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Voigtlaender Color Skopar f4 21mm
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 2:24 am    Post subject: Voigtlaender Color Skopar f4 21mm Reply with quote

Recently acquired a used copy of the Voigtlaender Color Skopar f4/21mm, the late version in Leica M mount
( for being roughly 28mm equivalent, though this lens actually being about 31 to 32mm, which is about my favorite focal lengths on APS-C for the street )



yesterday I had my first day out with it, photos taken with Ricoh GXR M, morning walk around Katano, Japan:







wide open:


at the Keihan railway station leaving for Kyoto:




at the Tojukuji temple, popular in this season due to the coloring of the Japanese maple:


flare produced against low sun ( at Fushimi Inari )


this is how it looks on the cam used:


So far I am very impressed!


PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 2:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was surprised of how different this Color Skopar handles the electrical lights as compared to my Super Wide Heliar 4.5/15 in this sample shots of an (in)famous, old movie hall in downtown Osaka taken the other night:
( jpegs straight of the cam, the reduced full frames sharpened, the 100% crops untreated )

the 4/21 Skopar:


the 4/15 Heliar:


the 100% crops, the Skopar:


and Heliar:


I wonder if this difference also is due to my Heliar being the old LTM version while the Skopar is the newer Leica M version?
There are LTM versions of the 4.5/15, 4/21 and 4/25 which share a similar, smaller body than the Leica M version of the three which again share a similar, somewhat bigger body. I have the LTM versions of the 4.5/15 and 4/25, now the Leica M version of the 4/21 and just discovered that the Leica M version, for better focus tab and for also having a aperture ring tab, imo handles better.


PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 3:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No corner problems on the sensor then.
I heard of trouble with the A7.
Looks very nice on the camera, an appropriate size.


PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 3:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

luisalegria wrote:
No corner problems on the sensor then.
I heard of trouble with the A7.
Looks very nice on the camera, an appropriate size.


oh, as far as I know there are no known corner issues with any of the RF wide angles on the Ricoh GXR M. After all it is the only ( besides the Leicas ) digital camera that has a sensor that is optimized for rangefinder lenses.
This certainly shows, I can confirm good corners ooc for the CVs 4.5/15 and 4/25, after first samples I'd say also for the 4/21
( I have been wondering if these lenses used on A7 and cropped to APS-C, without corner fix, actually, as one should expect, outperform the Ricoh M. They should but I am not sure, if anyone has the Ricoh M and any of the A7 I'd very much appreciate such a comparison! )

yes, it fits the camera well. Even though the GXR's grip isn't deep it's generally a very nice handling camera, the rubber helps, most RF lenses make a good fit

if wanted to view any of these or other pics taken with this lens in full resolution, here it's set on my flickr:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/kuuan/sets/72157647024844563


PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2015 1:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Although mine is the M39/LTM version it's basically the same lens.

From today's dog-walk, shot with Ricoh GXR-M (6 pictures merged) and clickable for larger view:



Unfortunately not failure-free. Next time I should rather use the tripod. Wink


PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2015 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

nice vineyards Thomas Smile

luisalegria wrote:
No corner problems on the sensor then.
I heard of trouble with the A7.
Looks very nice on the camera, an appropriate size.


now I also have the A7 and imo the Skopar looks alright on the A7 too:

the GXR M is smaller than the A7 but the Sony isn't all that much bigger neither

the Skopar does produce smeared corners and far right and left sides, a corner untreated and uncropped pic from yesterday

a 100% crop from low left corner:

still must verify if the Heliar 15mm, Skopar 21mm and 25mm on the A7, after fully cropping smeared areas, produce a wider view than on the GXR M


PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2015 3:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Andreas,

Well, I am enjoying the "Sturm" already. Is there an English word for that?
BTW, the grapes are extremely promising this year. I think this will be the best wine of the century so far. Wink

However, I am still very happy with my GXR's without corner smearing. For wider angles I still have my CV 12mm Ultra-Wide. Very Happy


PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2015 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tb_a wrote:
@Andreas,

Well, I am enjoying the "Sturm" already. Is there an English word for that?
BTW, the grapes are extremely promising this year. I think this will be the best wine of the century so far. Wink

However, I am still very happy with my GXR's without corner smearing. For wider angles I still have my CV 12mm Ultra-Wide. Very Happy


