When it comes to macro lenses, the name that springs to mind most these days is Laowa, produced by Venus Optics. Now, they’ve added another new one to their lineup, the Laowa 58mm f/2.8 2x Ultra Macro APO designed specifically for mirrorless cameras. Like Laowa’s other lenses, it’s a manual focus lens, and this one comes in four full-frame flavours. Sony E, Canon RF, Nikon Z and Leica L mounts.
The new lens offers a 40.9° field of view on full-frame sensors and focuses all the way from 2:1 magnification to infinity, making it suitable for not just macro but also portraits or a general walkaround lens. It features an apochromatic (APO) design to suppress chromatic aberration as well as 3 ED and 3 Ultra-High Refractive Index lenses for maximum sharpness.
Offering up to 2x magnification with a minimum focus distance of 18.5cm (around 7.29″) you’ve got a decent amount of working distance for teeny tiny subjects, which Laowa says will let you capture everything “from a tiny ant to a larger dragonfly”. But at the other extreme, it’s still able to focus to infinity, providing a lot of options for portraits, product photography or just as a general walkabout lens on your travels.
The lens features internal focusing, to keep the length of the lens constant as the focus is adjusted. This is particularly handy in a macro lens when you’re often extremely close to a subject. The last thing you want to do is rotate your focus barrel and find the end of your lens has bumped into the thing you’re trying to photograph. It offers a wider field of view than the more typical 100mm macro lens, meaning you’ll need to be closer to your subject. The 13 aperture blades, Laowa says, produces a smooth and pleasant bokeh in the out-of-focus areas.
|Angle of view||40.9°|
|Mount||Canon RF, Sony E, Nikon Z, Leica M|
|Focus type||Manual Focus|
|Optics||14 elements in 11 groups|
|Min focus distance||185mm|
|Dimensions||74 x 117mm|
The Laowa 58mm f/2.8 2x Ultra Macro APO lens is available to buy now for $499 from the Laowa website and it should start coming to the usual retailers around the world in the next few weeks.