Zeiss has unveiled a new lens for full-frame DSLR cameras from Canon and Nikon: the Milvus 35 mm f/1.4. The company suggests the lens is “particularly suitable” for portrait photography, but also notes it is “perfectly at home” when used for landscape photography.
The manual focus lens is protected against dust and splashes and features a metal barrel.
With aspherical lens elements, special glass materials and advanced correction, Zeiss says it has given the lens a completely new optical design, delivering photos which are practically free from chromatic aberrations.
The lens, adds the company, is also suitable for film productions: the manual focus with a large rotation angle can be operated with the aid of a Zeiss Lens Gear with a follow-focus system. The de-click function allows the aperture to be set continuously in the version for Nikon cameras. Zeiss also has matched the colour characteristics of the ten Milvus lenses. Filmmakers can therefore switch between the focal lengths and still have a uniform colour look.
The Zeiss Milvus 35 f/1.4 lens will be available in July. No Canadian price has been announced as yet, but its recommended retail price in Europe is 1,999 euros.
The lens, the equivalent of 56 mm on full format is designed as an entry-level model capable of focusing as close as 30 mm.
The Hybrid IS system offers up to four stopsof shake correction and the Smooth Movie Servo AF ensures quiet AF operation. Full-time manual focus is available.
The built-in LED lights on each side of the lens let users create shadows on either side of a subject or adjust intensity to give images a sense of dimension.
The Canon EF-S 35 mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM lens is scheduled to be available in June for an estimated retail price of $459.99.
Leica has introduced next-generation models of three of its classic M lenses: the Leica M Summicron-M 35 mm f/2 ASPH, Leica Summicron-M 28 mm f/2 ASPH and Leica Elmarit-M 28 mm f/2.8 ASPH. Leica says each delivers enhanced image performance and quality, thanks to new optical designs.
Additional improvements to the lenses include a more robust construction, now featuring a full metal rectangular lens hood with thread mount, and a threaded protection ring for the front of the lens when the hood is not attached. The lens cap is now also made of metal.
The 35 mm prime lens delivers superior image performance and a unique bokeh, notes the company. Images are said to be pin-sharp with rich contrast, and almost completely free from distortion. The optical design has seven elements in five groups, and the lens weighs 252 g without hood and lens caps. The lens will be available in either black or silver anodized finish.
At its maximum aperture, the 28 mm f/2 is said to deliver rich contrast, a soft and smooth bokeh, and extremely high resolution. Improvements within the optical design in this new generation lens have made it possible to achieve superior image performance across the entire image field, Leica says. There’s also significant reduction of image field curvature for better resolution of details from corner to corner. The lens has nine elements in six groups and weighs 257 g without hood and caps.
Leica says the 28 mm f/2.8 lens is the most compact lens in the entire portfolio of Leica M lenses. Compared to the previous model, this new generation lens offers significantly reduced image field curvature, which brings considerably improved image performance with high resolution and brilliant resolution of details, the company says. Leica says the lens is practically distortion-free from infinity to its closest focusing distance of 0.7 m. This lens has eight elements in six groups and weighs 175 g without hood and caps.
While there’s been no official word on Canadian pricing or availability, the lenses likely will be available by the beginning of February.
The 35 mm lens (53 mm equivalent) is described as a “superior” prime lens with 9 lens elements in 6 groups (including two aspherical elements) to reduce lateral and axial chromatic aberration, and autofocus speed as fast as 0.08 seconds. The exterior of the lens is weather- and dust-resistant and can work in temperatures down to 14°F. The lens uses eight seals on the barrel to protect it from rain, dust and splashes of water when shooting outdoors.
The lens also uses an internal focus system that is combined with a stepping motor to produce quiet, accurate and fast autofocus, and features Nano-GI coating to reduce ghosting and flare.
The new teleconverter is a high-performance model capable of multiplying the focal length of the Fujinon XF50-140 mm f/2.8 R LM OIS WR lens by 1.4x. Although the aperture becomes one f-stop higher when mounted, Fujifilm says the teleconverter features an excellent optical design with a construction of 7 elements in 3 groups to maintain the optical performance of the original lens.
The teleconverter is weather- and dust-resistant and operates at temperatures as low as 14°F.
The company notes AF speed does not suffer when the teleconverter is used.
Fujifilm will release a new firmware update that is required for all Fujifilm X-Series camera bodies to provide full compatibility with the new lens and teleconverter. The firmware will be available on October 29.
