The TT Artisans 28 f/5.6 (Leica Summaron Copy) is a STUNNER!

The Leica SL2S with a $280 JEWEL of a Lens!

By Steve Huff

STILL MY PERFECT CAMERA (well, as of August 2023 this has changed, see my NEW camera)

For me the Leica SL2S is still MY perfect camera in 2023 and it will be for many years to come just as it has been for the last few years. It has been my main camera since it was released and before that? It was the original SL from 2015 that I adored for its color, IQ and feel.

In fact, if I had the extra cash I would buy an OG SL today to have on hand as a 2nd body because that sensor, while not as good in low light or in many other areas, was superior in color and rendering even to the SL2S in good light. That’s my opinion of course but on the flip side the SL2S is a much more mature body and is without question the better camera.

I have reviewed the SL2S here and on YouTube over two years ago. I still love it as much today as I did on day one, actually probably more. I even updated mine to the new Reporter edition as I love the green color. It matches my surroundings out here in the remote woods where we have lived since 2020!

A new 2023 video on the SL2S and the ten reasons why I still love it today!

Over the last year I have rented and tried a few of the newer breed of cameras. I have tested new releases from Sony, Canon and even the newest Panasonic S5II. I enjoyed some of them but none felt like home to me like my trusty Leica SL2S does. Trusty is the key word here. Since owning my original 2015 SL and now the SL2S I have never once had a malfunction with either camera. Never a hiccup or a lost image. I can not say the same for all brands because I have had a few cameras and lenses fail on me over the years.

These days I like my menus lean, my cameras simple and an experience that is hassle free.

For me and the foreseeable future, it’s the SL2S and some pretty cool small lenses that do not cost a fortune.

The cost of the SL2S

This is a lens review, and we are almost there I promise! Before we get there I want to touch on something I have seen some talk about. I keep hearing that the Leica SL2S (which you can find for under $5k) is just too darn expensive. I have the opposite feeling on this. Yes, it is an expensive camera and in my world it is VERY costly but in reality it has saved me thousands of dollars. How so?

Well, the SL2S  has been the first (well, second) camera EVER that I am 100% happy with for the long haul. It wasn’t a camera I tired of, grew bored of or wanted to switch out for something new. THAT is huge. I haven’t spent money on a camera in a long while (I did upgrade to the Reporter Edition but at a minimal cost once the standard SL2S was sold..hundreds not thousands) and have stayed completely happy with the SL2S.

These simple pages were test shots with the $280 TT Artisans 28 f/5.6 which is a copy of the Leica 28 Summary (and a great one at that). Second one is at ISO 6400 to show you can shoot it indoors even with an f/5.6 aperture. The SL2S is a stunner in low light. 

Some ask why I did not go for the larger megapixel SL2. Well, I am personally not a fan of the sensor in the SL2 for my own personal tastes. Too noisy at higher ISO’s and I am not a resolution hound. For me, 24MP is still the sweet spot so the “S” is the one for me. Heck, I used to love the OG Sony A7S and. that was what, 12MP? I like fat pixels I guess.

Debby with the TT Artisans 28 5.6 on the SL2S. Click for larger. 

Owing the cameras I really enjoy means I have not been doing the constant upgrade game, losing money on buying and then selling a camera just to get the latest and greatest.

The reasons I enjoy the SL2S? The fantastic low light capability, the color rendering, the build and design, the feel, the easy menus, the EVF, the controls, how versatile it is with a variety of lenses and the video footage is special when it comes to color. Some compare it to Arri Alexa in color and vibe.

For me the SL2S feels like a true extension of my hand, and no, it’s not too heavy for me as I use only light lenses. I have AF lenses from Sigma that are small and M lenses that are manual, and tiny. The lens I will be discussing today is super tiny, jewel like and gorgeous. In fact, it’s hard to believe I paid only $288 for it. It’s not one of those cheap feeling wobbly lenses one normally gets in this price range. It’s solid, smooth, silky and there are no quality issues with the build. It’s fantastic.

The 28 f/5.6 from TT artisans provides a smooth vintage and modern kind of look. 

OK… let’s talk about this jewel of a lens. 

Many years ago I reviewed the Leica version of this lens. I loved it then but couldn’t swallow the over $3k price tag for a lens I would not use often. Over the years I would on occasion go back to some files I shot with that Summaron lens and I really felt the color and rendering were gorgeous. I am not usually a fan of lenses like this as I normally like fast aperture glass. This one though, well, is different. It’s got more mojo than most modern day 28mm lenses.

My review of the Leica version can be seen HERE. The images there have more snap and pop but it was a different time, different light, different camera and plenty of evening sunlight. The TT Artisans version is a touch more romantic and maybe 95% of that Leica. Even the build is fantastic and feels solid. It is jewel like and at this price, this is rare to find.

One could buy 10 0f these for the price of one of the Leica version. The Leica may give you something extra, but they are razor close in rendering and feel in the hand. 

When I saw that TT Artisans created a version or copy of the Leica 28 Summaron and it looked so similar I was intrigued. I found the gold/brass version on for $288 and bought it instantly. I expected to be let down in build and performance but at $288 I had to give it a shot.

When it arrived I slapped it on the SL2S with the M adapter and shot a few frames. I saw the same character as the Leica and while it may not be quite as all out sharp as the Leica I was blown away by the rendering and color for what this lens cost. The build and feel are also beautiful, solid and silky. The lens comes with a nice metal hood just like the Leica version and also includes  brass caps for the bottom and top. It also ships with a pretty snazzy display box (sort of like Leica). The presentation is lovely and costs $2700 less.

