Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2000/06/03

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Subject: Re: [Leica] 35 1.4 vs 35 2 ASPH was Summicron 2/35 pre-asph answers
From: Robert Appleby and Sue Darlow <>
Date: Sat, 03 Jun 2000 16:53:53 +0200

"Summicron-M ASPH 35mm and Summilux-M ASPH 35mm have a different fingerprint 
and therefore a diffferent audience and photographic capabilities. 
If you need F/1,4 there is no alternative. If F/2,0 is enough for you the 
flavour of Summicron-M ASPH 35mm and its price/volume are very attractive. In 
performance it and its sibling Summilux-M ASPH 35mm are in the same league."

So my question is...why does the Summilux seem to be so much more desirable 
that the Summicron...what is the difference between the 'fingerprint' and 
'audience' of the two lenses. Ok, maybe I'm nit picking. I wish I could try 
out both lenses on my own on a trial basis, but my dealer doesn't have a 
Summilux. Maybe I'll just have to flip a lot of coins. ;-)

Jim, I'm no great connoisseur of lenses, but I use the 1.4 asph for two
reasons: 1, I got it secondhand LN at a reasonable markdown, 2, 1.4 is
better than 2.0. Even at what I paid for it it was more expensive than the
2.0, but I'm delighted with it. No-one is going to be able to convince you
that one is better than the other and even shooting them side by side won't
do that, I believe. But if you need 1.4 there's no choice. So ask yourself
how much you need the extra stop. The rest is just not so important.
Erwin's comments are fascinating and no doubt very valid, and he certainly
seems to have the equipment - both bench and intellectual - to back up what
he's saying, but sometimes he seems to be musing to himself rather than
communicating information. The fingerprint and audience thing means nothing
to me, and I suspect also to most other readers of that review. My
criterion is practical: fast is good if it's not too heavy. The rest -
bokeh, fingerprints et al - don't get my juices flowing, I have to say.
That's my limitation, no doubt.
From a philistine in Paradise - 
Robert Appleby and Sue Darlow
Via Bellentani 36
41100 Modena
Tel/fax [39] 059 303436