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01-14-2017, 06:31 PM   #1
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New Ultra Wide Rectilinear Lens Decision - Irix 11mm F/4 v Venus 12mm f/2.8

I am currently starting to look for ultra wide angle lens to add to my lens line up, and just wanted to get some input. With two brand new lens (Irix 11mm and Venus 12mm) coming soon, this seams like a good time.

Venus Optics Laowa 12mm f/2.8 Zero-D Lens for Pentax K:
- Rectilinear Distortion Free
- F2.8 apature (ring controlled)
- No weather sealing
- $950 USD (according to B&H
- Manual Focus
- Not sure if chipped
- Not sure if it accepts screw in filters


Irix 11mm f/4 for Pentax K
- Rectilinear Very Low Distortion
- F4 apature (camera controlled)
- Chipped for lens identification (such as focal length)
- Both versions Weather Sealed except front element (This is becomming more important to me)
- Rumored to cost around 1K USD
- Manual Focus w/ locking ring
- 95mm screw in filters (I always use a uv filter to protect the front element)


Currently I plan on using an ultra wide lens such as this for landscapes and architecture on a K3ii. Assuming they perform similar optically (this will be the final deciding factor), I like the fast aperture and smaller size of the venus, but the weather sealing, locking focus, id chip and ability to accept screw in filters of the lrix weights just as heavy in my mind. I know there are many other offerings such as the samyong/rokinon, but I believe most of those are fish eye or high distortion.

While I know almost no one has had a chance to play with these (they are due start shipping soon), I just wanted to see what everyone opinions are.

01-14-2017, 07:16 PM - 1 Like   #2
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AFAIK Venus lenses are K mount and Irix lenses are KA, so you get auto aperture support. I think you'll be entering the focal length manually for both, though. We plan to review these as well as the 15mm over the course of this year
01-14-2017, 07:16 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Echo Eric Quote
I am currently starting to look for ultra wide angle lens to add to my lens line up, and just wanted to get some input. With two brand new lens (Irix 11mm and Venus 12mm) coming soon, this seams like a good time.

Venus Optics Laowa 12mm f/2.8 Zero-D Lens for Pentax K:
- Rectilinear Distortion Free
- F2.8 apature (ring controlled)
- No weather sealing
- $950 USD (according to B&H
- Manual Focus
- Not sure if chipped
- Not sure if it accepts screw in filters


Irix 11mm f/4 for Pentax K
- Rectilinear Very Low Distortion
- F4 apature (camera controlled)
- Chipped for lens identification (such as focal length)
- Both versions Weather Sealed except front element (This is becomming more important to me)
- Rumored to cost around 1K USD
- Manual Focus w/ locking ring
- 95mm screw in filters (I always use a uv filter to protect the front element)


Currently I plan on using an ultra wide lens such as this for landscapes and architecture on a K3ii. Assuming they perform similar optically (this will be the final deciding factor), I like the fast aperture and smaller size of the venus, but the weather sealing, locking focus, id chip and ability to accept screw in filters of the lrix weights just as heavy in my mind. I know there are many other offerings such as the samyong/rokinon, but I believe most of those are fish eye or high distortion.

While I know almost no one has had a chance to play with these (they are due start shipping soon), I just wanted to see what everyone opinions are.
I've been looking at the Irix 11mm for the K-1 but I'm a bit worried that the Irix Flickr page ( Irix lens?s albums | Flickr ) seems to have lots of 15mm images added but only the one 11mm image. Several new images have been posted to their stream recently all with the 15mm yet I'd have thought that posting quality images captured with the 11mm would be a good way to showcase it and gain interest in its pending release. I don't do facebook, instagram or twiiter and maybe there's something there I'm not seeing but with Flickr all about photorgraphy I'm now just a bit sceptical about this lens.

I plan to wait for some reviews then make a decision after that.

