How The Laowa 90mm f2.8 Macro Makes Bokeh Extra Special

We’re really curious about the Laowa 90mm f2.8 Macro lens being announced today for a few reasons. First off, Laowa puts out new lenses at a very furious pace. More importantly, they make them for nearly every lens mount available too. But what’s seriously fascinating about the new Laowa 90mm f2.8 Macro is a critical part of the design: it’s an apochromatic lens. If you’ve read about my thoughts previously on Apochromatic lenses, then you’ll understand why this is extremely special. Even better, Laowa is promising that the design is less than 5 inches long while being a bit more than 1lb.

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Affordable Macro. But Be Careful! Laowa 85mm F5.6 Review

For a long time, I wondered why Macro lenses needed to be so large. And then the Laowa 85mm f5.6 came out. It’s a very small full-frame lens. Granted, it’s got a lot of trade offs to meet a certain price point and a few other parameters. Before writing this introduction, I took some time to process my thoughts on this lens. Is it good? I think there are surely folks who would want it. To them it will be a great lens.

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You’ll Really Love These Manual Focus Lenses!

Very few things excite this staff like manual focus lenses. They help us feel connected to the fact that we’re taking a photo. But they also force us to work harder to get a better image. Some folks think manual focus lenses are a waste of time. But, they force you to take the time to compose an image in a different way. Check out these fantastic manual focus lenses.

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Medium-Format Magic in a Full-frame Lens. Laowa 45mm F0.95 Review

Imagine being able to get the kind of bokeh and depth of field with your full-frame camera that medium format camera users show off in their images. Creamy, buttery, super smooth, out of focus portions with an ultra-shallow depth of field. The Laowa 45mm f0.95 Z-mount lens delivered this and more in the week or so of indoor and outdoor testing I did with it. It’s not an autofocus lens, but it still won me over.

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If Not for Third-Party Lenses, Photography Would Have Died Long Ago

rokinon lenses

Thanks to third party lenses, photography is still within reach for those of us who don’t have the deepest pockets.

Come, look at our new super-fantastic lens! It’s the widest, fastest, fattest lens in the universe. You need it to be a pro, and it will only cost you a few thousand dollars! Sound familiar? It’s not uncommon for first party lenses from the likes of Canon, Sony, Nikon, and others to cost close to $3,000 these days, and because of this, many photographers are being priced out of certain systems. The photography market is in decline for sure, but if it wasn’t for third party lenses, photography would have died altogether a long time ago.

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How We Rate the Lenses That Took the Gold for TIPA Awards 2020

The TIPA Awards 2020, again, made some interesting choices when it comes to the best lenses of the last year.

Following on from our roundup, which focused on the TIPA Awards 2020 for best cameras, we bring you the best lenses according to TIPA as well. TIPA, the Technical Image Press Association rounded up their members and banged their heads together to come up with the list of best lenses which covers everything from the best DSLR lenses for pros to best the best portrait lens for Mirrorless shooters. There are some great choices and some eyebrow-raising ones too. Check out all of the winners of the TIPA Awards 2020, and decide if you need to add these lenses to your collection.

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A Quick Look at Some of Our Favorite Fast Lenses for Astrophotography

The Astrophotography season in the Nothern Hemisphere is about to kick off, and these lenses will help you capture the millions of stars in the night sky.

Right around the end of March is an exciting time for photographers in the Northern Hemisphere. Not only are warmer days afoot, but the Milky Way and all of the beauty and splendor it adds to the night sky finally become visible. Astrophotography is seen as a hard genre to break into by many, but it needn’t be that way. Anyone with a camera made in the last decade and some fast glass can create gorgeous astroscapes with a little practice. After the break, we will take a quick look at some lenses on multiple platforms that are perfect for astrophotography.

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Think the M4/3 Format Is Dead? We Disagree. In Fact, It Just Grew.

Cheaper lenses and accessories for the M4/3 platform could end up spurring sales of Olympus and Panasonic cameras.

