Ricoh GXR: M-Mount Unit with Voigtländer 75 mm (M39)

Introduction | Body with Lens Attached | Some Technical Data | Sample Images | Conclusions | Links


After Ricoh's official announcement of the M-mount expansion unit, I decided to buy one, although I had not intended to do so originally. Here are my first personal experiences with the lenses that I bought (or tried to buy). This page is devoted to the Voigtländer Color Heliar 75mm f/2.5 lens that I bought used from Ireland. This is not an M-mount lens, but a M39 one - it has to be used with an LTM adapter at the M-mount expansion unit.

All lens pages: Voigtländer 15mm f/4.5 | Zeiss Biogon 21mm f/4.5 | Voigtländer 25mm f/4 (M39) | Minolta M-Rokkor 28mm f/2.8 | Zeiss Biogon 35mm f/2.8 | Zeiss Sonnar 50mm f/1.5 | Voigtländer 75mm f/2.5 (M39) | Leitz Elmar-C 90mm f/4 | Leitz Tele-Elmar 135mm f/4



Why I Bought this Lens...

I bought the Voigtländer Color Heliar 75mm f/2.5 lens in June 2014 - primarily for use in conjunction with a Dörr slide duplicator (see Figures below) that I purchased in spring 2014. The advertisement for the slide duplicator states that a lens of a focal length of about 110 mm is needed for the slide duplicator when used at a full-format camera. And in fact, it showed that the slide duplicator was not suited well to the Leica X Vario, the Ricoh GXR A16, and my existing M-mount lenses (for use with the GXR A12 M-mount expansion unit). However, a focal length of 75 mm at an APS-C camera corresponds to 112.5 mm at a full-frame camera and therefore should be ideally suited to the slide duplicator. Actually, tests revealed that 70 mm would have been better. I was not able to copy a complet slide with this configuration. This put my attempts at slide copying with this equiment to a halt...

Note: Hama and Dörr, and perhaps some other companies, too, sell this slide duplicator. They seem to be all the same (according to the look and the technical data).


Figures: Dörr slide duplicator (left), ditto, achromat removed (right) (click images for larger versions)

The Dörr slide duplicator includes a +10 achromat, which can be removed and used separately as a close-up lens (52 mm filter thread). Since Voigtländer Color Heliar 75mm f/2.5 has a filter thread of 43 mm, you also need an 43 mm to 52 mm adapter ring to attach the lens to the slide duplicator.

The Lens

Below are photos taken by the previous owner who sold the lens (including a Voigtländer LTM adapter) in a very good conditon:


Photos: Voigtländer Color Heliar 2.5/75 mm (112.5 mm equiv.) (Photos taken by the previous owner)

And here are some quick-and-dirty photos of my own:


Photos: Voigtländer Color Heliar 2.5/75 mm (112.5 mm equiv.)

On the M-mount expansion unit, this lens has an equivalent focal length of 112.5 mm, so it is "beyond" a true portrait lens (which it is in full format).


Body with Lens Attached


Photos: Body with A12 M-mount expansion unit attached and Voigtländer Color Heliar 75mm f/2.5 lens


Some Technical Data

Focal length 75 mm (112.5 mm equiv.)
Angle of view (35mm film) 32° diagonal
Maximum aperture 2.5
f-stop range 2.5-16
Number of iris blades 10
Number of lenses/groups 5/6
Shortest distance 1.0 m
Weight 230 g
Length 64.5 mm
Maximum diameter 55.5 mm
Filter thread 43 mm
Lens hood separate, screw-in
Mount M39


Sample Images

Here are first samples taken with the Voigtländer Color Heliar 75mm f/2.5 lens (from the day when the lens arrived - which was a gray day...) (click the images to view the unprocessed original files in a new window):


More Photos (Sunny Days)

The following photos were taken a few days after the first ones on sunny days (blended together). Some of the motifs are similar to the first ones so that they can be compared with them (click the images to view the unprocessed original files in a new window).




Disclaimer: I am not a lens expert who sees marked differences between various Leica and/or other lenses. I can check for soft corners, find differences in color rendition, and, in rare cases, may discover a "3D look", but that's all. Please regard therefore my conclusions as the verdict of a "layman".

It is too early for me to draw any definite conclusions on this lens. But the first results that the Voigtländer Color Heliar 75mm f/2.5 lens produces on the M-mount unit are very pleasing.

The lens acts like a small tele lens on the GXR, which has to be considered when taking photos (often, I am too close to the objects...). Somehow, it therefore inspires me to look for geometric patterns instead of photographing objects as they are (and which I usually do with wider lenses...). You also have to take more care when focusing, because depth of field is shallower than with normal and wide lenses. Usually, I use screen magnification to set the correct distance - but sometimes, I fail for various reasons... Moreover, with its minimum distance of 1 m, this lens is definitely not the first choice for close-up photos. But it is good for taking photos of groups of flowers etc.



For more links related to the Ricoh GXR M-mount expansion unit, see page M-Mount Links.


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