Editor’s note: Last August, we posted a blog on the Lomography launch of the new/classic Petzval 80mm f/2.2. Our Lowepro colleague David was an early adopter and took part in the Kickstarter campaign.
March arrived and so did his lens. And it’s a stunner — a real object of beauty as well as an artful tool. Needless to say, there’s a bit of lens envy in our offices this week!
Here are David’s impressions and a few of his photos to share with you.
“The 80mm f/2.2 Petzval lens finally arrived and it lives up to all its expectations! The optics are extremely sharp and the swirly, off-focus bokeh effect adds an amazing artistic touch to photographs.
The bokeh effect is the result of an optical design that was abandoned in the 1800s and re-created by the Lomography’s Kickstarter campaign last August. The lens finally shipped last month and I’ve been busy testing it out.
At full aperture of f/2.2 the bokeh effect is most noticeable, but the depth of field is extremely narrow – so much so that that the hair and face of a portrait model cannot both be in focus. Also at full aperture, very bright objects do have some noticeable light bleed at the edges. Stopping down the f-stop eliminates the bleed and somewhat reduces the bokeh effect. Smaller f-stops give better depth of field excellent sharpness that rivals more expensive portrait lenses.
The lens delivers amazing artistic effects, excellent sharpness, and is a great value for the price. And as I imagined, it has become a prized addition to my photo gear.”