Today I received my Leica Apo-Summicron-M 2.0/50mm Asph., which I ordered some months ago (on the same day it was announced).
When I got the parcel with the lens it was already getting dark. I assume that I got one of the first 50 AAs (not counting the test lenses) and therefore decided to quickly grab my tripod and publish some test shots.
I arrived at dusk at my favorite spot for testing new lenses. At this time of the day, the light was, of course, changing every minute. It is therefore not possible to draw any conclusions regarding colors and contrast out of these test-images, but it should be possible to evaluate the sharpness.
Since I shoot mostly landscapes I decided to do the first tests at infinity (the main subjects were at a distance of about 1-3 km).
The M9 was mounted on a stable Gitzo tripod and the self-timer was used for every image. I did a quick comparison of the 50 AA vs. the 50 Summilux Asph at different apertures.
PP was done with identical settings in LR.
Short conclusion: The 50AA is extremely good wide open at f/2.0, especially at the edges/corners. Outside of the center area, it is significantly better than the Summilux (at f/2.0). Stopped down to f/8.0 and in the center area the sharpness difference between the two lenses is very small and probably not visible in a print. Due to the extreme price difference of the two lenses the 50AA makes only sense if you use it at least sometimes wide open and edge/corner sharpness is important for you. This conclusion is only valid regarding sharpness at infinity. I’ve not yet tested other aspects like bokeh, colors, contrast, sharpness at MFD, etc.
I will do some more tests tomorrow, hopefully with more constant light. Stay tuned!