Leica APO-Summicron-M 35mm f/2 ASPH. promises exceptional performance in compact package


posted Friday, March 5, 2021 at 12:00 PM EDT


35mm has long been a staple focal length for many camera manufacturers, including Leica. Leica has announced the launch of a new 35mm prime, the APO-Summicron-M 35mm f/2 ASPH. lens. Like its APO-Summicron sibling, the APO-Summicron-M 50mm f/2 ASPH, the new 35mm prime promises high-quality imaging performance.

The APO-Summicron-M 35mm f/2 ASPH has a close-focus distance of 11.8" (30cm), making it the closest-focusing 35mm M-lens ever. The lens includes a floating lens element to ensure exceptional imaging performance across all focus distances. The focusing ring has 300° of rotational throw, which should provide ample range for precise focusing, even when focusing on a close subject.


Leica states that the new prime's performance 'will maximize the fullest potential of today's imaging sensors while poised, futureproof and ready for the technology and resolving power of future sensors.' This performance is made possible by its 'elaborate optical design combined with its high-precision manufacturing at the Leica factory in Wetzlar.' In total, the lens incorporates 10 elements across 5 groups. There are four aspherical surfaces inside the lens.

Leica writes that the lens hood in combination with anti-reflective coatings on the glass results in the lens being 'extremely resistant' to any type of stray light and preventing lens flare and ghosting. Optical flaws, including chromatic aberration and distortion, are said to be 'barely' noticeable. For photographers who love good bokeh, Leica promises lovely bokeh. The lens has an 11-bladed circular aperture diaphragm. Even when shooting wide open, the lens should deliver impressive sharpness, but of course, real-world testing is required to know for certain. That said, the sample images Leica has published are impressive. Full-res downloads are available at the above link. 


The lens is quite compact as well. It is only 1.6" (40.9mm) long without the lens hood, which adds another third of an inch. The maximum diameter without the lens hood is just over 2" (53mm). That's a lot of glass to fit in a small form factor.

The Leica APO-Summicron-M 35mm f/2 ASPH. is available now at Leica Stores, Boutiques and Dealers for $8,195 USD. You can learn more about the lens and find authorized retailers by visiting Leica.