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FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton
  
 
davewolfs
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


So Fred does this one stay in the stable or does she go back 😀

I think a most will enjoy this lens most as a walk around/creative type lens.



Oct 12, 2017 at 11:22 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


davewolfs wrote:
So Fred does this one stay in the stable or does she go back 😀

I think a most will enjoy this lens most as a walk around/creative type lens.


As you described, I believe this lens was designed for wider aperture creative work. Infinity tests show it's not a flat-field lens optimized for infinity distance landscapes and it's under-corrected for spherical and color aberrations.
However, as long as focus is precise and working aperture is used, it can be a versatile lens.

So, although a competent landscaper under the right conditions, I believe the 40/1.2's strength will be on 'look' and 'character'.



Oct 12, 2017 at 11:34 PM
DavidBM
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
David,
If you refocused for every aperture, it's not a problem. Shooting distance is definitely a factor but I'm glad you already knew about the focus shift. Did you try hiding that information from us.


I didn't realise (since I focussed at shooting aperture for the infinity stuff) until I processed my MFD stuff yesterday and thought something funny was going on as I twiddled focus and so compared f 5.6 focussed at f5.6 with focussed at f1.2. Night and day. And then saw your stuff this (our) morning, and saw that it applied at infinity too (as you would expect if it applies any where)




Oct 12, 2017 at 11:39 PM
DavidBM
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
As you described, I believe this lens was designed for wider aperture creative work. Infinity tests show it's not a flat-field lens optimized for infinity distance landscapes and it's under-corrected for spherical and color aberrations.
However, as long as focus is precise and working aperture is used, it can be a versatile lens.

So, although a competent landscaper under the right conditions, I believe the 40/1.2's strength will be on 'look' and 'character'.


That's exactly my take. I am sorely torn about whether to buy my review copy or not.
It's a lens you buy for wide aperture work. You can't get bokeh like this from a lens of this focal length elsewhere. A 1.4/35 cropped a bit gives you .. what... f1.6 equivalent (which is not night and day, but still a bit) and otherwise you are reduced to Brenizer methods with a longer lens.

And the bokeh at f.12 is good enough to make it desirable for that.

If you want it for the bokeh, and you don't have other landscape options in this or nearby FLs, it will perform very well just so long as you pay close attention. But if you buy it, you aren't buying it for that.



Oct 12, 2017 at 11:44 PM
DavidBM
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
As you described, I believe this lens was designed for wider aperture creative work. Infinity tests show it's not a flat-field lens optimized for infinity distance landscapes and it's under-corrected for spherical and color aberrations.
However, as long as focus is precise and working aperture is used, it can be a versatile lens.

So, although a competent landscaper under the right conditions, I believe the 40/1.2's strength will be on 'look' and 'character'.


And I can tell you it's not flat field at MFD either. Nowhere near. Oddly it seems to have a relatively flat field at around 1-2 metres! But that's based on an image of a driveway run through focus peaking in FRW, rather than careful tests like at MFD. But it could easily go from curved field to flat and back to curved again.



Oct 12, 2017 at 11:46 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


DavidBM wrote:
That's exactly my take. I am sorely torn about whether to buy my review copy or not.
It's a lens you buy for wide aperture work. You can't get bokeh like this from a lens of this focal length elsewhere. A 1.4/35 cropped a bit gives you .. what... f1.6 equivalent (which is not night and day, but still a bit) and otherwise you are reduced to Brenizer methods with a longer lens.

And the bokeh at f.12 is good enough to make it desirable for that.

If you want it for the bokeh, and you don't have other landscape options in this
...Show more

Yes, perfect David. There will be nothing with this f/1.2 look and it's 'ok' sharp at that. Sure, there will be lots of color aberrations but it will all be part of its character. This lens could not be more different than it's big brother 65/2 APO.



Oct 13, 2017 at 12:19 AM
Fred Miranda
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


I just took some pictures for a flare test and thought the resistance was average (good). There will be ghosting and veiling flare when provoked.


Oct 13, 2017 at 12:20 AM
davewolfs
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


There is always a trade off somewhere. Iím no lens designer but perhaps the lack of flat field + CA correction has allowed for the compact size. All these issues appear easily workable with the EVF and in camera correction. Not something you could do with a DSLR.


Oct 13, 2017 at 12:25 AM
Juha Kannisto
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


davewolfs wrote:
There is always a trade off somewhere. Iím no lens designer but perhaps the lack of flat field + CA correction has allowed for the compact size. All these issues appear easily workable with the EVF and in camera correction. Not something you could do with a DSLR.


I think in practise it's not hard to focus at long distance by mostly relying on best peaking across the field at taking aperture and the auto CA correction in camera + PP (as in C1 Pro the CA setting is automatically applied if set in camera) can take care most of it.



Oct 13, 2017 at 12:36 AM
DavidBM
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p.2 #10 · p.2 #10 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
I just took some pictures for a flare test and thought the resistance was average (good). There will be ghosting and veiling flare when provoked.


That's interesting. I would rate it above average for sure.
better than Lox 50 and Lox 35 by a fair way: small easy to deal with ghosts, little veiling.

