23rd May 2012, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Leica Camera AG, Solms, presents a new milestone in the history of lens construction: the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. With their goal of creating a lens that fully exploits the opportunities offered by high-resolution camera systems, the Leica engineers have successfully redefined the limits of what is technically possible. The result is an extremely high-performance lens that sets entirely new standards and currently stands as an exceptional talent amongst the standard lenses of the Leica M portfolio.
This new reference lens achieves the best test results ever seen in the Leica M-Lens programme. The MTF curves of the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. that describe the contrast of fine details and, in turn, the image sharpness, confirm its outstanding performance. Even the finest details are resolved with more than 50% contrast across the entire image field. This previously unattained value confirms the exceptional positioning of this lens. This means that all images captured with the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. in any situation show extreme sharpness and resolution of details from corner to corner of the image. At the same time, the apochromatic correction of the lens minimises chromatic aberration on sharp edges to ensure natural rendition of every detail. In consequence, photographers benefit from the best possible reproduction results at any print size.
The outstanding performance of the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. is founded on the perfect interaction of all its design and construction parameters, from its optical calculation and choice of materials to the sophisticated and elaborate manufacturing and finishing of the lens. Together with more than 150 years of experience in the design and construction of optical instruments, this once again emphasises Leica’s reputation as the manufacturer of the world’s best lenses.
The new design of the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. is based on the optical design of its predecessor that has been on the market since 1979 and is the oldest lens represented in the Leica M portfolio. The classical specifications – 50 mm focal length and a maximum aperture of f2 – offered an ideal starting point for further development. This meant that the lens designers were able to concentrate exclusively on the improvement of imaging quality within these standard specifications.
In its optical design, the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. is oriented on particular features of the Summilux-M 50 mm f/1.4 ASPH. and the Summilux-M 35 mm f/1.4 ASPH. lenses. For instance, the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. also incorporates a floating element. The lens group behind the diaphragm is designed as a floating element that changes its position relative to the front group during focusing. This ensure that the lens achieves outstanding imaging quality throughout its focusing range, including at closer focusing distances.
The realisation of the apochromatic correction of the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. involved the use of specially formulated glasses based on original developments from the former Leitz glass laboratory. The use of such glasses requires great effort and many years of experience. Thanks to the consistent advancement of optical processes, working with these high-quality glasses has been refined to such a fine art that they are integrated in the best possible quality in Leica lenses – as today, in the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH.
As a particularly reliable product with enduring value and ‘Made in Germany’, the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. is manufactured from only the best materials and is assembled in an elaborate process completely by hand in Solms. The combination of cutting-edge technologies and painstaking manufacturing procedures guarantees the consistently excellent quality of every single Leica lens.
The Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. in black finish is now available for preorder at the Leica Store @ Avenue K.
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Technical data LEICA APO-SUMMICRON-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH.
Angle of view in °
(diagonal, horizontal, vertical): 45° / 36° / 26°
(Ø × L from bayonet flange, in mm): 53 × 47
Weight (in g): 300
Closest focusing distance
(from the sensor/film plane, in cm): 0.7
Smallest object field (in mm): 217 × 407
Number of iris blades: 11
Number of lenses (elements/groups): 8/5
Position of front lens (from the bayonet): 24.4 mm
Focusing range: 0.7 m to infinity
Scales: Combined, feet/metres
Largest reproduction ratio: 1:11.3
Settings / function: Preselection with click stops at half stops
Smallest aperture: 16
Bayonet: Leica M quick-change bayonet
Filter mount: Inner-threaded for screw-in filters
Filter thread size (Ø in mm): E39
Lens hood: Integrated, extendable