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Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review

  
 
Fred Miranda
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p.3 #1 · p.3 #1 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review



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Color Aberration:

Lateral

Lateral CA are well corrected, I didn’t find any in my pictures.

Longitudinal

There is a very faint green outlining visible in the out of focus areas, but this is a great performance and generally not something that should worry you in the field. Above average performance and one of the strengths of this lens.

There is a tiny purple fringing when shooting in very high scenarios but it is not an issue at all.

The out-of-focus areas behind the area of focus exhibit a subtle green outlining, but overall, this lens delivers an impressive performance, and this minor characteristic should not be a cause for concern during regular use. It offers above-average performance and excels in this aspect.

In extremely high-contrast scenarios, there might be a slight presence of purple fringing, but rest assured, it does not pose any significant problem or impact the overall quality of the images.

Below are three samples showcasing the performance under intense high-contrast lighting:

Sample 1




High contrast scene

  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/2.0    1/7500s    160 ISO    -1.0 EV  






Minor green fringing






Minor purple fringing on focused area






free of LOCA background. Impressive performance




Jul 19, 2023 at 06:42 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.3 #2 · p.3 #2 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


Sample 2




  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/2.5    1/640s    160 ISO    -1.0 EV  






No purple fringing on high contrast focused area






Fringing free




Jul 19, 2023 at 06:43 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.3 #3 · p.3 #3 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


Sample 3









Great color aberration correction






No fringing




Jul 19, 2023 at 06:43 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.3 #4 · p.3 #4 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review



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Flare Resistance:

When using the Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron, I mainly relied on its extremely slim hood. This optical design and coating excel in resisting both ghosting and veiling flare, which has been quite impressive. Even when pointing the lens directly at the sun or experimenting with various angles against strong light sources, I have not observed any signs of ghosting or veiling. I intend to conduct more tests to confirm, but it appears that this lens offers exceptional flare resistance – the finest I've encountered on a lens for the Fuji X-Pro3.




  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/2.0    1/8000s    160 ISO    -1.3 EV  






  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/2.0    1/6400s    160 ISO    0.0 EV  






  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/5.6    1/850s    160 ISO    0.0 EV  




Jul 19, 2023 at 07:19 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.3 #5 · p.3 #5 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review



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Final Thoughts:

After extensively shooting with the Voigtländer 27mm f/2 Ultron for a month, I must say that I am truly impressed by its performance. Most pancake design lenses I've tried in various camera systems often come with significant compromises in image quality, but this lens breaks that trend with outstanding overall performance. One unique aspect of this lens is its rendering, which has a classic look that will undoubtedly appeal to photographers seeking a distinctive touch to their shots. While the coma correction may not be perfect, it actually contributes to its special rendering when shooting wide open, adding a unique and artistic character to the images.

Apart from its charming rendering when shooting wide open, the lens' optical design excels in correcting color aberration, distortion, and shows remarkable flare resistance. This all comes packaged in a super compact design that makes it an absolute pleasure to use in the field.

The build quality and haptics of the lens are equally praiseworthy. It is built with tight tolerances, making it not only durable but also quite attractive. The focusing tab provides just the right amount of resistance, while the aperture mechanism is 'clicky' and satisfying, making every third of a stop easy to feel. Additionally, the slim hood, a hidden gem of this lens, complements the overall design, maintaining its compact nature, and often going unnoticed by casual observers.

I am full of praise for the Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron, especially for Fujifilm users who appreciate manual focusing. Despite the minor imperfections in coma correction and field curvature, this lens offers an exceptional and distinctive performance that makes it a must-have for the Fujifilm system. If only Voigtlander would release a similarly compact 18mm f/2 Ultron, it would undoubtedly enrich the Fujifilm lens lineup.

Pros:
  1. Ultra-compact pancake size and lightweight build
  2. High resolution and contrast even when shooting wide open, with optimal performance at f/2.8 in the center and f/4 in the corners.
  3. Low distortion
  4. Impressive minimal focus distance of 0.25m for creative close-up shots
  5. Excellent build quality with precise construction, enhancing its overall appeal
  6. Electronic communication for EXIF, Auto-magnification, distance, and Parallax compensation (X-Pro3)
  7. Aperture mechanism creates beautifully defined 10-pointed sunstars, adding a creative touch to images
  8. Virtually no lateral chromatic aberration and minimal axial chromatic aberration for clean and crisp images
  9. Superb flare resistance, particularly when used with the slim hood.

Cons:
  1. Coma correction may not be perfect but contributes to a unique and artistic rendering when shooting wide open
  2. Wavy field curvature at infinity, requiring careful consideration for specific shooting scenarios
  3. Short focusing throw may make focus adjustments more sensitive, requiring precise handling.

In conclusion, the Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron is an exceptional lens that delivers on its promises. Its special rendering, impressive image quality, and compact design make it a valuable addition to any Fujifilm photographer's kit. Despite the minor imperfections, the lens's overall performance and build quality make it a worthwhile investment for those who value creativity and precision in their photography.



