Leica M and M39

Reviews

9mm

11mm Fisheye

12mm

15mm

21mm

24mm

28mm

35mm

50mm

75mm

85mm

90mm

135mm

Adapters for Sony E-mount cameras

There are adapters for other mirrorless systems but most often it doesn’t make much sense to use M-mount lenses on these smaller sensors if you ask me.

Cheap adapters* usually work well enough but the expensive Novoflex adapters* have lower tolerances, better materials and fit a bit tighter. *affiliate links

A very interesting adapter is the Voigtlander VM-E close focus adapter which works as a variable extension tube and reduces the usually quite high close focusing distance of your Leica M lenses. Nowadays there are also many knockoffs of varying quality available.

Issues

Most rangefinder lenses do not perform as well on a digital camera as on film. For a very geeky analysis check out this lensrentals.com article for a short comprehension have a look at our article Rangefinder wide angle lenses on A7 cameras: problems and solutions.
The most important factor is the filter stack thickness in front of the sensor. Leica has minimized the thickness of this sensor so that most lenses perform closer to film on their Leica M10, M9 or M240 series cameras. Sony uses a much thicker sensor stack with all their A7/A9/A1 series cameras but it can be replaced by a thin one and then the cameras perform arguably as well as the Leicas. For a well done comparison check out Ron Schefflers site.

In short there are three issues:

  • Corners are “smeared”. This usually is caused by increased astigmatism and field curvature which is caused by the filter stack.
  • There is colorshift towards the corners which turns parts of the image magenta or green (only for wide angle lenses).
  • There can also be increased vignetting. This depends on the sensor itself, the later Sony BSI sensors do significantly better here and the differences to Leica’s digital cameras are not that meaningful compared to earlier cameras like the original A7r anymore.

5 thoughts on “Leica M and M39”

  1. I don’t know why but the link to the R lenses is leading me to this page dedicated to the M and LTM mounts

  2. Thank you for your review of the Jupiter 3 on Sony – I use a new similar rig – Sony A7II + L ME Helicoid + Jupiter 3 ( 1961 )

    I notice that subject lines of the photo tend to be broken – is there a way to fix this?

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