A fast and bright wide-angle prime, the Sony E-mount Laowa 15mm f/2 FE Zero-D Lens from Venus Optics is a rectilinear lens with a sophisticated optical design to effectively limit distortion. The bright f/2 maximum aperture makes this lens especially useful for astrophotography and low-light use, and when paired with the 5.9" minimum focusing distance, distinct shallow depth of field imagery can also be produced. The optical construction includes three extra-low dispersion elements and two aspherical elements to control both chromatic and spherical aberrations for greater sharpness, clarity, and reduced color fringing. A Frog Eye Coating has been applied, too, to repel dust and moisture from the front element of the lens to benefit working in trying environmental conditions. Additionally, the manual aperture ring can be de-clicked for smooth, silent aperture changes to suit video applications, and the front of the lens is threaded to accept 72mm screw-in filters.
The Laowa 15mm f/2 FE Zero-D is currently the widest f/2 rectilinear lens in the market which comes with a native E mount (i.e. Does not require additional adapters). It is an ultra-wide & ultra-fast prime lens which covers both 35mm full-frame & APS-C sensors. Despite the extreme specifications, Venus Optics has successfully minimized the weight of the lens to around 500g (~1.1 pounds) and 8cm long. This compact and light lens comprises of 12 elements in 9 groups with 2 pcs of aspherical elements and 3 pcs of Extra-low dispersion elements. The patented optical design successfully minimizes the distortion and chromatic aberrations to its lowest but at the same time, delivers a superb optical performance from corners to corners.
Ultra-wide & fast lenses in the market tend to be huge and have a dome-shaped front element. It is a headache for landscape photographers who need to use filters very often. Venus Optics understand their needs and manage to design a flat front surface and include a 72mm filter thread into the lens. 72mm screw-on filters can be used and no more investment on bulky filter holder is required.
The extreme 110° angle of view and ultra-fast f/2 aperture allow photographers to create impressive astro-photography shots with ease. It also gives photographers a fast and wide-angle option for landscape photography and low-light shooting.
The Laowa 15mm f/2 FE Zero-D is the second member of the Close-to-Zero distortion line-up from Venus Optics, followed the launch of 12mm f/2.8 Zero-D last year. The lens is specially designed to remove the optical distortion commonly exist in wide angle lenses at infinity focus. Any straight lines will be retained.
Photographers can take advantage of the super close focusing distance (i.e. 15cm) and the f/2 aperture to create some bokeh shots and wide angle close-up shots.
The new Laowa 15mm f/2 FE Zero-D is specially designed with an aperture switch which allows users to quickly switch between click-less and clicked aperture. This added feature will be extremely useful for videographers.
Sample Images (Click to enlarge)