Jul 19, 2023 at 07:53 PM
ggweci
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p.3 #6 · p.3 #6 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


Fred, thanks for the detailed review, with excellent sample images (as usual).

I don't current shoot Fuji (eagerly waiting to see what the X-Pro4 offers), but if I did, the lens would be added to my kit for all the positive reasons you referenced.

Fred Miranda wrote:
If only Voigtlander would release a similarly compact 18mm f/2 Ultron, it would undoubtedly enrich the Fujifilm lens lineup.


Agree 100%. An ultra compact 18/27 pairing would be lovely.



Jul 19, 2023 at 08:47 PM
Gabe13
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p.3 #7 · p.3 #7 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review



If only Voigtlander would release a similarly compact 18mm f/2 Ultron, it would undoubtedly enrich the Fujifilm lens lineup.


My wish list includes something akin to their Ultron 75mm f1.9 on "M" as I would love a small short telephoto to add to the 27mm and upcoming Nokton 35mm f0.9. This would make for a sweet X-T5 + 3 prime lens travel kit that is compact yet delivers with that lovely Voigtlander rendering.

Anyways, great review and great last round of test images that show the capabilities under harsher situations. My 27mm Ultron just arrived a few days ago direct from Japan and I cannot wait to take it on my next trip in Sept.

Here's how she looks mounted on an X-T2 (its an IR converted body) taken with my X-T5 which is similar in size and style to the X-T2.

Ultron small by Gabe D., on Flickr



Jul 19, 2023 at 10:32 PM
Juha Kannisto
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p.3 #8 · p.3 #8 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


I'm also wishing for a 28mm FF equivalent (i.e. ~18mm) F2 or so to be released by Cosina in their future lineup for X-mount, hopefully next year. I guess they will announce something new for X-mount again at CP+ next year (end of February). For now I'm happy with the 27/2 and 23/1.2. Still thinking if I should add one of the 35mm options from CV as well.

For the longer end I can adapt my rangefinder glass, including many 50mm, 75mm, 90mm lenses.



Jul 19, 2023 at 11:34 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.3 #9 · p.3 #9 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


I have had a conversation with Stephen from CameraQuest, and he is willing to pass along the suggestion to Cosina regarding the potential development of a new compact Voigtlander 18/2 Ultron.


Jul 20, 2023 at 11:16 AM
Fred Miranda
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p.3 #10 · p.3 #10 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


Since the Ultron 27/2 lens allows a depth of field comparable to a 40/2.8 full-frame lens, achieving sharp images is effortless by pre-focusing on the subject's distance. This makes it ideal for street photography.

Here is Attached is an example taken in Harajuku, Japan, under high-contrast lighting conditions:




  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/2.0    1/6000s    160 ISO    -1.0 EV  




Jul 20, 2023 at 04:21 PM
 


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FrozenInTime
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p.3 #11 · p.3 #11 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


The Voigtländer 27/2 seems useable for IR.
My initial tests on an unmodified X-T5 plus R72 filter are not showing any discouraging hot spot between f/2 and f/5.6.

With the X-T5's IBIS handheld IR is possible at f/2 and ISO 800+ :-)




  X-T5    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/5.6    14s    200 ISO    +0.3 EV  




Jul 20, 2023 at 05:10 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.3 #12 · p.3 #12 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


FrozenInTime wrote:
The Voigtländer 27/2 seems useable for IR.
My initial tests on an unmodified X-T5 plus R72 filter are not showing any discouraging hot spot between f/2 and f/5.6.

With the X-T5's IBIS handheld IR is possible at f/2 and ISO 800+ :-)


Wonderful image. Thanks for posting!



Jul 20, 2023 at 06:03 PM
newyork
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p.3 #13 · p.3 #13 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


Are you guys using focus peaking with a specific color? Forgive my newbie ness. What do you find to be most helpful/effective on Fujis with manual lenses?


Jul 20, 2023 at 07:49 PM
Gabe13
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p.3 #14 · p.3 #14 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


FrozenInTime wrote:
The Voigtländer 27/2 seems useable for IR.
My initial tests on an unmodified X-T5 plus R72 filter are not showing any discouraging hot spot between f/2 and f/5.6.


This bodes well and is one of the high hopes I had for this 27mm lens when purchasing since my CV 23mm f1.2 is not a good IR performer.

I had planned to do a bit of testing this weekend with it (that's the reason its mounted to my converted X-T2 in the pic above) to see how it goes. Since I will be testing it on this converted body, I am hoping to squeeze a hotspot free f8 out of it...but I'll take a f5.6.

Regardless, it is a stellar lens that I am glad to finally have...but it would still be nice to have a short tele and I can always wish for one

Sure I have some small tele's that I do adapt sometimes ( like a magical Pentax FA 77mm f1.8 Limited for example ) but having full electronic contacts and omitting the extra length of an adapter is always best.



Jul 20, 2023 at 09:16 PM
ksegedi
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p.3 #15 · p.3 #15 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


newyork wrote:
Are you guys using focus peaking with a specific color? Forgive my newbie ness. What do you find to be most helpful/effective on Fujis with manual lenses?



