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FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton
  
 
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p.4 #1 · p.4 #1 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Well I'm disappointed.
Thanks Fred.
Cheers.

Edited on Oct 14, 2017 at 08:09 AM · View previous versions



Oct 14, 2017 at 08:07 AM
baltmin
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p.4 #2 · p.4 #2 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


How is the sharpness like in ~3m distance wide open? Obviously corner is not a matter of concern in this scenario, but how would an environmental portrait look in the centre/mid frame?


Oct 14, 2017 at 08:09 AM
Makten
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p.4 #3 · p.4 #3 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
Also at 3m distance:


Did you have EFCS on or off? Some of the f/1.2 shots seem to have "cut off" bokeh balls.



Oct 14, 2017 at 11:29 AM
Makten
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p.4 #4 · p.4 #4 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


davewolfs wrote:
Some more samples.

http://mypace.hatenablog.com/entry/2017/10/10/210920

Will add some too this weekend. Great work Fred!


Thanks! This is exactly what I was looking for. I think the bokeh looks surprisingly good even at 5-10 meters distance.



Oct 14, 2017 at 11:31 AM
Jonas B
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p.4 #5 · p.4 #5 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
Also at 3m distance:


Thank you Fred.

Not too bad!

I see some PF but nothing bothering as I usually PP my images anyway. That's probably why people can take nice looking images with the ZM 35/1.4 as well: we don't always suffer that bad from the PF and it can most often be removed in seconds.

There is also something going on at he borders I think we can relate to natural vignetting. In all, it looks good from f/1.4 and with some editing it will look good at f/1.2 as well, at least with some editing.



Oct 14, 2017 at 12:07 PM
ken.vs.ryu
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p.4 #6 · p.4 #6 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


half body portraits please.


Oct 14, 2017 at 01:12 PM
sebboh
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p.4 #7 · p.4 #7 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


looks better than i expected.

ken.vs.ryu wrote:
half body portraits please.


+1



Oct 14, 2017 at 05:19 PM
SoundHound
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p.4 #8 · p.4 #8 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Gosh! Another super speed lens that has several optical flaws at or near wide open. And only $1000 or so. So stop it down and by F2.0-2.5-2.8 it looks OK. What's the point?

Why not a nifty 50 (mm F1.8) at F2.5? Yes a bit longer FL but a fraction of the price and small enough. Nikon and Canon make/made several. Or how about the tiny CV 40mm F2.0 adapted for the FE mount? It's just $400 or so.



Oct 15, 2017 at 12:49 AM
DavidBM
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p.4 #9 · p.4 #9 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


SoundHound wrote:
Gosh! Another super speed lens that has several optical flaws at or near wide open. And only $1000 or so. So stop it down and by F2.0-2.5-2.8 it looks OK. What's the point?

Why not a nifty 50 (mm F1.8) at F2.5? Yes a bit longer FL but a fraction of the price and small enough. Nikon and Canon make/made several. Or how about the tiny CV 40mm F2.0 adapted for the FE mount? It's just $400 or so.


The point is that nothing else will give you this degree of separation at a moderate wide-standard focal length, and it is capable of very beautiful things that no other lens can manage. The flaws are real, but if you know the circumstances in which they are significant, you can avoid them. I wish I had a human portrait I had permission to share, but Freddie the Labradoodle will show you what I mean.









Oct 15, 2017 at 02:08 AM
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p.4 #10 · p.4 #10 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Freddie is, indeed, beautiful.


Oct 15, 2017 at 02:25 AM
 

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p.4 #11 · p.4 #11 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


DavidBM wrote:
The point is that nothing else will give you this degree of separation at a moderate wide-standard focal length, and it is capable of very beautiful things that no other lens can manage. The flaws are real, but if you know the circumstances in which they are significant, you can avoid them. I wish I had a human portrait I had permission to share, but Freddie the Labradoodle will show you what I mean.


David,
I would think that any 50mm f/1.4 would give similar or even better separation and blur. I see your point though...50mm is not 40mm. If one loves the 40mm FL, I agree that there isn't anything that could do better than this.

The lens is not well-corrected for spherical and color aberration and that's a 'size' compromise. Personally, I was hoping for a miracle when I saw those 4 aspherical surfaces but it's just not the case. The small size/weight is very welcome and a plus for this lens though. We can't have it all.