It has been stated often over the last couple of years that the Micro Four Thirds platform is on its last legs, but some recent news shows just how wrong those statements could be. New reports say that both Venus Optics and Yongnuo will now officially support the platform going forward, and this can only mean good things for the M4/3 platform and those who use it. Let’s talk about this after the break.

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Third Party Lenses Could Make Fujifilm’s GFX Cameras Unstoppable

Fujifilm’s GFX series of Medium Format cameras are holding their own, but third party lenses could really take them over the edge.

Fujifilm has been working wonders in the niche world of Medium Format cameras, so much so that Sony recently announced a camera (the a7r IV) that will offer “Medium Format Quality” even though it’s a Full Frame camera. It’s evident that other manufacturers are impressed but also worried about Fujifilm’s ability to produce affordable Medium Format cameras. Fujifilm’s dream is to one-up the Full Frame crowd. One thing they lack though is excellent third party support. Thankfully this is starting to change thanks to companies like Laowa, who just announced their first lens for the GFX line. Join us after the break to see more details about the lens, and to see why we think third party lenses could really take Fujifilm’s offerings over the edge. Continue reading…

6 Lenses That Will Make a Sony a7r IV a Landscape Photography Monster

landscape photography

The new Sony a7r IV, when paired with any of these lenses, will become a landscape photography beast.

Landscape photography is such an amazing genre of photography. You get to be outside in nature, you can get some great exercise, and you get to see some stunning scenes where the light takes your breath away. As cameras have become more powerful, and as lenses have improved optically, it’s easier than ever to capture that stunning light as it hits the landscape in front of you. The new Sony a7r IV has a huge 61 Megapixel sensor and insane levels of dynamic range. It could quickly become one of the best cameras for landscape photography, especially if paired with any of the six lenses listed in this roundup. Continue reading…

Two New Laowa Wide Angle Lenses Launched for Nikon Z and Canon RF Mounts

Venus Optics recently expanded their roster of unique Laowa lenses with the Laowa 15mm f2 Zero-D and the Laowa 10-18mm f4.5-5.6 Zoom.

Photographers looking for a wider coverage for their Nikon Z and Canon RF mount cameras now have new options from Venus Optics. The company recently introduced two new Laowa wide angle lenses: the Laowa 15mm f2 Zero-D for both Nikon and Canon RF mount, and the Laowa 10-18mm f4.5-5.6 Zoom for Nikon Z mount.

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Six Manual Focus Lenses for Canon and Nikon Worth Mastering

These manual focus lenses can produce some seriously stunning results once you get to know them.

Often, when we go to buy new glass, we are quick to discredit manual focus lenses. That’s a real shame; there are some truly stunning manual focus lenses on the market for both Canon and Nikon cameras. But in a day and age where we expect things to be done for us, these gems often fall by the wayside. Let’s take a look at six manual focus lenses for both Canon and Nikon cameras that are worth spending the money on and mastering. Continue reading…

6 Versatile Lenses for Sony FE Cameras Under $1,000

These Sony E Mount lenses aren’t only affordable, they’re super fun to use and produce wonderful images.

There are a plethora of Sony E Mount Lenses available to Alpha shooters, and honestly it can be a little hard to sort through all of the offerings. Sometimes this can lead to fantastic lenses falling through the cracks. In this round-up we’re going to take a look at six third party Sony E Mount lenses that are wallet friendly, will produce outstanding images, and are just a pure joy to use. These third party Sony E Mount Lenses prove that you don’t have to buy official Sony glass, and you don’t have to spend over four figures to get glass that will simply wow you.
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Laowa 9mm f2.8 Zero-D Now Available for Micro Four Thirds

The newly released Micro Four Thirds version of the Laowa 9mm Zero-D lens is geared to be an ideal lens for both photo and video work.

If you’re still looking for a distortion-free wide angle lens for both photo and video work with your Micro Four Thirds camera, Venus Optics comes forward with a solution. The lens manufacturer has just announced the M43 variant of the Laowa 9mm f2.8 Zero-D lens, which they are marketing as a perfect lens for video work. As with the Laowa 7.5mm f2 MFT, another wide-angle lens made available for the M43 system, this new lens sports an ultra-compact body and boasts of exceptional image quality. It also promises a more natural perspective for shooting videos using the Panasonic GH5 and Blackmagic Pocket Camera. Weighing only 210g (0.46 lbs) and measuring only 60mm (2.3 in) long, it’s designed to be compressed to be as minimal as possible in its class. If you’re frequently shooting with gimbals, you might find the lightweight design and 100° angle of view especially handy.

