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25mm F0.95 SLRMagic topic
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  • Well, had the chance to test a brand new SLR Magic (SLRM from here on) 25mm vs. the Voigt and a Zeiss Contax myself now and I must say, I'm a bit disappointed after all that rave.

    The SLRM is much softer in the corners with some nasty radial distortion plus some CA and corners never get to the same level as the Voigt even when stopped down. This might be nice for portrait, but quite bad for exteriors, landscape or architecture. Even the famed sharpness WO is not really that much better, just a tiny bit in the center. But the Voigt looks like a better balance over the whole area, slightly softer center WO but corners far better than the SLRM (which is also quite yellow, BTW).

    When stopped down to 2.0, the Voigt is as sharp in the corners as in the center and even better than a Zeiss Contax 25mm at 2.8 – which is not Zeiss' best, but nevertheless a Zeiss and made for FF! The SLRM stays soft in the corners and in the sides at 16:9 on a GH2 even at 4, where both the Zeiss and the Voigt start to look like a bloody scan.

    Regarding bokeh: admitted, the SLRM is a bit creamier, but not that much. Plus, it shows quite some halo on strong lights at night. May look nice, but not always wanted. OK, if I could afford it, I might keep one for portrait only, but if you can afford only one in this price range, it's the Voigt for me. I can always soften corners in post if needed ;-)

    Sample variation? Maybe, but how to select a lens that you can't try out in a local photostore or send back no questions asked if you don't like it?

    Price: Well, with all the taxes added here in Europe and a street price for a near-new Voigt well below 800,- it's not that much cheaper.

    Mechanics Pro: cine gears, while the Voigt has that knurled ring. Cons: the fiddly situation regarding filter threads and the funny, much too short sunshade. I found some play in the focus ring too, where the Voigt has none, but not so much to be a dealbraker. The front cover is fiddly too, nice solid protection to show off, but in practice you'll want to replace it with something faster to handle.

    Just my two cents…

  • True. CV is super sharp at 2.8 onward. Great for deep DOF. It gives beautiful flares, too. I miss its higher magnification ratio.

    SM is hands down sharper at 0.95 and 1.4. SM is more specialty lens. Frankly I wouldn't wanna use it for deep DOF. Yeah fugly flares. But at max aperture, it's fantastic, and that's why I got 0.95 lens in the first place. Identical color match with SM 12mm 1.6.

    Just pick what you need. Get both if possible :)

  • @matthew, @vicharris, @theconformist, I just wanted to chime back in on the step up to 77mm issue some of us had been discussing a while back and is now being re-discussed.

    I got my SLR Magic 25mm and found a solution to buying their expensive lens hood step-up ring to use a 77mm ND fader. I got a 49mm extension ring and then a normal 49mm-77mm step up ring and there is plenty of room to focus to infinity. A normal 49-77mm step up ring alone def does NOT allow the full range of focus.

    I got this Cokin 49mm extension ring from Adorama for $9.77 -

    And this generic step up 49-77mm ring also from Adorama for $6.95 (any generic step up ring should work)-

    So my grand total was $16.72. Much cheaper than SLR Magic's expensive version. Hope this helps!

  • Yeah, I figured out it would work too but SLR sent me one of there's for the promo offer thing they did so I kind of just let it go. I have one of those cheap couplers just sitting here collecting dust.

  • @Stonebat Good points, mate! But if you have the money for two in this class, I might rather opt for the SLRM 25 plus the CV 17.5 with it's clickless aperture and wider angle. You'll need to color grade, though.

  • I've just purchased the SLR Magic 25mm 0.95 lens (and the 12mm 1.6) and initial impressions are it is well made, and gives impressive results when coupled with the GH3. I took some photos over the weekend - some of which I've posted here: In the next couple of weeks I've got a few filming sessions lined up so I'll know more about how those lenses work. I'm new to the whole M43 system so I can't give the most technical feedback (yet :)) I got the lenses from UK Digital and despite the website saying they were out of stock they turned up the next day!

  • Got round to doing some filming on this lens at a carnival on Saturday. The lens handles well, but try focusing at 0.95 on a fast moving target! The image the lens gives is excellent.

  • @EricSF I just saw this response now, Eric. Thanks so much for the info! You just saved me some serious cash. I also have the SLR 12mm, and I wonder if this same setup you described will prevent vignetting on that lens as well. Hmmm...

