Dennis Hissink : March 24th 2005 - 12:00 CET
Lensbaby 2.0 lens introduction
Lensbaby 2.0 lens introduction : At the WPPI trade show Lensbabies launched the Lensbaby 2.0 lens, a second-generation selective focus SLR camera lens, bringing brighter, sharper, and faster selective focus photography to professional and avid amateur photographers. "The Lensbaby 2.0 lens has proven to be a wonderful creative tool for demanding photographic assignments. Compared to The Original Lensbaby, Lensbaby 2.0 has a greater range of aperture settings, a much sharper 'sweet spot' of focus, and a new levitating magnetic aperture system, which makes it a snap to change apertures," said Craig Strong, the inventor of the Lensbaby and Co-CEO of Lensbabies, LLC.|
Lensbaby 2.0 lens - Spot AF|
Lensbaby 2.0 and the original Lensbaby bring one area of a photo into sharp focus, with that 'sweet spot' surrounded by graduated blur, glowing highlights, and subtle prismatic color distortions. Photographers can fluidly move the sharp area around the photo by bending the flexible lens tubing. Lensbaby 2.0 features an f2.0 aperture setting in addition to the original Lensbaby’s f2.8, f4.0, f5.6 and f8.0. With Lensbaby 2.0, a photographer can control the size of the sweet spot of sharp focus by changing the apertures.
Lensbaby 2.0 lens - Improved optics
The brighter the aperture, the smaller the sweet spot of focus and the greater the amount of graduated blurring in the photo’s surrounding area. The Lensbaby 2.0 lens also features a coated, high refractive index, low dispersion optical glass doublet instead of the singled uncoated optical glass element in the original Lensbaby. "In the year since we launched the original Lensbaby, we learned many photographers wanted to create Lensbaby images that had an even sharper sweet spot. Lensbaby 2.0's optic creates a much sweeter sweet spot of focus, which allows photographers to print large photos and see fine details like eye lashes or individual threads of fabric in the sharp area. Photographers will also find that Lensbaby 2.0 has minimal diffusion even at the f2.0 aperture setting," said Strong.
Lensbaby 2.0 lens - Soft focus or sharp spot focus
"We now have two products that will appeal to a broader range of photographers. Many photographers will want to have both versions of Lensbabies in their camera bags; others will naturally find a favourite. We expect those who love soft focus, diffused images will gravitate towards the original Lensbaby lens, while photographers who want a brighter lens with a very sharp sweet spot of focus and minimal diffusion will favour Lensbaby 2.0." Kevin Kubota, a professional photographer who used a prototype Lensbaby 2.0 lens, was thrilled. "The optic is bright and crisp. The images have beautiful mix of clarity and dreaminess. I love using it with my wedding work and find it perfectly suited to feminine portraits like pregnancy and high school seniors. My customers love the 'new' look," said Kubota.
Lensbaby 2.0 lens - Magnetic aperture system
Lensbaby 2.0 also features a levitating magnetic aperture system that makes changing apertures faster than with the original Lensbaby, which uses a rubber gasket to hold aperture disks in place. The Lensbaby 2.0 lens uses three shielded magnets embedded inside the optics cup to suspend metallicized plastic aperture disks just above the coated optical glass doublet. When a photographer drops an aperture disk into Lensbaby 2.0, it quickly snaps into position. Removal is also very easy: Lensbabies provides a complimentary Cell-Klear Lenspen that the photographer inserts through the center hole in the aperture disk to lift it out.
Lensbaby 2.0 lens and the original Lensbaby
Both Lensbaby 2.0 and the original Lensbaby combine several vintage camera technologies in a novel, patent-pending combination. The shooter focuses a Lensbaby using the same general principle used with a bellows camera, by moving the focusing collar in and out with his or her fingertips. The photographer moves the ?sweet spot’ of focus around the picture by bending the glass optic out of a parallel position to the image capture plane, like a tilt-shift lens. Available in mounts for Canon EF, Nikon F, Pentax K, Olympus E1, Minolta Maxxum, Olympus OM, Canon FD, Leica R, Minolta Manual, Sigma, Contax/Yashica, and Screw mounts.
Lensbaby 2.0 lens - Specifications
- focal Length: right around 50mm
- focus Type: manual, fingertip, actually
- optical element: coated, high refractive index, low dispersion optical glass doublet
- aperture Type: interchangeable levitating magnetic apertures
- apertures: f2.0, f2.8, f4, f5.6, f8
- nominal focus: approximately 18 inches
- maximum focus: infinity and beyond
- minimum focus: approx. 10 inches (pushed on the back of the focusing collar)
- size: 2.25" high x 2.5" wide
- weight: 3.6 oz.
Lensbaby 2.0 lens - Availability and Price
The Lensbaby 2.0 is available for sale now at www.lensbabies.com for $150, in camera mounts for virtually all SLR camera bodies. It will be rolled out to specialty photographic supply stores starting in mid-April. Lensbabies continues to offer The Original Lensbaby for $96.