Ultra Wide lens review

(11 images) – Fitting that on World Photography Day a new lens I ordered finally turned up – the “Laowa MTF 7.5mm F2.0 C-Dreamer Ultra Wide Angle Lens” – lite version. A big name for such a gorgeous little lens!

Laowa 7.5mm F2.0 Wide Angle Lens

After reading and watching many reviews on wide angle and fish-eye lens options for the micro four third system, I settled on this light weight, mid priced all metal option.

Lineup: Laowa 7.5mm with Olympus 60mm Macro, 12-40 pro & 14-150 II

While this is not an in depth review – there’s plenty of those on the interwebs – they say first impressions count, so here’s mine after an hour or so use with a few images through the glass. The box says: Extra-low dispersion glass, GLass [sic] aspherical, Frog Eye Coating(FEC) … let’s find out!

Laowa 7.5mm mounted on the EM1 Mark II.

Firstly, this is a full manual lens for both aperture and focus as there are no electrical contacts with the camera body. All metal – including the lens shade – build quality seems good, it fit the camera body snugly but not over tight – this lens in not weather-sealed like my other lenses.

The focus ring is a nice width and grip, smooth and quite firm so not easily moved accidentally. It is difficult to access/turn with the lens shade on backwards as shown above. The aperture ring is fairly narrow and close to the body with notches at the stops. f4 – f5.6 is sharpest, the following images taken with the lens were all at f4. So, let’s see what it can do …

Fungi close-up, unedited.

Please bare in mind, these shots were taken without a tripod in fairly rushed circumstances.

Fungi closeup, unedited.
Cave – not cropped, edited from RAW.
Quarry, not edited or cropped showing good depth of field at f4.
Rusty sign up close.
close up uncropped shows little distortion and good sharpness.
Street scene uncropped showing distortion at edges and lens flare at left.
Sunset at the dock – uncropped showing + 90 degree view.

Unfortunately it’s cloudy tonight, so astro testing will be in a later post with some longer term use observations and maybe some comparisons with my other lenses. Follow this blog for more!

Conclusion: Considering this was a rushed first test shoot with no in camera setup with the first true ultra wide lens I’ve ever owned, I’m not disappointed! Each lens has it’s strengths and weaknesses, so far, I can’t see anything obviously bad.

No excessive distortion, seems sharp and clear across the entire frame, nice fade out to blur, lens flare may be something to watch but in the example above it was subtle and acceptable.

Given it’s so much smaller, lighter and around half the price of the Olympus 7-14mm f2.4 Pro lens I think it will be a great addition to my kit.

Another lens I was considering and still may purchase later is the 7artisans 7.5mm F2.8 Fisheye @ $170 AU on ebay – only because it is so cheap and offers a wider view with way more distortion for a different effect.

Comments and questions welcome, if you’d like me to try something specific with this or an of my lenses, let me know 🙂

5 thoughts on “Ultra Wide lens review

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