Reviews coming SOON! Leica X Vario, Zeiss Touit Lenses, Voigtlander 50 1.5 Nokton

Reviews coming SOON! Leica X Vario, Zeiss Touit Lenses, Voigtlander 50 1.5 Nokton and Olympus E-P5

Hello everyone! It has been a rowdy week with all of the Leica news and the new X Vario camera. I know many of us (most of us) were disappointed as we were really hoping for a real “Mini M”. I think the problem was the fact that Leica teased us with the “Mini M” promo but to be fair, they all called the X2 the “Micro M” so we could have read into it any way we wanted to.


The Leica X Vario Camera is on the way!


Now that the dust is settling and we now know that this is indeed the new Leica camera I have one on the way for a full review. B&H Photo is shipping me one today so I can evaluate it for a couple of weeks. Was shipped out today so I should get it within a few days. I will use it, test it and bring it along to Palouse for the workshop coming up on the 21st of the month. I have no doubt it will make for a fine daylight landscape camera, NO DOUBT AT ALL πŸ™‚ I feel the camera will lose its appeal for me when I take it to lower natural light. With that slow zoom, it just does not seem possible to get nice clean shots in low light. But in any case, I have one on the way for review so I am looking forward to it. I remember hating the Nikon V1 specs and then loving the camera so you never know. I will give my 100% honest evaluation of the camera so stay tuned! All site sponsor dealers have them in stock as of today for anyone feeling the zoom love. Those sponsors are always listed on the right side of any page πŸ™‚

The NEW Voigtlander 50 1.5 Nokton Chrome/Brass M Mount


I am really excited to be getting my very own Chrome Voigtlander 50 1.5 lens from Camera Quest this week! This is the new M mount redesign of the legendary 50 1.5 Nokton screw mount of the past. That old lens competed head on with the Leica Summilux and the new version looks like a classic lens, made of chrome and brass and my guess is that it will be damn good. I am hoping to have mine by the end of the week so when it gets here, expect a 1st look video and snaps with a full review to follow. Camera quest has only a few left in Chrome in their 1st shipment and black is all sold out but if you ask me, Chrome is the way to go as it is limited edition and built just like they used to make them. REAL Brass and Chrome. You can buy one here for shipping this week, but as I said, only a few remain. You can also order a black for shipping in July.

Specs (hey, the lens hood is even included)

Voigtlander 50/1.5 Nokton Leica M mount Aspherical

M Mount

Close Focus .7 Meter

5 Groups, 6 elements

Filter size 49mm

Length 47.7mm

Diameter 53.8mm

f/1.5 to f/16

Black or Chrome (real chrome on brass)

Notice the smaller 49mm filter size compared to the earlier 50/1.5 Screw mount version. Voigtlander has apparently modified the formula slightly

Lens Hood included

Zeiss Touit Lenses on the Fuji X


I have also been shooting the X-E1 with the new Zeiss Touit Lenses and they look and feel FANTASTIC.

The Zeiss lenses are a great addition to the Sony NEX and Fuji X line as they feel like solid pro glass should. Amazing build and feel and while the 32 1.8 is about equal to the Fuji 35 1.4 in IQ and output, the construction is indeed much nicer. But I will have that review up very soon as well.

For those joining Ashwin and I in Palouse I will have all of this gear with me including my M 240 for anyone to take a look at. Should be a blast and I can not wait! now is a Fuji X Dealer and they also carry the full line of Zeiss Touit lenses.

X-E1 and the 32 1.8 Zeiss Touit with nice window light


The Zeiss Touit 12mm 2.8 in 111 degree heat in Apache Junction AZ πŸ™‚


BTW, I will have the Olympus E-P5 HOPEFULLY before Palouse by may not get that one until I return. Either way, it will have a full review!


  1. I can’t wait to read your review about Leica X Vario Steve! I heard many times Fuji is great, or even Olympus is cool but all of them still look dull when comparing with Leica M series. I have two options: forget Nikon D800 heavy body and lenses and go with it (so painful and not much happy) or wait little more and see reviews and images for Leica X Vario to decide.

    I know you will tell me Sony RX1 but to be honest its not for me, I tried it many times, I really tried but I can’t hold this camera, even I was amazed its sensor (Same as Nikon D600). So, Sony RX1 not an option.

    Some will laugh my choice Nikon D800 or Leica X Vario but I don’t care. I can’t afford yet M 240 and I never use telephoto lenses, mostly landscapes, street/architectural and portraiture. Yes, X Vario is insanely expansive but I want to see images and your opinion how you will feel and you hold it and shoot with it.

    X Vario review please πŸ™‚ How long have to wait? πŸ˜€

  2. Hi Steve, have you got your chrome Nokton yet? quite curious about it. hope you can post your review of it soonest!

  3. Steve, this is out of left field a bit, but is there any chance you can test the Voigtlander 50mm f 3.5 Heliar collapsible lens? It’s available new, with a neat nickel finish. One magazine years ago said it was the sharpest lens they ever tested.

    It’s this one:

    I owned it briefly (literally a day) but returned it because I did not like the unusual aperture ring.


    • I would have to buy it to review it so…probably not. THOUGH I was intrigued with it myself a few months ago. After reading reports from those who bought one and seeing samples I was a little underwhelmed with it.

  4. Very curious to read the zeiss fuji comparison article. The shots I’ve seen so far seem to suggest perhaps better color and contrast on the zeiss, but better bokeh on the fuji. I like the fuji lens but there’s something about it I don’t quite love. As the zeiss reviews roll in I may be inclined to ditch the one in favor of the other.

