Vazen, a new cinema lens maker based in China, caught a lot of people’s attention last summer at Cinegear Expo 2019 with a 40mm T2 lens dubbed “the world’s first 1.8x anamorphic MFT prime.”
Now, the company is expanding this lineup with the announcement of its new 28mm t/2.2 1.8x Anamorphic Lens for Micro Four Thirds cameras.
With an aluminum body, this lens is lighter and more compact than Vazen’s 40mm. Weighing merely 1.59 pounds, it ended up being the lightest 1.8x anamorphic lens in the world. And because it’s small and lightweight, it makes traveling with it, shooting on gimbals, or capturing handheld shots less of a chore. Its compactness allows being used without a rig.
Other than that, the anamorphic lens is designed with a 77mm front filter thread makes using ND filters, diopters, and other accessories easy, and features like independent aperture and focus rings allow more experienced, professional filmmakers to have more control over their final images.
It’s also got a 72-degree horizontal field of view and focusing distance of 2.7″.
The entire unit is built up of aluminum and the independent aperture and focus rings are incorporated with 0.8 mod cine gears.
According to Vazen, you can expect sharp images from this lens even wide open.
All the Vazen 1.8x anamorphic lenses feature a front anamorphic design. It delivers a buttery smooth oval bokeh, signature blue, but not oversaturated, horizontal flare, and the widescreen cinematic look. The lens delivered outstanding sharpness, even wide open, which is unmatched by other anamorphic lenses with a similar squeeze ratio. Similar to other wide anamorphic lenses, the 28mm delivers a relatively cleaner image than its 40mm counterpart and the coming 65mm is expected to have the strongest anamorphic character.
Vazen chose to adopt a much more complicated 1.8x squeeze design instead of the 1.33x as it creates a much more cinematic look. The 1.8x also produces a cinematic widescreen 2.39:1 aspect ratio to your image when capturing with 4:3 ratio sensors like Panasonic GH5 and Z-cam E2.
- Focal Length: 28mm
- Min. Focus: 2.7’ (0.82m)
- T-stop range: T/2.2 – T/16
- Filter Thread: 77mm
- Front Diameter: 80mm
- Dimensions: 3.2”x4.2” (80 x 107mm)
- Weight: 1.59 lbs (0.72kg)
- Mount: Micro Four Thirds M43
Now, with so many filmmakers and street photographers committing to the switch to full-frame cameras, it might seem kind of strange to want to drop over 3.000 $ on an MFT lens, no matter how beautiful and powerful it is.
However, there are still certain benefits to shooting on cameras with smaller sensors, namely when it comes to weight and size, and if your work requires you to be nimble and quick—or if you’re just a fan of MFT shooters—then spending a lot of money on a high-quality, small, and lightweight anamorphic lens is a no-brainer.
The 1.8x squeeze factor also perfectly matches the recently added 2.8K anamorphic mode on the Pocket 4K or when capturing in open gate mode via an external monitor.
The Vazen 28mm T/2.2 1.8x Anamorphic Lens is already available for pre-order from authorized resellers selling for $3,250. You can also get a $400 discount if you decide to purchase both the 28mm and 40mm anamorphic lenses.
Also, Vazen isn’t done adding to their 1.8x anamorphic line. The whole set will contain 3 focal lengths, including the 28mm and 40mm, which have already been released, as well as a 65mm, which is expected to be out in a few months.
More info on Vazen’s website.