Tas
01-14-2017, 10:31 PM   #4
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No 95mm filter thread on the 11mm Irix

01-15-2017, 12:20 AM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
AFAIK Venus lenses are K mount and Irix lenses are KA, so you get auto aperture support. I think you'll be entering the focal length manually for both, though.
My Irix 15mm does transmit focal length to the camera so the 11mm will probably do that as well.
01-15-2017, 03:17 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by BROO Quote
No 95mm filter thread on the 11mm Irix
Broo, You are correct about the absents of a lens filter thread, this is unfortunate, but probably necessary due to the extremely short focal length.

Additionally, some pricing has been found on this website

The K-mount Black Stone Version is 23690 czk, or $932.99 USD
The K-mount Firefly Version is 17290 czk or $680.93 USD
01-25-2017, 01:35 PM   #7
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I'm also interested in getting one of either the Irix 11mm or Laowa/Venus 12mm.

Adam if you are planning to review both - please can I suggest you do a side by side test, since they are direct competitors. This would be very useful indeed. :-)

On paper it seems to come down to weather sealing vs speed, which is vaguely equivalent to indoor vs outdoor use. Although I'm sure outdoor night shots in the rain look very good through a super wide angle lens!

I'm hoping the 11mm has decent rectanlinear distortion control, since then they would both be suitable for architectural use.

The thing that puzzles me is that the faster lens is also the smaller and lighter of the two, by a fair margin in each case...

I can confirm the Laowa/Venus 15mm is a "dumb" mount but personally I don't find that too problematic.

Last edited by MrA; 01-26-2017 at 11:15 AM.
01-25-2017, 01:54 PM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
AFAIK Venus lenses are K mount and Irix lenses are KA, so you get auto aperture support.
The Laowa 12mm has a KA mount.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/130-lens-sample-photo-archive/336550-laow...le-photos.html

01-25-2017, 01:57 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Not a Number Quote
Nice!

Adam
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06-18-2017, 11:42 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
AFAIK Venus lenses are K mount and Irix lenses are KA, so you get auto aperture support. I think you'll be entering the focal length manually for both, though. We plan to review these as well as the 15mm over the course of this year
Adam, now that these lenses are available for purchase, will you be doing your reviews and comparison soon? I'm leaning towards the Venus Optics Laowa 12mm since it is faster and smaller, but it is always reassuring to see your reviews when spending around a grand for a lens. Interestingly, I can not find any comparison review between these two lenses yet for any mount.
06-18-2017, 04:12 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Echo Eric Quote
Adam, now that these lenses are available for purchase, will you be doing your reviews and comparison soon? I'm leaning towards the Venus Optics Laowa 12mm since it is faster and smaller, but it is always reassuring to see your reviews when spending around a grand for a lens. Interestingly, I can not find any comparison review between these two lenses yet for any mount.
Expect those reviews toward the end of the year. We're currently wrapping up the D FA's and a couple other third-party offerings, then the ultra-wides will be next.

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06-18-2017, 06:47 PM   #12
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What other WA lenses do you have?

Those both seem really really tempting! But due to their price, I will stick to the Samyang 14mm and DA 21mm for a while longer. Yes, both of these have noticeable distortion, so they are not perfect for architecture (even though you can fix the distortion at a low FoV cost in Post). But I like them both. Samyang is super sharp, and DA 21mm just has amazing contrasts and colours (plus, full automation).

QuoteOriginally posted by Echo Eric Quote
and ability to accept screw in filters of the lrix weights just as heavy in my mind
I think alongside making lists of what the lenses offer you should make a list of your needs and wants. WR is nice, but is your camera WR? Do you ever go out in poor weather? Do you live in a place or travel to places where WR is needed? Lens ID is nice, but how much does its lack really bother you? How important are filters in your experience? Do you have a good collection of filters, do you use them regularly? Why, what do you get from them? You should ask yourself this kind of questions to narrow down your priorities

I don't have personal experience with those two lenses, but I do like UWA lenses in general. I don't really use filters and I don't need WR (even though I've traveled to various places). I would probably go with the 12mm as my 'only' UWA. But I would get the 11mm since I already have 14mm. That said, since I have the 14mm I really don't think I need any wider. It gets awkwardly wide. To first time apsc UWA I usually recommend the Samyang 16mm f2. Fast aperture, sharp, I think it takes filters, has auto-aperture, super wide but not awkwardly wide. If I didn't have the 14mm and had a budget, would go with the 16mm now and probably wouldn't bother going wider.

