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Archive 2011 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4
  
 
Paul Yi
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p.1 #1 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


I have used CV 90 and 125, but I have never use 180....

Is the lens' performance comparable to its siblings at wide open?
How is its bokeh?

And, lastly, what is its going price?
I can't even find it on eBay....




Mar 09, 2011 at 06:09 PM
AhamB
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p.1 #2 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


From what I've read, the CA correction of this one is the best of all three Apo-Lanthars. One of our regulars here commented that he didn't like the bokeh -- should be possible to find the discussion about it with a search in the archives (I guess 2010 or 2009).

Price: ridiculously low numbers have been quoted (in the same discussion as above, IIRC), but that was for Japan. Since it's rare on ebay it will be expensive, but a fair bit below the 125/2.5.



Mar 09, 2011 at 06:18 PM
mpmendenhall
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p.1 #3 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


I got one a few years ago. I don't have the CV125 to compare, but I can say that the 180 is up to the same standards as the CV90 (sharp and clean from wide open at any focusing distance, with the main drawbacks being the slow max aperture and slight vignetting at f4). The compact size makes it my preferred telephoto for outdoor/hiking use. The close-focusing distance (down to 4ft/1.2m) is handy detail shots. Bokeh is decent but not exceptional in my opinion; in areas nearer to the focus plane there can be some double-banding, which smooths out at farther distances; you can judge for yourself from the image below. I got mine for ~$750 a few years ago, but I don't recall seeing any for sale since then, so the "going price" is hard to judge.








Mar 09, 2011 at 06:31 PM
Paul Yi
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p.1 #4 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


$750 a few years ago...?.... wow.

Why did I think this lens was under $500...?



Mar 09, 2011 at 07:09 PM
mpmendenhall
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p.1 #5 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


Paul Yi wrote:
Why did I think this lens was under $500...?


Maybe because for a while it was selling at nice lower prices (while most people ignored its existence). Then it went out of production, and more people realized how nice a highly corrected APO telephoto was, with prices rising to match the "competition" (e.g. somewhere between the Leica 180/3.4 APO and 180/2.8 APO). I wish I had known about the lens while it was still cheap (same with the CV 125 macro, which reportedly was being dumped for ~$300 new in Japan before everyone caught on to how great it was).



Mar 09, 2011 at 07:29 PM
wayne seltzer
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p.1 #6 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


AhamB wrote:
From what I've read, the CA correction of this one is the best of all three Apo-Lanthars. One of our regulars here commented that he didn't like the bokeh -- should be possible to find the discussion about it with a search in the archives (I guess 2010 or 2009).

Price: ridiculously low numbers have been quoted (in the same discussion as above, IIRC), but that was for Japan. Since it's rare on it will be expensive, but a fair bit below the 125/2.5.


Yes, just search one of the many 180-200mm lens threads that we have had here in the last two years. The CV 180/4 is hard to find due to its unique light-weight, lower price relative to the other options of Leica 180/2.8 APO and Mamiya APO 200/2.8. Its bokeh is not as good as these two.
We have been saying for awhile, it seems like a no brainer for CV to reintroduce their 125 and 180 lenses.
I have the Leica 180/2.8 APO, which as you know Paul, is a special lens.



Mar 09, 2011 at 07:40 PM
Paul Yi
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p.1 #7 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


The size and the name Apo Lanthar are what triggered me for looking at this lens...
If its performance is, though it is a slower lens, any way comparable to Leica Apo 180/2.8, I think I'm going to grab it....

I just hope that Cosina doesn't come out with the new version as soon as I grab it....

Time to look for the lens....

Thank you all... !





Mar 09, 2011 at 07:54 PM
j.liam
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p.1 #8 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


I think a good thread on this lens, which includes a head-to-head comparison to the Leica 180/3,4 APO Telyt can be found HERE. I own all three CV APO's; the 180 has size, light weight and near-APO performance on its side; very contrasty stopped down a touch, tack sharp right at f/4 and colors slightly more subdued than the 90 IMO. Against it is its slow speed, making it more challenging to focus in failing light and focus mechanism optimized for near subjects (the box says, "close focus") so nailing focus with confirmation on distant and infinity subjects can be tricky because the slightest adjustment or breathe results in focus confirmation loss. I have seen them show up on eBay in Pentax mount several times last year for just under $1000 while in Nikon mount, they have been selling for US$1200-1300 when they sporadically appear (maybe 2-3 times a year). They are also rare; no more than 750-1000 in Nikon mount were ever produced; read HERE.. Lloyd Chambers did a 180mm comparison on a D3x that included the Leica 180/2.8 APO and the CV 180/4; see HERE. . It appears in his paid subscription site but the bottom line is that the Leica, as alluded to above is a special optic almost diffraction-limited at f/2.8. The CV impresses him for all the above reasons but stopping down to 5.6 is needed for peak performance. He and Bjorn Rorslett confirm that the Voigtlander isn't perfectly APO (no mean feat of precision assembly) but close enough. I briefly owned the Leica R 180/3.4 APO Telyt; as images in the first link above demonstrates, lower contrast is its hallmark though later on in the thread, I posted night shots that take advantage of the lower contrast to reveal extraordinary shadow detail at night. It's also optimized for distant objects and while focus is easy and performance are really amazing at infinity, it's pretty ordinary for near to mid-distanced subjects. The optic was devised in the 70's with the US Navy for maritime surveillance so it reflects these priorities. It does not have the dual personality (stellar close and distant performance) of the world-class Leica 180/2.8 APO. But then, even at $1200, it's 1/3 the going price of the Leica.

