Thanks to Robert (monza) at Precision Camera, I was able to get a hold of this outstanding lens last evening. Given the first winter snow storm in Seattle in 2 years (and the fact that I couldn't bike, plus public transportation was hit-or-miss at best, I got to take the 35 lux asph II and M9 out for a maiden voyage through the snow....
The whole set of test shots is here:
And here are a few examples:
The one above is heavily cropped...
Images were processed solely in lightroom. I did some color adjustments (direct positive and old polar, 1 B&W coversion using an "orange filter" conversion)....It was a cool, evening day, around both sunrise and sunset, when I took the shots...part of the coolness in color rendering is due to the time of day and setting. Some was due to processing in LR3.
My initial thoughts
1. No detectable focus shift (maybe the best lens for this that I own...)
2. A bit more contrasty than the prior lens, with a slightly cooler rendering
3. A mix of modern asph look, with a touch of the classic creaminess, similar to the first version
4. Aperture and focusing rings turn smoothly, and are not stiff
5. THe lens hood is a real winner, though it takes a bit of force to get a 46 mm UV-MRC filter in....
6. It seems smaller than the prior asph version, mainly due to hood design
7. It's build quality is tops, no faults here (no element wobble)
Seems like a winner to me. Thanks for humoring my mini review!
My best to you all, and happy holidays!