I wonder if it's different conditions, or we just mean something different by "average"
(I mean, I guess it's average for recently released high end compact primes)



Oct 13, 2017 at 12:48 AM
 

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Fred Miranda
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p.2 #11 · p.2 #11 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Sunstar Rendering

Personally I'm a big fan of lenses with aperture made of 10-straight-blades for well-definined 10-point sunstars. It's possible to get nice looking sunstars at f/2.8 with the CV 40/1.2 and that's something special about it. When shooting street photography at night time or the sun for that late afternoon sunset, it's a very nice look.

Here is a sunstar rendering sample image at f/2.8. Nice defined edges only possible with straight blade apertures. Most lenses could only accomplish this at much smaller apertures. IMO, a big strength of most Voigtlander, Loxia and ZM lenses.







Oct 13, 2017 at 12:57 AM
Fred Miranda
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p.2 #12 · p.2 #12 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


DavidBM wrote:
That's interesting. I would rate it above average for sure.
better than Lox 50 and Lox 35 by a fair way: small easy to deal with ghosts, little veiling.

I wonder if it's different conditions, or we just mean something different by "average"
(I mean, I guess it's average for recently released high end compact primes)


Average for me is actually good. If there is ghosting flare in most of my images with the sun around or in the frame, I would rate it below average. Most of these new lenses do a great job on veiling flare.

To follow your example, I consider the Loxia 35/2 and CV 65/2 below average and the CV 35/1.7 in the same level as the CV 40/1.2. You are right, the is subjective and we don't have a standard on sharpness or flare resistance rating.



Oct 13, 2017 at 01:03 AM
DavidBM
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p.2 #13 · p.2 #13 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
Average for me is actually good. If I would see flare in most of my images with the sun around or in the frame, I would rate it below average.

To follow your example, I consider the Loxia 35/2 and CV 65/2 below average and the CV 35/1.7 in the same level as the CV 40/1.2. You are right, the is subjective and we don't have a standard on sharpness or flare resistance rating.


Ah, OK, it's just a verbal disagreement then! Yes that's about where I rank it...



Oct 13, 2017 at 01:04 AM
Fred Miranda
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p.2 #14 · p.2 #14 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Flare performance

When grabbing some shots to showcase sunstars, I struggled with ghosting flare when really provoking. In practice though, the lens has good flare resistance and will perform well in most situations.

Here are a few examples of ghosting flare during my late afternoon walk. Nothing to worry about.















Very nice performance even at high sun!




Oct 13, 2017 at 01:12 AM
JimBuchanan
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p.2 #15 · p.2 #15 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
Focus shift

Below is an example showing focus shift. The image on the LEFT was focused at f/1.2 and captured at f/1.2. The image on the RIGHT was focused at f/4 and captured at f/1.2. Big drop in resolution as you can see.


Good work Fred!

If I may repeat what I'm hearing so far.

That infinity focus wide open, center frame, focus ring is back a tad from hardstop. However, focus wide open in the extreme corner requires focus toward the hardstop. From DavidBM.

This scenario suggests the field curvature is inward toward the edges as in holding an open umbrella out horizontally. This would be the opposite from a typical M mount lens, where the thick Sony filter stack's effect is equivalent to the wind blowing the umbrella out so as the umbrella is pointed away from the handle. And, to focus for the corners with a M mount lens on a Sony sensor, one would pull focus back from infinity.

Fred is saying that for optimum infinity sharpness, to focus midfield at shooting aperture. This would suggest that to sharpen up the extreme corners, one would focus toward the infinity hardstop (from center infinity focus as suggested above) and that focusing stopped down may flatten the extreme field curvature experienced wide open (and not just widen the depth of field). So, what I'm saying is that a smaller aperture flattens the field versus a depth of field benefit.

Am I on target here?

And one last comment on the lens review thus far; the lateral chromic aberations is so bad that when Lightroom takes the color out, the lack of sharpness in the structures is significant.



Oct 13, 2017 at 01:35 AM
Fred Miranda
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p.2 #16 · p.2 #16 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Coma Performance

I got some clear skies tonight and tested the CV 40/1.2 for coma at f/1.2, f/1.7 and f/2.8.
There is very noticeable coma wide open which improves at f/1.7 and gets really nice at f/2.8!









at f/2.8 coma looks great. It even had a nice sunstar. :)




Oct 13, 2017 at 03:51 AM
DavidBM
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p.2 #17 · p.2 #17 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
Coma Performance

I got some clear skies tonight and tested the CV 40/1.2 for coma at f/1.2, f/1.7 and f/2.8.
There is very noticeable coma wide open which improves at f/1.7 and gets really nice at f/2.8!


Excellent! One thing off my to-do list: I'll just link to you, if that's OK!




Oct 13, 2017 at 03:57 AM
Fred Miranda
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p.2 #18 · p.2 #18 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Just to compare with another Voigtlander lens, the CV 35/1.7 Ultron coma performance is slightly better. It looks great starting at f/2.4.

See below: f/1.7 and f/2.4.







Oct 13, 2017 at 03:58 AM
Fred Miranda
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p.2 #19 · p.2 #19 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


DavidBM wrote:
Excellent! One thing off my to-do list: I'll just link to you, if that's OK!



Sure. I will test onion rings now....Oh no...



Oct 13, 2017 at 03:59 AM
DavidBM
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p.2 #20 · p.2 #20 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
Sure. I will test onion rings now....Oh no...


How much do you like onion soup? I don't mind especially with croutons. (here served with a side of cat's eye)








Oct 13, 2017 at 04:07 AM
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