The Fujinon XF 35 mm f/2 R WR lens will be available in November for an MSRP of $499.99.
The Fujinon XF 1.4X TC WR teleconverter will be available in November for an MSRP of $599.99.
Tamron has announced two new SP lenses, both fast, fixed focal length models, delivering what the company calls “ultimate performance.” And, apparently, these two are just the first in a relaunched SP line.
Sporting a totally revamped external appearance, the new lenses are compatible with full-frame DSLR cameras, although both can be used with APS-C cameras as well.
The SP 35 mm f/1.8 Di VC USD and SP 45 mm f/1.8 Di VC USD will be launched late this month in Canon and Nikon mounts, with a Sony mount version to follow later. The Sony version will not include Vibration Compensation (VC) since that’s built in to the camera.
In 1979, Tamron unveiled the first SP Series lens in 1979, a 90 mm f/2.5 Macro, with several other lenses following. But the company says it wanted to redefine the SP line, especially with the advent of new technologies.
All of the key performance criteria were redefined, says Tamron, to achieve the ultimate in optical performance. VC (Vibration Compensation) was incorporated as an integral part of the opto-electronics design. Priority was given to “dramatically closer” focusing capability, yet size had to remain practical.
Each lens sports a “metal-based” barrel, a brand ring that’s tinted “luminous gold” as well as an SP emblem in the same colour.
The window over the distance scale has been enlarged by 20 percent to maximize visibility and legibility. Font style of the characters and numbers has been changed to enhance legibility.
The shape and sliding torque of the AF/MF change-over and VC On/Off switches have been reconfigured.
Canon’s new EF 35 mm f/1.4L II USM lens for EOS system cameras is the world’s first to utilize the company’s newly-developed and exclusive Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics (BR). This new optical technology utilizes organic material to achieve a higher level of chromatic aberration correction than other existing technologies resulting in outstanding high-quality imaging performance.
BR incorporate a new organic optical material with unique anomalous dispersion characteristics for use in camera lenses. The molecular design of BR Optics refracts blue light (short wavelength spectrum) to a greater degree than other existing optical technologies including UD glass, Super UD glass and Fluorite, to control colour fringing as effectively as possible. When placed between convex and concave lens elements made from conventional optical glass materials, BR Optics help to produce sharp images with outstanding contrast and colour fidelity by thoroughly reducing axial chromatic aberration.
In addition to BR optics, the new lens incorporates two aspherical elements and one UD glass element in a 14 element, 11 group optical formula.
The lens also features Canon’s Sub-Wavelength Structure Coating (SWC), applied to the rear surface of the first and second aspheric lens elements to help combat flare and ghosting caused by light rays entering the lens at a large angle of incidence.
The lens is also said to offer best in class minimum focusing distance at 0.28 m (approximately 11 inches) resulting in an increased maximum magnification of 0.21x.
Autofocusing is swift and virtually silent due to a rear-focus optical system and Canon’s original Ring USM focusing motor. Full-time mechanical manual focusing is also available even when the lens is set to AF mode.
The lens features improved durability over its predecessor. As with all L-series lenses, this new lens is highly resistant to dust and water. In addition, a fluorine coating on the front and rear lens surfaces helps to repel liquids and dust particles, and makes the lens easier to clean.
The Canon EF 35 mm f/1.4L II USM lens is compatible with 72 mm filters and will be supplied with a lens hood and lens pouch. It is scheduled to be available in October, for an estimated retail price of $2,199.
Sony has announced several new alpha E-mount lenses and converters; four FE full-frame E-mount lenses complement the alpha 7 camera lineup. They are a Zeiss Distagon T* FE 35 mm f/1.4 ZA wide angle lens, an FE 90 mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS lens, an FE 24-240 mm f/3.5-6.3 OSS zoom lens, and an FE 28 mm f/2 wide angle prime lens, as well as two sets of ultra-wide and fisheye converters, one set exclusive for the new full-frame FE 28 mm lens and another set for use with existing 16 mm and 20 mm APS-C E-mount lenses.
With a minimum focusing distance of approximately 12 inches, the 35 mm lens is the first E-mount lens to feature a fast aperture of f/1.4. The lens has a 9-bladed circular aperture, and the company says the lens produces excellent corner-to-corner sharpness – even at maximum aperture – thanks to its advanced optical design with 3 aspherical elements including one Sony advanced aspherical element. It also features Zeiss T* coating that suppresses flare and ghosting for natural colour reproduction and excellent contrast.
