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Leica MTF Examples

Examples on this page are from Leica lenses. Leica’s MTF charts are among the very best for useful information (Zeiss also).

Measurement distance is infinity for Leica MTF charts (unless otherwise noted). Leica MTF charts are for 5/10/20/40 line pairs per millimeter, yielding a very useful overall signature . They can be compared with Zeiss charts using the 10/20/40 lines.

Example — Leica 2010 35mm f/1.4 Summilux-M ASPH

The Leica 2010 35mm f/1.4 Summilux-M ASPH represents state of the art lens design. But like all lenses, it has compromises, and the MTF is very revealing of strong field curvature at ~ f/2.8, which must be kept in mind when shooting flat (planar) subjects.

Contrast rises considerably from f/1.4 to f/2.8, but with a large dip in mid-zones, due to field curvature. Stopping down to f/5.6 brings a sharp plane into focus as revealed by a more level MTF graph, but remember that the zone of sharpest detail is still just that— a zone centered around a 3D curve. Actual contrast appears to reach 80% at 40 lp/mm, which is world-class.

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Intrigued? See Focusing Zeiss DSLR Lenses For Peak Performance, PART ONE: The Challenges, or (one topic of many) field curvature.

Aperture series 1.4, 2.8, 5.6 available in full article
Aperture series 2.5, 5.6 available in full article

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