If one doesn't mind shooting 50mm instead, the FE 50/1.4 ZA provides close to APO performance with minimal coma. However, it's twice its size and weight! Size wasn't a main constrain for this one...



Oct 15, 2017 at 02:41 AM
GMPhotography
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p.4 #12 · p.4 #12 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


I just feel the FE 35 1.4 for this kind of look at least in my mind is the better option. You get Eye AF and it had nice manual focus. Still has onion rings but the CA stuff is more under control. Or the old Zeiss 35 1.4 ZE


Oct 15, 2017 at 02:51 AM
Juha Kannisto
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p.4 #13 · p.4 #13 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


For daily walkaround lens I think both FE 50/1.4 and FE 35/1.4 are too large & heavy and the 40/1.2 is just the right size and 40mm is the better general use FL for me. I always feel 35mm is a bit too wide as a single-lens setup and 50mm is a bit to long.

Manual focusing is much nicer on the 40/1.2 + you get the Voigtlšnder sunstars and the ability for nice bokeh shots as well as for nice cityscapes and street.

I do have both the FE 50/1.4 (my favorite event lens) and FE 35/1.4 too.

As a general walkaround lens I would opt for small adapted 50mm lenses like the recent Voigtlšnder 50/3.5 Heliar (lovely lens on A9 and A7 series) or Konica Hexanon 50/2.4 LTM (likewise but suffers from flare-sensitivity) if I didn't have this new 40/1.2 but they can't focus so close (without helicoid adapter) and are not as fast and they are 50mm so a bit longer than what I ideally want for this use.

I used to have the Voigtlšnder 40/2 Ultron for Minolta SR (MC/MD) mount, it was a tad front heavy with an adapter and didn't have the nice sunstars that this 40/1.2 has. It had a rather modern look to it. Didn't become a favorite for regular use and I sold it eventually.



Oct 15, 2017 at 03:05 AM
DavidBM
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p.4 #14 · p.4 #14 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Fred Miranda wrote:
David,
I would think that any 50mm f/1.4 would give similar or even better separation and blur. I see your point though...50mm is not 40mm. If one loves the 40mm FL, I agree that there isn't anything that could do better than this.

The lens is not well-corrected for spherical and color aberration and that's a 'size' compromise. Personally, I was hoping for a miracle when I saw those 4 aspherical surfaces but it's just not the case. The small size/weight is very welcome and a plus for this lens though. We can't have it all.

If one doesn't mind
...Show more

No of course: the separation of a 1.4/50 is about the same.

But it's the angle of view: if you like a little wider (which is what I meant by wide-standard, I didn't mean wide or standard!), this is what you need.

You could use a 1.4/35; but that when cropped becomes noticeably (albeit not hugely) less burry.

As I say in the conclusion of my review, if you don't care about the exact focal length and don't mind some extra size, the best 1.4/50s are the go (ZA, Milvus, Otus)

If you want a little wider and don't expect to crop then the ZA 1.4/35 is tempting.

If you want small, and don't mind the cropped result being noticeably less blurry, the CV 35 is a better lens in every way.

BUT if you are a 40mm junky, and you want maximum blur - and quite nice blur - there is a niche for this lens. Nothing else does *exactly* same thing, nearly as compactly.

Having said that, I am a 40mm fan, and I'm not sure I'll keep it, though I might have if it was a bit better (though it would probably have been bigger)



Oct 15, 2017 at 03:28 AM
sebboh
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p.4 #15 · p.4 #15 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


SoundHound wrote:
Gosh! Another super speed lens that has several optical flaws at or near wide open. And only $1000 or so. So stop it down and by F2.0-2.5-2.8 it looks OK. What's the point?


uh, you can still shoot it at f/1.2 unlike the slower lenses, and it looks pretty nice. some people even like their lenses to have a few flaws...

