I’ve been excited about this lens ever since I was lucky enough to meet Andrew from SLR Magic about a year ago.
Andrew was very keen to move into more high end cinema lenses and he came and spent an afternoon with me on the set of Offspring watching us work. He was especially interested in looking at the way we work with lenses and grilled both my focus pullers on features they’d like to see.
Andrew also wanted to make something that would perform exceptionally well optically.
This 50mm lens is the end result of those efforts. So far it looks like SLR Magic have delivered.
I have been using SLR Magic’s MFT lenses for a long time on both my Olympus OMD and Blackmagic MFT cameras. I have found them to be great lenses, and I am a huge fan of the 10mm T2.1 lens they recently released.
I’ve also read on many forums that they are somehow re-purposed CCTV lenses. This lens is a brand new design that Andrew has spent a lot of time refining. He’s passionate about delivering something no one else is really doing at the moment.
Mechanically it’s very well made. The first thing I noticed was the solid aluminium rear cap, It’s a work of art in itself !
The markings look very accurate and so far on my PL mount camera are pretty much spot on across the focus range. Andrew also changed the initial rear PL mount from aluminium to titanium which is more thermally stable. He also plans to make it easier to adapt this lens to Canon EF in the future with an EF mount option.
If necessary, like any good PL mount cinema lens, you can also re-shim it, though Andrew recommends only trained technicians do this.
The lens is quite compact for a lens of this optical performance but it feels very well made and solid. The focus action itself is very smooth as well and minimum focus is also an impressive 2″.
Like the Leica – C’s, it has a shroud and witness marks for both the on and offside.
I’ve only had the lens in my hands for 48 hours and I’ve only seen one little test shoot, but from what I’ve seen optically this lens looks beautiful. I think it has a very beautiful subtle look, it’s sharp without being obvious and drawing attention to itself and the bokeh looks controlled, contained and consistent.
Andrew tells me he’s worked really hard at the edge to edge sharpness so that the lens performs equally well in the corners. So far that seems to be the case though I haven’t really punished the lens with charts just yet. The APO designation refers to the superior optical performance which should be revealed in higher contrast situations, again something I’ve not had a chance to specifically test for just yet. He’s shared privately with me some measurements that look very very good.
I’ll post some more shots soon hopefully with faces and skin tones but I wanted to share my first impressions and publicly congratulate Andrew and SLRMagic on this very very impressive lens.
Here’s a link to a few JPG and Tiff exports from Resolve shot with a Blackmagic URSA shooting 4K RAW.
This lens will be selling for $1999 from SLR magic themselves