Nippon Kogaku LTM 35mm f2.5 vs Voigtlander 35mm f2.5?

Discussion in 'Leica M and LTM Lenses' started by SParis, Sep 13, 2017.

  1. SParis

    SParis Leica Place Rookie

    11
    Sep 5, 2017
    Beverly Hills, Michigan
    Scott Paris
    So, I saw a thread about the Nippon Kogaku 35mm f2.5 (I think it was Brian's) and got a bad case of GAS. Went to the bay to look for one and it turns out the the Japanese sellers are asking $500 to $750 for them. That's out of the question, not only for me but apparently for everyone else as well, since none have sold for anything near that. The highest seller today is a minty one complete with the correct caps and the leather case, and that went for $450. Another nice one that was put up as an auction (rather than BIN) went for about $150.
    Anyway, the asking prices let the wind out of my sails, plus I thought of the Voigtlander lens of the same focal length and speed.
    I owned the Voigtlander when they were LTM and found it a pretty decent lens. (I shoot b&w film and make wet prints, so pixel peeping is not an option.) Sold it years ago in one of my purges.

    What I'm looking for is a small light 35 for outdoor shooting so f2.5 is just fine.
    .
    Question is, discounting price, and discounting the vintagy goodness of the Nikon lens, has anyone actually used these two lenses and have an opinion about their relative image quality?
    The Voigtlander is a decent but not high-end lens; the Nikon is lovely, but a 60-year old design with 60-year-old coating tech and so forth.

    For the same price, which would you rather shoot with?
     
  2. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    "Somewhat of an Answer"- I got the 35/1.7 Ultron LTM, Black paint, for $300. About the same price as the Nikkor. The Ultron has smooth Bokeh, sharp enough at F1.7 and "very sharp" stopped down to F2.8. If I were to pick one 35mm focal length lens- and use common sense about it- it would be the Ultron.
     
  3. SParis

    SParis Leica Place Rookie

    11
    Sep 5, 2017
    Beverly Hills, Michigan
    Scott Paris
    Yeah, you're probably right. I hadn't thought of the 1.7 because I was taken with the small size of the (older LTM version) of the Voigtlander. And of the Nikkor.
    But there really isn't much difference in price between the 1.7 and the other two.
    Thanks.
     
  4. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    The 1.7 in LTM- not that big, uses 39mm filters. A full stop, and an aspherical design. Hard to beat for the money, the Black version feels better than the chrome.
     
  5. cobbu2

    cobbu2 Leica Place Regular

    43
    Sep 17, 2014
    Rockville, MD
    I have the Voigtlander 35/2.5 PII version and it "lives" on my M8. Its sharpness and overall performance is great for my purposes.

    Cheers, Allan