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Leica Summilux vs Canon Serenar - if you can't be witty, then at least be bombastic [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
kyle cassidy

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Leica Summilux vs Canon Serenar [Jan. 2nd, 2015|09:19 am]
kyle cassidy
[mood |accomplishedaccomplished]

I've been using a 1950's era 50mm f1.8 Canon Serenar on my Leica since 1999 or so and lately I've been worried that I'm not getting as much out of my camera as I might be and was luckily able to test a mid 1990's pre-asph Leica Summilux side by side with the Serenar.




Side by side, clickenzee to Embiggen!



There's definitely a difference wide open in the bokeh -- the Summilux is a lot smoother. It's also half a stop brighter and the color is a bit different. And the Summilux focuses closer, which is a distinct advantage, though it's also significantly larger and heavier.

In the 100% crop it seems a bit sharper but at this aperture it could also be a focusing variation as well.



100% crop


My ultimate conclusion is that the Summilux, while nice, isn't $1,200 nicer than the Serenar.





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Comments:
[User Picture]From: againstathorn
2015-01-02 02:26 pm (UTC)
I much prefer the first image, but that might have more to do with composition. Do you find that 50mm lens work best for portraits? Have you ever used longer lens for portrait work? How long would you go?
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2015-01-02 02:33 pm (UTC)
If I was shooting portraits for money, I'd use the Nikon d800 and the 85 f1.8 which I've dubbed "the rock star lens" because everybody looks like a rock star when shot with it. With the Leica, the 50mm is the best (imho) Leica makes a 75mm 1.4 and a 50mm .95 both of which are notoriously difficult to focus on a Leica M. (More about the 85 1.8 here: http://photographers.livejournal.com/17884473.html) I've also used a 300 2.8 as a portrait lens, which is really nice, but cumbersome.
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[User Picture]From: againstathorn
2015-01-02 11:11 pm (UTC)
Very cool. I personally think longer lens, if used accordingly, can produce some excellent portraits. My main beef is the excessive use of wide lens for portraiture, which more often than not results is distorting and elongating the subject's features.
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From: wrayb
2015-01-02 03:10 pm (UTC)

$1200

quite a punch line.
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[User Picture]From: mizkit
2015-01-02 06:52 pm (UTC)
Not especially relevant to the post itself, but *wow* what a great dress! :)
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2015-01-02 08:51 pm (UTC)
Someone made it. It might be Kambriel. I can't remember.
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[User Picture]From: maehymn
2015-01-03 08:09 pm (UTC)
This is really interesting, thanks for sharing. I definitely prefer the image on the left. There's something about it-could be the crop though too. I know what you mean, about the extra $1200. You have to be making way more money, to be able to make that kind of jump.
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[User Picture]From: drksoulhuntress
2015-01-04 10:14 am (UTC)
Hi Kyle! My word, in any focus Trillian is lovely.

Do you have any advice to photographing make up? I do some free lance work and want to start building my portfolio, anything I can get refurbished I will, I was thinking about the T3i with a few softbox lights. I really admire your work, so I was hoping you might have some thoughts.
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2015-01-04 08:11 pm (UTC)
the camera's less important than the lights. a couple of softboxes would be great.
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[User Picture]From: drksoulhuntress
2015-01-05 05:40 am (UTC)
Thanks!
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