Chrome v Black

agp

Well-Known Member
I have probably been silly. Persuaded Ffordes (UK) to sell me a new chrome Summicron F2 for the price of a black one. (I have spent thousands with them in recent years, so they probably wanted to keep me happy!). This is my only chroms lens, except for the 5cm Summitar for my IIIg, which doesn't really count.

However, I'm alarmed. I have black 24mm, 35mm, 90mm and 135mm lenses. The results are fantastic, but the chrome lens feels so much better, though it is quite heavy.

The black feels insubstantial. Should I change all the lenses, and will anyone give me the money to do it?

Rather frivolous post - sorry!
 

missmiw

Member
I have the chrome 50th anniversary 50 mm Summicron (and black 21/2.8, 35/2.0 and 90/2.8). And it sure feels best of ALL on my chrome MP!!!
 

hoffman

New Member
I think you may find it difficult to get somebody to exchange their chrome lenses for black lenses. I thought about it for 2 months before I bought my first Leica new lens whether to buy chrome or black lenses and for the same reason you quoted above I chose chrome. The easiest way to get round your problem is to sell your black lenses and buy chrome lenses as a seperate purchase. There are still many second hand chrome lenses for sale. Regards Brian
 

agp

Well-Known Member
Thanks for the replies to my rather silly message. The chrome is great, but the lenses work the same (don't they?), so I won't change the others. I wish I'd bought chrome at the beginning. It would have been worth the relatively little extra money. Much more expensive to change now, and for what purpose? Only one criticism - the silver chrome seems heavier, and the 50mm tilts my MP down at the front.
 

hoffman

New Member
The chrome lenses are much heavier because the chrome is plated on a brass base while the black are on a alloy base. I think the decision to keep your black lenses is the wisest decision because it could have been quite expensive to change now. I have mainly chrome lenses but I do have a couple of black lenses and both versions have their attractions. Regards Brian
 

Ricko of fla

New Member
Chrome

I just purchased a chrome M8 and I like to keep all my lens in chrome
so far a have 3 and the 4th one coming today. can hardly wait the UPS guy to show up.

Cal me MR CHrome
 

noisycheese

Member
The chrome Leica M lenses are built using brass barrels (lens bodies) whereas the black M lenses have aluminum barrels, except for the current production "black chrome" 50mm Summilux ASPH (#11688), or the discontinued pre-ASPH 50mm Summilux black paint millennium model; both of these lenses are black, but have brass barrels and are heavier due to the brass construction.

That is why the chrome lenses feel more substantial or heavy. Beyond that, there is no difference in construction or image quality if you compare (for example) a current production chrome 50mm Summilux ASPH to a current production black 50mm Summilux ASPH.

Chrome vs. black M lenses is a matter of personal taste; some Leica M shooters like black cameras and lenses for their supposed stealthiness, while some like the old world look of chrome bodies and lenses. In my humble opinion, spending money to trade black lenses for chrome lenses would be pointless in terms of lens durability or performance, unless you were to get a newer model of lens which would deliver better image quality or closer minimum focus distance.

Of course, if you just like the look of chrome (or black) lenses better, that is a separate issue.
 
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noisycheese

Member
As far as I know, MSRP is set by Leica so all dealers will be selling all new Leica products for the same price.

At B&H, the chrome 50mm Summilux ASPH (#11892) sells for $200 above the price of the black aluminum version (#11891):
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while the black chrome 50 Summilux (#11688) sells for $400 more than the chrome version ($600 higher than the black 50 'lux).
 

crocus63

Well-Known Member
One of my biggest mistakes was to buy a chrome 90mm Summicron-M. It was much heavier than a black version, so it wound up not being used as much as my other lenses.
 
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