Ownership of a Summicron-M 90mm APO ASPH is almost obligatory among status conscious M shooters in these parts. I had one, and while it appeared to live up to its hype, I never bonded with it. It got trundled off in the SL gear shuffle late last year.
Elmar-C, Summicron v. 2, Macro-Elmar-M, Summarit f2.5, and even the R ‘cron suffered similar fates. Actually I really liked the IQ of the Macro-Elmar, but found it too fiddly in the field, with having to extend it, the reversible pinch hood, etc. Add the macro adapter and size benefit goes out the window.
Although the 75mm ‘lux could easily fill in for a 90, there are times I just don’t want to carry 600+ grams. So the other day I picked up a two decades-old Elmarit-M after inspecting it well. Somehow I must have missed something, because in the field it had little saturation, parts of the frame were ungracefully unsharp, and infinity hard stop was off. I took it back.
The same shop had a newer version (f/2.4) Summarit, a lens at which local M devotees turn up their noses. Thus a dirt cheap price, and I walked out of the shop with it attached to my camera. It appears that Leica heard their customer base’s negative comments about the first iteration loud and clear.
I think I’m gonna like it . . .