Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

Started 3 months ago | Discussions
karlbown Forum Member • Posts: 53
Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

After previously having an M8, which was a test to see if I could get on with using a rangefinder, and enjoying it, about a year ago, I sold it with a view to getting a full frame M model.

After looking for a while I've picked up a used M 240 in black, it's got a certain amount of brassing, which adds to the charm/makes it look old (delete as appropriate), and seems to be in pretty good condition.

I take photographs for fun, and the act of photography has to be enjoyable for me. I've been through just about every manufacturer over the last few years, and though I've pretty much got on with every style of camera, my favourites have really been my Fujis (I still have an X100V right now). They're just nice items to pick up, look at, and, of course, use. I've had a few Sonys, but despite their clear technical ability I've never enjoyed using them. So tempted though I am by them, I always end up feeling disappointed.

The Leicas that I've had have been in a different class though. I had a T, which was such an interesting and attractive design, an M8, which really showed where Leica were going. And now an M 240. Which is a lovely piece of kit, solid without being huge, and just enjoyable to use and hold (for me anyway, I can see not everyone would like it).

So I'm thinking of getting a 28mm lens, mostly for street and landscape photography. Priorities for me are cost (cheaper is good), size (small lens for a small camera), and of course an ability to match the camera.

I've looked at Voigtlander Ultron (which looks like it might be fairly large) and Zeiss Biogon, but I also started seeing a few Minolta Rokkor 28mm f/2.8 M mount lenses for sale at a good price. They're very compact and seem to have solid reviews.

Anybody out there with one of these (or the Voigtlander or Zeiss, or all three!) who could give me a solid recommendation or warning as to whether I should go for one, or avoid them?

Many thanks

 karlbown's gear list:karlbown's gear list
Sony RX100 VI Fujifilm X100V Leica M Typ 240 Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R Leica Elmarit-M 28mm f/2.8 ASPH +2 more
Jonathan Robson Contributing Member • Posts: 919
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

The Ultron is a very small lens. Excellent value IMHO.

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jjcha Regular Member • Posts: 194
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

For the Minolta, be aware that that lens is prone to white spotting. If you google it, you will find much discussions of this. Most of the more affordable ones I’ve seen suffer from this, and more pristine ones usually go for more.

I just picked up a Zeiss 28mm and while it’s not as small as some of the others, it’s still pretty small, especially considering it’s got a rather small, and I have to believe ineffective lens hood.

The Voigtlander isn’t tiny either, but it’s not a large lens at all.

There are many, many good options, each with their pros and cons, for a good 28mm lens.

If size + budget is your most important priorities, you’re probably looking at the Zeiss, Voigtlander, Hexanon, Minolta.

The Leica is the smallest, but obviously you have to pay up for that. Don’t underestimate tho the importance of the lens tab shape and ergonomics. My Zeiss is nice, but the nub (which is Minolta’s approach too) isn’t as nice as a tab, IMHO.

Tomm111 Contributing Member • Posts: 863
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

The Minolta 28mm M lens has always been attractive. There is a big but with this lens, most copies have deveoped white spots under the front element. It has been enough to keep me from this lens, and I am always looking for a good inexpernsive lens. From reports it does affect the image and requires a complete tear down of the lens to remove. I just Googled the problem and it seems that spots do lower contrast of the lens but once removed the lens is an excellent 28. I would check with a repair shop and find what the repair would cost.

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OP karlbown Forum Member • Posts: 53
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

Jonathan Robson wrote:

The Ultron is a very small lens. Excellent value IMHO.

I'll check it out, maybe its the hood that makes it look big. Thanks

 karlbown's gear list:karlbown's gear list
Sony RX100 VI Fujifilm X100V Leica M Typ 240 Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R Leica Elmarit-M 28mm f/2.8 ASPH +2 more
OP karlbown Forum Member • Posts: 53
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

Thanks guys, think I'll give the Minolta a miss unless I see it up close first

 karlbown's gear list:karlbown's gear list
Sony RX100 VI Fujifilm X100V Leica M Typ 240 Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R Leica Elmarit-M 28mm f/2.8 ASPH +2 more
Jonathan Robson Contributing Member • Posts: 919
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

karlbown wrote:

Jonathan Robson wrote:

The Ultron is a very small lens. Excellent value IMHO.