    Thanks again! - Matt

  • @Matthew Actually, SLR's step up ring does make a difference with the 12mm. I thought it didn't but there's just a hair of vignetting with even the slimmest after market step up ring. I don't mind it and nobody has ever said anything about it but it is there. Andrew came out here and explained it to me first hand with Kholi backing him.

  • @vicharris Ahhh, good to know! Thanks :)

    Although I'm a little bummed I have to drop $80 PLUS shipping to get a step up ring :(

    Oh well...

  • @Matthew Yeah, it's alot, I know. I thought about seeing if I could grind the inside edge of mine down just a hair to see if it works but just keep forgetting. If you look in the 12mm thread, I think I posted a Hurst Castle video. I just got the lens and shot all of the footage with it. You can check the edges there.

  • @vicharris Thanks for letting me know. I just checked out the video and I do see the vignetting (although very slight as you said). I'm sure a 2.39:1 crop would get rid of that, but if I ever wanted to reposition in post after the crop I'd reintroduce that vignetting. Debating whether the SLR step up is worth the extra money now...

    As far as the 25mm goes though, is there any reason I shouldn't buy the 49mm extension and generic 49-77 step up?

  • Not sure. I was lucky to get one free when I preordered my 25mm but I know there's a guy on that made it work with cheap stuff.

  • A 49mm ND10 filter worked without vignetting. Although Aperature Mode w/o a filter, shutter 40, seems OK wide open.

  • @Matthew, @vicharris I don't see any reason not to get the 49mm extension and generic step up. Works fine for me. Plenty of clearance at infinity focus. See attached photo of this combo with focus at infinity to see all the clearance.

    As far as vignetting, I don't think I see any but maybe I'll take some tests shots to be sure there's not something small. I've never tested vignetting, so what's the best way to do that? Take a photo of a blank wall?

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  • Never said it didn't work. I got SLRs for free. What can I say. Didn't want to waste anymore time or money on the idea so I conceded to ya'll.

  • I really really like the lens - I used it for a wedding recently. The lens is tack sharp at open apertures as long as you lock focus.

    The church had odd lighting - All of the indoor church shots were @ T0.95 wide open. All of the reception were @ T0.95(around the end of the film). Shot with one hacked GH2 and one stable unhacked 1080 25p mixed with 720 50p. Most of the shots are SLR magic 25 T0.95 and the rest are super takumar 50 1.4, slr magic 12 T1.6 and takumar 55 f1.8.

    probably skip to 2minutes in.

    This was another video mostly shot with the slr magic 25 T0.95. Shot with unhacked GH2 1080 25p mixed with 720 50p.

    I do have a few gripes with the SLR magic - the focus knob makes a very slight grinding noise - like there isn't enough oil. The focus is knob turns in the opposite direction of all my other lenses, but for $650 I'm very happy!

  • image

    T/0.95 is very usable, with care to ensure accurate focusing, as the depth of field can be very shallow at this aperture value. Sharpness here is good in the centre, but fairly poor towards the edges of the frame. Stopping down improves sharpness across the frame, with outstanding sharpness in the centre from around T/2 onwards and good clarity towards the edges of the frame from around T/5.6 onwards.



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  • Hi guys, sorry to bother you with these step up rings. But all my nd filters are 62mm. What do you think I need for the SLR Magic 25mm T0.95 to match with my filters? thx...

  • @magnifico

    49mm extension:


    49mm to 62mm step up ring.

    There are cheaper alternatives of the step that are aluminum. Brass is better and more expensive.

    If this makes sense to you, great! If not, read the entire thread, as it's discussed in detail why you need to use this approach.

    Hope that helps.


  • @_OZ I read entire thread, it was to be sure!! thx for that :-)

  • Received the SLR 25mm and it is sitting a little loose in the bayonet :( When I change the focusing direction, it makes hearable CLACK noise. Seems like it can affect the image stability as it makes a tiny impact. I'm also curious if the on-camera mic will pick this noise.

    I'm going to do some tests over the weekend and decide if I want to ask for replacement.

    I remember this thread having few mentions of similar problems, but I'm not sure what was the resolution. Can you guys share your experience?

  • I just bought the gem and I ll get it next tuesday !! Hope it will be fine. I will report here my experience.

  • I remember this thread having few mentions of similar problems, but I'm not sure what was the resolution. Can you guys share your experience?

    Resolution was replacement as far as I remember.