Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/06/05

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Subject: Re: [Leica] advice on 180mm lenses
From: Ray Moth <>
Date: Tue, 5 Jun 2001 20:06:45 -0700 (PDT)

Seth Wrote:

Sorry for the sending error. 

I am getting back to some telephotography. For many years was using 
280/4.8 Telyt on Visoflex. Sold both 6-8 years ago. For SLR work, I
have had an R6 for some years and have been limited to the 135/2.8
Elmarit, occasionally with the 2X extender. I want a 180; it's a very
useful focal length and, with the extender, gives that much more reach,
almost a 400mm.

I cannot justify the new Apo-Elmarit at over $3,000, a bit less used, 
and wouldn't want the 180 Summicron; apart the price it's simply too
heavy and bulky. The old 180/4 has a great weight/size advantage -
important to me - and I could probably live with the f/8 extender speed
- - others live comfortably with the 400/6.8. My question has to do with
the optical quality of the f/4 compared with that of the 180/2.8
lenses, both alone and with the extender. Given the constraints of
purse, limiting me to these lenses, optical performance is what
concerns me most.

Incidentally, I had been considering the 180/3.4, a truly excellent 
lens, but have heard that it does not perform well with either the
normal (understandable) or the apo  extender (not quite so

Help.       Seth     LaK 9

I bought a used 180/4, mainly because it was the only 180mm lens I
could find in Jatkarta at the time. I haven't tried it with an extender
but I'm very happy with the images I get from it, in terms of colour
saturation and sharpness. The 180/4 is handy for travel, being small
and light (even the 135mm is a heavier lens). I also like the fact that
it takes E55 filters. The 180/4 focuses closer that the 180/3.4 and, I
believe, performs somewhat better at close range ... and it's a lot
cheaper! If you haven't already done so, see Doug Herr's review of the
lens at URL:



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