Sturm, right on! I'd say 'half fermented wine', an amazing drink, love it! For 'non-Austrians: Wink : http://www.austrianwine.com/servicelinks/glossary/wine-glossary/glossar/sturm-1742/
as you know around my area it's all 'Most', a cider, light alcoholic drink made out of pears, sometimes apples, love that too Smile

I'd love to have the CV 12mm, had considered it instead of the A7, a new one costs abt. the same as a used A7


PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2015 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

one taken on NEX5n:
street livin by Andreas, on Flickr

and a few on Ricoh GXR M:
Roti Canai by Andreas, on Flickr

newly wed by Andreas, on Flickr

China town by Andreas, on Flickr

Tuk Tuk by Andreas, on Flickr

happy cat by Andreas, on Flickr

Buddha by Andreas, on Flickr


PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2015 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The lens is fantastic on that RIOCH Smile I don't think you will ever see it better on digital.

So much better than with a Nex-5, where I shot it often.


PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 4:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kuuan,
You should eat what is inside the head of the shrimps. You loose the best of them !
You should say to non Austrians that Sturm can be terrible once you have drunk.!


PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 5:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Skopar does indeed deliver far less convincing results on the Sony A7 than on the Ricoh. The new 15/4.5 type III is probably your best bet for RF ultrawides on the A7, although the 12/5.6 is not bad (no smeared corners, only vignetting and a hint of purple in certain situations but this is very easy to correct).

tb_a wrote:
Well, I am enjoying the "Sturm" already. Is there an English word for that?

The English word is federweisser (obviouslyly borrowed from German). In France, it is called "vin bourru" (surly wine) or "bernache".
It has indeed a very nice and refreshing taste but, as stated by memetph, it can be terrible if you don't drink it with moderation!

Cheers!

Abbazz


PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 5:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Abbazz wrote:
The Skopar does indeed deliver far less convincing results on the Sony A7 than on the Ricoh. The new 15/4.5 type III is probably your best bet for RF ultrawides on the A7, although the 12/5.6 is not bad (no smeared corners, only vignetting and a hint of purple in certain situations but this is very easy to correct).

tb_a wrote:
Well, I am enjoying the "Sturm" already. Is there an English word for that?

The English word is federweisser (obviouslyly borrowed from German). In France, it is called "vin bourru" (surly wine) or "bernache".
It has indeed a very nice and refreshing taste but, as stated by memetph, it can be terrible if you don't drink it with moderation!

Cheers!

Abbazz


In Normandy they have a cider Sturm which is called simply " la boisson". Easier to drink than austrian wine Sturm but similar consequences ... Most is a more friendly drink.


PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 6:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

memetph wrote:
Easier to drink than austrian wine Sturm but similar consequences ...


To drink Sturm is also a matter of timing, i.e. the status of the fermentation process of the Sturm is very important.
It's still in a very light state but next month it will be already stronger.
However, if you drink way too much it may work like a laxative. Wink


PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

@ uhuh7: the Ricoh is fantastic, specially for RF lenses but actually, compared to images produced by my Sonys generally I prefer it's colors, the photos I take with any lens. If only Ricoh made a FF M mount camera specialized for RF glass..

@ memetph: you are right, specially if it was bigger shrimp. This was in a local place near the coast in Malaysia famous for shrimp soup, there were so many fresh shrimp and already I had sucked the heads more than most people around Wink I think I never had got drunk with Sturm, never had suffered bad consequences..yet Wink

@ Abbazz: thank you for your thumbs up for both the 15mm Heliar III and the 12mm on the A7! Very desirable lenses.
exactly, Federweisser, and there are a number of other German/Austrian names for it like Bitzler, Bremser, Kraetzer, Neuer Suesser, Neuer Wein, Sauser and Suser, see: https://wienerweinguide.wordpress.com/2013/09/02/traubenmost-sturm-staubiger-jungwein/ Federweisser to Austrians wouldn't really sound right

@ again memethp: Here in the 'Mostviertel' the first fresh fruit juices made mostly from pears, often mixed with apples, the 'Suessmost' is sold now. I believe that there is a special name for half fermented Most but I can't think of it, possibly it is also referred to as 'Sturm', 'Most Sturm' then. Anyway delicious stuff Smile

another take on the GXR M:
Untitled by Andreas, on Flickr


PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the Ricoh was full frame, the lens would not look so great LOL

It is not fantastic on the M9. Usable, barely, and of course light years ahead of the A7.

