Laowa 8-16mm F3.5-5 Zoom CF: Compact ultra-wide-angle APS-C lens

Laowa 8-16mm F3.5-5 Zoom CF
Laowa 8-16mm F3.5-5 Zoom CF

Venus Optics has introduced the Laowa 8-16mm F3.5-5 Zoom CF manual zoom lens   for APS-C cameras. The company says the lens is the “ideal tool” for landscape photography, architectural photography and creative wide-angle portraits. It is designed for modern Sony E, Fujifilm X, Nikon Z, Canon RF and EF-M mirrorless cameras. Price: $549.

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The compact zoom promises to “redefine the boundaries of wide-angle photography” and offers a field of view from 82.8 to 120.9 degrees. The lens provides well-controlled optical distortion, sharp focusing and, despite its ultra-wide angle, it is possible to install a front filter with a diameter of 86 mm in the hood.

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Laowa 8-16mm F3.5-5 Zoom CF without lens hood weighs 463 g. It is compact – Ø69.32 x 77.28 mm. The optical design is quite sophisticated – it consists of 16 elements grouped into 12 groups, including two ED elements and two aspherical ones.

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The aperture is five-blade with an adjustment range from f/3.5 to f/16. There are focus and aperture control rings. The minimum focusing distance is 20 cm.

This is already the second ultra-wide-angle lens in the APS-C line; Venus Optics also has the Laowa 10mm F4 pancake .

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The Laowa 8-16mm f/3.5-5 Zoom CF is aimed at beginners “who want to explore the world of ultra-wide-angle photography at an affordable price.” A manual focus lens should also be in demand for video shooting, including vlogging, where a wide-angle perspective is often required. For video, it is also possible to switch the aperture ring to clickless mode.

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Optical design

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MTF Charts

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Laowa 8-16mm f/3.5-5 Zoom CF Specifications

  • Focal length: 8-16mm
  • Sensor format: APS-C
  • Viewing Angle: 82.8°–120.9°
  • Aperture range: F3.5/5–F16
  • Optical design: 16 elements in 12 groups
  • Special elements: 2 aspherical, 2 ultra-low dispersion
  • Aperture: 5-blade
  • Minimum focusing distance: 20 cm
  • Maximum magnification: 0.125x
  • Thread diameter for filter: Ø86 mm
  • Dimensions: Ø69.32 x 77.28 mm (without hood)
  • Weight: 463 g
  • Mounts: Sony E, Fujifilm X, Nikon Z, Canon RF, Canon EF-M

What about the prices?

The Laowa 8-16mm f/3.5-5 Zoom CF is already available for purchase on the manufacturer’s website for $549.

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