Laowa Announces World’s First 100mm Macro Lens with 2:1 Magnification

laowa 100

Venus Optics has announced the availability and pricing of the new Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2X Ultra-Macro APO lens.

Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 Ultra Macro APO

The 100mm f/2.8 2:1 is the follow up to the 60mm f/2.8 2:1, and becomes the second 2nd member in the Laowa 2:1 macro line-up. The 100mm f/2.8 2:1 can cover full frame sensors and focus from 2:1 magnification to infinity.

Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 Ultra Macro APO

100mm is quite a popular focal length for macro lenses, however, the majority of 100mm macro lenses that are currently available only achieve 1:1 (life-size) or even smaller magnification.

Having a 2:1 magnification is crucial if you are shooting tiny objects such as insects. Having a 2:1 magnification also makes this new lens a lot more versatile than its competition.

Size & Weight

Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 Ultra Macro APO
Image credit ShaoWeiWei

Venus Optics have managed to keep the size and weight of the 100mm f/2.8 2:1 to a minimum. Usually a 2:1 macro lens is going to be a lot larger than a 1:1 macro lens, but the Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 looks to be very comparable in size to other macro lenses with less magnification.

Optical Design

Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 Ultra Macro APO

The optical design of the lens consists of 12 elements in 10 groups. Venus Optics claims that this enables a crystal sharp image at both macro and infinity distances. The bright f/2.8 and circular aperture is said to render softly diffused bokeh and isolates the subject from its background.

The APO element helps control chromatic aberrations. (Photo by Fengniao)
The APO element helps control chromatic aberrations. (Photo by Fengniao)

The lens has an internal focusing structure that will not extend when the focus is changed. A multilayer coating has also been applied to reduce lens flare and ghosting for increased contrast.

© Gua Ge 2
Image credit: Gua Ge

The Laowa 100mm 2:1 Macro lens features an apochromatic (APO) characteristic that according to Venus Optics, eliminates any chromatic aberration. Chromatic aberration (CA) is one of the biggest challenges for an optics designer. Some of the macro lenses on the market control chromatic aberration at the ‘in-focus’ area really well but the CA is uncontrollable in the ‘out-of-focus’ rendition areas. Venus Optics claims that 100mm delivers exceptional performance when it comes chromatic aberration suppression, both at the ‘in-focus’ area as well as ‘out-of-focus’ area.

Mounts Available

Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 Ultra Macro APO

The lens is available in Canon EF, Nikon F and Sony FE mounts. The Canon version of the Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 Macro lens is integrated with a CPU chip and aperture motor. This allows you to control the aperture and exposure through the camera and record the EXIF data into photos. A focus indicator will also be shown in the camera to assist focus. This new feature also benefits macro photographers when composing at smaller f-stop as the aperture will only close when the shutter is released.

Specifications

Focal Length100mm
Max. Aperturef/2.8
Angle of View24.4°
Format CompatibilityFull Frame
Lens Structure12 elements in 10 groups
Aperture Blades9 (Canon), 7 (Nikon), 13 (Sony FE)
Min. Focusing Distance24.7cm (2X)
Max. Magnification2:1
Filter Thread67mm
DimensionsФ72 x 125 mm
(Sony version: Ф72 x 155 mm)
Weight638g

Other 100mm f/2.8 Macro Lenses

Other 100mm f/2.8macro lenses that are available include:

Please note that all of these other macro lenses listed only have a 1:1 magnification.

Price & Availability

Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 Ultra Macro APO

The retail price of the new Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 Ultra Macro APO lens will be $449 USD, however, pricing will vary in different countries.

This $449 USD price certainly makes the Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 a very attractive proposition if you are in the market for a macro lens.

The lens is now available to order from Venus Optics authorized resellers and official website. Shipping is expected to start from late May onwards.

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