I'll check it out, maybe its the hood that makes it look big. Thanks

Aaa, here is the confusion. I am referring to the f/2 version, great lens...

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/577528-REG/Voigtlander_BA288A_Ultron_28mm_f_2_0_Manual.html

I think there is a larger f/1.9 version. The f/2's hood is barely there at all.

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 Jonathan Robson's gear list:Jonathan Robson's gear list
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OP karlbown Forum Member • Posts: 53
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

Jonathan Robson wrote:

karlbown wrote:

Jonathan Robson wrote:

The Ultron is a very small lens. Excellent value IMHO.

I'll check it out, maybe its the hood that makes it look big. Thanks

Aaa, here is the confusion. I am referring to the f/2 version, great lens...

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/577528-REG/Voigtlander_BA288A_Ultron_28mm_f_2_0_Manual.html

I think there is a larger f/1.9 version. The f/2's hood is barely there at all.

That 2.0 does look very nice. It’s definitely on top of my list now. Thanks

 karlbown's gear list:karlbown's gear list
Sony RX100 VI Fujifilm X100V Leica M Typ 240 Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R Leica Elmarit-M 28mm f/2.8 ASPH +2 more
JDLaing50 Senior Member • Posts: 2,178
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

karlbown wrote:

After previously having an M8, which was a test to see if I could get on with using a rangefinder, and enjoying it, about a year ago, I sold it with a view to getting a full frame M model.

After looking for a while I've picked up a used M 240 in black, it's got a certain amount of brassing, which adds to the charm/makes it look old (delete as appropriate), and seems to be in pretty good condition.

I take photographs for fun, and the act of photography has to be enjoyable for me. I've been through just about every manufacturer over the last few years, and though I've pretty much got on with every style of camera, my favourites have really been my Fujis (I still have an X100V right now). They're just nice items to pick up, look at, and, of course, use. I've had a few Sonys, but despite their clear technical ability I've never enjoyed using them. So tempted though I am by them, I always end up feeling disappointed.

The Leicas that I've had have been in a different class though. I had a T, which was such an interesting and attractive design, an M8, which really showed where Leica were going. And now an M 240. Which is a lovely piece of kit, solid without being huge, and just enjoyable to use and hold (for me anyway, I can see not everyone would like it).

So I'm thinking of getting a 28mm lens, mostly for street and landscape photography. Priorities for me are cost (cheaper is good), size (small lens for a small camera), and of course an ability to match the camera.

I've looked at Voigtlander Ultron (which looks like it might be fairly large) and Zeiss Biogon, but I also started seeing a few Minolta Rokkor 28mm f/2.8 M mount lenses for sale at a good price. They're very compact and seem to have solid reviews.

Anybody out there with one of these (or the Voigtlander or Zeiss, or all three!) who could give me a solid recommendation or warning as to whether I should go for one, or avoid them?

Many thanks

Look at a ttartisan 28mm f/1.4

 JDLaing50's gear list:JDLaing50's gear list
Sony RX1R II Olympus PEN-F Leica M-P (Typ 240) Voigtlander 50mm F1.5 Nokton +4 more
David Kieltyka
David Kieltyka Veteran Member • Posts: 5,680
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

I have the f/1.9 LTM (screwmount) version of the Voigtländer and also the Zeiss f/2.8 ZM Biogon. I was previously a big fan of the Contax G version of the Biogon…the ZM is very similar in rendering, which is to say very sharp and tonally punchy. The Voigt f/1.9 is a moderate contrast lens by their standards, though I understand the current f/2 is contrastier. I like the lighter touch of the f/1.9 for monochrome, and often use the lens on my M8 for infrared pics via an IR-pass filter.

I'd avoid the Rokkor at this point due to the spotting issue mentioned in this thread.

Zeiss 28/2.8 Biogon, coded as a Leica 28/2.8 Elmarit, at f/5.6 or f/8.

