LensTip.com

Lens review

Venus Optics LAOWA 17 mm f/1.8 MFT II

28 January 2020
Arkadiusz Olech

6. Distortion



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The Venus Optics LAOWA 17 mm f/1.8 MFT II is an instrument without any contacts so a camera body doesn't know what lens is attached to it; it also cannot try to correct its aberrations. The only operation takes place when you pass from RAW to JPEG files - it consists of cropping the field of view a bit. The cropping doesn't influence distortion in a noticeable manner because the measurements you get for both types of files are in accordance with each other within the limit of measurement error. In the case of JPEG files we got a result of −2.35%, and in the case of RAW files, developped with dcraw program, it was −2.38%.

It's a level a tad too high for a prime lens with an angle of view of about 65 degrees. Results of most of full frame 35 mm lenses range from −1 to −2%, and the best of them can reduce that aberration to imperceptible levels around −0.5%. It proves a prime lens can be properly corrected in this category; it's a pity the Laowa didn't even try to fight off distortion.

Olympus E-M5 II, 17 mm, JPEG
Venus Optics LAOWA 17 mm f/1.8 MFT II - Distortion
Olympus E-M5 II, 17 mm, RAW
Venus Optics LAOWA 17 mm f/1.8 MFT II - Distortion