Leica revives the Thambar lens
The Thambar is back and updated
Leica has announced it is reviving the classic Thambar lens with the release of the new Thambar-M 1:2,2/90.
The original was released in 1935 and the new Thambar inherits much of the optical design of its ancestor.
“The only difference is that the four elements in three groups that make up the design have now been single-coated to protect the glass against environmental influences and surface corrosion,” Leica explains.
“The 20 blades of its iris deliver a unique bokeh with perfectly round rendition of point light sources.”
The Thambar’s ‘soft’ look is a result of deliberately under-correction of spherical aberration.
This under-correction increases towards the edges of the optical system and the degree of softening can be controlled by means of the stepless aperture setting. So the effect is more pronounced at wider apertures.
The lens goes on sale mid-November from Leica UK stores and dealers for £5,095
See the proposed specifications below.
Angles of view
(diagonal, horizontal, vertical)
approx. 27°, 23°, 15° (for 35 mm: 24×36 mm)
Number of lenses/groups Position of entrance pupil (at infinity)
(in the direction of light incidence behind the bayonet fitting contact area)
Smallest object field / Biggest scale
1 m to ∞
approx. 215×322 mm/1:9.0 (for 35 mm: 24×36 mm)
Setting/Function Setting range
No detent positions
2.2 – 2.6 or 9 – 25 (values in white: for use with the associated center spot filter)/2.3 – 6.3 (values in red: for use without the associated center spot filter)
Leica M quick-change bayonet with 6 bit lens identification bar code for digital M models2
Filter mount / lens hood
Internal thread for screw-on filter E49, center spot filter and push-on lens hood in the scope of delivery
Black lacquered (Distance scale: silver)
Dimensions and weight
Length to bayonet flange (without/with lens hood) Largest diameter (without lens hood) Weight
approx. 90/110 mm approx. 57 mm approx. 500g
All Leica M cameras