Voigtländer 28/1.9, via an old Voigt LTM adapter that hosed manual lens coding, at f/5.6 or f/8.

Voigtländer 28/1.9, via 720nm IR-pass filter, at f/5.6 and IR focus offset.

-Dave-

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OP karlbown Forum Member • Posts: 53
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

After previously having an M8, which was a test to see if I could get on with using a rangefinder, and enjoying it, about a year ago, I sold it with a view to getting a full frame M model.

Many thanks

Look at a ttartisan 28mm f/1.4

I’m assuming this is the same as the 7artisans lens. I had it on the M8. It’s a very large heavy lens compared to the others I’m looking at. Great value but not what I’m looking for right now

 karlbown's gear list:karlbown's gear list
Sony RX100 VI Fujifilm X100V Leica M Typ 240 Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R Leica Elmarit-M 28mm f/2.8 ASPH +2 more
JDLaing50 Senior Member • Posts: 2,178
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

karlbown wrote:

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

After previously having an M8, which was a test to see if I could get on with using a rangefinder, and enjoying it, about a year ago, I sold it with a view to getting a full frame M model.

Many thanks

Look at a ttartisan 28mm f/1.4

I’m assuming this is the same as the 7artisans lens. I had it on the M8. It’s a very large heavy lens compared to the others I’m looking at. Great value but not what I’m looking for right now

Much better built and optics than 7artisans. Size isn’t bad but a good performer.

 JDLaing50's gear list:JDLaing50's gear list
Sony RX1R II Olympus PEN-F Leica M-P (Typ 240) Voigtlander 50mm F1.5 Nokton +4 more
bs1946
bs1946 Veteran Member • Posts: 6,327
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

Used the Zeiss Biogon 2.8/28mm with the M8 I had. Excellent lens.

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www.flickr.com/photos/wrs1946
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“Sharpness is a bourgeois concept”
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 bs1946's gear list:bs1946's gear list
Leica M9 Leica Summarit-M 35mm f/2.5 Leica Summarit-M 50mm f/2.5 Carl Zeiss C Biogon T* 2,8/35 ZM Carl Zeiss C Sonnar T* 1,5/50 ZM +3 more
OP karlbown Forum Member • Posts: 53
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

After previously having an M8, which was a test to see if I could get on with using a rangefinder, and enjoying it, about a year ago, I sold it with a view to getting a full frame M model.

Many thanks

Look at a ttartisan 28mm f/1.4

I’m assuming this is the same as the 7artisans lens. I had it on the M8. It’s a very large heavy lens compared to the others I’m looking at. Great value but not what I’m looking for right now

Much better built and optics than 7artisans. Size isn’t bad but a good performer.

Searched for ttartisan 28mm 1.4 and there’s no reference to it anywhere on google and it doesn’t appear on their website. Very odd.

 karlbown's gear list:karlbown's gear list
Sony RX100 VI Fujifilm X100V Leica M Typ 240 Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R Leica Elmarit-M 28mm f/2.8 ASPH +2 more
bs1946
bs1946 Veteran Member • Posts: 6,327
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

TTArtisan makes a 21mm f1.4. Perhaps he's thinking of that one. Their other two lenses are a 35mm f1.4 and a 50mm f0.05. Mattias Burling has done reviews of their lenses on YouTube if your'e interested.

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Bill S.
www.flickr.com/photos/wrs1946
instagram.com@billschaffel
“Sharpness is a bourgeois concept”
– Henri Cartier-Bresson -

 bs1946's gear list:bs1946's gear list
Leica M9 Leica Summarit-M 35mm f/2.5 Leica Summarit-M 50mm f/2.5 Carl Zeiss C Biogon T* 2,8/35 ZM Carl Zeiss C Sonnar T* 1,5/50 ZM +3 more
Foskito
Foskito Regular Member • Posts: 421
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

karlbown wrote:

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

After previously having an M8, which was a test to see if I could get on with using a rangefinder, and enjoying it, about a year ago, I sold it with a view to getting a full frame M model.