Last edited by Na Horuk; 06-18-2017 at 06:54 PM.
06-20-2017, 04:28 AM   #13
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I have no experience with anything shorter than 14mm (for full frame), so I'm not qualified to comment about the specific matter, though I suspect that thinking of a 11/12mm UWA "fully rectilinear", with FF coverage, belongs more to a pipe dream, than to actual present-day reality.
My Samyang 14mm thrashes a beautiful vintage lens like the Pentax-A 15mm, has an amazing IQ for such an extreme optic, but still has a pronounced "moustache" distortion.
Asking such extreme focals to be truly "fully rectilinear" is a bit too much, IMHO.
Shooting raw, a good lens profile can be quite useful, though sample variation is pronounced... I guess that a specific profile should be the way to go.
I am an absolute novice in this field, therefore my personal opinions have no value at all. I'm just asking myself, and those who are reading this post: is it really possible to correct complex distortions with lens profiles?
Afaik these lenses have floating elements, perhaps the distortion is affected by focusing. Isn't it?

Btw, Samyang's profiles for Lightroom can be downloaded with the Adobe utility.
Most third party lenses don't have this privilege...

Cheers

Paolo

Last edited by cyberjunkie; 06-20-2017 at 04:37 AM.
06-20-2017, 10:50 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by cyberjunkie Quote
Asking such extreme focals to be truly "fully rectilinear" is a bit too much, IMHO.
Look it up. the Laowa has very minor distortion. This was one of the first things that caught my attention with it, because I was realizing how much resolution I lose whenever I do corrections on my other FF wide angles (Fa20 and Tak20). The second thing that caused me to go with the Laowa over waiting for the Irix was filters. There are no options with the Irix. The Laowa has no threads but has a 100mm adapter (at this point I think still only available direct from manufacturer).

I had a defective issue with my copy of the Laowa (the mount had slight wiggle when attached) so had to return it within the 30 day window with Adorama. The whole thing was such an ordeal (very long story, the net result being 1. I would advise you to make very sure Laowa has the lens in stock before you order from them, and 2) Adorama won't be getting my business anymore) that I almost didn't purchase a replacement. Because I already have the filter adapter in possession from Laowa and have 100mm filters that I bought just for this scenario, and really like the lens (assuming I can eventually get a good copy), I have a replacement that is arriving this week from B&H.
09-05-2017, 10:27 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by todd Quote
Look it up. the Laowa has very minor distortion. This was one of the first things that caught my attention with it, because I was realizing how much resolution I lose whenever I do corrections on my other FF wide angles (Fa20 and Tak20). The second thing that caused me to go with the Laowa over waiting for the Irix was filters. There are no options with the Irix. The Laowa has no threads but has a 100mm adapter (at this point I think still only available direct from manufacturer).

I had a defective issue with my copy of the Laowa (the mount had slight wiggle when attached) so had to return it within the 30 day window with Adorama. The whole thing was such an ordeal (very long story, the net result being 1. I would advise you to make very sure Laowa has the lens in stock before you order from them, and 2) Adorama won't be getting my business anymore) that I almost didn't purchase a replacement. Because I already have the filter adapter in possession from Laowa and have 100mm filters that I bought just for this scenario, and really like the lens (assuming I can eventually get a good copy), I have a replacement that is arriving this week from B&H.
Hi,

Is your BHPhoto copy ok? Have same problem?
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