Just yesterday I received a small package from a very cool guy from Austria, and that packaged contained … a new lens! Well, not a new lens (he was the second owner himself), but one in as-new condition, and one new to me. The lens in question is a Voigtländer Ultron 28mm f/1.9 Aspherical M39 screw mount lens, a lens that was discontinued a couple of years ago and replaced by the Ultron 28/2 Aspherical in M-mount. It’s only available on the used market, and you need an M39->M adapter to use it on an M-mount camera.
The Ultron 28/1.9 is about the size of a Leica Summicron 28mm, maybe a tad longer, and of course a whole lot cheaper – about 90%. I decided to get it because I wanted something faster than my M-Rokkor 28/2.8, which is really a nice little lens, but of not much use in difficult light. (If you’re interested in that lens — I’m going to sell it, so just drop me a line!)
So after some fiddling and fondling with it, here are some first pictorial results. Nothing spectacular, just the typical family protrait session … 😉
In the office, a reflection in the window.
In the office as well. Taken without UV/IR filter.
“Wow dad, that lens looks so great on your M8!” 😉
After just a day of shooting, I’ve come to really like that lens. Not only does it look great (as stated above), but also does it take great pictures. The bokeh (where there is any) is very smooth (see pictures 2 and 3), and some subject seperation is possible at f/1.9 and close distance — not bad for a 28mm lens! Vignetting is moderate wide open, and almost gone at f/2.8 — so it beats the Rokkor at that. It’s also reasonably sharp already at f/1.9, although the image tends to “glow” a bit at that aperture — nothing to worry about, as it’s really only very moderate. Contrast is rather low wide open, but gets better the more you stop down.
All in all I’m glad I purchased it, as it just gives me more satisfaction than the Rokkor did — but that one’s a great lens, too, if f/2.8 is enough for your needs.
Oh yeah, and about that f/1.9 specification, well it really does go to f/1.9. When stopping down to f/2, the diaphragm closes but the tiniest bit. Really, it’s only for marketing, so Cosina could say “this one goes to f/1.9“. There’s no difference in speed or rendering, at least none noticeable to my eyes.