SoundHound wrote:
Why not a nifty 50 (mm F1.8) at F2.5? Yes a bit longer FL but a fraction of the price and small enough. Nikon and Canon make/made several. Or how about the tiny CV 40mm F2.0 adapted for the FE mount? It's just $400 or so.


those lenses are also bigger (with adapter) and have their own flaws and need to be stopped down a bit to get rid of them. if you want amazing performance at f/2.5 and a small package you can get a 50 summicron v4 (or v5), loxia 50/2, or cv 35/1.7 + pcx 5m filter. you won't save any money though.

if you want something that has amazing performance at apertures faster than f/2 you can get the sigma art series, otus, FE 35/1.4 or FE 50/1.4. be prepared to pay more though and have a lens 3-8x the size.



Oct 15, 2017 at 06:15 AM
artur5
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p.4 #16 · p.4 #16 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Just a minor point. Everything else being equal, DOF is proportional to the square of the focal length. When you shoot from the same distance, a 40/1.2 has the same DOF of a 50/1.9. Thereíre dozens of good and cheapish MF 50/1.8 lenses out there. Of course, if you want to have the FOV of a 40mm. lens this is irrelevant.


Oct 15, 2017 at 09:14 AM
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p.4 #17 · p.4 #17 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


artur5 wrote:
Just a minor point. Everything else being equal, DOF is proportional to the square of the focal length. When you shoot from the same distance, a 40/1.2 has the same DOF of a 50/1.9. Thereíre dozens of good and cheapish MF 50/1.8 lenses out there. Of course, if you want to have the FOV of a 40mm. lens this is irrelevant.


My calculations for cropping 40mm on ff to 50mm equivalent gives a blur equivalent of f1.53 when the cropped image has the same angle of view as a 50mm on ff, though thatís back of the envelope. But a legacy 1.2/50 has more blur potential.

So if you donít care about the FOV you can certainly get equivalent blur potential more cheaply. But if we didnít care about FOV we would never buy a 1.4/35 - on the basis that there are cheap 2/50s out there with similar blur potential. (It has to be said, though, that cheap 1.8/50s while they are often very fine stopped down tend to be a bit ropey wide open)

Take home: this lens is interesting if you like the 40mm angle of view. I do: if I could have only one lens itíd be in the 40ish ballpark. You may not, or may be neutral in the standard range.

If you donít like 40mm in the wide to standard range then of course look elsewhere. If you really like blur and want a fifty get the Mitakon! If 65 counts as standard for you, and you like the long end of standard, get the APO Lanthar and have similar blur and one of the handful of the best lenses ever made to cover the 135 image circle.

But if you want blur potential in the 40 or a bit less focal length range, this might be pretty attractive.
And thereís something else interesting about it. Up to now fast standardish lenses have been divided between small and old school, or huge optically great and new school. No one has made a small fast lens thatís a bit better than legacy fast lenses, but necessarily nowhere near as perfect as the behemoths. Thatís a useful niche to fill.



Oct 15, 2017 at 10:09 AM
artur5
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p.4 #18 · p.4 #18 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


I also like the 40mm FOV better than 35mm. but I'd rather have a 40/1.8mm. instead of 40/1.2. In all likelihood it would be much smaller and cheaper while maintaining the same optical quality that the Nokton 40/1.2 has from f/1.8 and above. Of course, I understand perfectly why you prefer the faster lens.
Oh well, maybe someday Samyang or Laowa will release "my" perfect 40mm.

Edited on Oct 15, 2017 at 11:26 AM · View previous versions



Oct 15, 2017 at 11:22 AM
DavidBM
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p.4 #19 · p.4 #19 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


artur5 wrote:
I also like the 40mm FOV better than 35mm. but I'd rather have a 40/1.8mm. instead of 40/1.2. In all likelihood it would be much smaller and cheaper while maintaining the same opticall quality that the Nokton 40/1.2 has from f/1.8 and above. Of course, I understand perfectly why you prefer the faster lens.
Oh well, maybe someday Samyang or Laowa will make "my" perfect 40mm.


Actually, that was exactly what I thought before this came out: bring us a good 2/40 thatís smaller and a bit better. But Iíve really enjoyed the combination a bit more background than in slightly longer lenses with a bit more blur than weíve seen in past 40s...

Still not sure Iíll keep it, though....



Oct 15, 2017 at 11:26 AM
Juha Kannisto
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p.4 #20 · p.4 #20 · FM Review of the Voigtlander 40mm f/1.2 Nokton


Huff is loving it:
https://youtu.be/M61bss8AUmk



Oct 15, 2017 at 01:28 PM
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