Laowa 90mm f/2.8 CA-Dreamer Macro 2x lens review
8, ca dreamer macro two times its a manual focus macro lens for mirrorless cameras, full frame or aps c and will be available on Sony e nikon z, canon rf and leica l mounts its price is 500 us dollars and id like to say a big. Thank you to laura for loaning me this lens for testing for a couple of weeks, although, as usual, this is a totally independent review. This is essentially a version of their famous 100 millimeter two times macro lens, except now, designed from the ground up for mirrorless cameras instead of digital slrs, which makes it much more compact for mirrorless, camera, shooters and obviously non functional on digital slrs. That slightly wider angle of 90 millimeter makes it slightly easier to use, but also when shooting at that fantastic two times macro capability youll have to get really close to whatever it is youre shooting my wife managed to get a lot of these pictures of bugs. For me, something about her attractive and peaceful countenance must have stopped them from flying away that two times. Microability is very impressive, really fun, although a tripod will help you enormously. If youre going that close, remember, your image will be much darker at such a close distance and if you shoot handheld youll end up using very high iso levels. The lens, however, is still able to work at normal focus. Distances too, where, like other 90 millimeter macro lenses, it can work quite well as a portrait or subject photography lens.
I personally also quite like the 90 millimeter focal length for landscape photography. Well, lets take a look at its build quality. First, the lens isnt too big, really for an optical of this kind, its certainly way shorter than lauers 100 millimeter version, its body is made of metal, feeling, lovely and solid, and its weight is about 620 grams. The lenses rear mount is also made of metal, but not weather, sealed at the bottom theres the aperture control ring it turns very smoothly, with just the slightest tiniest little click that you could possibly imagine at every f stop and, as i mentioned, its manual focus only The focus ring turns quite smoothly, with a fairly long travel to it for decent enough precision. People shooting video will need to know that this lens displays a lot of focus, breathing zooming in and out as you change focus in this footage. If you look carefully, you can also see the image getting darker when the lens comes to its closest focus distance, which, as i mentioned earlier, is a natural occurrence at such magnifications. This is normal for a macro lens. The lens comes with its own fairly deep plastic. Hood, its filter thread size is 67 millimeters. Overall, its build quality is pretty gorgeous here, although a little weather ceiling might have been nice. Okay, image quality when shooting at normal distances, ill, look at macro quality in a minute ill, be testing it now on a sony.
A7R iii, with its full frame 42 megapixel sensor in camera, corrections are not available with this lens at f 2.8 image. Quality in the middle is razor sharp, with excellent contrast and over inner corners. Brilliant were still seeing tons of sharpness here. Chromatic, aberration is also very, very low, although contrast doesnt seem quite as punchy as it was back in the middle stop down to f4, though, and it reemerges leading to absolutely perfect image quality, very, very impressive. The lens taster sharp down to f11, where a touch of softness begins to creep in due to the effect of diffraction, f16 and f22, look much softer but theres, no avoiding diffraction. So this is essentially a perfect performance from the lower lens, especially when you bear in mind that no in camera corrections are being performed here before we look at macro image. Quality. Well, lauer made a special request that i compare this lenses sharpness to a couple of its competitors. Well, why not? Two of the very sharpest macro lenses ive tested so far on sony e mount by a long way are the sony, fe, 90 millimeter, f, 2.8 macro lens and the sigma 105 millimeter, f, 2.8 dg dn macro art so lets take a look. All three lenses are razor sharp in the middle of their images from f 2.8 over in the corners. It looks like the sigma lens is sharper by just a whisker, with a lower lens coming, a close second and the sony lens trailing behind.
Just a little stop down to f4, though, and all three lenses even out pretty nicely for all practical purposes, well, theyre, virtually all as sharp as each other. All right lets take a look at macro image quality. My test subject is this 50 pence coin. Commemorating the liberation of the falkland islands, which was 40 years ago today here it is at the lenses closest focus distance at f 2.8. That macro quality is simply razor sharp. It taste this sharp down to f 5.6. However, at f 8 on the 42 megapixel camera, we are already just about beginning to see the effect of diffraction softening the image. This is because diffraction sets in at brighter apertures when you shoot at closer distances and, of course, this lens is getting particularly close. Heres 11 and f, 16 and f 22, which are all very soft, but you simply cannot beat the laws of physics that god has instituted its virtually the same without free macro lens out there. That problem with diffraction between f 2.8 and f 5.6 on a 42 megapixel camera. This lens is incredibly sharp at its maximum magnification and usably sharp down to about f11 right lets, move on from resolution testing and look at distortion and vignetting on a full frame camera. The lens projects essentially no distortion here at f 2.8 on full frame, theres a little vignetting, but nothing bothersome stop down to f4 or 5.6 to see what little corner darkness there was brighten up.
Next work against bright lights, the lower lens trips up big time here, showing a lot of flaring and loss of contrast when bright lights come into the image. So you will want to use that plastic lens hood and now bokeh. This lens can get you some nice. How to figures backgrounds, particularly when youre shooting close to your subject. Of course, the quality of those out of focus backgrounds looks nice and smooth to me. Nothing distracting going on there related bokeh is longitudinal chromatic aberration at f 2.8. We do see a touch of color fringing on bokeh highlights here, although its nothing too serious, theres, some yellow beyond the plane of focus and blue before, however, stop down to f4, and it goes away very quickly, so thats a better than average performance all right. Well, overall, this lens shares a lot of similarities with its 100 millimeter older brother for digital slr cameras and thats. A good thing getting as close as two times magnification to your subject is fun and useful. A big improvement over normal macro lenses and the lower 90 millimeter manages to do so, while maintaining fantastically high image quality. Things like softening from diffraction and slow shutter speeds at high magnification, well, thats, simply normal for any macro lens. The lenss price of 500 us dollars is reasonable for the excellent quality youre getting in its pretty good value. Actually so, if youre happy to shoot manual focus, it comes highly recommended testing.
All these macro lenses really reminds me of the lockdown. When thats all the camera manufacturers seem to be releasing because well thats, all people could really shoot with at the time. Hope you enjoyed the review, and i want to take a moment say a huge thank you to my supporters over on patreon check it out in the description below patreon supporters, get all kinds of exclusive bonus content and, of course, a warm fuzzy feeling inside for helping To keep this channel trucking on take care.