The (very) popular Laowa 24mm f/14 2x Macro Probe is now available as a Sony FE Cine version. That means: dedicated 0.8 gears for focus and iris control plus a rugged aluminium case.
This device is a special kind of lens that is certainly not suitable for everyday use. The Laowa 24mm f/14 2x macro probe is capable of very unique angles and shots. With its close focus of only 2cm, you get a 2:1 macro, but also a pretty wide “bug eye” viewing angle (85°) that was not possible before this lens (at least for indie filmmakers).
Now Laowa has released a new mount variant for this lens: the Sony FE Cine version not only features a native Sony FE mount, but also standard ring gears to control focus and iris. In total, these versions are now available:
- Canon EF (Standard and Cine)
- Nikon F (Standard)
- Sony FE (Standard and Cine)
- Pentax K (Standard)
- ARRI PL (Cine)
- Leica L (Standard)
Laowa 24mm f/14 Macro Probe
The wide-angle design translates into a much greater depth of field at close range than conventional telephoto macro lenses, so more background detail is visible.
Controlling the focus and iris via a follow focus or –even better– with attached motors will certainly help avoiding lens shake when touching it. So that’s a benefit of these dedicated Cine versions (ARRI PL, Canon EF and now Sony FE).
Other than the new mount for the Cine line, nothing has changed, even the price is the same: $1.499 for a standard one, $1.1699 for a Cine version.
I’d love to see a slightly faster version of this lens at some point since you just need a ton of light to properly light a scene with a f/14 lens. But for now, having the freedon of choice regarding lens mounts is nice to have.
However, since this lens is strictly manual, I’m not sure if all these native lens mounts are really necessary. You could just get a PL or EF version and adapt it to whatever camera you have. Of course, since stability and lens shake is an issue with this lens, a native mount wil be a bit more rugged than an adapted lens.
Please note: The images (including the featured image) do not show the new Sony FE Cine version, since Laowa doesn’t have images on their website, yet.
Do you use macro lenses on your shoots? Have you tried the Laowa 24mm f/14 Macro Probe yet? Share your experiences in the comments below!