New 21mm f/1.8 Ultron!

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 Post subject: Re: New 21mm f/1.8 Ultron!
Unread postPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:42 pm 
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A couple more sample photos on DPR today and a 21mm shoot-out including this lens.

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 Post subject: Re: New 21mm f/1.8 Ultron!
Unread postPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2013 4:24 pm 
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We just got one of these bad boys in the lab. Stay tuned for a full review! ;)

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 Post subject: Re: New 21mm f/1.8 Ultron!
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 5:50 pm 
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Initial results from casual "real world" (if banal) shooting... It was manually coded in the MENU as an Elmarit-M 21mm f/2.8 (11134). No off-colored edges and only very slight (if any) vignetting wide open as a result.

Distortion is remarkably low and well controlled. Impressive. Perhaps slightly barrel.

Sharpness is good from wide open; not quite as good but surprisingly similar to f/4 in center. Even at MFD (.7m) wide open, it's quite nice and very usable. Perhaps not "wow" sharp like the ZM or SEM however.

Fairly even purple fringing across the frame wide open on strong backlights/contrast transitions. Not unexpected and even the $11k Noctilux does this (if not more so). Cleans up by f/4. Some CA wide open (in the bokeh as well) but not bad.

It's hard to get a handle on the bokeh since so little is actually OOF with a 21mm... But it's got some of that "Bokton mojo" going on. That is, nice - like the 35mm Nokton. Perhaps not quite as smooth... But most definitely unlike the 50mm Nokton... Which is unpredictable and generally kind of nasty (when it's bad).

This should not be construed as even remotely scientific testing. In fact, it was quite half-assed. But the weather and lighting has been crap. Stay tuned. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: New 21mm f/1.8 Ultron!
Unread postPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 9:43 pm 
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I was out shooting the post-blizzard today and used the 21mm pretty extensively. Should have some lovely shots to show after I PP tomorrow morning. I haven't used the 21mm focal length much, because - well, I don't know why. It was fun and man, it's wide.

I've been shooting with the plastic Voigtländer 21/25mm finder, but I bought the metal one, which is much nicer. Hasn't been delivered yet, which ironically - was supposed to happen today.

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 Post subject: Re: New 21mm f/1.8 Ultron!
Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 2:24 pm 
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This lens, I think - will be a keeper.

Stopped down, at least - this lens is nicely sharp. Sharp enough to excite the sensor in the M9 (aliasing and likely moire) to the corners. Distortion is extremely low and well controlled. Sun stars are well defined when stopped down and look great. Handling of the sun in and just out of the frame is similarly outstanding... Despite the number of lens elements (13 in 11 groups), flare was extremely rare despite pushing the lens. There is purple fringing evident, but cleans up when stopped down. This is to be expected.

Images taken with firmware v1.196 on the M9, lens manually set in MENU as an Elmarit-M 21mm f/2.8 - results in a lack of colored edges, vignetting, etc. Very happy about this. The 28 Cron setting should allow more of the natural vignetting to show through; must test.

Got the metal version of the Voigtländer 21/25 finder. Both work, but the metal is better. Smaller, all metal, slightly brighter with slightly less distortion (though still some barrel). It also doesn't require your eye to be right up against it for an easier view - which is good because it sits deeper into the hotshoe. Very much like the 28mm finder; that is to say - excellent.

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 Post subject: Re: New 21mm f/1.8 Ultron!
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 11:15 pm 
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I coded the lens tonight with a template and a Sharpie; easily done because of the groove and worked the first time.

MFD is easy. My strap happens to be just right to measure .5m. Or, you can stick with RF-only focusing to .7m. Not sure about focus shift yet, but no flare. I think out of 200 shots over the weekend, I saw flare in ONE of them. And I easily shot quite a few into and close to the sun.

Handling is very nice. It doesn't feel front-heavy at all. It's closer to the 35mm f/1.2 Nokton than anything else. It looks big(ger) because of the integral (non-removable) hood.

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