The lens has a Direct Drive SSM (DDSSM) system that enables whisper-quiet precision focusing, even at the shallowest depth of field, says Sony. A dedicated aperture ring can be set for smooth, continuous operation – ideal for movie-making – or with click-stops. The lens is also dust and moisture resistant.
Designed for close-ups and portraits, the new 90 mm lens is the first mid-telephoto macro lens for the alpha E-mount line, and features built-in Optical SteadyShot (OSS) image stabilization, allowing for sharp images at up to 1:1 magnification, even when shooting handheld. The smooth, quiet mechanism drives two ‘floating’ focus groups independently, ensuring extremely precise focus positioning, the company notes. The macro lens maintains the same overall length at all focal distances and has a focus hold button and sliding focus ring that can instantly switch between manual and auto focus. It is also dust and moisture resistant.
Sony’s 24-240 mm lens includes five aspherical elements and one ED glass element, contributing to what Sony says is “excellent optical performance in a compact design.” It features an advanced linear motor that drives the focusing mechanism for quick, smooth response throughout the extensive zoom range, as well as built-in Optical SteadyShot (OSS) stabilization and dust and moisture resistance.
The 28 mm prime features a high-grade aluminum finish, a 9-blade circular aperture, three aspherical lens elements – including one advanced aspherical element – and two ED glass elements that work together to ensure excellent edge-to-edge sharpness. All lens surfaces are multi-coated to suppress flare and ghosting with backlit shots.
The inner focus mechanism is driven by an advanced linear actuator, allowing for whisper-quiet AF, says Sony. Overall lens length will remain constant during focusing.
The 28 mm wide angle lens can be combined with either the Ultra-wide Converter or Fisheye Converter to respectively increase angle of view to 21 mm or 16 mm fisheye with full 180° coverage. Maximum aperture of each converter when mounted on the 28 mm lens is f/2.8 and f/3.5 respectively.
Sony suggests in a first for alpha lens converters, corresponding EXIF data for each adapter is generated when they are attached to the lens.
The new wide angle converters for E-mount APS-C camera bodies are interesting, to say the least. The VCL-ECU2 converter is compatible with the E 16 mm f/2.8 and E 20 mm f/2.8 APS-C lenses, boosting ultra-wide angle performance to 12 mm (with the 16 mm) or 16 mm (20 mm). The Fisheye Converter creates exaggerated perspective effects for both lenses with full 180° coverage. Each converter sports a smart new black finish.
The Zeiss Distagon T* FE 35 mm f/1.4 ZA full-frame wide angle prime will be available in April for $1949.99.
The 90 mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS lens will be available in July for $1349.99.
Sony’s FE 24-240 mm f/3.5-6.3 OSS lens will be available in March for $1199.99.
The Sony FE 28 mm f/2 wide angle prime will be available in March for $529.99.
The Ultra-wide Converter and Fisheye Converter will be available in March for $299.99 and $359.99, respectively.
VCL-ECU2 Ultra-Wide and VCL-ECF2 Fisheye APS-C converters will be available in May for $159.99 and $189.99, respectively.
No monitor, no exposure metering, no batteries.
It has a shutter-speed dial and an aperture ring on the lens, and rangefinder focusing.
The technical specs of the M-A are essentially based on the currently available analog Leica MP.
The Leica red dot was omitted to emphasize the classical simplicity of its design. Seen from the side, the M-A is significantly slimmer than its digital counterparts.
The camera is available in a choice of two different finishes: the classic silver chrome version and the black chrome alternative.
While the silver chrome version of the M-A displays its origins in the engraving on its top plate, only much closer scrutiny of its completely matte black counterpart reveals the discreetly engraved Leica script on its accessory shoe.
Each Leica M-A is supplied with Kodak Tri-X 400 black-and-white film, which is also celebrating its 60th anniversary this year.
The Leica M-A will be available starting in October.
Sony has five new full-frame E-mount lenses, an A-mount lens, and a set of mount adapters designed to complement its new A7R and A7 full-frame mirrorless cameras [see above].
The new lens line-up features three advanced models from Carl Zeiss including two prime lenses – a Sonnar T* 55 mm f/1.8 ZA and Sonnar T* 35 mm f/2.8 ZA model – as well as a Vario Tessar T* 24-70 mm F4 ZA OSS mid-range zoom.
