The newest Irix 30mm f/1.4 lens is a product based on the 30mm Cine model and therefore intended for the much more demanding film industry market. The entire optical structure of the lens is identical in both versions – the main emphasis here is on the vividness of the image. Of course, the photographic version has a completely different housing, while retaining the optical properties of the cine version.
The Irix 30mm f/1.4 features a modern optical design that includes 3 ultra-low dispersion glass elements, 2 high reflectance glass elements, and one aspherical lens. There are a total of 13 elements in 11 groups that provide sharp details, vivid colors, and ultra-low distortion – 0.95%. However, what deserves special attention is the smoothness and “cine look” of the image it offers. The lens is designed to work with 35mm full-frame sensors. It is worth emphasizing the use of a new, 11-blade design aperture with rounded edges, which ensures a pleasant and very vivid background blur. It works in the range of f/1.4 to f/16.
The housing for the lens is what Irix refers to as a “Dragonfly” standard that it uses in earlier models (the 45mm and 150mm), and uses a reinforced internal structure based on metal elements. It has a scratch-resistant lens finish, anti-slip focusing rings, engraved markings filled with UV-reactive paint, and is sealed to provide some protection from dust and water.
Speaking of those previous lenses, the 30mm f/1.4 uses a focusing ring that the company says is a hallmark of its 150mm and 45mm lenses. It features special texturing and specially selected rubber material that provides what the company describes as reliable and precise focusing. Additionally, detailed embossing lets users “feel” the position of the ring, likely important as this is a fully manual focus lens.
The company leans on the cine lens design of the optics as a major selling point, saying that it provides smoothness and a cinema look that should stand out. Below are a few example photos taken with the lens:
The lens features a focus lock switch to fix the focusing ring into a specific position, which the company says is particularly helpful in the case of zone focusing or to keep focus at infinity for landscape applications. The lens focuses from the rear and does have electronic communication, which allows it to provide focus confirmation and aperture control from the camera as well as a full record of exposure parameters in EXIF data. It is also compatible with PASM semi-automatic camera modes.
The Irix 30mm f/1.4 lens will be available for Nikon F, Canon EF, and Pentax K mounts sometime in October, with final pricing and exact timing for release to be revealed at a later date.
More info on Irix’s website.