New Leica Summicron lenses for the SL System..SHIPPING SOON!
This was announced on Jan 15th but due to travel and then getting the flu..and then getting sick again 2 weeks after that cleared up, I have been down and out for a few days here and there, so I apologize for the delay. This year has been brutal for the flu, and I will be glad to see it leave until next year.
In any case, it appears that these new Leica SL lenses will be shipping soon! The 75 Summicron SL and the 90 Summicron SL. These are ones I have been waiting to really see and check out as I remember bokeh promises being made by Leica a year or two ago. In fact, I remember seeing an interview where Leica said that these new Summicron lenses, while being an f/2 design, will render or give the appearance of an f/1.4 design when it comes to the bokeh. True? No idea but if so, that’s pretty nice.
As many of you know who read these pages, I am a huge fan of the Leica SL. It’s in my top 3 cameras of all time, for my preferences and tastes (of course). It’s built to Leica Germany expectations, it feels amazing in the hand, the native lenses are all stunning (though huge) and it can shoot M lenses via the adapter Leica offers. All of this while retaining a simple basic user interface and a lovely control system. Also, I can not forget to mention that EVF as even today in 2018, it is the best EVF ever implemented in a camera to date, hands down makes it such a joy to use and shoot with. Damn, writing this is making me miss it! Lol. The Leica SL has been around for a while now, my full review can be read and seen HERE if you missed it.
When I go back to all three of those reviews I quickly remember the other reason why I love the SL so much. The image quality is sublime.
Native lenses for the system has been sparse indeed. The 24-90, the 90-280 bazooka and the 50 1.4 Summilux were all we had when it came to native glass. While it offered focal lengths from 24-280 and a fast 50 prime in the middle, some out there were and are waiting for smaller lenses. These new Summicron lenses will be the smallest of the native glass made for the SL, and this is very welcome. I will let you guys in on a little secret though…if you can handle not having auto focus, the little 50 APO lens for the M mount is GORGEOUS on the SL, and tiny ; )
The 90 Summicron M ASPH has always been such a gorgeous lens. Now that we have a 90 coming for the SL, I will predict that it will be even better than the M version as the SL native glass has all been jaw dropping in image quality. These lenses promise “lightning fast” AF (words from Leica’s press release below), fast f/2 aperture, are being made in Germany, and will come in at around $5k each, give or take a few hundred dollars ; ) TO BE EXACT, the 75 f/2 Summicron SL will come in at $4,750 and the 90 Summicron f/2 SL will come in at $5150. They will be beautiful, and I have no doubts on that.
These lenses start shipping in Feb, so just a couple of weeks away. I hope to review them very soon. You can pre order them at B&H Photo by clicking on the images below to go to the B&H pages for each lens. They also have a little more info on them as well. The SL can be purchased from B&H as well, and the current price of that body is $5995.
Size wise, here are the specs…
The 90mm Summicron f/2
The 75 Summicron f/2
So almost exactly the same for size and weight with the 75 being a teeny bit heavier than the 90. For comparison sake, here is the size and weight of the 50 Summilux SL which is 3/4 LB heavier and larger! So the Summicron line will be much smaller indeed.
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE FROM LEICA BELOW:
Leica Camera Unveils New Prime Lenses for the Leica SL-System
The new APO-Summicron-SL 75 mm f/2 ASPH and APO-Summicron SL 90 mm f/2 ASPH lenses embody superior performance and the finest engineering in compact designs
|January 15, 2018 – Today, Leica Camera announces the first two editions of a new line of high-performance Summicron-SL lenses for the Leica SL-System; the APO-Summicron-SL 75 mm f/2 ASPH. and the APO-Summicron-SL 90 mm f/2 ASPH. that will be available in February for photographers across the country. Both lenses seamlessly work with the SL-System’s lightning-fast autofocus and, as with all SL-Lenses, have been designed and constructed in Germany with exceptional materials for a long work life, even withstanding the rigors of professional use while always providing superior image quality.
The focal lengths of these two SL-Lenses are ideal for all types of photography, and truly shine when used for portraiture. While the APO-Summicron-SL 75 mm f/2 ASPH., for example, captures exceptional natural portraits, the APO-Summicron-SL 90 mm f/2 ASPH. is a classic telephoto focal length for portraits with the often sought-after compression between the subject and background, ultimately creating the ideal aesthetic for exquisite pictures of people. Another great feature of these new lenses is their fast and silent autofocusing, meaning the photographer does not have to wait to take the perfect shot to quickly capture their subject’s best look, even for a moment.
Both the construction and design of the new, cutting-edge Summicron-SL line represent the continuing innovation in the development of lenses for the Leica SL-System. State-of-the-art, extremely precise manufacturing methods and measuring technologies were developed specifically for the production of these lenses. The results of these developments are reflected not only in the more compact dimensions and considerably lower weight of the lenses, allowing for greater portability, but also in their excellent imaging performance. As the Leica SL-System continues to evolve with new capabilities and lens options, the addition of these two primes further round out the Leica SL native lens selection, which now encompasses two zoom lenses and three prime lenses. Current Leica SL customers continue to receive new lens options at their disposal that can bolster their current capabilities, and new users have more selection than ever before.
Additionally, these lenses feature a new, faster autofocus system, as well as a considerably shorter close focusing limit for tight portraits of their subjects. The autofocus drive of all Summicron-SL lenses employs extremely powerful and robust stepping motors with DSD® (Dual Syncro Drive™). Thanks to this advanced focusing drive, the entire focusing range can be fully travelled in only around 250 milliseconds, providing photographers the confidence that they will always be able to instantaneously capture their subjects in crystal-clear sharp focus.
As both Summicron-SL primes deliver extremely high imaging performance at their largest f/2 aperture, the lenses are also ideal for photography in low-light or difficult lighting conditions. The Leica promise of ‘maximum aperture is a usable aperture’ also applies to the new SL-Lenses. Users can rest assured that their lens is capable of creating a tack-sharp photograph in any situation. Meticulous attention was paid to the prevention of stray light and reflections in the construction of the APO-Summicron-SL lenses. Together with optimizing the optical and mechanical design, the application of high-quality coatings to each lens surface reduces unavoidable reflections to an absolute minimum. Thus, photographers get a lens that always creates images with beautifully strong contrast, where other lenses may suffer from distracting flares and ghosting effects that detract from the photo.
All glass elements in any optical imaging system, including camera lenses, can sometimes refract certain colors of light at different lengths. Thus, not all rays of light from a multi-colored subject are always focused at the same point – the result of this imperfection is chromatic aberration, also known as color fringing. In order to reduce chromatic aberration to a hardly perceptible minimum, both new Summicron-SL lenses are Apochromatic, or in short, APO, corrected, allowing photographers to capture photos in high contrast situations without a distracting purple or green outline along backlit subjects. Further supporting this optical achievement, most of the eleven elements of the optical system, one of which is aspherical, feature anomalous partial dispersion and are manufactured from sensitive and specially formulated, high-quality glass. Without all of these state-of-the-art lens corrections, images could suffer from fringing, flares, ghosting or distortion. These incredibly well-corrected glass optics are what make a Leica lens special and so crystal clear.
The APO-Summicron-SL 75 mm f/2 ASPH. and the APO-Summicron-SL 90 mm f/2 ASPH. will be available in February. Both can be purchased at Leica Stores, Boutiques and Dealers. In the second half of 2018, the SL-System will even further increase its prime lens arsenal with the launch of a Summicron-SL 35 mm f/2 ASPH. and APO-Summicron-SL 50 mm f/2 ASPH.