    • I feel the same on the Fuji lenses. To me they feel cheap, hollow and not very well made. The Zeiss lenses feel like a pro lens with a precision feel and build. Great style and materials, very well done. IQ wise I really do not see a difference that would be noticeable to 95% of people, only those who obsess with Bokeh will see a slight difference. I would buy the Zeiss if it were me, hands down, just because I am not a fan of the Fuji 35 1.4 build, feel or the many shots i missed due to its AF.

      • So base on you comment I assume in terms of AF the Zeiss 32 is better than the Fuji 35?

  5. I`m really looking forward to your X-Vario review. In other fora some try to find reasons to like the camera. Although their arguments and also the pics shown are not very convincing. So your unbiased view will be appreciated.

  6. Steve Huff – my wife and I look forward to your photographer’s assessment of the X Vario, particularly how well it does hand-held without image stabilization. We live in north Phoenix and would consider this to become our “Grand Canyon” daylight landscape/walkabout camera . . . if the images have the soul of a Leica. We don’t want a rangefinder camera, but we do want autofocus and some zoom capability.

    We are encouraged by this Jono Slack jpeg, which does not appear to be “flat” like our X-E1 renders.

    • So you see what I mean about the Fuji X being flat? I have been saying that since the X-Pro 1 and the X-Trans sensor and many know what I mean and others deny it, but I am shooting the X-E1 again and the files are really dull and flat to my eyes when compared to the Leica M 240, Leica X1/X2, Sony RX1, and even the Rioch GRD and just about every other camera made. The X Vario will have better color, snap and sparkle/depth than what comes from the Fuji X bodies with an X-Trans sensor but the lens is slow…for a daylight Grand Canyon camera it probably would be better than an RX1 as it is very sharp across the frame. For low light though, not so much.

      • Your heart, and the many wonderful contributors from around the globe that it draws, provide us with joy every day. Thank you.

  7. So after all you are going to review the “xvarious” camera? And maybe you’ll tell us you like it, after all? Great. πŸ™‚

  8. I share the disappointment about the Mini M. What I was hoping for was a full-frame or APS-C Leica CL-D with a fixed lens (40mm-eq) plus EVF built-in. Oh well, we can dream. But I can see that in some ways the X-Vario is a large sensor update of the Digilux 2 , a great camera that I still own. The D2 lens was f2-2.4, but on a 2/3 sensor. Given the new sensor size and improvements in high ISO performance, the X-Vario could be the new Digilux 2….

  9. Any chance of comparing the new Nokton with the old screw mount one please Steve?

      • Ah I see, sort of poses a bit of a problem to do that then. πŸ™‚

        I’d send you mine Steve no problem if I lived in the USA. So, any kind reader out there who would like to send Steve their LM Nokton 50mm f/1.5 for a few days? πŸ˜€

        • Edit: Woops, obviously I meant screw mount and not LM mount that I typed above. doh.

  10. Very curious to see a comparison between the X-E1 with the Touit lenses and the RX1. I know you’ve already done a comparison between the two cameras with the Fuji 35mm, but it would be very interesting to see whether Zeiss glass on the X-E1 renders images as beautifully as the RX1 does and closes the gap between these cameras.

    If not comparing them by images, perhaps a few words on the subject in your review? I’m really really torn between these options πŸ™‚

    • No, the Touit renders almost exactly like the Fuji 35 1.4. Only advantage is in the build and feel. The Fuji sensor can never match the RX1 sensor for DR, depth or IQ. That’s my opinion.

      • I’ve seen some side by side images from the 35mm Fuji vs the Zeiss Touit and IMO the Fuji has a far nicer looking bokeh.

        As for the RX1…yeah I don’t think the Fuji sensor can touch that.

  11. The greatest thing ever was to read the comments Leica got on their Facebook post with this announcement hehehehehe

    • A stupid statement about a camera you have never seen or used. If your whole life is only related to “expensive” or “cheap” you’re poor guy.

      • I don’t need to see, hold or use the Leica Vario to know that Gorgiv is right….it’s WAY too expensive for what it is…and I’m not cheap…I spend a LOT of money on all kinds of things whether they be cameras, watches, cars etc.

  12. Hi Steve!

    Can you please answer to a question that ALL the M240’s owners ask about?
    Is the new evf Olympus VF-4 works on the M???????
    I ask you this because the vf-4 evf is finally available in stock at Adorama and B&H and nobody test it on the Leica M yet!

    Thanks πŸ™‚

    • Mechanically and electronically, it should be possible, as previous Pen cameras can use the new VF.

      But the old cameras require a firmware upgrade, and not all can benefit from all improvements of the new VF (limitation in interface and/or sensor readout bandwidth?).

      So, who is going to be brave enough to try in absence of a firmware upgrade? πŸ˜‰

      • Does not work and Leica is not going to release a FW update so a new Olympus branded EVF will work on their camera. No way no how. The only way it will ever work on the M or X is if Leica releases their own version of the VF-4, meaning, a VF-4 with the Leica name on it. If they do this then it will be with a FW update.

  13. Looking forward to the voigtlander review. curious to see if it suffers from focus shift like the zeiss sonar. is the lens hood chrome on the chrome version (at least the exterior)?

    • Never found any problem with using the old LS Nokton and focus shift with several M8’s personally so one would hope the new one is the same in that respect. That was the main reason I bought it over the Sonar, that and Sean Reid’s review.

      • Nice, thank you! i am shooting film now more and more so focus shift would be a much bigger issue than on digital, where it cost ‘nothing’ to reshoot

Comments are closed.