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Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.
  
 
Gricoh
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


Hi everyone, I hope you can help me with something.
Namely, I am looking to complete my travel kit with a high quality mid-telephoto prime lens which I intend to use for environmental portraits and landscapes, with landscapes with a bit of compression being the main draw for me.

Currently I own an a7r mk I which I am very happy with, which I use with the following lenses :

Zeiss 28/2 distagon:
Not technically perfect but my favorite lens by far.

Zeiss vario-sonnar 35-70/3.4:
The rendering wide open is great for people and the sharpness closed down is downright impressive.

I also have a few lenses on loan:

Leica r 60/2.8
Very much enjoy the rendering of this lens, great from close to medium distances.

Leica r 90 2.0:
Great for people photography, so so for landscapes.

Leica r 28/2.8 v1:
Great colors, very poor corners.

So far, I have looked at :

Leica apo telyt m 135/3.4: I like the sample images from this lens on Flickr very much.

Leica r apo 100/2.8: apparently an almost perfect lens, nice rendering.

Leica r apo telyt 180/3.4:
Very impressive images on Flickr. May be too long

Zeiss 100/2 Makro Planar: great rendering, though maybe too harsh for people photography. Pro: I'd have a macro lens as well.

Zeiss 100-300 vario sonnar: supposedly a great performer but hard to get a nice copy. Don't know if zeiss still services them.


As you can see from the list, I would be willing to spend quite a bit, though I would only buy used, so the new batis is out of the range, and I have not yet seen anything from that lens that made me want to use it.
The 135/2 lenses are probably too heavy for my requirements, since I would like a lens set for traveling wide and far.

Also, I would like a lens that is still serviced by the manufacturer because my insurance requires this.

Any thoughts? Any lenses I overlooked? Advice is very welcome, though as I see it, choosing anything will be a though choice indeed.



Apr 21, 2017 at 06:48 AM
pinholecam
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


The Pentax Takumar 135/3.5 has grown on me ever since I got a FF camera.
On apsc before this, the subject separation via shallow DOF was not as strong and the working distance for portraits was too far for my preference.

I reach for it now if I want something smaller than f2.8, f2, f2.5 135mm lenses.

On FF, I often find that f3.5, f4 is enough.

20170106-DSC02623 by jenkwang, on Flickr



DSC0230820140809ILCE-7 by jenkwang, on Flickr


[url=https://flic.kr/p/SC5LYs]
[/url]Constructing on the top of the World by jenkwang, on Flickr



The Canon ltm 100/3.5 is tiny and really good.
Sharp from f3.5 and often enough isolation via shallow DOF with f3.5, f4 (esp up to half body shots)



20160227-DSC00465-1-BW by jenkwang, on Flickr



20160605-DSC01358 by jenkwang, on Flickr



20160228-DSC00492 by jenkwang, on Flickr





Apr 21, 2017 at 08:11 AM
jcolwell
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


Have a look at the Voigtlander 180/4 Apo-Lanthar SL. The Voigtlander Color-Heliar 75/2.5 SL is also a peach, but maybe shorter than you're looking for.

Also, the Contax Sonnar T* 100mm f/3.5 has comparable IQ to the MP 100/2 ZE (f/8 & infinity), and it's a lot smaller.



Apr 21, 2017 at 12:25 PM
Gricoh
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


jcolwell wrote:
Have a look at the Voigtlander 180/4 Apo-Lanthar SL. The Voigtlander Color-Heliar 75/2.5 SL is also a peach, but maybe shorter than you're looking for.

Also, the Contax Sonnar T* 100mm f/3.5 has comparable IQ to the MP 100/2 ZE (stopped down), and it's a lot smaller.


HI, the Contax is a great tip, I'll look into that.

A 75mm would be too short for my liking, since my 35-70 covers that focal length, whilst the Voigtländer 180 is too expensive , at that price point, I could get another A7r AND the leica r 180 telyt...



Apr 21, 2017 at 12:30 PM
Gricoh
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


pinholecam wrote:
The Pentax Takumar 135/3.5 has grown on me ever since I got a FF camera.
On apsc before this, the subject separation via shallow DOF was not as strong and the working distance for portraits was too far for my preference.

I reach for it now if I want something smaller than f2.8, f2, f2.5 135mm lenses.