Many thanks

Look at a ttartisan 28mm f/1.4

I’m assuming this is the same as the 7artisans lens. I had it on the M8. It’s a very large heavy lens compared to the others I’m looking at. Great value but not what I’m looking for right now

Much better built and optics than 7artisans. Size isn’t bad but a good performer.

Searched for ttartisan 28mm 1.4 and there’s no reference to it anywhere on google and it doesn’t appear on their website. Very odd.

I never heard of a TTArtisans 28mm 1.4 either. Doubt it exists.

 Foskito's gear list:Foskito's gear list
Canon EOS 5D Leica M8 Leica M9-P Sony a7R II Fujifilm X-T3 +11 more
jjcha Regular Member • Posts: 194
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

karlbown wrote:

So I'm thinking of getting a 28mm lens, mostly for street and landscape photography. Priorities for me are cost (cheaper is good), size (small lens for a small camera), and of course an ability to match the camera.

I've looked at Voigtlander Ultron (which looks like it might be fairly large) and Zeiss Biogon, but I also started seeing a few Minolta Rokkor 28mm f/2.8 M mount lenses for sale at a good price. They're very compact and seem to have solid reviews.

Anybody out there with one of these (or the Voigtlander or Zeiss, or all three!) who could give me a solid recommendation or warning as to whether I should go for one, or avoid them?

Many thanks

On the side topic that others are talking about, there is no TTartisans 28mm F1.4. I'm sure someone just mistook the 7artisans 28mm F1.4, which as the OP mentioned, is a monster of a lens, but one I do like for specific purposes.

Back to the main topic - for the OP, I was in the same boat, looking for a compact 28mm as I was finding my 7artisans way too big and heavy. I considered strongly each of the Voigtlander, Zeiss, Minolta and Hexanon. I crossed off the Minolta and Hexanon off the list because I wanted a modern lens, and didn't want to worry about the white spot issue. My understanding is that the Hexanon, while a fine lens, isn't likely to match the anti-flare/contrast, whatnot of the Zeiss.

I tried each of the VM, ZM and the latest Elmarit in the shop (I live in Tokyo), and thought each were excellent in their own way.

VM is compact, for the OP, I wouldn't worry about the size at all. It's reasonably small and compact. You get that extra stop of light. But I find I don't need F2.0 versus F2.8. Also, in my test shots on my M10-P, I just subjectively didn't like how it rendered an image. I'm sure it's fine, I just didn't like it as much as the others, but this is literally based on two or three shots of salespeople and store shelves. I did prefer the ergonomics though, with the proper focus tab.

I went with the Zeiss because 1) I found a great deal, 2) I do like my Zeiss 25mm, so figured the 28mm would be fine and 3) while not as compact as the Elmarit, with a lens hood, it's about the same size (the latest Elmarit has a massive lens hood).

Really to the OP, the question is fairly simple, in my mind. Do you want the extra stop of light or prefer the focus tab? Then it's the Voigtlander. The image quality is perfectly fine.

If you want the modern sharp precision of the Zeiss optics, then go with the Zeiss.

Either one will serve you fine.

Also, don't discount getting an Elmarit ASPH.  As you probably already know, it's about the "rental" value because eventually, you are likely to sell the lens anyway, assuming you can live without the cash for a while.

Used, I've seen, in the US used markets, the 2nd generation Elmarit ASPH for sale for as low as $1900, though more often closer to $2200.  At $1900, I'd probably buy the Leica, due to being compact and the ergonomics.  But I live in Tokyo and those prices aren't easily accessible to me...

JDLaing50 Senior Member • Posts: 2,178
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

karlbown wrote:

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

After previously having an M8, which was a test to see if I could get on with using a rangefinder, and enjoying it, about a year ago, I sold it with a view to getting a full frame M model.

Many thanks

Look at a ttartisan 28mm f/1.4

I’m assuming this is the same as the 7artisans lens. I had it on the M8. It’s a very large heavy lens compared to the others I’m looking at. Great value but not what I’m looking for right now

Much better built and optics than 7artisans. Size isn’t bad but a good performer.