Click images for larger versions

This lens, just like the Leica version is small, tiny and so sexy looking. It comes in black, chrome and gold. I chose the gold for some reason but I think it looks amazing on the Reporter SL2S.

It’s the best TT Artisans lens I have ever tried out and the least expensive. What we pay for in those modern expensive lenses is sharpness, lack of flare and distortions, and a rendering that is more aimed at perfection that character. I have always preferred character over modern day lenses that can look sterile.


It’s a NO BRAINER if you want a lens with a rendering that is sort of vintage and sort of modern. It has a lovely draw and while it can flare on you, those flares can be used in an artistic way. I just adore this lens and even if I use it a few times per year it will be well worth the $288 investment. It will not wow you with big Bokeh but rather in the way it just draws the scene, if your lighting is right.

The 28 f/5.6 from TT Artisans is a lovely lens with the SL series. Here is a monochrome shot of my son Brandon

The images I shared here are all basically snapshots. Nothing professional or serious but lets face it. Most of us who shoot with Leica and these kind of lenses are doing it for the fun, the passion and well, because we love photography. I stopped shooting pro years ago and these days shoot just for the fun and pleasure of it. To create memories from blocks of my life. Today I have tens of thousands of images from when before my son was born to today. He is now 27. How time flies but I have images to pass down to him that documented much of his life. To me, that is what photography is all about.

If you have been looking for a lens for your Leica M or SL that is small, well made, affordable, beautiful and renders in a unique way you may want to take a look at this 28 5.6 from TT Artisans. It’s a copy of a Leica lens that sells for $3095. You can see the Leica version HERE. 


Well, this is not a low light lens, so I reserve this for well lit days. But this is not really a con as this is how the lens was designed. With a modern sensor that does well in low light, I will argue that you can use it for inside shots of family, to make memories. To be honest there ARE NO CONS with this lens at this price. The con of the Leica version is the price but then again, it’s a Leica. Either way both are unique and beautiful lenses. Be aware though, this is a tiny lens and it’s not a bokeh kind of lens!


Click images for larger. The Nikon Z9 does fantastic (Better) with this lens. 


Amazon sells the lens HERE.

Buy the SL2S at Amazon

Buy the SL2S at B&H Photo

Buy the TT Artisans at B&H Photo 

See my Nikon Z9 Review where I have many more shots with this lens! 



  1. Hello Steve, it’s so great to read and watch a new photo review after such long time ! Thank you very much and all the best for you !

  2. Hi-Steve,
    I manage to have a good price with a Chinese dealer, and the lens arrived this morning,
    The lense is exactly as you described it, a beautiful little jewel,and 1st test shots are better than expected, and surprised haow good it is already full open.
    Best regards

  3. Thank you for the review! I would be curious for your thoughts on the Pixii by the way. Have a nice day!

    • I had the Pixii here for a few weeks. I enjoyed it at first, but then discovered some bugs and issues with my particular body. Had to send it back and hold off on a review.

  4. Very nice kit indeed. I swear that someday I will buy a Leica. You sent me down the Sony Alpha rabbit hole many years ago LOL. No regrets whatsoever. My most recent acquisition thanks in part to your early enthusiasm, the A7RV. 61MP, 9.44M dot EVF, 3.2″ bright LCD, 8 stops of IBIS, AI Autofocus, new menus, 8k Video and a new flippy/tilty screen paired with GM lenses is simply a joy to shoot with. Sony finally abandoned the whole “smallest full frame” concept and corrected the ergonomics so that it feels great in hand. I do very much want to own a Leica but for now, the Red Dot will have to wait…thanks to you 😉 Great to see a camera review here again.

  5. Thanks for the review, Steve. Enjoyable and informative, as ever.

    I’ve got a Sigma fp which has the Sony sensor and wide angle m mount lenses are very poor on the edges. They do seem to work better on the Leica. Is this right?

  6. I have an SL2-S Reporter and love it too. Only issue is the Kevlar weaving has turned very light colored in just 2 months of owning it. And it only happens where I hold the camera so other parts are jet black. Is this happening to you at all?

    • Hasn’t happened yet but I see what you mean. I have to make sure my hands are super clean before using so it may not have been the best covering. Even so, I will consider any wear as a “patina” of sorts. I am sure after a couple of years these will look pretty used. I am ok with that as long as it doesn’t fall off.

  7. Hi Steve,

    Great to see another great camera gear review from you. I have been browsing your website for the past 13 years. Like many others, I have started phased out from taking my Leicas everywhere and my fav camera is an iPhone.

    Just wanted to say that I couldn’t agree more with your opinion on Leica SL. I still use it when I need to take any “serious” photos, alongside with my Leica 246 + 50 Noct .95.

    Reading your review again makes me feel like going back to those good old days.

    All the best,

  8. nice to see an original photo publication. I love HIFI but I even more like you photographic point of view

  9. Thanks Steve, I always enjoy reading your photographic reviews even if they are less and less … perhaps because there are less and less really interesting products. I own a CV 28 2.0 II and I like it very much, I understand that they are two different lenses but this TT fascinates me aesthetically, does it make sense to make a comparison?

  10. Hi Steeve,
    Happy to see a photo review, even if I like your audio ones.
    I was looking for this lense myself, but price in Europe is 399€ at best.
    Most of your pictures have softer corners which was predictable, except the one of your son, where infinity is sharp in the corners when it was focus close on your son.
    All the best for you

  11. glad to see the lens review again. missed it. went to your site every day and waited for more reviews on photographic equipment. i read and enjoy, your reviews are the best

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