Short Relationship with the Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.1 Leica M Mount Lens

Since I rarely used my Nikon 85mm f1.4 lens or my Nikon D90, I decided to trade it in for something I had been lusting for...

It's a Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.1 lens for the Leica M mount camera. I'm kind of a sucker for fast lenses, since I shoot in low light and hate to use flash. On the surface it gives you exactly what you would ask for - slightly more than an extra stop over an f2 lens. But it also gives you incredible bulk and weight on a camera system that's supposed to be light and nimble.

All of these images are shot on Kodak Tri-X 400 film pushed to 1600 ISO and developed at home in Kodak D-76 (stock solution) for 9.5 minutes. The Nokton allowed me to use a little faster shutter speed than an f2 or f1.4 lens, but not really enough to justify the extra bulk. Most of these images are fine.

Jim Campbell's "Scattered Lights" in Madison Square Park

Empire State Building from 17th and Broadway

Empire State Building and Tree

Night Foosball in Herald Square

Victoria Secret Window

Paying for Water

Ultimately, here's why I decided to part with this lens. Sure, it's heavy and bulky, but I absolutely hated the distorted lights in the corners. I know it's a lot to ask of a lens not to give you these seagull looking lights in the corners, but I noticed these on two night time rolls with this lens.

There's a happy ending though, the Voigtlander got traded in for a 1982 Nikon FM2n SLR with a Nikon 50mm f1.4 lens. Pics from that coming soon.