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Venus Optics brings the World's Widest f/2.8 lens for Full Frame cameras with Invisible Distortion, Superb Optical Quality & Tiny Size.
Venus Optics brings the World's Widest f/2.8 lens for Full Frame cameras with Invisible Distortion, Superb Optical Quality & Tiny Size.
Venus Optics brings the World's Widest f/2.8 lens for Full Frame cameras with Invisible Distortion, Superb Optical Quality & Tiny Size.
759 backers pledged $667,311 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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Ultra Wide Angle Lens with Zero Distortion, Laowa 12mm f/2.8

$667,311

759

LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D is currently the ※ World’s Widest f/2.8 Rectilinear Lens for Full Frame cameras. Currently available in Canon EF, Nikon AI, Sony A, Pentax K and Sony E mounts.

※ As of July 22, 2016 

 

The Story

Ultra Wide Angle Lens is one of the most important lens that every photographer should have one in his camera bag. There are a lot of wide angle lenses in the market, offering from a few hundred to a a few thousand dollars. However, these UWA lens are not perfect. They are suffering from dramatic barrel distortion (2-5%), poor peripheral sharpness or huge physical size. We therefore spend a lot of time to come up with a design which is truly perfect and overcome the frustration of photographers. That’s where the LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D comes from.

# All below images were shot with our LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D Lens unless otherwise mentioned. Some photos may have been post-processed for our own taste. Please note the quality of the images were compressed by KS. Click to view in higher resolutions. 

Why is it the Best?

Ultra Wide Angle lenses in the market tends to suffer a optical distortion rate from 2-5% which causes straight lines to bend. Our LAOWA lens features a *close-to-zero distortion rate that you can barely notice from your eye. 

If you are not so sure what distortion is, this article may helps. https://photographylife.com/what-is-distortion

Adapted from the Digital Picture
Adapted from the Digital Picture

 

                                                                                         
Credit: 李森,梁曦 (China)
Credit: 李森,梁曦 (China)

     

Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)

 

Credit: 野火老師 (China)
Credit: 野火老師 (China)

 

      
Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)
Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)

 

 

Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)
Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)

 

 * The aforementioned close-to-zero distortion rate is measured from shooting objects at infinity focus. The distortion rate may vary for shorter object distance. Only Optical Distortion (Barrel/ Pincushion/ Moustache) is covered here.

Our LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 Lens cover a ultra-wide 122° angle of view for you to create an outstanding landscape or architecture shot that no others can compare. Shooting interior shots will also become much easier. Your house will become spacious and impactful in your photo even if you are shooting a small area. Do not forget, this is also the world's widest rectilinear f/2.8 lens.

 

Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)
Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)

 

                                                                                                                                                                       
 
Credit: Gabriel Spadoni -wazer- (Italy)
Credit: Gabriel Spadoni -wazer- (Italy)

 

Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)
Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)

  

Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)
Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)

 

 

Credit: 紅燒腳丫 (China)
Credit: 紅燒腳丫 (China)

 

  

Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)
Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)

 

Credit: Dierk Topp (Germany)
Credit: Dierk Topp (Germany)

 

Optical performance is what we will never compromise. The optical design features a 16 lens elements in 10 groups with 3pcs of Extra-Low Dispersion Elements and 2pcs of Aspherical Elements. This patented optical design delivers a high resolution from corners to corners, even in wide open (f/2.8) situation. Chromatic Aberration has also been controlled to the minimal. 

Credit:  臧伟材, 毕翰林, 小开火 (China)
Credit: 臧伟材, 毕翰林, 小开火 (China)

 

Credit: Steve Leung (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steve Leung (Hong Kong)

 

 

Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)
Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)

 

 

Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)
Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)
 

 

Weigh merely 609g, our LAOWA Lens is an every-day lens. It is really small compared to other UWA lenses in the market. You finally do not need to bring a hefty piece of glass for work and travel. Also, you can now insert 2pcs of 100mm (not 150mm!!) ND filters & 1pc of 105mm CPL filter into our optional filter holder (+$50 to your pledge) to create your best landscape photo ever.

 

 

Our LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D is currently the ※brightest (or fastest) 12mm lens in the market. Astro photographers will truly appreciate our effort to bring the lens to f/2.8. The ultra fast aperture can effectively shorten the exposure time required and help to achieve more details of the night sky. This is proven to be the perfect tool for a nice milky way shot.  The fast aperture is also very convenient for low-light / indoor shooting. (※ As of July 22, 2016)

Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)
Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)

 

Credit: Steve Leung (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steve Leung (Hong Kong)

 

Credit: 紅燒腳丫 (China)
Credit: 紅燒腳丫 (China)

 

                                                                         
Credit: 丁丁老師 (China)
Credit: 丁丁老師 (China)

 

 

Credit: 丁丁老師 (China)
Credit: 丁丁老師 (China)

 

Time-lapse footage shot in Alaska with our LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D Lens (Click 1080p for the best experience)

 

 The 122 angle of view + Close-to-zero distortion is too good to be true for panorama shooting.

Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)
Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)

 

Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)
Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)

Find it hard to locate the entrance pupil (nodal point) for panoramic shooting? Let us help you.

Not sure what it is?  Check below link for further explanation. http://www.panoramic-photo-guide.com/entrance-pupil.html

Get to Specifics  

 *Dimensions of Sony E mount lens will be slightly longer due to the flange distance difference.

Resolution

 

Your may refer to below review by Photozone for a scientific data of our lens resolution. You can also do a quick comparison of its performance against some of your favourite ultra wide angle lenses. Check to view in details.

 
Adapted from Photozone
Adapted from Photozone

                                                                              

Our LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D adopts a floating optical design to ensure an exceptional sharpness not only at infinity focus, but also in close focusing distance. Along with 18cm minimal focusing distance and 0.2x Maximum magnification, LAOWA lens is also a fun tool for some mini wide angle macro.

Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)
Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)

 

Credit: Bastian Kratzke (Germany)
Credit: Bastian Kratzke (Germany)

 Bokehiiistic

Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)
Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)
 

Laowa Water & Dust Repelling 'Frog Eye' Coating (FEC)

Every LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D will be coated with the new Laowa 'Frog Eye' Coating. It gives your lens an extra layer of shield. See below video to understand its difference versus traditional coating.

Reward Levels

Stretch Goal UNLOCKED!

Add $50 on top of your pledge amount to get a filter holder.

Add $300 on top of your pledge amount to get a Laowa Magic Shift Converter for your Sony E mount camera.

Add $30 on top of your pledge amount to get a Canon EF - Sony E  or Nikon F - Sony E adapter.

 

 

 How to Back this Project

1. Choose a reward level.

Everybody can choose one (and only one) reward level to back this project. You cannot choose more than 1 reward level.

2. If you want to add something, check out the Add-On Menu.

If  you want to add something additional to your reward, check out the Add-On Menu below. You can increase your pledge by the amount specified in the menu. You can only add things to your reward that are in the Add-On Menu. You do NOT need to choose which mount at this moment.

If you want to add on another LAOWA product that you don't see in the Add-On Menu or you wanna pledge more than one piece, don't worry. We'll give you a chance to do that after our campaign ends. 

3. You are done for now.

All details like shipping information, camera mounts, imprints names, and specifics of your additional pledge will be collected via survey AFTER this campaign has ended.

International Backers 

We currently ship the LAOWA 12mm lens worldwide with the exception of selected countries from our Hong Kong warehouse. Please note that you will be responsible for duties, fees and taxes applicable to your region, which may have ranged from 0% to 20% in the US and EU countries, to as much as 200% for certain South American countries. Express shipping (via DHL/TNT/Fedex) quotes is available to provide upon request.  Please add the VAT of your corresponding recipient countries on top of your pledge.

Estimated Delivery 

Each reward tier may have a different estimated shipment month. While we do not expect these to change, it is still possible that the delivery date may be postponed or advanced. We will provide updates if the estimated shipment date changes.   

Warranty 

We are very confident with our products and offered 3-year warranty.

About Venus Optics

Anhui ChangGeng Optics Technology Company Limited (Venus Optics) is a new camera lens manufacturer from Anhui, China. We currently design, manufacture, market and distribute camera lenses under the brand name of ‘LAOWA’. Over the past 2 years, we have developed and launched a number of interesting lenses to fill the gaps of the camera lenses market. 

We will continue to develop unique, practical and high-quality lenses to the market and look for breakthroughs in the lens development. Your support to this Kickstarter project will be greatly appreciated. 

 

Quality Assurance 

Unlike some other manufacturers in China that quality may not be their primary concern, we instead, put Quality as the first and foremost item in our checklist. Designing a good lens is one thing, having it manufactured with the best quality standard is another topic. Our team put a lot of time, effort and resources into the production and quality assurance to ensure every piece of LAOWA lens is up to the market standard. We take this very seriously and will never compromise the quality of our lenses for anything.

 

 

Rolling Update - Sample Gallery (Click to view the images in HD)

Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)

 

Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)

 

Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)

 

Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)

 

Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steven Wu (Hong Kong)

 

Credit: Dierk Topp (Germany)
Credit: Dierk Topp (Germany)

 

Credit: James Kwok (Hong Kong)
Credit: James Kwok (Hong Kong)

 

Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)
Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)

 

Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)
Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)

 

  

Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)
Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)

 

Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)
Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)

 

Credit: Dierk Topp (Germany)
Credit: Dierk Topp (Germany)
Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)
Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)

 

                                                                                  

 

Credit: Gabriel Spadoni -wazer- (Italy)
Credit: Gabriel Spadoni -wazer- (Italy)

 

 

Credit: 毕翰林  (China)
Credit: 毕翰林 (China)

 

