Speed Review – Venus Optics 15mm f/4 1:1 Wide Angle Shift Lens


Laowa 15mm f/4 from Venus Optics
Laowa 15mm f/4 from Venus Optics

My Laowa 15mm f/4 from Venus Optics arrived today.    This is the world’s first wide angle macro lens. Offering 15mm and 1:1 macro capabilities.  Manual aperture and manual focus with a shift mechanism is added at the rear end of the lens with a maximum adjustment of +/- 6mm, which is extremely useful for landscape/architecture photography for distortion correction.

01-4.42 mm_1-120 sec at f - 1.8_LG-H815
The Laowa 15mm 1:1 Macro on Canon T6s – notice no aperture communication.

My first thoughts – This lens is interesting – Wide angle lenses typically don’t make good macros as you need to get close to achieve 1:1 and that’s true with this lens too. Some of the photos below I was actually touching the subjects.

Live view exposure simulation doesn’t work, leaves you to use the viewfinder and with manual focus only that can be tricky.   I took a handful of images with the Canon T6s and the Canon 5D Mark III. I haven’t played with the shift mechanism yet – Will be posting more photos soon.

Available to order direct from Venus Optics or B&H Photo Video



Example of the Shift function – Two images taken from the same location. Using shift to avoid distortion. Rollover to see shift in action.

Larger version of the house photos https://www.dropbox.com/home/Public/Laowa15mm


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  1. I’m really interested in this lens, but I’m unsure about how it performs at non-macro distances. I’ve only seen macro shots in full size so far. Could you post a full-size version of your shift example? I’d really appreciate it!

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