angenieux 50mm F0.95 can be adapted to be used on modern digital camera systems such as Micro Four Third and Sony NEX. It can also be physically converted to Leica M Mount through the additions of an aperture ring, diaphragm blades to control apertures, focusing barrel and a new heilcoid to allow full functionality on Leica Rangefinders.

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Leica M Modifications can be done by the following skilled technicians:

-Miyazaki San (Japan)

-Traditional Master (Hong Kong)

-Hawks Factory (Taiwan)

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Kinoptik Apochromat 75mm F2 Lens

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Kinoptik is a French cinematic optics manufacturer founded by Georges Grosset and Gerozes Perthuis in 1932. The Kinoptik Apochromat lens series has excellent apochromatic optical design and also benefits from the symmetrical Double Guass lens construction, which results extreme high resolution with rich colour saturation and unique bokeh.

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Versions:

  1. FOYER
  2. FOCALE
  3. APO

 

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Specifications


Production Year: 1944 onwards


Construction: 6 Elements / 4 Groups


Diaphragm: 16 Blades


Design Features

  • Double Gauss


Maximum / Minimum Aperture:  F2 - F16


Closet Focusing Distance: 1m


Weight: 490g

 

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Alpa Kern Macro Switar 50mm F1.8/F1.9 Lens

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Introduction

The Alpa Kern Macro Switar 50mm was exclusively made for Alpa cameras by Kern Aurau in Switzerland. Alpa is a precision Swiss watchmaker combined forces with Kern who was famous for making optical glass at the time to produce this legendary lens. The Kern Switar 50mm F1.8 was firstly introduced in 1951 and replaced by Macro Switar in 1958 with close focusing capability of 28cm for macro photography. The Kern Macro Switar 50mm F1.9 was introduced in 1968 with revised lens design and newer coatings for improved optical performance.

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Build Quality

Alpa is known as the precision watchmaker thus no surprise that the Alpa Kern Switar 50mm lenses were extremely well engineered. The build quality is excellent and on par with well-known cinematic lens makers such as Angenieux or Schneider at the time. The Kern Switar 50mm lenses were hand assembled and finished in either chrome, black paint or combination of both. 

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Image Quality

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Image quality from the Alpa Kern Switar 50mm lenses are exceptional and the lens excels at macro photography. Images produced are extremely sharp with high contrast and vivid colour saturations. Alpa claimed that this is an apochromatically corrected lens of unequalled quality, which is found to be true in most situations.

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The Kern Macro Switar 50mm Lenses have close focusing capability when used with liveview for macro photography. The details retained by this lens is incredible with extreme sharpness and pleasant rendering, which is an amazing achievement on modern rangefinders.

 

Practical Use

Unlike Modern lens design, when the aperture ring is turned that the yellow dots appeared indicating the visifocus depth-of-field scale for the selected aperture stops. The focus ring has an extremely long throw and takes several turns to reach the minimum focusing distance of 28cm equivalents to 1.8x magnification, which is extremely useful for close-up work.

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Modern photography technological aids such as live-view or high resolution electronic viewfinder, which allows to maximise the ability of the Kern Macro Switar 50mm Lenses to reach its full potential for macro photography.  

 

Alpa Kern Macro Switar 50mm F1.8

VS

Alpa Kern Macro Switar 50mm F1.9

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The Kern Switar 50mm F1.9 Lens was introduced later with revised lens design and newer optical coatings compared to the Kern Switar 50mm F1.8 Lens for improved performance. The Kern Switar 50mm F1.8 has golden yellow colour coating whereas the Kern Switar 50mm F1.9 has golden yellow with purple coloured coatings.

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The Kern Switar 50mm F1.9 has updated lens design with an additional element with 8 elements in 5 groups compared to 7 elements in 5 groups of the Kern Switar 50mm F1.8 Lens. The Diaphragm blades also have been moved forward in position. The improved lens design resulted better optical performance for the newer Kern Switar 50mm F1.9 Lens.


Lens Versions

  Nekogahora Camera Collection  (Clockwise)

 Nekogahora Camera Collection (Clockwise)

  1. Macro Switar 50/1.9 (Surgical 81)
  2. Macro Switar 50/1.9
  3. Macro Switar 50/1.9 (Gold Plated)
  4. Kern Aarau Switar (Automatic Diaphragm)
  5. Macro Switar 50/1.8 (Black Paint)
  6. Macro Switar 50/1.8

 

Adapters

There are three popular Alpa to Leica M adapter options on the current market and the price is reflected in it’s materials & build quality. The finish of the adapters are mostly in either Chrome or Black and most adapters are Rangefinder Coupled. However, during actual use might require manual calibration to work perfectly on Rangefinders.

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I will rank the adapter brands from most to the least expensive:

  1. Shogun
  2. Metabones
  3. Kipon
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Specifications

Lens Mount: Alpa


Production Year:  1951 (F1.8) | 1968 (F1.9)


Construction:

7 Elements / 5 Groups (F1.8) 

8 Elements / 5 Groups (F1.9)


Diaphragm:  9 Blades


Maximum Aperture:  F1.8 | F1.9


Minimum Aperture:  F22


Closet Focusing Distance:  0.28m


Filter Size:  48mm


Weight:  280g

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Voigtlander Nokton 50mm F1.5 Aspherical VM Lens

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50mm is my favourite focal length as it best represents human eye perspective for street photography. The Leica 50mm F1.4 Summilux ASPH Lens is my favourite out of them all and I have tried similar fast 50mm lenses offered in Leica M mount, which includes the Zeiss 50mm F1.5 Sonnar ZM and Voigtlander Nokton 50mm F1.5 Aspherical VM Lens.

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The Voigtlander Nokton 50mm F1.5 Aspherical has a classic barrel design  with all metal construction finished in either black aluminium or chrome brass. The lens is inspired by the original LTM version made in the 1950s and specifically manufactured the modern version with classic looks. It uses the same basic lens design as the classic version with modern performance by incorporating an aspherical element into the optical design to reduce aberration and distortion with improved sharpness. When shooting the lens wide open at its maximum aperture allows it to generate shallow depth of field with pleasant smooth bokeh. It is the best combination of modern and classic world.

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Specifications

Lens Mount: VM | Leica M Mount


Construction: 6 Elements / 5 Groups


Diaphragm: 10 Blades


Maximum / Minimum Aperture:  F1.5 - F16


Closet Focusing Distance: 0.7m


Filter Size: 49mm


Weight: 220g / 293g (Black | Silver)

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Gallery

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