The speed and high performance of the Leica Apo Elmar-S 180 mm f/3.5 (approx. 144 mm) sets new standards of quality for handheld telephoto photography. The motto is: Open aperture equals working aperture as the contrast performance cannot be further increased by dimming. Aberrations of any kind are unknown to this high-performance lens. It proves to be an excellent portrait lense thanks to its high speed and selective sharpness. The close-up limit of 1.5m enables the possibility to take charming close-ups. The separately available close-up converter lens ELPRO-S 180 mm, specifically designed for the Leica APO-Elmar-S 180 mm f/3.5 lens, reduces the minimum focus distance from 3.6′ (1.1m) to 8.8′ (2.7m) and increases the maximum reproduction ratio of the lens to 1:4.5.
This apochromatically corrected lens features nine lens elements in seven groups. Six elements are made from glasses with anomalous partial dispersion, and two of these have particularly low dispersion. This ensures optimum elimination of chromatic aberrations. Three glass elements with a high refractive index almost fully eliminate monochromatic aberrations.