The Ultra Wide Angle Lens is one of the most important lenses that every photographer can have in his backpack and now here I am for another review, this time or talk you about Loawa Venus 15mm F2.0.
I have on my backpack the older brother of this lens, the 12mm, and i loved the quality of it, you can see here the review of it, and I had a big desire to test the 15mm, and now I had that opportunity.
This is my wholehearted honest review of this lens, I have not received any gifts or payment for writing this review. 
The Laowa 15mm f/2.0 Zero-D, like the predictor is a manual focus, ultra-wide angle lens designed for full-frame cameras and available in Canon, Nikon, Sony A, Sony E and Pentax mounts. 

'Zero-D' means no distortions. Yes, this is a rectilinear lens and not a fish-eye lens, with a 110° angle of view.  


Anhui Changgeng Optics Technology Co., Ltd (Venus Optics) was established in 2013.  With headquarters in China, they are a leading manufacturer of premium lenses, formed by a group of photography enthusiasts and industry experts.
They are a team of optical designers has more than 20 years’ experience and previously designed lenses for Japanese and German manufacturers.
Their mission are to design and create their own portfolio of photographic lenses that are truly unique, practical and affordable.
LAOWA headquarter and manufacturing facility are in Hefei, located at the eastern part of China and 5-hour drive from Shanghai. Their sales and marketing head office is located in Hong Kong and they also have a distribution office in the United States. They are now have 131 employees and the number is growing.

Over the last four years, they have launched some very unique optics into the market and that have been welcomed by photographers from around the world.
In 2013, they realized that there was a need for a budget macro lens that could not only achieve high magnification for shooting smaller insects, but also serve as a normal portrait lens.
After 15 months of research and design, they launched the first product – the Laowa 60mm f/2.8 2X Ultra-Macro Lens.  It was a world first 2:1 macro lens with a focusing range from 2:1 magnification ratio to infinity focus.
They have received tremendous support from industry professionals and photographers.  This has strengthened their resolve and drives them harder to achieve their dream.
Following this, they launched another unique lens with a ‘World First’ title; the Laowa 15mm f/4 Wide Angle Macro Lens.
That was the world’s widest 1:1 Macro lens.  Soon after, they announced the ’Bokeh Dreamer’ lens, Laowa 105mm f/2 Smooth Trans Focus Lens.
A fast and bright wide-angle prime, the Sony E-mount Laowa 15mm f/2 FE Zero-D Lens from Venus Optics is a rectilinear lens with a sophisticated optical design to effectively limit distortion. The bright f/2 maximum aperture makes this lens especially useful for astrophotography and low-light use, and when paired with the 15cm minimum focusing distance, distinct shallow depth of field imagery can also be produced. The optical construction includes three extra-low dispersion elements and two aspherical elements an the Frog Eye Coating has been applied.
When I recibed the box I tough to my self "I hope that the quality is like the older brother", the first impression I got was that it would be another lens that would make me very happy, soft to the touch, robust, and very solid.
After two minutes of inspecting and just holding it I absolutely loved it, the weight, feel and texture of the Laowa actually makes it feel like a real premium product.

In the Box:
- Venus Optics Laowa 15mm f/2 FE Zero-D Lens for Sony E
- Front and Rear Lens Caps
- Lens Hood
- Warranty
Ultra wide angle lenses are the best tool that every Landscape, Seascape and Cityscape photographers most have on him photography backpack. There are a lot of wide angle lenses on the market, however, these UWA lens are not perfect. They suffer from dramatic barrel distortion (2-5%), poor peripheral sharpness or huge physical size. They therefore spent a lot of time to come up with a design which is truly perfect and overcomes the frustration of photographers. That's where the LAOWA 15mm f/2.0 ZERO-D join to the party.
The Laowa 15mm f/2 Zero-D is the second member of the Close-to-Zero distortion series from Venus Optics, following the launch of the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 Zero-D last year. Zero-D lenses are specially designed to remove the optical distortion commonly associated with wide angle lenses. Any straight lines will be retained.

Their LAOWA 15mm f/2.0 Lens cover a ultra-wide 110° angle of view for you to create an outstanding landscape or architecture shot that no others can compare. Shooting interior shots will also become much easier. 
Optical performance is what they will never compromise. Laowa 15mm have a good quality in full range distance, at F/2.0 in coners loose a little bit of sharpness not compromising the photo. 
Laowa has successfully minimized the weight of the lens to only 500 g and the length to only 82 mm, LAOWA Lens is an every-day lens. It is really small compared to other UWA lenses in the market. This compact, lightweight lens is comprised of 12 elements in 9 groups with 2 aspherical elements and 3 Extra-low dispersion elements. The patented optical design successfully minimizes distortion and chromatic aberrations and delivers superb optical performance from edge to edge.
ALMOST Ultra-wide & fast lenses in the market tend to be huge and have a dome-shaped front element. This creates a serious problem for landscape photographers who often require filters for creativity and exposure control. Laowa understood this situation and managed to design a flat front lens element that allows them to attach a 72mm filter onto the lens. Unlike other ultra-wide lenses, there is no need to invest in an expensive, bulky filter holder.
As I previously mentioned the Laowa 15mm f/2.0, it can be used with 100mm filter holders, which in UWA lenses it's very rare, when I bought the lens, i also bought the Laowa holder for the lens, as you know, I am an ambassador of Haida filters , and I can perfectly use the M10 system in the 15mm f/2.0 with any vignetting.
This benefit becomes much more attractive to use a ultra wide lens. For me this is one of the biggest assets of this lens.
Every LAOWA 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D is coated with the new Laowa "Frog Eye" Coating. It gives your lens an extra layer of shield. 

