Friday, January 3, 2014

Lumix GM1 With Leica & Nikon Prime Lens

I have used my selections of old Nikon and Leica M optics on my Olympus E-P2 and OM-D before, the experiences were not intuitive mainly because it is so bloody hard to get an accurate manual focussing on these digital cameras!

Most of you have heard of Focus Peaking, which is a tool to assist you while manual focusing.  It highlights the areas that are in focus so you are able to quickly focus the lens on that area.

You would think that most modern digital cameras with an electronic viewfinder will have focus peaking built in?


But did I not post an article about the focus peaking feature in OM-D E-M5?

Yes, but the feature in E-M5 is what I call "pseudo focus peaking", it is very clunky and not very user friendly.

I was not expecting any special feature when I try out my 25 year old 50/2 Leica Summicron-M lens on the GM1!

I was wrong!!

The Leica Summicron-M 50/2 attached to the GM1 with a Voigtlander VM adapter.
My target was an ad-hoc fruit basket and my trusted 35 year old car thermo/hygro meter is included for sharpness check.  ;)

This is the view on the rear screen of the GM1, I focus the Leica 50/2 on the meter till I notice a shimmering green effect on the area of focus. It is that simple!  But wait, there is more...

If I double tap on the focus area, it shows me a highly magnified view to confirm the focus accuracy!  You can enlarge the magnified view by turning the menu wheel. Tapping "Exit" will return you to the normal view with peaking.

Was that cool or what?

This is the result from the 50/2 Summicron at f4, the light came from a short fluorescent tube; notice the accuracy of the GM1 auto white balance!

 Enlargement from the above picture.

Next, the Nikon 50/1.4 SLR manual focus normal lens.

Being a retro focus SLR lens, the 30 year old Nikon 50/1.4 lens is much larger and heavier than the Leica-M range-finder lens.  The Nikkor was mated to the GM1 with a Voigtlander F Adapter.

Result from the Nikon 50/1.4 prime at f4.

Using your old manual prime lenses on the tiny GM1 is easier than you thought, I set the Lumix on "A" (Aperture priority), fucus dial to "MF" and away you go!

Try it out and give your old optics a new lease of life!  ;)

1 comment:

mityvisionz said...

A very good write up and very creative with the various lens gadgets at hand ... photog extraordinaire