Leica announced an updated version of its Summilux-M 50mm F1.4 ASPH fast normal prime for its M lens mount in April 2023. The redesigned Summilux-M now has a closer minimum focus distance of 45cm (17.7″), down from 70cm (27.6″), 11 aperture blades (up from 9) and gains a metal hood that screws outwards, rather than the push/pull version on the older lens.

Manual focus is also the only option for the lens, so while F1.4 is attractive, focusing wide open is a test of both eyesight and a steady hand. Getting 100% perfect focus probably isn’t realistic for a rangefinder lens (but we tried with the EVF, rear screen and with focus peaking on and off).

Also, a note about F-stop readings in the metadata: there is no communication between the lens and the Leica body so information within the EXIF file is not always the exact F-stop used for an image but rather the camera’s best guess based on the M11’s sensor readings.

Coupled with an Leica M11, we took the new lens out on the road for a few weeks to see how it performs.

View our Leica Summilux-M 50mm F1.4 ASPH sample gallery