On FF, I often find that f3.5, f4 is enough.
https://c1.staticflickr.com/1/327/31992651872_1a372d02e1_h.jpg
20170106-DSC02623 by jenkwang, on Flickr


DSC0230820140809ILCE-7 by jenkwang, on Flickr

[url=https://flic.kr/p/SC5LYs]https://c1.staticflickr.com/3/2913/33226163994_32c5681478_h.jpg
[/url]Constructing on the top of the World by jenkwang, on Flickr

The Canon ltm 100/3.5 is tiny and really good.
Sharp from f3.5 and often enough isolation
...Show more


Hi, nice images, but there appears to be a bit of veiling in some of these shots, as well as a bit of CA? in the bike shot.

I really am looking for a lens that will stop me from even thinking about needing anything "better"...



Apr 21, 2017 at 12:31 PM
telyt
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


Gricoh wrote:
Also, I would like a lens that is still serviced by the manufacturer because my insurance requires this.


Leica no longer has parts for R lenses and my recent experience suggests you don't want them to service your equipment.




Apr 21, 2017 at 12:34 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


Gricoh wrote:
A 75mm would be too short for my liking, since my 35-70 covers that focal length, ...


Depends how well you want it "covered", the CV 75/2.5 is noticeably better than the CZ 35-70/3.4, at the edges and corners.




Apr 21, 2017 at 12:34 PM
Gricoh
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.




jcolwell wrote:
Depends how well you want it "covered", the CV 75/2.5 is noticeably better than the CZ 35-70/3.4, at the edges and corners.


Really? Well that has to be a downright impressive lens then.
But if I was to get a 75 it would probably be a leica summarit... Though I say that without having checked Flickr for the computer, which I shall do immediately.



Apr 21, 2017 at 12:55 PM
retrofocus
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


I highly recommend the Leica 90/2.8 Tele-Elmarit M lens - I bought it used as version I for a steal, and it is superb in sharpness and contrast. I use it both on my M cameras and my A7R with adapter. It is a fairly light-weight lens and fits in every bag. For travel, I rarely needed anything longer than 90 mm. Additional benefit: it is a great portrait lens.


Apr 21, 2017 at 01:17 PM
mcbroomf
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


I wonder if your 1st decision is what FL you want. You've listed possibilities from 90mm to 135mm, but to me they are quite different (and I want both ...)

In the 90-100 range I'd agree that the 100 Leica and Zeiss are both good options (and the Leica is a macro as well). In this FL I do want a lens that will have reasonable close focus. I mainly use an OM 90/2 macro, but it may have too much loca for you. The Contax 100/3.5 is excellent and I use that lens with a macro focusing helicoid adapter for closer focus. You could add the 90mm Summarit in for consideration. I've only used the 75mm though. For 135mm I prefer to use the Canon L which you've mentioned you aren't interested in. The Leica telyt-Elmar 135/4 is a good to consider, but even though I've not owned one I think I would go for the Apo Telyt 135/3.4. I've seen enough images from it to feel that it wants for nothing (except F2).

I may be wrong but I don't think Zeiss service any Contax lenses now (but I may be thinking of the Contax N line). If so that includes the 35-70 VS and maybe your 28/2 Distagon if it's a Contax.



Apr 21, 2017 at 01:41 PM
 

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LightShow
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


Gricoh wrote:
Hi everyone, I hope you can help me with something.
Namely, I am looking to complete my travel kit with a high quality mid-telephoto prime lens which I intend to use for environmental portraits and landscapes, with landscapes with a bit of compression being the main draw for me.

Currently I own an a7r mk I which I am very happy with, which I use with the following lenses :

Zeiss 28/2 distagon:
Not technically perfect but my favorite lens by far.
I have the SMC K 28/2, it has impressive resolution.

Zeiss vario-sonnar 35-70/3.4:
The rendering wide open is great for people and the sharpness closed down is downright impressive.
I still want to take this one for a spin some day, it looks like fun, I do have the R 35-70/3.4, it's quite sharp, I wish it had the same close focus as the Zeiss.
I also have a few lenses on loan:

Leica r 60/2.8
Very much enjoy the rendering of this lens, great from close to medium distances.
Mine's sharp at all distances.

Leica r 90 2.0:
Great for people photography, so so for landscapes.
The 90AA is better.

Leica r 28/2.8 v1:
Great colors, very poor corners.
I haven't used mine enough for an opinion

So far, I have looked at :

Leica apo telyt m 135/3.4: I like the sample images from this lens on Flickr very much.
I wish I had one...

Leica r apo 100/2.8: apparently an almost perfect lens, nice rendering.
I'm definitely looking forward to shooting mine again this spring/summer, it seriously impressed me last summer.

Leica r apo telyt 180/3.4:
Very impressive images on Flickr. May be too long
It's an inch longer than the 100 APO, I think it's a nice size, and great quality.

