I happend upon the Mitakon booth on my way out of PhotoPlus for the day, and saw the newly announced limited edition 135mm f/1.4, and just had to stop. Along the way, I tried out two other new ultra-fast prime lenses for E-mount and Micro 4/3.
Mitakon 135mm f/1.4
This lens, the fastest 135mm available, was just announced a few days ago. It’s ridiculously huge, as one might expect from an extreme aperture telephoto lens. Mitakon had the lens mounted on a tripod as well as another copy for closer inspection. The lens is a big hunk of metal and glass and has smoothly turning aperture and focus rings.
Ergonomically, it’s a challenge, as the focus ring is part of the enormous outer barrel. My hands are not accustomed to focusing such a large ring, and it made it quite difficult to turn easily simply because of the size. It also has a relatively long minimum focus distance of over 1.5m. Still, if you want shallow depth of field, this lens can deliver. I didn’t have my A7 with me, but I did get a chance to take a quick shot with my a6000.
Mitakon 35mm f/0.95 for Sony E-Mount
Mitakon also has some very interesting ultra-fast mirrorless lenses on display here at the show. They handed me their new 35mm f/0.95 for Sony APS-C E-mount cameras (also available in Fuji X and Micro 4/3) and I took the one image above of the 135mm with that lens. It’s quite compact, lightweight and has good tactile feel.
I unfortunately had my shutter speeds a bit too slow, as I had been using my stabilized 35mm f/1.8 OSS, so I don’t have full size image samples due to some hand shake, but the qualities I see look quite nice. This might be a very nice option to get full-frame depth of field for a small amount of money.
Mitakon 25mm f/0.95
Also on display is the impossibly tiny 25mm f/0.95 for Micro 4/3. When I say it’s tiny, I mean it’s TINY.
The lens is roughly the size of the Olympus 25mm f/1.8, but is nearly two full stops faster. The focus and aperture rings feel great, and at $399, is an unbelievable bargain given the aperture. I didn’t shoot much with it, but they had a GH4 they let me use, and contrast is excellent while sharpness looks decent too (I may have slightly missed focus). See a full-size sample below.
Mitakon is certainly pushing the boundaries for speed and affordability in its lenses. Let’s hope they keep it up!