I have been using Red / High for years, starting with the X-T2, and now with X-H2 and X-E4. Coupled with a monochrome film simulation, the red pops easily. Using the focus point joystick, click to zoom in, if needed. And I shoot RAW + JPG, in case I want a color version later on.

Once you pick up the workflow, it's really easy to manually focus.




Jul 20, 2023 at 09:44 PM
Juha Kannisto
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p.3 #16 · p.3 #16 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


newyork wrote:
Are you guys using focus peaking with a specific color? Forgive my newbie ness. What do you find to be most helpful/effective on Fujis with manual lenses?


I'm also using Red(High) peaking on my X-S10. I've been using Red High setting on my Sony E-mount cameras since I started shooting with manual focus lenses back in 2013, so I picked up using the corresponding setting on Fuji as well. I mainly rely on peaking but when it's not enough to confirm critical focus (esp. with stopped down infinity shots) I toggle full-screen magnification manually with the joystick. I never utilize automatic magnification option as I don't like that.

I always shoot Raw+JPEG and I tend to keep the Film Simulation as Provia while shooting most of the time. I apply a different Film Simulation later, e.g. while converting Raw using C1 Pro if I want to change it.



Jul 20, 2023 at 10:04 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.3 #17 · p.3 #17 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


More samples. All wide open:




  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/2.0    1/80s    160 ISO    -1.3 EV  






  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/2.0    1/80s    1250 ISO    0.0 EV  






  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/2.0    1/80s    1250 ISO    0.0 EV  






  X-Pro3    VOIGTLANDER ULTRON 27mm F2 lens    27mm    f/2.0    1/2700s    160 ISO    -1.3 EV  




Jul 21, 2023 at 12:00 AM
Gabe13
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p.3 #18 · p.3 #18 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


Fred Miranda wrote:
More samples. All wide open:


Those top 3 really demonstrate excellent results in subtle mixed lighting scenarios, I think I am really going to be happy and satisfied on my next trip having this lens along. I opted to eliminate the XF 27mm f2.8 WR despite it having good performance and I don't have a mg of regret doing so since I'm pretty sure it would have just stayed behind most if not all of the time. I have other WR lenses for when it's required anyway.



Jul 21, 2023 at 09:21 AM
FrozenInTime
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p.3 #19 · p.3 #19 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


Gabe13 wrote:
I had planned to do a bit of testing this weekend with it (that's the reason its mounted to my converted X-T2 in the pic above) to see how it goes. Since I will be testing it on this converted body, I am hoping to squeeze a hotspot free f8 out of it...but I'll take a f5.6.


I may be good beyond f/5.6. I only tested a series to that point, then the sun disappeared behind clouds.
Look forward to seeing your IR results on the converted X-T2.



Jul 21, 2023 at 09:36 AM
Gabe13
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p.3 #20 · p.3 #20 · Voigtlander 27mm f/2 Ultron X-mount Review


FrozenInTime wrote:
I may be good beyond f/5.6. I only tested a series to that point, then the sun disappeared behind clouds.
Look forward to seeing your IR results on the converted X-T2.


So it would seem my brief testing this past weekend with a 720nm IR converted body (X-T2) more or less mirrored the results you obtained with a filter.

Unfortunately where I live we are currently in the summer rainy season (subtropical) and as such throughout the weekend and into the future we have primarily overcast skies with the typical deep cloud layers. So as you know, this is not conducive to an ideal IR shooting scenario. Still, I managed to find a few times with some breaks in the sky, the second example more of a break than the first but the typical foliage hyper-reflectiveness one would associate with these type of images is not manifest in the expected way. The images were processed via DxO 6 Elite + NIK Silver Efex.

That being said, I am happy with the performance of the CV 27mm f2 lens for IR. Although, for my converted body I would say f4 is the likely sweet spot as even f5.6 began to show a large diffuse hot spot in the center. The rendering of the 27mm produces very very nice details so its likely I would not care to need to shoot beyond f4 anyway.

Currently, when I travel I have found an excellent inexpensive all manual 35mm lens (Chinese variant) that is fairly small with native X mount that is truly hotspot free at all apertures. However, given the performance of the CV 27mm I would likely just use this when traveling as I would be bringing it anyway and thus I can omit that extra lens when I bring along the X-T2. I travel a lot including internationally so I like to have a smaller kit with me these days as I got tired of lugging around a FF larger body with larger lenses prior to switching over to Fuji.

I am curious what you used to process your IR image because I did have a few other unique results that I will discuss a bit later.

Cypress Alley by Gabe D., on Flickr
720nm IR converted X-T2 + CV 27mm f2
f4.0, 1/250, ISO 200

Voigt 27mm IR test by Gabe D., on Flickr
f4.0, 1/1000, ISO 200

Edited on Jul 27, 2023 at 10:55 PM · View previous versions



Jul 24, 2023 at 06:55 PM
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