Venus Optics Laowa 60mm f/2.8 2:1 Ultra-Macro Lens review

Ever heard of this specialty lens called Venus Optics Laowa 60mm f/2.8 2X Ultra-Macro Lens?

There are already many review online. I took the plunge bought one. I ordered from their official website and it shipped from China. It is a Chinese made lens. First I want to say this company has really bad customer service. I bought the lens on Mar 6. There is no further information since then. I send multiple emails ask what happen to my order. No response what so ever. I then dispute this paypal transaction on April 17. And then they finally email me back saying sorry for the late reply, they will ship to me with express mail and can I cancel the dispute. I said after I received the lens I will cancel the dispute. So finally I get the lens.

Really bad experience. However good news is that B&H now has this lens for sell now. So anyone can just order from B&H, hassle free. easy to return as well.
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Some photo of the lens.

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This is when in 2:1 super macro mode

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This is when in infinite mode.

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Lens feel solid. Focus ring turns smoothly. But it create loud noisy. The throw is very short. From infinite to 1:2 is like 30 degree turn only. Hard to do focus pull as slightly turn will change the focus a lot. I guess this lens is not designed for run and gun situation.

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Mounted on my Sony a7s with Fotodiox Nikon to E mount adapter.P1270598

The lens also come with a UV filter. But it sucks. It creates ugly reflection. I am going to show you. So just do not use it.P1270599

Without the UV filter.

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With the filter. Look at the green color reflection.

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Many people will ask does this lens work with full frame camera? Since it is specially design for aps-c camera.

The answer is yes, kind of. You will see vignette when take normal photo. but in close up situation, it is not an issue.

APS-C mode.

DSC00537_1

Full frame mode

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Just give you an idea the vignette can still be clean up very well in post.DSC00538_1x

Now let’s talk about resolution. The lens is sharp at center right from f2.8. However a big disappointment from this company. My lens is a bad copy. It has decentering issue. Left corner is very low resolution but the right corner is fine. I am going to show you now.

The photo were take in full frame mode at f2.8.

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Center (click for 100% crop) Pretty good.

center

Right corner ( click for 100% crop)). Looks fine.

right

Left corner ( click for 100% crop) Pretty bad.

left

One more example.

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Center is good

center2

Right corner is good.

right2

Left corner again is poor.

left2

Not a very happy result. Quality control need to be improved.
But remember this is the full frame frame. If you use APS-C sensor camera. The bad corner will be much reduced.

Now let’s take a look at the quality of Bokeh. That what the lens is good at. 14 aperture blades. That is amazing.

Some quick test.
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Finally give you an idea how close you can get from 2:1 macro.
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This is at 2:1 macro mode. My lens is almost touch the subject. And at f2.8 the DOF is so so so thin.

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Will I keep this lens. Yes, since I do not have any macro lens now. This lens is good for this. I am really disappointed at the decentering issue. I might just use this lens for food, product photography. I will use another lens for general purpose.

Hope you find some useful information.

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