I'd imagine, though, it's even better than your Rioch on the Leica M8. It has the thinnest sensor cover of all, a much more mild crop, yet the less than stellar digital edges are still cropped out.

Here is the anti-skopar, which I replaced it with:


Ross Lakes Pass by unoh7, M9 SEM 21


Sunset Slopes by unoh7, on Flickr

It's alot bigger, but you have everything from wide open. The edges are better at f/3.4 than the skopar edges at f/11.

only 10 times the price Wink Well maybe not quite, since picky users of the skopar have been known to try 4 copies before they found one properly centered. That's also a problem APS-C would mask.

But the centers are fantastic on about any camera Smile


PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2015 5:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

uhoh7 wrote:
If the Ricoh was full frame, the lens would not look so great LOL

It is not fantastic on the M9. Usable, barely, and of course light years ahead of the A7.

I'd imagine, though, it's even better than your Rioch on the Leica M8. It has the thinnest sensor cover of all, a much more mild crop, yet the less than stellar digital edges are still cropped out.

It's alot bigger, but you have everything from wide open. The edges are better at f/3.4 than the skopar edges at f/11.

only 10 times the price Wink Well maybe not quite, since picky users of the skopar have been known to try 4 copies before they found one properly centered. That's also a problem APS-C would mask.

But the centers are fantastic on about any camera Smile


Well, it's an old story that it's always the combination of lens and camera. It's no wonder that a lens from Leitz which has been optimized for the Leica M9 works best on this camera. Everything else would be rather disastrous for Leitz. It's also no secret that there are some issues like color shift, etc. with the CV Skopar on the M9.
The Skopar was developed for film and not for digital and there it works best also in FF mode.
Besides that the Ricoh GXR-M was and still is the only camera which was designed and built to make use of all existing RF lenses in Leica M mount (and of course in LTM). The people at Ricoh did a very good job to enable the most possible compatibility and quality for those lenses. IMHO it's still unbeaten for that.

Therefore we should not compare apples with eggs. Wink

BTW, I won't change my Ricoh to a M8. The slightly bigger sensor of the M8 doesn't compensate the better functionality and versatility of the Ricoh.

Finally there will always be a better or more perfect solution if money and effort don't matter. Every large format camera will beat any Leica by far. Wink


PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2015 4:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

tb_a wrote:
uhoh7 wrote:
If the Ricoh was full frame, the lens would not look so great LOL

It is not fantastic on the M9. Usable, barely, and of course light years ahead of the A7.

I'd imagine, though, it's even better than your Rioch on the Leica M8. It has the thinnest sensor cover of all, a much more mild crop, yet the less than stellar digital edges are still cropped out.

It's alot bigger, but you have everything from wide open. The edges are better at f/3.4 than the skopar edges at f/11.

only 10 times the price Wink Well maybe not quite, since picky users of the skopar have been known to try 4 copies before they found one properly centered. That's also a problem APS-C would mask.

But the centers are fantastic on about any camera Smile


Well, it's an old story that it's always the combination of lens and camera. It's no wonder that a lens from Leitz which has been optimized for the Leica M9 works best on this camera. Everything else would be rather disastrous for Leitz. It's also no secret that there are some issues like color shift, etc. with the CV Skopar on the M9.
The Skopar was developed for film and not for digital and there it works best also in FF mode.
Besides that the Ricoh GXR-M was and still is the only camera which was designed and built to make use of all existing RF lenses in Leica M mount (and of course in LTM). The people at Ricoh did a very good job to enable the most possible compatibility and quality for those lenses. IMHO it's still unbeaten for that.

Therefore we should not compare apples with eggs. Wink

BTW, I won't change my Ricoh to a M8. The slightly bigger sensor of the M8 doesn't compensate the better functionality and versatility of the Ricoh.

Finally there will always be a better or more perfect solution if money and effort don't matter. Every large format camera will beat any Leica by far. Wink


Oh I would not tell you to sell the Ricoh, which is such a nice camera, and the Skopar works very well there. I was always amazed by the centers on my Nex-5, better than so many of my lenses. I have also seen very strong work with the lens on the M9, from those who know how to finesse it, and have taken care to find a good copy.

The M8, though, is a steal today, less than a M6 in many cases, and capable of incredible imagery, not to mention the film like handling of the RF. APS-C always drove me crazy, as I love the glass and want to see 21 as 21 Smile But the M8 crop is way less.



