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Where are all the Reviews of the 21 APO?


jplomley

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On 10/26/2023 at 9:45 PM, helged said:

A puppy before an SL-APO-Cron? Well, as a puppy-father myself, I perfectly understand @jonoslack... (image taken with S3 and S120).

 

The dog ate my homework!

It is coming, but there are a lot of accouncements and I have a puppy on my lap!

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A useful length, but more experimentation required to find its sweet spot / distinguishing features.

Edited by jrp
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19 hours ago, Virob said:

Makes me think that Leica might be keeping the price “lower” on release, in recognition of all those who have been waiting years for this lens, and then the price will go up after the initial demand is met.
2) I also get  the impression from the discussion  that it might not be a true APO lens by Leica standards, but very close.

1- Selling price has a loose relationship with production cost. The APO SL lenses all fall within a certain price range, and Leica as a whole is profitable, that's all we know. 

It's not just Leica, of course. Do you ever wonder why every C segment crossover is priced within a hundred Euros/dollars, and every "premium" crossover sells for exactly 10,000 more? Price is a marketing tool. 

2- I don't think that APO means anything specific in photography. There was a long-ago debate about this on usenet; APO means something for microscope objectives, but not for general-purpose lenses. It's certainly meaningless when comparing different brands. 

I'm sure that the 21 meets Leica's own standard for the APO label. That's probably why it took so long. 

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3 hours ago, BernardC said:

2- I don't think that APO means anything specific in photography. There was a long-ago debate about this on usenet; APO means something for microscope objectives, but not for general-purpose lenses. It's certainly meaningless when comparing different brands. 

 

Well, one positive thing I have noticed from the images here is a total absence of longitudinal chromatic aberration or color shifts in the out of focus areas. Perhaps not as big a deal as it would be in a longer lens with more bokeh, but it is characteristic of the APO Summicrons, and a really good optical sign. In the images I downloaded to look at, the lens was very sharp on center, but it was a bit harder to judge the edges because they were not in the same focus plane as the center. But in general they look a bit softer than something like the 35mm APO. But they certainly seemed sharp enough for most purposes. Overall it strikes me as a very good lens. If it is a fundamental lens for you, then probably worth the cost. If it is something you rarely reach for, one of the excellent Sigma lenses is probably a good substitute. I am curious to hear from Jono and others who have had real time with it though. Would be cool to hear from an astrophotographer too, as they can probably speak well to the image quality in demanding scenarios.

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I should have said that the pics above are processed (including upright geometric corrections, dehaze, clarity, texture, lens corrections) as I normally would, rather than trying to bring out lens features.

This one has no local contrast adjustments so may give some idea of how distant blurs look.

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I did put the SL system to one side for a time, following an injury that meant I could not carry as much.  The Sony system has some splendid lenses (the best of which are no lightweights). And the camera technology is a generation ahead of the SL2.   But for clean, aberration free, images, the SL Summicrons are the cream of the crop.  That said, some of the compact L-mount lenses from Sigma / Panasonic are not that much of a compromise.

Edited by jrp
.. and another thing
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Please - if any of you have both lenses - could you post a comparison with the Sigma 20mm F1.4 DG DN? I'm particularly interested in all aspects of image quality.

  • "On paper" it is not clear to me which one would offer greater edge-to-edge sharpness (see MTF charts below)
    • I have the Sigma 20mm F1.4 DG DN, it is very sharp 'in real life'
  • The Sigma weighs 635g, Leica 789g (1208g with lens hood)
  • Sigma has a manual aperture ring
  • f/1.4 vs. f/2.0
  • similar minimum focus distance (Leica 21cm, Sigma 23cm)

Sigma 20mm at f/1.4:

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Leica 21mm at f/2.0:

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Just got the SL21Cron and had a few test shots with it.

At f2 first (focus point at the centre; click for larger view). On SL2-S.

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Edited by helged
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At f4.5 (focus point at the centre of the image; click for larger view). On SL2-S.

