Leica APO-Summicron-SL 90mm f/2 ASPH Review

April 30, 2018 | Amy Davies | Rating star Rating star Rating star Rating star Half rating star


The Leica APO-Summicron-SL 90 f/2 ASPH is an ideal lens for Leica SL users who are particularly keen on portrait photography. 

It produces beautiful results, and is ideal for that compression that particularly suits portrait subjects. It’s also great for other subjects, such as flowers, food and still life. Although not its primary intended usage, it can also be used for portrait photography - the long focal length allowing you to maintain a discreet distance. 

Results are sharp, while the out of focus areas are beautifully rendered. The rounded bokeh is stunning when there are lights in the out of focus areas. The lens is also able to quickly and accurately focus on the subject in the majority of instances - it’s not a lens you will likely want to use for sports or action photography, but it might be reasonably useful for animals or wildlife that you can get quite close to. 

As this is a Leica lens, you shouldn’t expect a bargain, of course. It currently retails for just over £4,000, which is obviously a very high price to pay for any lens - but when you’re talking about Leica, it’s obviously par for the course. If money is no object, you may also want to consider the 75mm lens as well, which gives you a little more flexibility as a walk around lens as it offers a wider angle of view, while still being useful for portraits. 

If you’re only looking to purchase one prime Summicron lens for the SL, this one will be the obvious choice if you’re primarily a portrait photographer, and it does an excellent job of that. If you’re an SL user, you’ll likely also be pleased that more lenses are becoming available for the system - especially prime lenses which tend to produce the highest optical quality. 

There’s no denying that this is a niche lens for a niche system, but if you’re in the market for it, then you’ll undoubtedly be very pleased with what the new Leica APO-Summicron-SL 90 f/2 ASPH is capable of producing.

4.5 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4.5
Features 4.5
Ease-of-use 5
Image quality 5
Value for money 3