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03-22-2014, 12:25 AM   #1

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Voigtlander color ultron 50/1.8 vs Pentax 50/1.7

Just saw a Voigtlander color ultron 50/1.8 in a reasonable condition in a local shop. I never owned any Voigtlander so was wondering how it compares against our beloved and reputed Pentax 50/1.7 lenses

Any comparison?


03-25-2014, 06:12 AM   #2
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It may depend on how old this lens is.

The Austrian and later mainly German company Voigtländer had their own lens designs, but then mainly bought licenses from (West German) Zeiss and produced these lenses themselves, just like Rollei (both with their own coatings, as far as I know). During this time, most of their production was moved to Singapur. I think then there was a merger of Voigtländer and Rollei, and the result was at some point bought by Zeiss. They then sold the brand name "Voigtländer" to Japanese Cosina, who still is allowed to use a range of Zeiss designs, and (as far as I know) manufacture some lenses for Zeiss as well. Cosina is now branding their top of the range lenses not as "Cosina", but as "Voigtlander".

The lens may be identical to the Carl Zeiss Ultron 1.8/50 of the seventies or eighties. I remember this Zeiss lens was champion in most tests of German photo magazines of the early eighties, closely followed by Minolta. These two were tested a bit better than the 1.7/1.8 lenses of the others of the "Big Five" of that time (Canon, Minolta, Nikon, Olympus, Pentax). But all of them were first class lenses - I think it would be difficult for you to decide which is best.

Last edited by RKKS08; 03-25-2014 at 06:19 AM.
03-25-2014, 07:47 AM   #3
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If you want to see some images with the Voigtlander color ultron just have a look in the Voigtlander LBA thread in Lens Clubs, I believe a few members have posted pic's with the 50/1.8.
03-31-2014, 03:20 PM   #4
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I have the pentax A 50mm 1.7 and have shot with a friends 40mm voightlander but not the 50mm. I would be surprised if the voightlander outperforms the pentax as their 40mm does not outperform the pentax 40mm and on top of that is manual focus.

My advice on lenses is to not buy focal lengths that you already own. That being said I am poor so I am pretty picky on which lenses I pull the trigger on.

04-01-2014, 11:00 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by yusuf Quote
Just saw a Voigtlander color ultron 50/1.8 in a reasonable condition in a local shop. I never owned any Voigtlander so was wondering how it compares against our beloved and reputed Pentax 50/1.7 lenses

Any comparison?

These late Voigtlander lenses has no connection to earlier Voigtlander lenses. They are made in coorporation with Cosina and can be any Japanese brand relabeled. You better look at the real Bessamatic - Ultramatic - Retina DKL mount Schneider and Zoomar lenses you can use Manually with a DKL-PE adaptor. The Zoomar 36-82mm 2.8 was the worlds first quality regular produced "Rubberlens" - untill ENNA Munchen came with the first long 80-250mm 4 and called it Tele-Zoom , and the name Zoom was made. At that time it was also connection between Zeiss and Asahi and they din borrow the Pentax name from Zeiss - and that made Pentax brand cameras.
04-30-2014, 09:38 PM   #6
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what u are talking is a lens which i have, ahving said that, i have owned and used smc-M 50 1.4, helios 44m 58/2, pentax-A 50/2, well of the four i still have voigtlander and 50/1.4. sharp it is edge to edge from 1.8 onwards. this is equivalent (lens formula)to zeiss planar 50/1.7 which is iconic, mine is made in singapore which is irrelevant as there was a technolgy transfer then.
But the issue is auto pin, which will need a fix.
to me its voigtlander 50/1.8 hands down.
05-01-2014, 12:41 AM   #7

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I have the Rollei 50/1.8 (made in Singapore).
I believe RKKS08 has gave a pretty good chronology of the lenses.

Its a good lens.
Without any comparisons, I'd say 'get it'.
Sharp, contrasty and good colours.

But I recently made an informal comparison between it and my A50/1.7 and was truly surprised. (just last week in fact)
Half of me had thought that the internet hearsay would be very true, that Zeiss was the top of the game.
However, the other half thought that the Japs were no fools too and could certainly come up with good lenses too.
Minute sharpness between them was of little interest to me, so it was informal, with tripod and such, (it was for my own curiosity too)

1. Pentax is a bit better for flare resistance.
2. Rollei may be a little sharper (real little).
3. They both have hexagonal OOF highlights by f4 (which can drive me nuts, YMMV, perfectly ok before that)
4. Pentax surprisingly had a bit better bokeh (as in smoother blending of the OOF objects)
5. Rollei draws the subject a bit better (with that I mean its does bolder outline of the subject and has a more distinct transition between in focus to OOF ) ; This is a Zeiss strength and often observed in their lenses. Pentax can do it ioo, often in the limiteds and often the FA* lenses (and a couple of others).

There was no winner to me.
One can be happy with either choice.

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