Lens News

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Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Oct 26, 2015  |  0 comments

Sometimes an old fashioned recipe and the latest modern technology don’t mix: zap-blasting your grandmother’s vegetable soup ingredients in a 10,000-watt microwave instead of slowly simmering them for six hours, for example. But other times strange bedfellows bring out the best in each other. Such is the case with Lensbaby optics on modern digital cameras.

George Schaub  |  Jun 15, 2012  |  First Published: May 01, 2012  |  0 comments

There are three main elements in depth of field—focal length, aperture, and distance to subject—and depth of field is a very important part of a 2D photograph. It’s how we judge scale (or are fooled by it), how we note the importance of certain subjects within the frame, and how we define content and context in the scene. With these three controls, and using various points of view, it seems we have infinite variations to choose from, and that’s part of the creative play of photography. Now you can add a fourth element to the mix—tilts that range from mild to extreme and that create “slices” of sharpness within the frame. The tool that helps us create that effect is the latest optic from Lensbaby, which they dub the Edge 80.

Cynthia Boylan  |  Apr 08, 2015  |  0 comments

Lensbaby recently introduced the latest addition to its unique line of creative lenses. The new Velvet 56 is a 56mm f/1.6 lens for DSLRs and mirrorless cameras. It's a classic portrait lens with 1:2 macro capabilities designed to deliver "a velvety, glowing, ethereal look at brighter apertures," according Lensbaby, and sharp (but subtly unique) images as you stop down.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Nov 24, 2013  |  0 comments

Lensbaby Spark lets your camera color outside the lines. It mounts directly on your Canon or Nikon and focuses manually when you squeeze it toward the rear while watching the sharp, sweet spot move around in the viewfinder. The affordable Lensbaby Spark deserves a spot on every photographer’s holiday wish list.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Feb 02, 2017  |  0 comments

Unless you’re completely new to photography, you’ve heard about Lensbaby, the marvelously creative series of lenses that are best described as intentionally unsharp and stuffed with almost every imaginable aberration and distortion. The Lensbaby Trio 28 is the latest model, and it has a secret. 

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Aug 17, 2017  |  0 comments

The Lensbaby Twist 60 is a very modern rendition of a 175-year-old optical design, and true to the designer, Joseph Petzval. But does it satisfy our creative expectations when used in the field?

Ron Leach  |  Apr 12, 2016  |  0 comments

Lensbaby, known for a variety of creative effects lenses, has dropped the curtain on the new Twist 60, a 60mm portrait lens with a fast f/2.5 maximum aperture, all-metal construction and some unique swirling bokeh effects. The lens harkens back to a design created by Joseph Petzval in 1840.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 04, 2020  |  0 comments

Making a lens sharp and acceptably free of aberrations is hard. Very hard. Making a lens that can be both tack-sharp and intentionally soft, pleasantly unsharp and able to exploit the native beauty of certain optical aberrations is even harder. Then there’s Lensbaby.

Joe Farace  |  May 06, 2015  |  0 comments

I’ve been writing about and playing with—emphasis on play—Lensbaby lenses since they were introduced in 2004 and ten years later they’re still coming up with new ideas. All their products, including the Medium Format 3G with "Marvin the Martian"-like antennae, have been interesting and the new Lensbaby Velvet 56 portrait lens not only looks like fun but appears to be the most practical Lensbaby product ever.

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jun 11, 2020  |  0 comments

Portraits, close-ups and numerous other creative compositions—the Lensbaby Velvet 85 does it all. Here’s a thorough review and several examples shot with this exciting lens.

George Schaub  |  Sep 15, 2011  |  First Published: Aug 01, 2011  |  0 comments

Having shot with numerous Lensbaby products over the past years I’ve almost grown accustomed to their ingenious approach to image-making tools and the equally ingenious way in which they approach product design. I do have to admit that one area in which I took less advantage than I might have was in aperture control and how that affected depth of field in my Lensbaby shots, more from laziness or simply forgetting about changing the aperture inserts as I got involved in the shoot. (For those who have not shot with Lensbaby optics you lift in and drop out, via supplied magnetic wand, the various aperture rings corresponding to the diameter of the desired aperture for the optic in use.) Now, this impediment to getting the most from the optics (admittedly, again, my own) is removed with their latest product, the Sweet 35 Optic.

Ron Leach  |  Jun 06, 2016  |  0 comments

Scientists at Harvard’s John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) are working on a high-efficiency, ultra-thin single planar lens that could revolutionize photography by replacing the multi-element curved lenses used for cameras, smartphones and telescopes. 

Jack Neubart  |  Jul 01, 2009  |  0 comments

There’s an old saying that putting a new lens on your camera is like putting on a fresh pair of eyes. The latest lenses increasingly offer the ability to shoot in lower light without having to raise the ISO beyond quality limits, thanks to wider maximum apertures; shoot wider angles of view with APS-Csensor-size cameras; and allow for perspective control right in the camera.

 

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Peter K. Burian  |  Jun 01, 2006  |  0 comments

Every year the PMA Show becomes increasingly digital in its scope, with fewer exhibitors of "traditional" products. The 2006 show confirmed this trend but surprisingly, most of the new lenses (of familiar brands) are of the multi-platform type: suitable for 35mm cameras and digital SLRs with small (APS-C size) or full-frame sensors. That may not prove to be a...

Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz  |  Jan 01, 2011  |  0 comments

One of the great things about photokina is that you find a lot of “straws in the wind”: not necessarily major introductions from major manufacturers, but intriguing indicators of which way the wind is blowing.

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