Leica Tri-Elmar-M 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH. Lens with Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder

Leica Tri-Elmar-M 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH. Lens with Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder

Leica Tri-Elmar-M 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH. Lens with Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder

B&H # LE161821MTFB MFR # 11642
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Product Highlights

  • Leica M-Mount Lens
  • Aperture Range: f/4 to f/22
  • Two Aspherical Elements
  • Floating Elements System
  • Internal Focusing Design
  • Minimum Focusing Distance: 1.6'
  • Includes Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder
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Configuration: With Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder

Lens Only With Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder
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Leica 11642 Overview

  • 1Description

Configured for ultra-wide photography with an M-mount rangefinder camera, the Tri-Elmar-M 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH. Lens with Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder from Leica bundles the uniquely versatile three-focal-length lens with the Universal Wide Angle Viewfinder for making more accurate compositions with each focal length position.

  • Tri-Elmar-M 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH. Lens

    A uniquely versatile super-wide lens, the Tri-Elmar-M 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH. from Leica allows you to work with three separate focal lengths within one lens. The optical design, which includes a pair of aspherical elements, notably reduces distortion for clean, accurate rendering of interior and architectural subjects, and the aspherical elements also promote a more compact form factor. Seamless switching between 16mm, 18mm, and 21mm focal length positions is possible while retaining a minimum focusing distance of 1.6', and a floating elements design is used to maintain image quality even at close range.

    Unique three-focal-length lens gives you the option to seamlessly switch between the 16mm, 18mm, and 21mm focal length positions to adjust your field of view.
    Super wide-angle lens has been designed to notably reduce distortion and field curvature to suit photographing interior and architectural subjects.
    Two aspherical elements are featured to limit spherical aberrations and improve sharpness and clarity throughout the aperture range and at each focal length setting.
    An internal manual focusing design is used along with a floating elements system to achieve consistent image quality throughout the focusing range at each focal length, even at the minimum focusing distance of 1.6'.
    The aspherical elements also contribute to a more compact form factor.
    The front of the lens is male threaded to accept the included lens hood or an optional 67mm filter holder.
  • Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder M

    The Leica Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder M is a shoe-mounted external viewfinder for M-system rangefinder cameras (including M8). This viewfinder offers bright-line frames to match the 16-18-21mm lens. Since the 1.33x conversion factor has to be considered for the M8 digital camera, bright-lines for 21, 24, and 28mm are also included. It can also be used with other fixed lenses that match this range. A parallax compensation dial allows for adjustment of the frame to the focusing distance, in five steps (0.5, 0.7, 1, 2 meter & infinity).

    The use of one aspherical lens element and one with achromatic correction in the viewfinder makes it insensitive to stray light, and provides a high resolution and exceptional brilliance image.

    An illuminated spirit level helps to keep the camera horizontal even in unfavorable light conditions.
    Compatible with the R8/R9 series of diopter correction lenses.
    UPC: 799429120115
In the Box
Bundle Items
  • Lens Hood for 16-18-21mm Lens
  • Lens Hood Cap for Leica Wide-Angle Lenses
  • Rear Lens Cap for M-Mount Lenses
  • Leather Pouch
  • Limited 3-Year Warranty
  • 2-Year Warranty
Table of Contents
  • 1Description
  • Tri-Elmar-M 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH. Lens
    Focal Length 16mm
    Aperture f/4 to f/22
    Camera Mount Type Leica M
    Angle of View 16mm: 107°
    18mm: 100°
    21mm: 92°
    Minimum Focus Distance 1.6' / 50 cm
    Reproduction Ratio 16mm: 1:38
    18mm: 1:35
    21mm: 1:30
    Optical Design 10 elements in 7 groups
    Diaphragm Blades Not specified by manufacturer
    Focus Manual
    Filter Thread N/A (male thread to accept included lens hood or optional 67 mm filter holder)
    Dimensions 2.1 x 2.4" / 54 x 62 mm
    Weight 11.8 oz / 335 g
    Packaging Info
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 5.9 x 4.8 x 4.8"
  • Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder M
    Packaging Info
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 4.7 x 4.6 x 2.8"

