I’m evaluating two new Voigtlander lenses currently, on a 2-week loan courtesy of Stephen Gandy of CameraQuest: the Ultron 40/2 SL II aspheric, and the Nokton 58/1.4 SL II (see my Nov 11 2007 entry). Preliminary impressions: very high quality build, and these “chipped” lenses offer electronic aperture control as well. The imaging characteristics show promise, but it’s too early to conclude anything without more shooting—except that they will appeal to those looking for something other than the standard “look”. At $379 each, they are relative bargains (lens hood for the 58/1.4 is extra).
The 40/2 is particularly appealing for its diminutive size (“pancake lens”), its tiny lens hood, as well as its accompanying close up lens, though at 200 grams it’s heavier than one might assume. Users of compact Nikon DSLRs (D300 and smaller) looking for an extremely compact system should definitely take a look at the 40/2.
(Nikon D3 + Cosina Voigtlander 40/2 SL II @ f/8)
The bokeh of the 58/1.4 is definitely something I’ll be studying; it is distinctly different from the bokeh of the Zeiss ZF 50/1.4 Planar.
(Nikon D3 + Cosina Voigtlander 58/1.4 @ f/1.4)