*Wanna see differently? Check out the Lensbaby Super Holiday Sale

©2011tysonrobichaudphotography

My friends and hometown optics company, Lensbaby is offering a wide gamut of their unique products at substantial sales for the holidays.

As many of you know, I tend to shy away from using this site to push gear specials or sales constantly because we get them from many other sites, especially this time of year.  I will however give a shout out for Lensbaby because they’re a very cool, forward thinking, local company that I have been fortunate enough to become friendly with over the years.  I’ve helped create promotional imagery for them, I’ve done quite a bit of beta product testing and feedback, and have been published in a coffee table book focused on Lensbaby imagery.  When I was a wee blogger, they didn’t look twice when I asked about reviewing their lenses for the mirrorless systems way back in the day.  They even had me do some acting spots for their educational videos for larger retailers like B&H and Adorama which was a lot of fun, so you can say that I’m a bit of a honk.

I make no money from you buying Lensbaby products, so I’m not saying this because there is monetary incentive for me to do so, I just like them as a company, and like their products.  If you or someone you know has been interested in one of the many cool Lensbaby optics or creative products for photography or film making, now might be a good time to check on their sale.  You can see updates and find links to all of the discounts going on through the 22nd of December on Lensbaby’s website HERE.  Have a look, and let me know if you have any questions about the Lensbaby stuff, I’ve used quite a bit of it :)

If interested, you can see my various Lensbaby reviews and articles on the Review Page HERE.

Happy holidays to all, and happy shooting.

Tyson

*Voigtländer Nokton 42.5mm f/0.95 review… dayum.

Voigtlander Nokton 42.5mm f/0.95 lens review

Would it sound ironic if I were to mention the speed, and slowed hinderance of manual focus as the two best qualities that this lens can provide a photographer?  Let’s be honest, there are not many lenses in existence that offer this large a maximum aperture for any system, anywhere.  Certainly not very many that come in at under a thousand bucks, but this is the case for the micro 4/3 mount, Voigtländer Nokton series.  Yes, this 42.5mm (85mm equivalent field of view) lens is joined by a soon to be 10.5mm f/0.95 (21mm e-fov), a killer 17.5mm f/0.95 (35mm e-fov) and a 25mm f/0.95 (50mm e-fov) to create a set of super fast, Nokton wonder lenses.

I have been using the also stellar Olympus 45mm f/1.8 lens of late, and before I took off on a recent trip, knowing I’d be doing a vast majority of my shooting in the darker hours, I felt the one thing I was really lacking, was a really fast lens.  A remarkably solid and well built hunk of metal and glass, this 85mm equivalent lens has been calling me ever since it was announced.  Well, I decided that I’d benefit more fully from a really fast portrait focal length over the long run, and would gain a good amount of latitude while handholding it combined with the IBIS in the GX7, so I bit.

C’mon in to see a few shots, and read my thoughts on this optical marvel.

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*Olympus 75mm f/1.8 vs Canon 135 f/2 L

the showdown

One of my absolute all time favorite lenses has been my EF 135mm f/2 L USM.  Before I’d acquired this lens, I was looking for a mid range tele lens that I could use for portrait work as well as use for events, sports, etc.  The 135L a few years back cost me exactly as much as the Oly 75mm f/1.8 does today.  Yes, the Oly uses much less in the way of materials, far less glass, and is actually a 75mm lens, not a 135mm (or 150mm to be more accurate) lens, but, for the Micro 4/3 format, it is as close to that magical piece of glass that the 135L is for the Canon system.  Both are metal, neither are weather sealed and they’re each their own system’s mid-tele master.  Even with the extra glass, the 135L is a noticeably faster focuser (I’d assume largely due to the USM focusing motor and a superior PDAF in the EOS DSLR’s) but as to the quality of the actual images…

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*Olympus 75mm f/1.8, all it’s cracked up to be?

Oly 75mm f/1.8 Lens

After my recent disappointment with the Olympus 60mm f/2.8 macro (read here), and my ongoing ups and downs with the Olympus OMD EM5, I have been looking to be convinced by Olympus.  I hear so much about Oly’s stellar reputation, but I’d not personally felt those plaudits justified through my experiences with the few Olympus products I’ve owned (hopefully the fanboys will be kind to me here).  In comes the M. Zuiko 75mm f/1.8 lens.  A solid, sharp, 150mm EFOV lens with quite a reputation of its own has come onto the scene.  After returning the 60mm macro, I wanted to make sure that the investment in the 75mm lens would be worth it to me…

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*Lensbaby’s brand new Edge 80 Optic!

February 14th, 2012 – Uh oh, don’t look now.  Lensbaby has further diversified their lineup with a sharp, solid portrait lens with the same quirky capability of that signature Lensbaby look…  It’s been a busy winter for Lensbaby.  Out now and available immediately, the new Edge 80 optic.  Like the Sweet 35 before it, the Edge 80 has the ability to control the aperture of the optic without having to use the magnetic drop in disks necessary with the standard optics.  An 80mm f/2.8 Flat Field focus Optic with a 12 blade circular, user controlled aperture mechanism is great for anything from portraits to street shooting.  Read on for more examples and links…

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