Leica 11642 Reviews

Tri-Elmar-M 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH. Lens with Universal Wide-Angle Viewfinder is rated 4.8 out of 5 by 4.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Quite amazing for some reason I use this lens at 16mm most of the time and wonder why I simply didn't buy a wide angle lens to begin with. I am new to leica glass, I have a 50mm 1.4 and a 90mm 2.0 and have the new 35mm on order. For landscape and for interesting perspectives I love this wide angle lens. leica has me so much more disciplined than when I was a dslr snapper. i love shooting wide open but am still experimenting.
Date published: 2010-09-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Exceeded some very critical expectations This is not a lens for every day use, nor should it be one of the first Leica M lenses that you buy. However, it does have some very good applications. Uses: I find it impressive for in close(not close-up) photography. You can work in close proximity and the result will spread out and give a roomy impression. This is great for interior people photography and camera shy subjects who are sure that the camera is not pointed at them. Interiors, such as churches, museams, and theaters are often difficult to include adequate coverage to give a true impression of the size and character of the subject. Not with the WATE. Ergonomics: It is well designed and constructed. It is easy to use and has very smooth focusing and focal length adjustments. There is essentially no finder blockage from either the hood or the 67mm filter adapter when the Universal finder is used. Resolution: I expected the same optical performance as my previous series I and II 28-35-50mm Tri Elmars, but the WATE's performance is much better. Color reproduction is spectacular, and contrast is extremely good, if not superb. Certain reviewers state that you can tell a sharpness difference in this lens and the prime lenses it covers if you examine the emulsion on film. What he is saying that this lens really approaches the limits of sensor resolution on the M9. For my purposes, this is more than adequate. I was blown away by the depth of field. At f8 and focused at a distance of 150 feet, the building was sharply focused and the plants at my feet on the lower margine of the frame were surprisingly sharp. Who is this lens for? Its for those of use who are looking to expand photography to a level that many of us have not ventured into before. I am still on a learning curve and find new uses for the lens whenever I pull it out of the bag. Its use is less limited than I originally thought. The Universal viewfinder takes a little getting used to, but it soon becomes obvious why Leica designed it the way they did. It is pricy, but still a great investment.
Date published: 2012-04-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Wow The last time I saw an M lens this wide it cost $15,000used, thanks to collectors, so try to consider this abargain This lens on a M8 has put my Canon IDs with 24tilt-shift and the 16-35 on the shelf. It has also made meponder if I really still need my M 21mm 2.8 anymore. Thissharpness compared to any and all Canon wide lenses is verywelcome.The viewfinder really isn't necessary for framing thanks todigital, but the built in level allows me to shootarchitectural photos hand held. So sure, the viewfinder isbig, but it is smaller, lighter and less expensive than agitzo carbon fiber tripod. The electronic registration with the M is problematic fornow, the need for an adapter for the UV filter is an issue,but I have been happy with the images without filter while Iwait for it.Oh, and the price, it only goes up.Don't get confused on my rating of the ease of use at a 2,that's just a reflection of the viewfinder adjustments andthe need for filters etc.The fact that I rate this a five star as value for the moneyreflects how much I like this lens. Expertise: Professional
Date published: 2007-10-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from useful for film or digital Useful for:Architectual photos -- exaggerated perspective in hallways, entrances, arcades, lobbies, cathedral interiors. Landscapes with foreground subject or pattern with wide vistas requiring depth of focus.Sky scenes -- sunrise or sunset.Including the context of the surroundings with an interesting foreground subject.City 'canyon' photos with skyscrapers outlining shapes overhead.Reflected scenes with still water or wet pavement in the foreground.Capturing overhead visual elements such as overpasses, archways, clouds.No disclosure -- I bought this for my personal use. I like using it. I am a photography student. This is a specialized lens. It will be fun learning to use it. It could be used with M-mount rangefinders, Sony NEX and alpha 7 cameras, and Voigtlander and Zeiss rangefinders.Recommended for full frame and film cameras. I like the viewfinder, but you do not absolutely need the viewfinder --use your hands held out to the side. Think -- lots! Bring the lens, consider leaving the viewfinder.
Date published: 2014-03-17
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what year was 16-18-21 first released?
Asked by: Anonymous
The Tri-Elmar was announced at Photokina in September 2006.
Answered by: James B.
Date published: 2018-08-27


can this lens be shot at in between setting of its focal lengths say at 17 ?
Asked by: Frank
It would not be possible to shoot in between the set focal lengths of this lens.
Answered by: Kirk R.
Date published: 2018-08-27
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