Minolta CLE - Advice Required + WTB

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Thomas Keidan

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Hi All,

I've been looking quite extensively at the minolta CLE as my next purchase. However, i'm not sure whether to look at the 28mm 2.8 or 40mm 2.0 lens. I can only really afford one lens so I would like some advice on which would be the best for daily shooting.

On a side note, if anyone is selling a body+lens I am actively looking!

Thanks :smile:
 

Kodachromeguy

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Beware of the 28mm Rokkor lens made for this camera. Even 20+ years ago, many of these lenses developed some sort of spotting or hazing behind the front element. I have never seen one in years for sale at the big auction site that did not have this haze/spot problem. I read many years ago that it was unrepairable, but cannot confirm.
 
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Thomas Keidan

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Beware of the 28mm Rokkor lens made for this camera. Even 20+ years ago, many of these lenses developed some sort of spotting or hazing behind the front element. I have never seen one in years for sale at the big auction site that did not have this haze/spot problem. I read many years ago that it was unrepairable, but cannot confirm.

Yes, I am aware. I was trying to negotiate with a seller who was trying to sell the CLE with 40mm and 28mm. Unfortunately the 28mm has the infamous spotting issue but the seller would not sell me the camera and 40mm lens only!
 

Nodda Duma

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The 90mm looks great but if I purchase the camera I would want to maintain a small body+lens size!

The 90, at f/4, is about 1.5” diameter and the length of my finger. That whole system is all about compact.
 

macfred

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... I do like to use a 2.8 focal length for portraits!

There's not much difference between f/2.8 and f/3.5 (1/2 stop); the 28mm is less than ideal for shooting portraits.
Go for the 40mm f/2 - should be a more 'universal' lens (though the 90mm is a 'nice to have').
There's a Voigtländer Nokton 40mm f/1.4 MC but some folks reported about focussing problems with those fast lenses,
because of the short rangefinder baselength.
 

rbultman

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I have the CLE and Nokton Classic 40mm f1.4. It is a really great combo. As someone who wears glasses, this combo means that I can see the framelines without taking off my glasses. I haven't had any focusing problems with it.

I also have the Ultron 28mm f2 and the Minolta 90mm in good condition that was originally released for the CLE. They are all great lenses and make for a tiny kit.
 

craigclu

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I also use the Nokton 40 on my CL with great success. Don't spend extra for the pricey Voigtlander hood as it interferes with the rf on the little CL. I've got a simple, small, round hood that works fine. The small Konica HX-18W and Olympus S20 flash units make a nice little combo for fill work on the CL and seem like they were made for the duty. Actually, they're the same basic units and Leica had a version with their label on it, too.
 

Lee L

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Be aware that if you want to use the CLE in manual mode, setting both shutter speed and aperture, the meter is inoperable. The meter gives no indication of proper exposure at all except in aperture priority autoexposure mode. That's one reason I don't use mine as much as the Leica CL. My 28/2.8 only developed the spotting/haze problem within the last 6-8 years, I think because of a change of climate in a different part of the US. So getting a clean Rokkor 28/2.8 may not insure that it will stay that way. This is anecdotal, and a sample of 1. The 40mm Leica Summicron-C and the Rokkor 40/2.0 are both among the best lenses I've used in my 50 years of photography.
 

Kodachromeguy

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Yes, I am aware. I was trying to negotiate with a seller who was trying to sell the CLE with 40mm and 28mm. Unfortunately the 28mm has the infamous spotting issue but the seller would not sell me the camera and 40mm lens only!
Thomas, the spotting on the 28mm lens may not affect photographs all that much, obviously depending on how extensive the decay is. With the sun behind you, meaning no direct sun hitting the front element, you may not see too much degradation. However, the seller cannot expect much for a lens with this issue. I know the seller will not agree, but he really should be selling the CLE with 40mm, and the 28 comes in at no extra cost as part of the package. I would never sell something defective unless someone specifically wanted it as a repair or parts item.
 

rbultman

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Be aware that if you want to use the CLE in manual mode, setting both shutter speed and aperture, the meter is inoperable. The meter gives no indication of proper exposure at all except in aperture priority autoexposure mode...
Note that while this is true, and makes the camera less convenient to use, you can simply meter the scene using auto, then transfer the shutter speed to the dial, recompose as needed, then shoot. I used this technique yesterday by metering a relatively dark scene, setting the speed, then recomposing to include bright sky. That is a poor-man's AEL. :D
 
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