It was the 21 skopar which inspired the Kolari Mod on the A7 series. A bit of a heavy lift, but much progress was made:


a7M_CV21_11 by unoh7, on Flickr

nearly usable at f/11 Smile The SEM 21 is well beyond usable on the A7.mod:


SEM21_5.6_corrected by unoh7, "corrected" means I adjusted the brightness a bit, no cornerfix.

On the M9 or 240, it's the best 21 ever made, I think, and the A7.mod is not quite there, but better than any 21mm the stock A7 can shoot. But I do wish the Skopar was closer to the SEM 21 on digital FF, because it is a joy to carry. Practically weightless.


PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2015 8:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

@uhoh7

I certainly understand where you are coming from. I really would like to have the same "comfort" on RF digital like on DSLR digital or in the old film times to use a 21mm lens as designed. However, as I have different sets of cameras, lenses and formats I will always have such problems; e.g. 65mm on my "Texas Leica" correspond to 28mm FF. Wink
The main advantage of my RF line is the small size and weight and when the 21mm lens doesn't cover the scenery I simply change to a shorter focal length, i.e. 15 or even 12mm.
Bottom line is that my set of RF lenses from 12 to 135mm do cover almost all possible needs and deliver excellent results on the Ricoh APS-C. For extreme requirements I can always switch to my analog Bessa and use the 12mm as designed on film. Those results are still sensational (when the right combination of film and scanner is used).
So finally from my experience it's IMHO better to have these small portable sets with me than the much heavier and bigger equipment at home.
My quite nice set of a FF DSLR and good quality primes is rarely used nowadays since I have the Ricoh's. Wink
Therefore any measurement to increase the weight and size of my equipment again will lead to lesser activities in outdoor photography. That's the story behind.


PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2015 8:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

uhoh7 wrote:
If the Ricoh was full frame, the lens would not look so great LOL..


most probably but mere speculation both ways, however since the GXR M does better with RF lenses than any other APS-C cam there is founded hope that a FF Ricoh, again optimized for RF lenses, would be doing remarkably well too.


PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2015 9:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kuuan wrote:
uhoh7 wrote:
If the Ricoh was full frame, the lens would not look so great LOL..


most probably but mere speculation both ways, however since the GXR M does better with RF lenses than any other APS-C cam there is founded hope that a FF Ricoh, again optimized for RF lenses, would be doing remarkably well too.


+1

I'm certainly sharing the same opinion. Wink


PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2015 6:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kuuan wrote:
uhoh7 wrote:
If the Ricoh was full frame, the lens would not look so great LOL..


most probably but mere speculation both ways, however since the GXR M does better with RF lenses than any other APS-C cam there is founded hope that a FF Ricoh, again optimized for RF lenses, would be doing remarkably well too.


No question Ricoh is best APS-C for M, period.

However I do not think they can do any better than Leica FF. As well, certainly. It's really all about the cover glass. There are limits. M8 is the thinnest ever.

So my real point is: the weak aspects of the lens are at the edges on digital. GXR crops these. GXR FF would not. We would see them as we do on the M9. So I stand by my point, which is not speculation but observation based on what we already know.

Crop out the weak zone and the lens will appear a more potent design. Smile


PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2015 5:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

yesterday took some pics with the Skopar 4/21 here in China town of Ho Chi Minh City with the A7. I was happy to find that for most street photos I don't find the smeared corners to disturb me much, actually was surprised to the upside. Smearing is there but I wouldn't say that the lens is unusable on the A7, however certainly don't want to argue with those who say so, given that for landscape or architectural shots they often will be more disturbing

uncropped and untreated corners, 100% crops of them ( to be precise first pic is a bit cropped but on the lower left corner, not on the top right of the 100% crop )

Untitled by Andreas, on Flickr



Untitled by Andreas, on Flickr




PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2015 6:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Focusing on infinity makes the things worse.

This pictures are made in Cholon ? Did the people stop saying "Saigon" and " Cholon" ?


PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2015 6:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

memetph wrote:
Focusing on infinity makes the things worse.

This pictures are made in Cholon ? Did the people stop saying "Saigon" and " Cholon" ?


right! of course f stop and where focus exactly sits also play a role. intended use of this lens for me above all is 'street' and I believe I will be satisfied with it for that.
and right again, for locals it is 'Cho Lon' and 'Saigon', but 'Cho Lon' most others wouldn't understand, usually I do say Saigon but officially it is Ho Chi Minh City.

Untitled by Andreas, on Flickr