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Reader Question: Lenses for Wide Angle Macro

Get Venus Optics Laowa 15mm f/4 Macro and Zeiss 25mm f/2.8 Distagon and Zeiss 15mm f/2.8 Distagon at B&H Photo.

Luis F writes:

Do you consider that one can do wide angle macro shots with the Leica Q?

Something like the Venus Optics Laowa 15mm f/4 Macro?

DIGLLOYD: This Leica Q evaluation at close range is the closest I got to testing out its closeup range, so I don’t have a solid answer on the Q in its closest-range macro setting. Note that at close range the angle of view cannot be assumed from focal length (and the focal length itself can change drastically).

I have not used the Venus Optics 15/4 lens, but it looks like fun. The Zeiss 15mm f/2.8 Distagon goes to 1:9, so it doesn’t get nearly as close.

The wide angle lens I’d suggest is the Zeiss 25mm f/2.8 Distagon, which goes to 1:2.3, and can be shot on Nikon (natively), or Canon or Sony (with adapter). It has a unique rendering style at close range and an 80° field of view—not nearly as wide as the 110° of a 15mm, but its rendering style is great fun (not highly corrected at all). The Zeiss 21mm f/2.8 Distagon is another excellent choice, going to 1:5. But if the desire is to go all the way to 1:1 and wide angle, then the Venus Optics 15/4 looks like about the only choice in that range.

For fast shooting fun at 28mm (equiv), the Ricoh GR is very enjoyable; see the macro range and close range portraits in my review of the Ricoh GR. Its performance is not terrific at close range, but it’s pocketable and has built-in fill flash with leaf shutter.

f9 @ 1/500 sec, ISO 100; 2013-06-18 18:19:56
Ricoh GR + 18.3 mm f/2.8

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