It might be a 'no-brainer' for a new 180 but Cosina may have other arrangements or contractual limitations with Zeiss that could preclude this. The oft-debated issue with the 125 is its direct challenge to the Z*100 and the word is that Zeiss is introducing 2 tele lenses in the next 12 months. Who knows if these two elusive Voigtlanders will ever materialize again.



Mar 09, 2011 at 11:54 PM
drhee39
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p.1 #9 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


Paul, the performance versus size is simply awesome. You can take it to events and never get weird looks or questions. From the Ringling bros in Dallas:

5D @ f4 1600 iso







100% crop







Edited on Mar 10, 2011 at 02:11 AM · View previous versions



Mar 10, 2011 at 01:53 AM
Ulff
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p.1 #10 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


Great image!


Mar 10, 2011 at 02:08 AM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



Dan1
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p.1 #11 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


j.liam wrote:
It might be a 'no-brainer' for a new 180 but Cosina may have other arrangements or contractual limitations with Zeiss that could preclude this. The oft-debated issue with the 125 is its direct challenge to the Z*100 and the word is that Zeiss is introducing 2 tele lenses in the next 12 months. Who knows if these two elusive Voigtlanders will ever materialize again.


New Zeiss teles huh? Care to divulge anything further?



Mar 10, 2011 at 02:45 AM
j.liam
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p.1 #12 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


Patience....


Mar 10, 2011 at 05:47 AM
jan_haidn
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p.1 #13 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


http://cgi.ebay.de/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=380315756783&ssPageName=ADME:B:SS:DE:1123
This was the cheapest in a long time(I was to late). Normaly they start at 850$ and run to 1200$. That is a rise of 100 % in the last 3 years.



Mar 10, 2011 at 07:07 AM
AhamB
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p.1 #14 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


j.liam wrote:
It does not have the dual personality (stellar close and distant performance) of the world-class Leica 180/2.8 APO. But then, even at $1200, it's 1/3 the going price of the Leica.


This really makes my Mamiya 645 A 200/2.8 which I got for less than $600 last year a no-brainer. It even betters the Leica 180/2.8 in IQ according to some.

This Voigtländer has intrigued me for its great IQ in a tiny package though. I must say I really do enjoy the f/2.8 aperture on my Mamiya though.



Mar 10, 2011 at 10:33 AM
delic66
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p.1 #15 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


I can also vouch for the performance of this lens. This is the closest I have seen a lens reach true APO level including many Nikon, Canon, Zeiss stuff. What I like most is its compact size and close-focus ability. The former reminds me of the old Nikkor 200/4.


Kinderdijk. Voigt 180/4 at f/8.

I am selling my copy. PM me if you would be interested.



Mar 10, 2011 at 01:06 PM
Paul Yi
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p.1 #16 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


After reading the linked thread, the CV180/4 looks very tempting...
I don't usually use the telephoto lens for infinity focus....
I mainly use it for close to medium distance shots...



Mar 11, 2011 at 05:08 AM
freaklikeme
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p.1 #17 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


I think it's an excellent lens. I've really enjoyed mine, but I've been carrying around the Leica 100 mac and the 2x, so this one has been sitting in my bag for many months. It's up for sale or trade now on the B/S boards.

I do think the 180 bokeh is better than the 90 and more on par with the 125. The slow max aperture, though, in relation to DoF, makes it less practical in some shooting situations and isn't a bother in others. The best thing about it, aside from being fantastically corrected, it that it's good close up and at distances. All three of the following were shot wide open...

















Mar 17, 2011 at 01:12 AM
dbehrens
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p.1 #18 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


Thought I would bring this up to the top as Ebay has one up for sale at a good price. Tempting but its a Nikon mount.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Voigtlander-180mm-F4-APO-Lens-Nikon-Mount-/180712691274?pt=Camera_Lenses&hash=item2a1350d64a#ht_500wt_1413



Aug 21, 2011 at 04:00 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #19 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


AhamB wrote:
From what I've read, the CA correction of this one is the best of all three Apo-Lanthars. One of our regulars here commented that he didn't like the bokeh...


That might have been me. Its bokeh sometimes leaves a lot to be desired when compared with faster 200mm lenses, but that's not necessarily a fair comparison. I sold my APO-Lanthar 180/4 in 2009, as I found the EF 70-200/4L IS was a pretty good and more flexible solution for travel. 20 months later, and I sold my 70-200/4L IS to help pay for a new 1DIV. Now I regret not having the APO-Lanthar 180/4, it's a peach. Live and (hopefully) learn. Maybe I'll luck in and get one for $750 - in EOS mount, no less.



Aug 21, 2011 at 07:33 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #20 · Voigtlander Apo Lanthar 180/4


dbehrens wrote:
Thought I would bring this up to the top as Ebay has one up for sale at a good price. Tempting but its a Nikon mount.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Voigtlander-180mm-F4-APO-Lens-Nikon-Mount-/180712691274?pt=Camera_Lenses&hash=item2a1350d64a#ht_500wt_1413



That's in Brookfield NS, just a few minutes down the road from my place (at the speed that I drive). I bet that's Conner999. I'll find out.




Aug 21, 2011 at 07:57 PM
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