Laowa 9mm f/2.8 Zero-D Review

November 12, 2018 | Mark Goldstein | Rating star Rating star Rating star Rating star Half rating star

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Reviews of the Laowa 9mm f/2.8 Zero-D from around the web. »

Now that the Fujifilm X system is more mature, plenty of lenses are available not only from Fujifilm themselves but third-party manufacturers are also starting to provide quality options. One such company that has just released it’s first native Fujifilm X mount offering is Venus Optics with their ultra-wide Laowa 9mm f/2.8 Zero-D.
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Let's start with the fun facts first - "Laowa" - what does that actually mean? Any guesses? In Chinese, it means "(Old) Frog". Why is that? The owner of Laowa (who is also one of the designers) likes the fantasy of a frog looking into the blue sky as his dreamland. Hard to understand from a western perspective but then why not? It may also give you a hint where the name of the Laowa's lens coating - FEC or Frog Eye Coating - is coming from.
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Venus Optics is a rather new name in the camera world, but it has quickly garnered the attention of enthusiast photographers with its line of high-quality, affordable manual focus lenses. The Venus Laowa 9mm f/2.8 Zero-D ($499) is one of its unique offerings, covering a wider angle than any first-party option, and doing so without introducing a ton of barrel distortion to images. For some photographers, a lack of autofocus is a non-starter, but if you're willing to dial in focus adjustments yourself, and want a very wide perspective on the world, consider picking this one up.
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By zeroing in on focal lengths that other manufacturers skipped they have created a cozy market niche instead of offering “just another zoom lens.” Today’s subject, the manual focus 9mm f/2.8 Zero-D lens for certain Fujifilm, Canon and Sony mirrorless cameras, fills a vacant spot in the marketplace—a fast 13.5mm equivalent for these camera brands.
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