Voigtlander 75mm f1.5 review

Voigtlander 75mm F1.5 Nokton Portraits

Voigtlander 75mm F1.5 Nokton Portraits

What is the best Voigtlander portrait lens for Leica? My usual answer is the Voigtlander 75mm f1.5 Nokton VM ASPH lens.

Let me share a few example images to illustrate my opinion and check out my YouTube video below for a visual of the lens.

Nokton lenses from Voigtlander

I’m a big fan of Voigtlander Nokton lenses for Leica. I use a 35mm f1.2, 35mm f1.4, 40mm f1.4, 50mm f1.5 and now the 75mm f1.5. I even have the Nokton 58mm f1.4 for Nikon F mount and I recommend that one too! See all these lenses in my KitList.

Recognise this image?

You may recognise this image from my latest YouTube video! It was shot with the amazing Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f1.5 lens on my Leica SL camera during a recent Leica photography workshop. See more images from this day below!

Leica Photography Workshop (YouTube Cover Photo)

Lens sharpness

The Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f/1.5 is sharp and contrasty even shot wide open . Here is a film selfie test to prove the point at 0.7m using a Leica M4-P.

Leica M4-P Selfie
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Subject-background separation

If you love subject background separation you’ve come to the right place! Here are a few sample photos shot in Poland during one of my model photography trips to illustrate my point.

YouTube: Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f1.5 Review
Leica M240 High Key
Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f1.5 Portrait
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Nokton 75mm f1.5 colours

As predominantly a black and white portrait photographer i’m probably not the best person to ask when it comes to colour. Here are a few colour portraits but take them with a pinch of salt as they are edits. (More below too but not full res).

Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f1.5 Portrait
Leica Workshop - Model Photography
Voigtlander 75mm f1.5 (See Blog)

Film portrait – Voigtlander 75mm f1.5

Here is a colour film example using expired Kodak Vision 3 500T film. Photo shot with a Leica M4-P camera. As this lens is so sharp even wide open it works really well for film shooters.

Kodak Vison3 500T Portrait
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Digital – Voigtlander 75mm f1.5 portraits

Initially I used the 75mm lens on my Leica M240 rangefinder camera. Leica M240 RAW files + MrLeica Leica M240 B&W Preset

Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f1.5 (As seen on YouTube)
Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f1.5 (As seen on YouTube!)

I also tried it with my little Leica CL APS-C camera which applies a 1.5x crop. Leica CL RAW file + MrLeica Leica CL B&W Preset

Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f1.5 Portrait

Since getting the Leica SL I use this camera with all my fast lenses for portrait work. Leica SL RAW files + MrLeica Leica SL B&W Preset

Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f1.5
Leica Model Photography Workshop
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Model photography workshop with the 75mm

I ran one of my Leica model photography workshops in the UK a few days ago and I had the 75mm Nokton lens on my Leica SL for most of the day. See a selection of 75mm portraits below (all shot wide open at f1.5).

Voigtlander Nokton 75mm f1.5

75mm Voigtlander portraits

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These are my quick Lightroom edits that I give to the model. (For me that means RAW file + Leica SL preset pack applied, either colour or B&W presets to taste). *I did boost the contrast and saturation

Leica SL Lightroom presets (Before and after)

To see how the images looked without my Lightroom presets applied here are 2 before and after examples.

MrLeica Leica SL B&W preset (Swipe to view)

Voigtlander 75mm f1.5 Nokton PortraitVoigtlander 75mm f1.5 Nokton Portrait

MrLeica Leica SL colour preset (Swipe to view)

Voigtlander 75mm f1.5 Nokton PortraitVoigtlander 75mm f1.5 Nokton Portrait

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Leica Summicron 75mm vs Voigtlander 75mm

If you are a Leica photographer looking at 75mm lens you will probably have the question, Leica Summicron 75mm f2 or Voigtlander 75mm f1.5. I can help!

I owned the Leica lens when I received the Voigtlander lens to test. The Leica APO Summicron 75mm f2 is very sharp at f2 and focuses to 0.7m which I loved. The Voigtlander is sharp and contrasty wide open at f1.5 and gives a smoother more pleasing fall off being a faster lens.

I was so impressed with the Voigtlander than I sold my expensive Leica M lens and replaced it with the cheaper Voigtlander lens. Crazy times I know. The Leica has the built in hood which is nice but I don’t use a hood with the Voigtlander and it still works fine for me.

Not my typical work but here is an example portrait with the Leica 75mm Summicron. See the full written Leica Summicron 75mm f2 APO review for more full res images.

Leica Studio Portrait

You are not limited to Leica cameras!

Stating the obvious I realise, but you are not limited to shooting this amazing Voigtlander lens only on Leica camera bodies.

Are you a Micro Four Thirds user for example? The 75mm on a 2x crop gives you a small but brilliant 150mm equivalent setup. Less of a bokeh machine but lots of reach. I have used the lens on my little Lumix GX880 and Lumix GX80. (I still need to review these little cameras but with my MrLeica Lumix G presets applied i’ve got some really nice images).

Lumix GX80 vs GX880
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Price

As this lens is still quite new there are less available on the used market but it’s still worth searching eBay for a good deal.

Buying new? Compare prices –

In Summary

I’ve been really impressed with this lens. It even made it into my best 3 lenses of 2021 video!

What are the best Voigtlander portrait lenses?

As a portrait photographer (model photographer more specifically I guess) I need to be able to make pretty photos for the models. As my preference is Leica M mount lenses I love many of the Voigtlander VM lenses.

The word best is obviously subjective but of all the lenses i’ve used from various brands my favourites are as follows.

Voigtlander 75mm f1.5 Nokton VM (YouTube)

Best Voigtlander 50mm lens?

I need to list 2 favourite lenses here as both are great. Voigtlander have made many amazing 50mm lenses. The Heliar gives a more classic rendering (See my Voigtlander Heliar 50mm f1.5 video). The Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.5 is the best size but wasn’t sharp enough for me at close focus distances wide open. (See my Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.5 video).

Voigtlander 50mm f1.2 Nokton VM

For me the Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.2 offers the best bang for the buck as they say. Nice glow look wide open at f1.2 but stopped down slightly and it gets nice and sharp.

Voigtlander 50mm f1.0 Nokton VM

If you want the fastest Voigtlander lens for Leica M mount get the Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.0. A bigger lens but produces very nice images and still smaller and lighter than the TTArtisan 50mm f0.95 lens I love.

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Prefer something wider?

If you often shoot indoors such as me in the winter months you might need wider than 50mm for portraits. I have the perfect lens!

Voigtlander 35mm f1.2 Nokton v3 (+ v2)

The Voigtlander Nokton 35mm f1.2 is super sharp and contrasty wide open and makes a killer portrait lens. Version 3 is smaller than my v2 lens so fits better in the bag and makes for a nicer setup. Version 2 is cheaper if buying used and still takes great images. I’ve listed both.

Need something longer?

Many portrait photographers prefer 85mm to 50mm for portraits. In Leica and Voigtlander terms we have 90mm lenses as the closest focal length option. Voigtlander only offer an f2.8 lens but if you can cope with a little less bokeh it is still a fantastic lens.

Voigtlander 90mm f2.8 APO-Skopar

The new-ish APO-Skopar 90mm f2.8 lens is small and light and comes with a deep lens hood. Great if shooting in the snow as I found myself! See a full lens review with sample photos here to suppliment the YouTube video.

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Matt

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