Freitag, 9. September 2011

Notiz an mich

 So much can happen, when you get up early! In my case "early" means 10am, since I don't have anything better to do than sleeping. So what did happen today? I went to uni, handed in my request for study aid, experienced once again the super-German-ness of the (unnecessarily) meticulous bureaucracy here, noticed that female students in Trier aren't as underwhelmingly dressed as when I left (could it be that skinny jeans finally established themselves in Germany?!), I borrowed two promising books from the library ("Sexuality" and "Porn Studies"), which should help trigger some intellectualisms in my bored brains (the first book already did, really well written!) and I embarrassed myself asking for a job by calling the best-assorted camera shop in Trier literally a photo shed (Foto-Schuppen). Lovely.

  At least they had two interesting lenses in the photo shed, the Voigtländer 15mm f4.5 Super Wide Heliar (yeah, unfortunately it is actually called "Super Wide", but not without reason - it's the second widest lens for the M-mount) and the 35mm f1.4 Nokton (also "Nokton" not without reason - it's the second fastest 35mm lens for the M-mount) that was my absolute favourite for the Nex system (you see the crazy amount of bokeh wide open to the right - as well as the otherwise also decent performance).
 Many of you will probably say now "Oh noz, he just bought the Nex, hasn't even used the 40mm Cron extensively yet and is already looking for new lenses", but I can silence those voices, because the real life experience and little testing in and outside the shop helped me get over these lenses. Both around 500€, they are pretty much as cheap as it gets for the M-mount and the Heliar has no rivals below 3000€, but I didn't quite like them on first sight - nah, that's too harsh: I didn't love them. Might sound weird, but the 40 year old Leica lenses still manage to enchant me, I just take them into my hands once in a while to feel their weight and to admire their perfect proportions. I admit, I am superficial, but these lens designs are just beautiful - a perfect match for the Nex 5, which is a milestone in design itself. Lucky me that both are not only top notch in looks, but performance, too. Doesn't mean that the Voigtländers aren't great lenses, they are and I will buy the 15mm Heliar sooner or later, but after my extensive fornication in the last eight months (only eight months!) I got older, wiser and pickier. The Leica stuff spoiled me. Again lucky, because I promised myself not to by any more camera stuff until Christmas. At least nothing that costs more than 30€ and if I should find a used Leica Noctilux on the flea market for 31€, I might just make an exception. A great offer on ebay makes it quite hard to keep the promise, though. The M39 version of the Heliar with 15mm viewfinder (which otherwise costs at least another 100€) and M39 to M-mount adapter for only 389,99€. And this offer comes from a German, not - as usual - a Chinese dealer. 3 years warranty. And the M39 version is smaller.

  Why not stay with the Summicron and be happy for once? Well, I am happy and I carry the Nex-C-Cron with me everywhere I go, but I don't get quite a few shots, simply, because the lens is too narrow. It goes all the way to f2, is very usable there and insanely sharp at f5.6, but it is a 60mm film equivalent focal length, which is almost a portrait length. Take the following shot as comparison:

  This one was made with the 15mm Heliar outside the shed. The red lines mark roughly what the 40mm would cover (I took the same shot with the 40mm so I could estimate better) and the white lines mark what the 90mm Elmar would cover. Quite tight, right? The 40mm couldn't even fit in a two storey building 30 feet away! And just imagine the field of view one the film Leica CL with REAL 15mm! Ok, that "real" is a bit over the top :D but look how cute it looks with the Heliar and the viewfinder as a little hat:! Of course I would get the lens in black.
 For people not willing to imagine stuff: the actual film coverage of the Heliar:

  Anyway, after the embarrassment I didn't dare go into the Saturn to ask for a job in the camera department.  Instead I went home and checked if there was dust on my sensor from the relentless lens swapping. Paranoid, I know, but I was right! There was one dust grain on my until  then virgin sensor! But it was easy to remove with a cotton bud. Having lost all fear from dust, I put on the 90mm Elmar for a change. Beautiful. See for yourself!

  Looooow key.... In contrast to the Cron the Elmar's gigantic, but in absolute terms, it's actually ok, especially for a 90mm (again, the second smallest). Still feels balanced in the hands and the focusing ring is the smoothest I have ever used.

   To be honest, it looks a bit like a penis with its particular length and circumference. But like a bloody marvelous penis!

  How to make a tiny lens look even tinier? Put it next to a penis! I think the Cron is actually the smallest M-mount lens, did I ever mention that (also note that the lens ends with the red dot, what comes beyond is just the rear lens cap!)?

  "But how does the Elmar perform on the Nex???", most of you will ask! Actually I don't think any of my readers would ask that. That's why I won't write to much about it. It's plenty sharp, the colours are amazing, but the minimal focusing distance is 1m, as you can see, again, to the right. Another achievment of today: I went to a furniture shop to get some tape measure so I can actually and literally start planning the furnishing of my room. I used the Cron non the picture just as a weight to hold the tape down, which otherwise curls up (because I love to roll up those measure tapes even more than to burst the bubbles on bubble wrap). Another scientific test shows that you can't do hand-held self portraits with a C-Elmar 90mm, which proves that my arm is not 1m long! Gotta love science!

Oh, and I ate instant Soba. Was ok. The seasoning is black by the way,
but the orange packing makes it look green - makes total sense, right?

 Notiz an mich: Wenn du jemals in einem Kamerafachgeschäft arbeiten willst, nenne es beim Namen und vor allem nenne es nicht einen Foto-Schupp'n!


  1. wie kommst du mit der manuellen focussierung über den monitor zurecht?

  2. ich liebe manuelles fokussieren und der monitor ist phantastisch. ich benutze peaking und den mf assist, genaues fokussieren dauert also ca. eine sekunde, manchmal zwei. wer's nicht supergenau nimmt, braucht keins von beiden und hat mitunter in weniger als einer sekunde fokussiert. mir macht es spass. sehr haptisch und es verlangsamt meine photographie, was zu besseren photos fuehrt. portraits bei f2 sind aber schwierig, wenn die leute sich viel bewegen. hab aber auch schon babies und laufende kinder mit manuellem fokus crisp hingekriegt. kanns jedem empfehlen, der manuellem fokussieren prinzipiell nicht abgeneigt ist! gruss thomas