Searched for ttartisan 28mm 1.4 and there’s no reference to it anywhere on google and it doesn’t appear on their website. Very odd.

Correct. It is 7artisans. I have lenses from both and it’s easy to get them mixed up. It is a nice performer though.

 JDLaing50's gear list:JDLaing50's gear list
Sony RX1R II Olympus PEN-F Leica M-P (Typ 240) Voigtlander 50mm F1.5 Nokton +4 more
OP karlbown Forum Member • Posts: 53
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

jjcha wrote:

karlbown wrote:

So I'm thinking of getting a 28mm lens, mostly for street and landscape photography. Priorities for me are cost (cheaper is good), size (small lens for a small camera), and of course an ability to match the camera.

I've looked at Voigtlander Ultron (which looks like it might be fairly large) and Zeiss Biogon, but I also started seeing a few Minolta Rokkor 28mm f/2.8 M mount lenses for sale at a good price. They're very compact and seem to have solid reviews.

Anybody out there with one of these (or the Voigtlander or Zeiss, or all three!) who could give me a solid recommendation or warning as to whether I should go for one, or avoid them?

Many thanks

I tried each of the VM, ZM and the latest Elmarit in the shop (I live in Tokyo), and thought each were excellent in their own way.

VM is compact, for the OP, I wouldn't worry about the size at all. It's reasonably small and compact. You get that extra stop of light. But I find I don't need F2.0 versus F2.8. Also, in my test shots on my M10-P, I just subjectively didn't like how it rendered an image. I'm sure it's fine, I just didn't like it as much as the others, but this is literally based on two or three shots of salespeople and store shelves. I did prefer the ergonomics though, with the proper focus tab.

I went with the Zeiss because 1) I found a great deal, 2) I do like my Zeiss 25mm, so figured the 28mm would be fine and 3) while not as compact as the Elmarit, with a lens hood, it's about the same size (the latest Elmarit has a massive lens hood).

Really to the OP, the question is fairly simple, in my mind. Do you want the extra stop of light or prefer the focus tab? Then it's the Voigtlander. The image quality is perfectly fine.

If you want the modern sharp precision of the Zeiss optics, then go with the Zeiss.

Either one will serve you fine.

Also, don't discount getting an Elmarit ASPH. As you probably already know, it's about the "rental" value because eventually, you are likely to sell the lens anyway, assuming you can live without the cash for a while.

Used, I've seen, in the US used markets, the 2nd generation Elmarit ASPH for sale for as low as $1900, though more often closer to $2200. At $1900, I'd probably buy the Leica, due to being compact and the ergonomics. But I live in Tokyo and those prices aren't easily accessible to me...

Thanks for this, it's exactly the kind of analysis I wanted. The Elmarit is definitely under consideration as well, 2-3 times the cost of the others but like you said, with lenses you're only ever renting them so that price is only what you can spare at the time.

 karlbown's gear list:karlbown's gear list
Sony RX100 VI Fujifilm X100V Leica M Typ 240 Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R Leica Elmarit-M 28mm f/2.8 ASPH +2 more
Foskito
Foskito Regular Member • Posts: 421
Re: Back to M, and Minolta 28mm?

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

JDLaing50 wrote:

karlbown wrote:

After previously having an M8, which was a test to see if I could get on with using a rangefinder, and enjoying it, about a year ago, I sold it with a view to getting a full frame M model.

Many thanks

Look at a ttartisan 28mm f/1.4

I’m assuming this is the same as the 7artisans lens. I had it on the M8. It’s a very large heavy lens compared to the others I’m looking at. Great value but not what I’m looking for right now

Much better built and optics than 7artisans. Size isn’t bad but a good performer.

Searched for ttartisan 28mm 1.4 and there’s no reference to it anywhere on google and it doesn’t appear on their website. Very odd.

Correct. It is 7artisans. I have lenses from both and it’s easy to get them mixed up. It is a nice performer though.

JD, question, how do you find the size of the 7A 28mm, is not too long?

 Foskito's gear list:Foskito's gear list
Canon EOS 5D Leica M8 Leica M9-P Sony a7R II Fujifilm X-T3 +11 more
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