Summitar Questions

J

jerryplemons

I have a Summitar f2 lens with the following text at the front of the lens:

Ernst Leitz Wetzler
Summitar f=5cm 1:2 No 811289

A couple of questions, please. Is this a coated lens? I shot a roll of color film and the results showed significant purple fringing in areas of high contrast, i.e., tree leaves against a bright gray overcast sky. Not sure that coating has anything to do with the results, but I was interested to know if it is a coated lens.

Is this a good, sharp lens? I don't have a good way of testing resolution except what I see in Photoshop after scanning the negatives on a Nikon Coolscan III scanner. Seems a little soft at the edges, even at higher fstops - may be my scanner.

Finally, is there a website which lists Leica lenses, serial numbers and production dates - like the sites that list Leica body serial numbers & dates?

Thanks in advance for your help,

Jerry
 
H

hektor

Dear Jerry,

Your Summitar is a coated lens.

Shoot a roll of slide/transparency film at all apertures to assess whether the lens is to your standards. Many Summitars have graced my cameras and they tended to vary in quality. One IMHO was one of the sharpest lenses I have had.

The Summitar is a good lens if your are not hyper critical.

Have fun.

Justin
 

kaptn

New Member
> One reason that some "Summitars" might seem much better than others is that > when the Summicron was first introduced it was marked as a Summitar. In > other words, there are "Summitars" out there that are really 7 element > Summicrons, a much sharper lens.
 
J

jgea

Jerry,
I find Sphen Gandy's website extremely useful:
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If you are looking for information about the Leica SM or M, you can start on his page on classic cameras, and then follow the links:
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Information about screwmount lenses:
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And about M lenses
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And this is a list of serial numbers, according to which, your Summitar is from 1950:
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I have a Summitar and my only complaint is flare. It is sharp enough for me, but I don't have any of the modern lenses...
Good luck!

Juan
 
H

hektor

Dear Al,

Sadly my super sharp Summitar did not have the * suffix. Over the years with many lenses I have found varying quality. I tried three 90mm Tele-Elmarits before settling on the one I now have, and two dual-focus Summicrons. With so much hand finishing and final adjustment, it was inevitable that quality varied, admittedly within an narrow band. Even Leitz acknowledged the variable quality by implication when annoucing the dual-focus Summicron was selected from normal Summicron production.

One thing the Summitar does need, like any early lens, it the proper lens-hood.

Regards,

Justin
 
J

jerryplemons

Thank you all for your responses. This has got to be the best, most informative, and courteous forum on the Internet. I really appreciate your help.

Jerry
 
D

david40

> Well, I find my earlier generation Summar a very useful lens with heaps of built-in character and it's very compact. I think the multi-coating on the Summitar would make the biggest difference. I read it has very faithful colour rendition and stacks up favourably even compared with modern lenses.
 
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