Today’s post will focus on the lens adapter: “Hasselblad to Nikon” and “Leica M to Sony NEX” and the Voigtlander M mount 35mm f1.4 and 21mm f4.
First, lets see the Voigtlander 21mm f4 I bought in Hong Kong (400 USD)
Here it’s coupled to an M6 but of course it can be used on a NEX with the matching adapter, as well as the 35mm f1.4 you’ll see below (by the way the above picture was shot using a NEX3+ Voigtlander Nokton 35mm f1.4)
Above picture as been taken using a Zeiss 80mm f2.8 T* coupled to a D300, which setup is shown in the following group of picture (taken with the 35mm Nokton coupled to the NEX3):
On this picture you can see the Nokton @f1.4 is “creamly” soft, it’s out of focus zone being a bit prone to flare, as seen on the Nikon logo of the D300. This is OK for portrait when you usually need to be rather soft, and this softness disappears one or two stops away from f1.4, around f2.8. And keep in mind I bought it around 500 USD brand new, a Leitz 35mm f2 costs around 2000 USD and a f1.4 more than 4000 USD. I know the quality is not exactly the same, but for those like me who praise quality and price VS quality, the choice goes to Voigtländer. By the way, I’m also aware the NEX3 is only APS-C, not full-frame, and I’ll live with it (-; One day I may buy an M9, if the digital rot brings the price down to around 1000 USD. Otherwise I’ll go on shooting something else.
Back to my adapters: the manufacturer was clever enough to add a tripod mount to the adapter, takin into account that even a D300 or D700 doesn’t compete with the Hasselblad Zeiss when it comes to weight…
Now, here is a close up on the M to NEX adapter:
It’s pretty well built, 100% metal and was cheap (around 30 USD). I was happy to be able to handle it before buying, otherwise I may have doubted the quality of the hardware based on the price. It doesn’t mean anything found on ebay is OK, but be aware this is possible. Some Paris based shop sell it for around 150 euros (180 USD). Amazing.
In the next post I’ll try to give you an idea of the pros and cons of the above mentioned coupling, and try to compare it with “regular” lenses to see if all this is worth it.
I don’t have the answer yet but from my first non scientifically-backed test, the Voigtländer have what I was seeking: they give the “flare less” feeling to my pictures, especially when I’m optimistic enough to shoot in contra light. Even if it is soft @f1.4, the Nokton doesn’t give milky results when a bright light (or a window) is in the center or the corners of the picture.
A con I already knew: the 21mm f4 has a kind of “purple” vignetting, which it also has with a M8 or a M9. This is due to the almost horizontal ray of light which strikes the corner of sensor, due to the fact that the rear elements of the lens are close.
This was however successfully fixed with the excellent and free Corner Fix.
Stay tuned (-;