Credit: 李森 梁曦 (China)
Credit: 李森 梁曦 (China)

 

                                                                                                                                                                             
Credit: Gabriel Spadoni -wazer- (Italy)
Credit: Gabriel Spadoni -wazer- (Italy)

 

 

Credit: Steve Leung (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steve Leung (Hong Kong)

 

 

Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)
Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)

 

 

Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)
Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)

 

 

Credit: 丁丁老師 (China)
Credit: 丁丁老師 (China)

 

Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)
Credit: Keith Cooper (United Kingdom)

 

Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)
Credit: Nicky Bay (Singapore)

 

 

Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)
Credit: John Hancock (United Kingdom)

 

 

Credit: Steve Leung (Hong Kong)
Credit: Steve Leung (Hong Kong)

 

 

Credit: 李森 梁曦 (China)
Credit: 李森 梁曦 (China)

 

 

Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)
Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)

  

Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)
Credit: Kenneth Chung (Hong Kong)

Take a look at below video and you can see how straight lines are perfectly retained.

"Xidi, Huangshan" - Timelaspe with the Laowa 12mm f/2.8. View in HD!

Mini-timelapse shot with the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D. Check the HD version to see the details.

Impressive Preview by Nicky Bay

 

Supplementary Information

- Image Gallery by Steven Wu

- Review by Bastian Kratzke @ phillipreeve.net

- Review by Photozone

- Review by Nicky Bay        

- Review by John Hancock

- Review by Keith Cooper

- Review by Dierk Topp

- Flick Image Gallery 

- Flick Image Gallery by Dierk Topp

- Venus Optics Official Website   

- Venus Optics Official Facebook Page

- Comparison versus Voigtlander 10mm/12mm Lens made by Dierk Topp

Special Thanks

Walking along the road, we have had ups and downs, challenges and frustrations. Without the help from below people, we cannot come this far. Please allow us to express our gratitude to every one of you.

北京木本文化发展有限公司,马志伟,赵博,一片云,长心宽,子意,老白,祁连山,张杰,刘颖,瓜哥,车神,ZH,詹姆士-于震,文太大叔,张超,李森,梁曦,丁丁,野火,紅燒腳丫,红外冰蚕,广东中野,图虫信仰,臧伟材 毕翰林,小开火, Photozone, Special Camera Service, K'otologue Photography, Steve Leung , Nicky Bay , John Hancock , Gabriel Wazer , Keith Cooper @ Northlight Images, Jamie Morrison, Dierk Topp, Bastian Kratzke@phillipreeve.net, Brian Lee, James Kwok, Daniel Han, Albert Dros, Steven Wu, Tin Cheung Camera, Dynamic One, Adrian Murray, Pop Photo

 

 

Risks and challenges

In the past few years, Venus Optics has launched a number of extraordinary lenses which has received a very positive feedback from the market.

Venus Optics is composed of a very strong and experienced team of manufacturing, optical design and business professionals. We are already very far along in the development process and are looking for help from the Kickstarter community to expedite the launch of the LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D Lens.

We have already finished all the testings on the prototypes and the results are very encouraging. We are currently working day and night to prepare the lens for mass production and our whole team is extremely confident that this will be the most successful lens ever built under our current product portfolio.

We have carefully evaluated and calculated all foreseeable risks and challenges and come up with the most conservative delivery schedule. However, there is still a slim possibility that we may face unexpected challenges which could potentially delays the shipment. We will put our greatest effort in order to resolve any unexpected challenges and to get the lenses shipped at earliest convenience and with the best quality.

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    You are the lucky guy!!

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    Low Serial Numbers Package! #21-#50

    Get a Laowa 12mm f/2.8 with serial numbers between #21 to #50 (Ship by random) at a discounted price. Delivery in late Sept.

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    Be the very FIRST one to get it.

    'I can't wait anymore! Please send me the lens!'

    Be the very FIRST group of people to get the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D Lens in EARLY Sept.

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    Personalised

    Get your very unique and own Laowa 12mm f/2.8 Lens with laser printing your suggested wordings on it. Delivery in late Sept.

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    Final Chance

    Final chance to get your Laowa 12mm f/2.8 Lens at at a discounted price. The lens will retail at $949. Dellvery in late Sept.

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    Extra Low Serial Numbers Package! #1-#20

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    Pre-Order

    Pre Order your Laowa 12mm f/2.8 Lens and get dellvery in late Sept.

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    LAOWA Wide Angle Combo

    Get a Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D and a Laowa 15mm f/4 Wide Angle Macro Lens at a discounted bundled price.

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    'I LOVE LAOWA' Combo!

    Get a full set of Laowa Products

    Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D Lens
    Laowa 60mm f/2.8 2X Ultra-Macro Lens
    Laowa 15mm f/4 Wide Angle Macro Lens
    Laowa 105mm f/2 Smooth Trans Focus Lens

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Funding period

- (30 days)