Zeiss 100/2 Makro Planar: great rendering, though maybe too harsh for people photography. Pro: I'd have a macro lens as well.

Zeiss 100-300 vario sonnar: supposedly a great performer but hard to get a nice copy. Don't know if zeiss still services them.

As you can see from the list, I would be willing to spend quite a bit, though I would only buy used, so the new batis is out of the range, and I have not yet seen anything from that lens that made me want to use it.
The 135/2 lenses are probably too heavy for my requirements,
...Show more IIRC, they do CLA, I'm not sure how far they will go, same for each lens?

Any thoughts? Any lenses I overlooked? Advice is very welcome, though as I see it, choosing anything will be a though choice indeed.

The Voigtlander APO lenses are another option.




Apr 21, 2017 at 05:10 PM
darrellc
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


I second the Contax 100/3.5. Love mine. Also had the Summarit 90/2.5, excellent and can be acquired for pretty cheap now if you look hard enough. I didn't like the short focus throw and MFD but otherwise delivered great shots on A7RII.

Philip Reeve has some reviews of various lenses in that range on his website. I think he liked the MD 100/2.5 a lot recently. OM 100/2.8 is small and pretty good, improves a lot one stop down (used to have the lens) but susceptible to flare.

Contax 100/3.5 is great from wide open, so take that in consideration if you feel it is perhaps too slow.



Apr 21, 2017 at 06:44 PM
notherenow
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


It is auto focus but you can always use it for manual focus.

Sigma 150 2.8 APO macro. There are also shorter and longer ones.

Nice telephoto and macro too. Latest version is also stabilized.

Just a thought.



Apr 21, 2017 at 09:16 PM
Lee Saxon
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


Why are you set on buying only used? Typically when someone says that they're concerned about price but the Batis you mention costs *less* than some of the lenses you're interested in, so I'm just curious.

If it's because you're not into the focus-by-wire experience, I can identify with that 100%.



Apr 21, 2017 at 09:51 PM
Gricoh
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.




Lee Saxon wrote:
Why are you set on buying only used? Typically when someone says that they're concerned about price but the Batis you mention costs *less* than some of the lenses you're interested in, so I'm just curious.

If it's because you're not into the focus-by-wire experience, I can identify with that 100%.



Hi the batis is 2000€. The leica 135 used is 500€ less than that.

And yeah, I do not enjoy focusing by wire.



Apr 21, 2017 at 10:00 PM
Gricoh
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.




darrellc wrote:
I second the Contax 100/3.5. Love mine. Also had the Summarit 90/2.5, excellent and can be acquired for pretty cheap now if you look hard enough. I didn't like the short focus throw and MFD but otherwise delivered great shots on A7RII.

Philip Reeve has some reviews of various lenses in that range on his website. I think he liked the MD 100/2.5 a lot recently. OM 100/2.8 is small and pretty good, improves a lot one stop down (used to have the lens) but susceptible to flare.

Contax 100/3.5 is great from wide open, so take that in consideration if
...Show more
I will look into the 100 3.5.

I am looking for a lens that I can use from w.o without penalties.



Apr 21, 2017 at 10:04 PM
pinholecam
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


Gricoh wrote:
Hi, nice images, but there appears to be a bit of veiling in some of these shots, as well as a bit of CA? in the bike shot.

I really am looking for a lens that will stop me from even thinking about needing anything "better"...



Vignetting is added iirc.

Do look around at the options, but I'd think that most of them have some CA at/near wide open. (esp old lenses), so do look over samples of the lenses you are interested in to make sure.

Good luck in your hunt.



Apr 22, 2017 at 06:18 AM
freaklikeme
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


The APO-Macro-Elmarit-R 100 is sort of the opposite of the Summicron 90. Fantastic landscape lens, great macro, and kind of harsh with people. Same with the APO-Telyt-R 180. The APO-Telyt-M 135 is a better all-arounder, though the Tele-Elmar-M 135 would give you the best bokeh if you plan to use it for street portraits.

If you do want a fast 135, the Canon nFD 135/2 is fairly compact for the focal length and speed and a strong performer. It's not well corrected, but nothing terribly distracting.



Apr 23, 2017 at 03:03 AM
AmbientMike
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


I'd look for a zoom. Might not be perfect, but better than dealing with composition that's off by a few mm focal length.

What if you buy a perfect 100mm, but the composition needs 135 or 85mm? Then you have to crop, which lowers quality, or stitch, which I never get around to.



Apr 23, 2017 at 04:11 AM
Teper
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Which manual telephoto lens for traveling with the a7r.


Then you zoom with your legs :P


Apr 23, 2017 at 06:12 AM
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