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Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review

  
 
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


FM Review: Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar
Pre-order the Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar lens:

Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO (Black): CameraQuest | B&H Photo | Adorama

Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO (Silver): CameraQuest | B&H Photo | Adorama

_________


Review quick links:

  1. About the lens
  2. Resolution and Contrast performance
  3. Infinity Performance compared to Leica 90mm f/2 APO Summicron
  4. Infinity Performance compared to Sigma 90mm f/2.8 DG DN
  5. Field Curvature
  6. Distortion
  7. Sunstar rendering and Flare resistance
  8. Lateral Color aberration correction
  9. Samples



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FM Review: Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar - Intro:

Compact, light and highly corrected telephoto lens:

The new Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar just started shipping and I got my hands on a couple of copies. Thankfully, one of the them passed our strict centering test which leads me to believe it's an optimal review copy.












When picking up the lens for the first time, I was shocked by how light it was. It weighs a mere 241 grams, making it a perfect telephoto companion for travel, hikes and landscapes.

I consider the apochromatic performance in a tiny package the lens main appeal. As you will see in this review, the Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar is capable of capturing high frequency detail across the image field with great color accuracy.

One the Leica M10-R, the lens balances well and does not block the 90mm frameline. It sports 10 aperture blades for well defined 10-point sunstars. Similarly to recent Voigtlander APO releases, the aperture mechanism allows for perfectly round specular highlights not only wide open but also at f/4 and f/22. This allows one to shoot into a light source at these apertures and get a blurred effect. However, stopping the aperture down to f/8, allows for defined sunstars as we will see later in this review.











The optical system uses 7 elements in 7 groups where five (5) are abnormal partial dispersion glass. The clean and simple structure provides a total length of only 60mm in length.













The focus ring runs smoothly and the aperture ring has defined 1/2 stop clicks. The focus throw angle is not very long at ~100 degrees allowing precision but on the other hand, focus is sensitive to any tiny rotation. The filter thread is 39mm and MFD is at 0.9m. I wish it was shorter but it's still possible to adapt the lens to other mirrorless cameras and use a close-up adapter for higher magnification.













Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar specifications:
  1. Focal Length 90mm
  2. Maximum Aperture f/2.8
  3. Minimum Aperture f/22
  4. Lens Mount Leica M (only)
  5. Angle of View 27.4°
  6. Minimum Focus Distance 0.9m
  7. Optical Design 10 Elements in 7 Groups
  8. Special glass: 5 anomalous partial dispersion elements
  9. Diaphragm Blades 10
  10. Focus Type Manual Focus
  11. Filter Size 39 mm (Front)
  12. Dimensions (ø x L) φ53 x 60.0mm
  13. Weight 241 g without hood, 269g with included hood (measured)












Dec 16, 2021 at 11:58 AM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Resolution and Contrast performance

The Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar lens is optically designed for the Leica M sensor stack, which is a very thin sensor (0.9mm). However, being a telephoto lens with a exit pupil far from the sensor, performance across the image field is identical on the Sony A7R III.

-------

This test was done at infinity distance on the Leica M10-R (40MP sensor) but the results apply for whose adapting it to other mirrorless bodies.

Here is the full image thumbnail showing the area demonstrated at 1:1 magnification.








  1. Distance: Infinity
  2. Camera: Leica M10-R
  3. Focus: Center - Best of three
  4. WB: Daylight
  5. Lens centered using my decentering test
  6. Software: Lightroom with my default landscape sharpening. All other settings set to default
PS: Vignetting and distortion were NOT corrected. All in-camera corrections turned 'off'.

___________



At 90mm
Center, Mid-field and Extreme corner resolution and contrast: Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar







Center from f/2.8 to f/4: Great performance, almost optimal from wide open







Center from f/4 to f/5.6: Another small increment and it looks like f/2.8 and f/4 are the optimal aperture for this lens







Center from f/5.6 to f/8: Similar performance, except that diffraction starts to get noticeable







MID-FIELD from f/2.8 to f/4: Small improvement from wide open to f/4. I don't see the mid-field being particularly strong, so there is a small dip from the center performance







MID-FIELD from f/4 to f/5.6: This area improves further to optimal levels. However, although great performance, it's still not as strong as other 85-90mm I've tested







MID-FIELD from f/5.6 to f/8: Similar performance







Extreme corner from f/2.8 to f/4: Great performance from wide open. High vignetting at f/2.8 and there is a noticeable improvement in resolution and contrast at f/4







Extreme corner from f/4 to f/5.6: Similar performance







Extreme corner from f/5.6 to f/8: Similar performance




Dec 16, 2021 at 02:45 PM
Paul.S
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review




Edited on Dec 17, 2021 at 08:53 PM · View previous versions



Dec 16, 2021 at 05:34 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Field Curvature

The Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar is a flat-field lens. I can't detect any field curvature on this lens. Another plus for those intending to use it for landscapes.

See the results:

First image:: Similar results for Left crop and Right crop showing Center area

Left Crop: subject focused at Center
Right Crop: subject focused at Extreme Corner

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Second image: Similar results for Left crop and Right crop showing Center area

Left Crop: subject focused at Center
Right Crop: subject focused at Mid-field







Showing Center area: Left Crop: subject focused at Center | Right Crop: subject focused at Extreme Corner







Showing Center area: Left Crop: subject focused at Center | Right Crop: subject focused at Mid-field




Dec 16, 2021 at 05:43 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Paul.S wrote:
Hey Fred, centre test 2.8 to 4, is that a double up? 5.6 to 8 is missing.
Looks good, and thanks for the testing.


Hi Paul, thanks for letting me know. Not missing, just mislabeled. This is now corrected.



