Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1998/06/02

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Subject: Re: [Leica] Noctilux
From: (Ted Grant)
Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 07:23:03 +0100

>bentua wrote:
>> I'm considering getting a 50 Noctilux to use as a general-purpose lens,
>> for when I want to carry only one lens and body.  I would like to
>> solicit comments about this.  I've heard it's a great performer at the
>> wide-open apertures, but how is it at the other apertures, in brighter
>> light?  I can see it's a huge lens, so how does it handle?

Ken Iisaka replied:
>IMHO, Noctilux is a special purpose lens for low-light situations, and
>where paper-thin depth of field is desired.  Besides its weight and
>bulk, its optical performance will not be that of Summicron at the same
>I would consider a Summicron 50mm or 35mm to be a more appropriate
>"general-purpose" lens.

Hello bentua.

yep the Noctilux is "heavy in the hands of some folks" but the long and
short and size's an amazingly wonderful lens at any aperture!
Worth every dollar it'll cost you simply because it opens a whole new realm
of picture taking.

As far as using it as an all round every day highnoon to low midnight lens
it will reproduce what you want it to do.

I suppose if you shot 1 Noctilux frame and then 1 Summicron frame back to
back on the same roll of film and compared them, you'd see a slight
difference. But without doing it in that fashion it's highly unlikely you
would see anything but a great recorded photograph from the Noctilux.

This is one case when I say in editing film, "if in doubt, OUT!" it doesn't
apply.. Have no doubts about the Noctilux, just go for it!!!!!!! :)

Besides if you don't like it after some reasonable time using it there will
be a great number of buyers lined up to purchase it! :)

I've used one for many many years and unders somesome pretty severe
condions both light and weather and I wouldn't have been without it.

Ted Grant
This is Our Work. The Legacy of Sir William Osler.