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10 of the Best Wide Angle Lenses For Stellar Astrophotography Images

These fast, wide angle lenses will help you create truly stunning starscapes.

Astrophotography season is right around the corner in the Northern Hemisphere, so we thought it would be great to take a look at some of the best wide angle lenses that are well suited to this genre of photography. In the past, astrophotography was really only for those who could afford wide angle lenses (primes and zooms) that had apertures of at least f2.8, but now you can get some truly stunning wide angle lenses that are perfect for this genre for very little outlay. Continue reading…

9 Budget Friendly But Good Sony FE Mount Lenses (Under $600)

If you’re looking for cheap but really good lenses for Sony FE cameras, then you’re in the right spot.

Here’s the good news: we’ve tested loads and loads of lenses for Sony E mount; and you can see some in our database right here. And then there’s better news: we’ve scoured through our reviews index to pick and choose some of the best lenses for the money if you’re looking for entry level lenses and budget lenses. If you’re searching for an affordable wide angle prime, then we’ve found one! Want a portrait lens? We’ve got more than one for you!

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Venus Optics is Showing Off (Sort of) 12 New Lenses at Photokina

Venus Optics creates a number of manual focus, unique lenses and at Photokina they’re announcing three brand new ones.

While the new 17mm f1.8 and 12mm f1.8 for Micro Four Thirds lenses from Venus Optics are probably what will appeal to photographers a lot more, the company is also announcing a new cinema lens. That, and there are new variants on a number of their optics. The company’s press release explains it way better than I can.

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Venus Optics Announced a Slew of Lenses Today

Venus Optics, the company behind the Laowa lens brand, announced four new lenses today

It’s not every day that a company drops four lens announcements at once. Yet here we are, as Venus Optics has just announced four brand new lenses, including what will be the world’s widest zoom lens for the Sony FE mount. Today wasn’t all about Sony love as the Chinese company also announced some goodies for Micro Four Thirds and even Fujifilm’s GFX system. These new Laowa lenses are sure to peak your interest in some way. Continue reading…

The Venus Optics Laowa 25mm Ultra-Macro Lens Gets Really Long

The new Laowa lens is a lightweight and affordable ultra-macro option for full frame DSLRs and Mirrorless cameras.

Heads up, macro photographers! Venus Optics has recently introduced the Laowa 25mm f2.8 2.5-5x Ultra-Macro Lens. It’s a new member in their roster of unique macro lenses alongside the 60mm f2.8 2:1 Macro & 15mm f4 Wide Angle Macro. With a magnification range of 2.5:1 to 5:1, this new lens promises flexibility when it comes to macro photography in different sizes.

The Laowa 25mm f2.8 2.5-5x Ultra-Macro Lens is made with 8 elements in 6 groups with 1-pc of low dispersion element, ensuring outstanding sharpness, minimal chromatic aberrations, and reduced color fringing in all magnification levels. The wide focal length also produces a greater depth of field compared to lenses with longer focal lengths.

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Four Manual Focus Prime Lenses For Landscapes Under $800

In today’s world many photographers struggle with manual focusing (or at the very least greatly prefer to use autofocus). That said, one niche by and large still embraces the legacy of manually focusing in much larger numbers than other photography niches – Landscape Photographers. The reason should be pretty obvious, the subjects they are shooting are not moving, generally there is time to set up a shot and spend time to nail focus just right manually without stressing about missing a moment.

To that end, manual focus lenses are pretty popular in the Landscape field, especially among the budget crowd thanks to their usual price savings over their OEM AF counterparts. But there really are options all over the place and it can be hard to know where to send those hard earned dollars. So today we are bringing you a roundup of some of our favorite manual focus lenses for landscape photography that ring in under $800.

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