Dec 16, 2021 at 05:48 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Distortion

The Voigtlander 90/2.8 APO is well corrected for distortion.

There is a very minor pincushion distortion which is easily corrected in Lightroom by tweaking the slider to (-3).




Uncorrected for Distortion






Corrected for distortion






Lightroom slider showing pincushion correction (-3)




Dec 16, 2021 at 05:51 PM
nehemiahphoto
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


I’ve been watching this since it was announced, looks like a great option—curious for the testing for bokeh and flare resistance especially, and how APO this lens really is. Looks to be a modernized and very suitable replacement to the Contax g90 finally.

Just read the MF ring is very sensitive. Same on the CV 75/1.5. Unnecessary and annoying.



Dec 16, 2021 at 05:59 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


nehemiahphoto wrote:
I’ve been watching this since it was announced, looks like a great option—curious if the testing for bokeh and flare resistance especially, and how APO this lens really is. Looks to be a modernized and very suitable replacement to the Contax g90 finally.

Just read the MF ring is very sensitive. Same on the CV 75/1.5. Unnecessary and annoying.


Yes, same as CV 75/1.5. Pretty much same throw.

I've played with it a little and can already see that LoCA is very well controlled. However LaCA not so much. I will post the test soon.

Flare resistance seems to hold up so far.



Dec 16, 2021 at 06:03 PM
zhangyue
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Fred Miranda wrote:
Yes, same as CV 75/1.5. Pretty much same throw.

I've played with it a little and can already see that LoCA is very well controlled. However LaCA not so much. I will post the test soon.

Flare resistance seems to hold up so far.


Hi Fred, do you still have 90mm sigma i? I'd be very interested to see a comparison between the two. I finally got a good copy of it. It is quite impressive for sharpness and color correction. It is not the sharpest lens I ever tested but very consistent cross frame. I am quite happy with it.

These two are about the same size and weight. I am sure many will love to see a comparison between them.



Dec 16, 2021 at 06:11 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Infinity Performance compared to Leica 90mm f/2 APO Summicron

The only other APO lens I have to compare with the new Voigtlander 90/2 APO is the Leica 90mm f/2 APO Summicron. It's heavier, more expensive but a stop faster.

Just like the Voigtlander copy in hands, it's perfectly centered and sharp at any distance, which makes me confident this is a fair comparison. To be sure, I have tested this several times and achieved the same results. The Leica performs a little better in regards to resolution and contrast across the field, but the Voigtlander is very close, except for the mid-field area and as we already know, this is not due to field curvature.

Here are how they compare in size with and without hoods:














--------------

Here is the full image thumbnail showing the area demonstrated at 1:1 magnification.








  1. Distance: Infinity
  2. Camera: Leica M10-R
  3. Focus: Center - Best of three
  4. WB: Daylight
  5. Lens centered using my decentering test
  6. Software: Lightroom with my default landscape sharpening. All other settings set to default
PS: Vignetting and distortion were NOT corrected. All in-camera corrections turned 'off'.

___________



At 90mm
CENTER resolution/contrast comparison between Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar and Leica APO-Summicron 90/2 ASPH.







Center at f/2.8







Center at f/4







Center at f/5.6







Center at f/8




Dec 16, 2021 at 06:31 PM
 


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Fred Miranda
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


At 90mm
MID-FIELD resolution/contrast comparison between Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar and Leica APO-Summicron 90/2 ASPH.






Mid-field at f/2.8







Mid-field at f/4







Mid-field at f/5.6







Mid-field at f/8




Dec 16, 2021 at 06:31 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


At 90mm
EXTREME CORNER resolution/contrast comparison between Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar and Leica APO-Summicron 90/2 ASPH.






Extreme Corner at f/2.8







Extreme Corner at f/4







Extreme Corner at f/5.6







Extreme Corner at f/8




Dec 16, 2021 at 06:31 PM
tsdevine
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review



Makes me want the Leica...until I realize how close the CV price is.....to the price of the hood for the Leica.



Dec 16, 2021 at 07:21 PM
Maximilian
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


The Leica has a built-in hood


Dec 16, 2021 at 08:49 PM
tsdevine
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review



You are right, i was looking at the cost of the hood for the SL.

Maximilian wrote:
The Leica has a built-in hood





Dec 16, 2021 at 08:50 PM
rscheffler
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Interesting the the VM's mid-zone weakness; kind of turns me off a bit given I'd use it a lot for landscape type work. I have the 90AA. I predict backlight veiling flare resistance will be the AA's weakness. Onion rings too, if provoked.


Dec 16, 2021 at 09:50 PM
philip_pj
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Cosina's preference for fast rotation focus rings might not please RF users who need exact focus imagery at/near wide open. The F version is more generous in its rotation but even if it were the same ~90 degrees, the wider ring diameter would work better for these cases.

The 75/1.5 ring works well with focus magnification on Sonys, personal opinion of course. Would like to see how the F version compares, especially for midfield fall off. thanks again.



Dec 16, 2021 at 10:06 PM
rscheffler
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Add something like this: http://www.leicagoodies.com/steer.html

I think that specific accessory was designed for larger diameter lenses but the concept should be sound because it effectively increases the diameter of the focusing ring. Just makes a compact lens less so, and interferes with storage of the hood.



Dec 16, 2021 at 10:33 PM
stgrove
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


Thanks Fred. That is exactly what we needed-- a no nonsense approach. For street I will use it. For landscape not sure yet.


Dec 17, 2021 at 06:16 AM
sandycrane
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Voigtlander 90mm f/2.8 APO-Skopar Review


The new 90 is showing a lot of chromatic aberration in the corners that seems to get worse as it is stopped down. Is there an explanation for this?



Dec 17, 2021 at 11:18 AM
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