I recently wrote a 5 Frames piece about the Zeiss 35mm f/2.8 C Biogon T* ZM, extolling its virtues. Shortly afterward I suddenly decided I wanted a Leica 35mm lens on my M6! No logic in the decision at all. The only modern Leica lens I could possibly afford was a used Summarit-M, this model is from Leica’s “cheapest” range of lenses, however, it is not a budget lens and is built to the same high standards as the rest of the Leica ranges of lenses. These Summarit-M’s are quite rare as used items but luckily my local shop had a minter in stock. After what I thought was a positive deal part-exing my Zeiss, I was the new owner of this lens.
I bought the Zeiss 35mm f/2.8 C Biogon T* ZM over a year ago and had only put two rolls through the M6 in the last year. I went Yashicamat happy most of 2020. So it was a great relief to get out of the house and put a roll of the extinct Fuji PRO400H through the M6 in the last month. I’m very fond of this Zeiss lens, I had one on my M9 then M240 but it went when I sold all my digital gear for film gear.
I have a personal interest in the Yashica-Mat. Having set off in 1972 to West Bromwich Photographic College with only a Zenith B and realising something better was required, I part-exed the Zenith at a camera shop in Wilmslow for a used Yashica-Mat. They were still in production in 1972. I think the shop was called Laughtons and I believe I was assisted in the purchase by my family. This camera did sterling work at college, then later when working at a hospital, for doctors and nurses weddings.
I help as a guide in running members’ tours around the East Lancashire Railway, a large heritage railway based in Bury, near Manchester. These monthly tours are well attended. On the last tour this year I was able to take the Leica M6 and 7Artisans 35mm f2 lens along with me in an attempt to get some monochrome pictures, whilst also keeping an eye on the tour members, who have a tendency to wander ‘off piste’.
The lockdown has given people plenty of opportunity to buy stuff they can’t afford and don’t really need, I know, I’m one of them. I’d been thinking about replacing the 7Artisan 35mm f2. This lens is tremendous value for money, but in the long term I want a lens with better control over edge sharpness and flare.