Venus Optics Laowa 20mm F4 Zero-D Shift E-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 1   
reviewer#46928 date: Feb-8-2023
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:I have the Laowa 12mm f2.8 with shift adapter, which makes a 17mm f4. Wider, heavier and perhaps slightly sharper when shifted. But, 17mm is much wider than 20 mm, hard to compare.
price paid:RRP Netherlands
positive:Very solid mechanical build, typical of all Laowa lenses. Lens has filter thread (although 82 mm is very large, expensive filters). Warning: LEE filters wide angle adapter ring does not fit due to sunshade construction, it needs to be a normal one. 77 mm WA adapter with step down ring works without vignet but does not allow much portrait shift. Makes beautiful 14 point sunstars. Large rings for shift, focus and aperture adjustment. Infinity is correctly adjusted.
negative:Negative, sort of. Not the sharpest lens, particularly at the borders at f4, and the borders are more utilized when you shift (after all, this is a shift lens). There will be wide angle lenses that can resolve more lines (but they will not shift), center resolution is adequate at f/4 and stopping down to f8 or f11 fixes the borders. Let's call it a 4.5.

Heavy, lots of metal and glass.

Sunshade can be in view when shifting (but this can be fixed by rotating the sunshade 90 degrees or by removing it altogether). Like on all wide angle lenses flare is always an issue. Stopped down not so bad, The double lobed sunshade seems adequate. Just deal with it.
comment:The unique design feature of this lens, and the only reason to obtain it, is that it is a shift lens that provides in-camera composition with corrected perspective. It does that very well. Yes you can correct in post, but you have to think ahead and frame wider. I prefer in camera. The shift adjustment does not droop but can be positively locked anyway. The lens can be rotated to shift horizontally or vertically, or you if are very creative can be rotated in 15 degree increments with click stops to shift any way you want. The lens is all manual and has no electronics. As a shift lens is the opposite of a point-and-shoot lens, this is no issue. The aperture has light but noticeable clicks.
reviews found: 1   

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 1
  • sharpness: 4.00
  • color: 5.00
  • build: 5.00
  • distortion: 5.00
  • flare control: 4.00
  • overall: 4.60

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