Additionally, there is a Sony 28-70 mm f/3.5-F5.6 OSS zoom lens and two premium zoom lenses from G Lens – a 70-200 mm f/4 telephoto zoom for E-mount and a 70-200 mm f/4 telephoto zoom for A-mount.
In addition to the A7 and A7R full-frame cameras, the new lenses fit any of the existing E-mount cameras.
The new LA-EA4 mount adapter adds compatibility for Sony’s existing line of A-mount lenses as well as the focusing speed and power of Sony’s Translucent Mirror Technology to the new A7 and A7R cameras.
The Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* 24-70 mm lens features Optical SteadyShot and is designed with five aspherical elements with one ED glass element. Unique to Carl Zeiss, it also features T* coating on optical surfaces which cuts glare and internal reflections to boost contrast.
The Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* 35 mm lens weighs 120g, is also dust- and moisture-resistant, and has Carl Zeiss T* coating for reducing glare and higher contrast and detail in images.
The Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* 55 mm lens has a nine-bladed circular aperture, is dust and moisture resistant and has Carl Zeiss T* coating.
The Sony 28-70 mm will be paired as the kit lens for the new full-frame A7 camera. The lens features Optical SteadyShot and an advanced optical design with three aspherical elements and one ED glass element, which minimizes aberration and also minimizes size and weight. It is also dust- and moisture-resistant.
The premium 70-200 mm G Lens has two ED glass elements combined with three aspherical elements for high resolution and contrast throughout the entire zoom range, minimizing distortion and colour aberration, says Sony. It has a circular aperture and features Optical SteadyShot to cut the effects of camera shake while shooting.
The evolved ‘Mark 2’ version of the 70-200 mm G lens is approximately four times faster than the preceding model, offers quiet autofocus with improved AF tracking of moving subjects compared with its predecessor. Optical performance is further enhanced with addition of Sony’s Nano AR Coating that suppresses internal reflections for outstanding clarity contrast.
The LA-EA4 is an adapter for E-mount cameras that is compatible with Sony’s entire range of A-mount lenses – APS-C to full-frame. The adapter is equipped with Translucent Mirror Technology, adding extremely fast, accurate phase detection autofocus to any compatible A-mount lens (SAM or SSM) attached to an E-mount camera. This allows for fast moving subjects in focus at all times.
Also available, the LA-EA3 mount adapter lets photographers and videographers enjoy all benefits of full-frame shooting with their A-mount lens collection, however does not support autofocus.
The Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* 24-70 mm f/4 lens will be available in January for about $1200.
The Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* 35 mm f/2.8 lens will be available in December for about $800.
The Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* 55 mm f/1.8 prime lens will be available in January for about $1000.
The Sony 28-70 mm f/3.5 – 5.6 OSS zoom lens will be offered as the kit lens paired with the new Sony A7 camera for about $2000.
Pricing and availability of the G Lens 70-200 mm f/4 OSS lens has not been announced.
The G Lens 70-200 mm f/2.8 G SSM II lens will be available in January for about $3200.
The LA-EA4 and LA-EA3 mount adapters will be available in December for about $350 and $200 respectively.
Five new HD Pentax-DA Limited interchangeable lenses have been announced, all designed for use with K-mount DSLRs. The lenses: HD Pentax-DA 15 mm f/4 ED AL Limited, 21 mm f/3.2 AL Limited, 35 mm f/2.8 Macro Limited, 40 mm f/2.8 Limited, and 70 mm f/2.4 Limited.
These new lenses inherit the distinctive visual description and premium appearance of the Limited lens series, while adding state-of-the-art HD coating and a round-shaped diaphragm, to deliver even higher digital imaging performance in combination with a K-mount camera body.
The Limited series is claimed to offer outstanding image rendition and a high-quality, hand-machined aluminum body. Lenses feature treatments of both SP (Super Protect) coating and the high-grade multi-layer HD (High Definition) coating, said to deliver much higher light transmittance than conventional multi-layer coatings, for sharp, clear images with significantly reduced flare and ghosting, even under demanding, backlit conditions.
The lenses also feature a completely round-shaped diaphragm to produce a natural, beautiful bokeh (out-of-focus) effect in the foreground and background.
The HD Pentax-DA Limited Lens series, available in black or silver, will be available in October with the following suggested retail prices: 40 mm – $549.99; 15 mm – $699.99; 21 mm – $699.99; 35 mm – $749.99; 70 mm – $749.99.