Leica's new 75mm f/1.25 Noctilux-M costs over £10,000
The Leica 75mm f/1.25 Noctilux-M ASPH is announced this afternoon and, at £10,250 it becomes the most expensive M lens currently in production — it’s a full £2,000 more than the cheapo 50mm Noctilux. It is billed as the ideal super high-speed portrait lens with exceptional image quality at all apertures. And the depth of field is shallow — I mean shallow — twice as shallow as that of the Noctilux. Should be a doddle to focus on the rangefinder, then.
As you might expect from the price, this lens comes in superb packaging and is accompanied by a metal lens cap, clip-on plastic lens cap and no fewer than two soft nappa leather cases, one of for the lens and one for the tripod adapter. Did I mention tripod? Yes, and it’s therefore no surprise to find that this lens weighs just over a kilogram.
The design comprises nine elements and six groups and focuses down to 85cm, slightly closer than the 50mm Noctilux. It has a diameter of 74mm and is 91mm long (102mm with the integrated hood extended).
Leica Noctilux-M 75 mm f/1.25 ASPH.: A new extremely fast lens enriches the Leica M-System lens portfolio
Wetzlar, 29 November 2017. For more than 50 years, the name ‘Noctilux’ has been a synonym for exceptionally fast lenses with an optical design that verges on the limits of what is physically possible. Today, Leica Camera AG has added a new highlight to their lens portfolio – the Leica Noctilux-M 75 mm f/1.25 ASPH. Together with exceptional imaging performance and unique bokeh, its gossamer-thin depth of focus isolates subjects with extreme precision and makes it a truly exceptional lens. Its focal length of 75 mm makes it especially suitable for the creation of portraits with a natural look.
As the depth of focus of the Noctilux-M 75 mm f/1.25 ASPH. is even shallower than that of the Noctilux-M 50 mm f/0.95 APSH., it allows for even more precise isolation of subjects. The short close focusing distance of 0.85 m for such a fast lens and a reproduction ratio of 1:8.8 open up entirely new opportunities in portrait and close-up photography, while the eleven blades of its iris ensure a soft and harmonious bokeh in out-of-focus areas.
To guarantee this extraordinary imaging performance, the nine elements in six groups that make up its optical design are manufactured from glasses with high anomalous partial dispersion and low chromatic dispersion. Two of the elements are aspherical and reduce other potential aberrations to a hardly-detectable minimum. Here, particular emphasis must be placed on the use of a floating element within the complex focusing mechanism, which guarantees a constantly high level of imaging performance throughout the entire focusing range of the lens – from the closest focusing distance to infinity.
In addition to the intuitively located focusing and aperture setting rings typical to Leica, the lens also features an integrated lens hood. This can be extended or retracted by a simple twist action and can be locked in place in its extended position. The lens is supplied
complete with a tripod adapter for safe and secure mounting of the lens on a tripod.
The first lens of this series, the Leica Noctilux 50 mm f/1.2, was revealed to the world of photography at photokina in 1966. It astounded visitors to the fair and the industry press with its literally revolutionary optical properties. Ongoing developments led to the launch of two new generations of the Noctilux, in 1975 and 2008. Each new version was developed under the premise of achieving even better imaging performance, making the initial aperture value even faster than its predecessor and simultaneously maintaining the maximum aperture as a working aperture – it always was, and still is, unnecessary to stop down a Leica Noctilux-M lens to achieve a great imaging performance.
Together with the Leica Noctilux-M 50 mm f/0.95 ASPH., the Leica Noctilux-M 75 mm f/1.25 ASPH. is the co-founder of a new family of lenses. The two current members of this family are both distinguished by their extreme maximum aperture and exceptionally high performance at all apertures, even wide open, and stand for pictures with a truly special, uniquely aesthetic look.
When shooting at maximum aperture, the exceptionally shallow depth of focus of the Noctilux-M 75 mm f/1.25 ASPH. can be used to particularly effect with the aid of an electronic viewfinder such as the Leica Visoflex. What’s more, the Leica M-Adapter L transforms the Noctilux-M into an excellent lens for use on the Leica SL. When the lens is mounted on the Leica SL, the 4.4 million pixel resolution of the camera’s EyeRes® electronic viewfinder enables particularly comfortable and extremely precise focusing.
The Leica Noctilux-M 75 mm f/1.25 ASPH. will be on sale at the beginning of 2018.