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Old Summicron 90mm SEOOM

Dear Juan,

To add to the comprehensive advice of Joseph and Erik, this lens on an M3 feels "nose heavy". It balances better on the SL. If I were looking for an f/2 90mm lens for an M camera, the later aluminium mount/anodised black fits the M series well.

Incidentally your Summicron has the very rare pre-set diaphragm. With the ZOOEP you have an exclusive piece of equipment.

Have fun.

Dear Justin,
Thank you very much for your input. Through John Collier from the Leica Users Group I have learned this particular combination was called OESBO.
Yes, it has a preset diaphragm, and one can tell it would be front-heavy on the M3. I will use it on the Leicaflex, and maybe it will be the excuse I need to use the Viso...
Do you know if there is any rhyme or reason to the Leica letter codes (OESBO, ZOOEP, and so on)? They sound so odd!
As usual, thanks to everybody. Nice forum.

Justin, I am not aware of Leica M lenses ever having aluminium mounts, or any of their mounts being anodised black. I believe M cameras have chrome plated brass mounts and the lens mounts are ss
Juan, Up until recent years Leitz always gave their Leica accessories code names.This was to help in ordering. Nowadays this is replaced by a catalogue number,but some items became so well known by their code word,that the latter was more characteristic than the description of the accessory itself. Ex&les would include "Nooky" (Hesum) A close focussing device, "Ploot", a reflex mirror device preceding the "Visoflex" and "Vidoom" finders There are literally hundreds of others!

Do you mind to tell the price of this rare item?

Hopefully you can find a scrap 90/f2 lens at same type (even harder to be smae chrome) with good focusing barrel, then it may be used on M3 coupled. If you don't mind you spend some more to buy a bad condition 90/f2 same type in order to use this lens head. I am not sure the pre-set diaphragm design may affect focusing. Wait for expertise to answer the question.


So far I have tried to stay away of really expensive Leica items, and when I bought this I did not know if it was rare or not. The lens was US $357. As I have said before, to decide if the price is reasonable I check the listings of KEH (USA), collectcamera.com (Netherlands) and recent eBay sales.

The pre-set diaphragm makes it very convenient to use on the Viso or the Leicaflex, because you can focus at full aperture and then easily close the diaphragm to the working aperture just before shooting (or, in the case of the SL, before metering).

Finding the long focusing mount may be really difficult and involved (it would need rangefinder calibration and so on, so it would end up being _very_expensive_). As Justin suggests, this lens is probably better used on the SL. I will keep an eye open for a "Parts/Repair" kind of Summicron 90, though.


I rather like the names. I wondered if they are random letters or there is a pattern, if each letter stands for something (i.e., if someone can guess that SEOOM is a (S)ummicron for the (M) (and E, O and O also mean something). I would imagine there has to be a "code".


You should not check collectcamera.com for reasonable prices for he is too expensive. I know him personally and it's a trustworthy dealer but he has problems selling his stock because his prices are not realistic.Better look at the auction results of Tamarkin in New York or look frequently on Ebay.



You are absolutely right. I forgot to add I subtract 40-50% from his prices to reach my level of "reasonableness", although he has had bargains sometimes. He has always been very responsive, and I bought a very nice and inexpensive M3 Summaron from him last year, when the Euro was weaker. As an ex&le of his responsiveness, this is what he replied this morning when I asked him about the "long mount" for this lens:

"I don't think that you will find the regular tube easily; it was not an accessory but a part of the Summicron 90. I am afraid you will have to buy the whole lens to obtain the focusing tube. Best regards,"


The alphabetical code was used before 1960 for use on telex machines.

Computers and improved means of communication changed that.


Forget about a Visoflex unless tripod mounted, which is not why one has an f/2 lens. I use a 1:4/135 Elmar on a Visoflex I and tripod, but that is because it will focus from 1:1 to infinity.

Your combination on a Leicaflex is perfect. I wish I had your preset lens.