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Edited by helged
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Another on at f2, the second one is a crop of the first. Focus on the screw head. Camera: SL2-S (click for larger view).

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Edited by helged
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On 10/28/2023 at 2:18 PM, jonoslack said:

The dog ate my homework!

It is coming, but there are a lot of accouncements and I have a puppy on my lap!

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OH!.  "a lot of announcements" sounds good. So M11-P, M28/2.0, APOSL 21, SL Vario wide zoom that I know of. That's not a lot!

 

Soooo-SL3, Q3Mono, Evf-M, SL3S?, M APO 90/2.0, M APO 135. I must be missing a few for sure. Maybe a reworked close focus M  21? Then there are plenty more reissues they can do. Now that's a lot!

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5 hours ago, helged said:

Another on at f2, the second one is a crop of the first. Focus on the screw head. Camera: SL2-S (click for larger view).

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Is that a Norwegian guillotine I am looking at?

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Some additional examples from this afternoon, all at f2 on SL2-S, with quite high ISOs. Click to magnify.

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The night sky just outside of the house tonight (quite some light pollution; pluss a fairly large Moon, not ideal, but this is how it is).

The crops are pixel-crops of the four corners; the corners are 'labelled' by a white (+5 stop exposure) gradient tool in Lightroom.

Photo taken at f2 on SL2-S, 4 sec exposure, at 400ISO (single image, no tracking; typically one will stack multiple images and/or use tracking). Focus point was put about 1/3 off centre in the horizontal direction; something I typically do to maximise sharpness across the frame. The result is quite ok; and the best I have seen from any Leica lens (the second best in Leica-land in my book is SL24-90 @24mm). Click to magnify.

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Edited by helged
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On 10/28/2023 at 6:52 AM, Virob said:

There is a short segment, starting around 10:50 where they talk about the 21 APO and the difficulty Leica had designing and producing this lens, which may help explain the long delay. Very difficult and expensive glass to manufacture.
I assumed that on release, it would be the most expensive SL APO prime, but it isn’t, which is surprising considering these statements.

A couple of random thoughts.

1) Makes me think that Leica might be keeping the price “lower” on release, in recognition of all those who have been waiting years for this lens, and then the price will go up after the initial demand is met.
2) I also get  the impression from the discussion  that it might not be a true APO lens by Leica standards, but very close.

 

Fair thoughts but I have a couple counter thoughts. All the apo lenses are around the same price range. Only the sl summilux and the original zooms are priced a bit higher. Leica has said before I believe the chief of the company (back when the sl2 came out) that they had to price it appropriately because it has competition. In contrast to the M system where they're basically the only option in the market so they can control the price (these are my extrapolations). The other thing to keep in mind is the people interviewed in that video posted above are product managers vs Lens designers so I think we need to keep that in mind as their respective  roles should be taken into consideration when we watch their interviews.

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(Internal conversation)

I want one!

But it is very expensive.

I want one!

But you hardly used the 21mm f/4 Super-Angulon R you had when your Leica R5 was the main camera.

Well, yess,  but I still want one.

You've got the 16-35mm Leica SL zoom, which is excellent.

Mumbles: I want one.

They are out of stock now.

Sulks :o(

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On a tangent—and hope that Jono will touch on it in his upcoming review—is a comparison between this new lens and a Summilux 21mm already owned.  Hopefully, I will know more shortly.  What are your thoughts, I wonder?

Edited by ibramr
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2 hours ago, ibramr said:

On a tangent—and hope that Jono will touch on it in his upcoming review—is a comparison between this new lens and a Summilux 21mm already owned.  Hopefully, I will know more shortly.  What are your thoughts, I wonder?

Agree, that the M 21 lux versus the new APO 21 SL lens might be interesting. That would surely cut down on lens purchases if the M21 lux proves well suited to the SL.

 

Does anyone know or has anyone tried the M 21 lux on an SL?

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