Brand: Venus Loawa;
Color: Black;
Lens Type: Wide Angle;
Lens Mount: Sony E (Full Frame);
Format Compatibility: 35mm Film / Full-Frame Digital Sensor;
Mounts: Sony FE, Nikon Z, Canon RF;
Focus Type: Manual Focus;
Closest Focus Distance: 15 cm;
Focal Length: 15mm;
Angle Of View: 110;
Maximum Aperture: f/2.0;
Minimum Aperture: f/22;
Maximum Magnification: 0.25x;
Lens Elements / Groups: 12 Elements / 9 Groups
Diaphragm: 5 Blades;
Dimensions: 77.2 x 82 mm;
Weight:  500 g
Image Stabilization: None

The build quality of the lens is very nice as the lens is an all metal construction and feels very robust.

The Laowa 15mm f/2 Zero-D is both a compact and an impressively sturdy, and it balances very well with my Sony A7R4. It feels substantial without being bulky or heavy, with solid metal construction that will withstand a few knocks. 
The focus ring has a good resistance and is very smooth. The aperture ring has two method of working, this lens incorporates a small lever, where you can choose by one-stop click-stops and it takes about 45° from f/2.0 to f/22, or a smooth continuous ring.  It is very useful to avoid the  possible turn it by accident
When I had my first contact with the lens I thought for me that was more bigger, but no, for a 15mm full-frame lens, the Laowa is pretty small with a very slender profile.  

While it possesses a Frog Eye Coating on the front element, to repel water and dust, it's not a weather-sealed lens, meaning that you'll need to be somewhat careful when shooting out in the elements – though in a light shower during our testing, the coating seemed to do a good job of not letting raindrops well up. 
Part of the package is also a petal-shaped lens hood which seems to be made from aluminium and fits quite nicely. The hood of the second sample does not sit as tight as the one from the first though.
Venus made a good work.
The first thing thay draws me the attention was the smoth focus. The minimum focal range of 0.28 meters. 
All the Irix lens are manual focus but they designed an electronic control of aperture settings.
One of the things that most caught my attention on this lens was the infinite click. When we position the lens in the infinite position there is a click on the ring that defines that position, it is that for landscape photographers it is a great asset, in the photograms usually even at night at sunset. It is also very useful for night photography
Another feature that I liked very is the addition of the focus lock ring is particularly useful when you need to lock the focus once and don't have to worry about hitting your camera, which can adjust your focus on other lenses.

This lens provides a full DOF (Depth of Field) scale including engraved aperture marks covering f/8 through f/16, can be also used the provided hyperfocal setting marks.
Most Ultra Wide Angle lenses suffer from an optical distortion which causes straight lines to bend. LAOWA Zero-D lenses are so well corrected, they achieve a close-to-zero distortion.
Laowa claims that its Zero-D lenses produce zero distortion. Our distortion measurement isn't quite a perfect zero, and indeed slight barrel distortion is visible when shooting our lens testing chart, but a score of less than 1 is still highly impressive for such a wide lens. Unless you're particularly fond of shooting geometric charts or brick walls, distortion won't be an issue with the Laowa 15mm.
The distortion is mild to moderate barrel, which is rarely visible, but even without the profile corrections, I was still very happy with how each image turned out.
In comparison with the Laowa 12mm, or my Sigma 14-24, I became surprised, It's not quite "zero" distortion, but it's almost.
Very good work Laowa.

This is probably the most searched part of a lens review, and this lens surprised me by the positive, this lens actually holds its own very well with image sharpness. I have been incredibly happy with the sharpness across the entire frame.
The Laowa does not disappoint, it is remarkably sharp, the 12mm f/2.8 is one of the sharpest wide angle lenses with which I have ever shot. 
From f/2.8 the sharp lose a little bit in the corners and goes to  f/16 where's the sharpness is very consistent, with very little difference in image quality through that range. 
In the corners I see in apertures from F/2.0 to F/2.8 a detriment of the sharpenss, from this aperture upwards it improves substantially, staying even optimal from F/8 upwards.
In the center of the frame at f/2.0, this lens is reasonably sharp almost imperceptible the loss of sharpness and with a nice improvement F/2.8 upwards to tighter apertures. 
The vignette in this lens is not so bad. It has a little bit of vignette especially at F/2.0 but as you go up to F/4.0 it almost disappear, and mostly gone in the forwards apertures.

I'm quite satisfied with the images directly outside the camera, but when you apply the lens profile to correct the image in post production, then the vignette practically disappears.
Other good feature of this lens is that Loawa 15mm doesn't have any significant problems with chromatic aberration. like the older brother Loawa is probably one of the best lenses with which I have ever worked.
In every shoots i tooked i almost didn't saw any cromatic aberration.
Even at the maximum relative aperture it would be difficult to notice any traces of colouring in out-of-focus areas.

Another good work for Laowa.
With the frog eye coating that Loawa aplies in their lens, is very important for cromatic aberration, and for flare resistance, this lens is very consistent with other reputable lens, in normal conditions i didn't saw any flares, but when i pushed i little bit hard photographing sunset in front of sun, i noticed some flare resistance but they were still pretty clean.
8 - COMA
Most of the Wide angle lens have a big issue, .and  Laowa 15mm f/2.0 Zero-D  is not different, as astrophotographers among Iexpected for a better performance here.
When you photograph stars at F/2.8, i have a noticeable comatic problem in the corners. All the astro photography photographs looks for a good lens without coma. 

At f/2.0 the amount of comatic distortion is fairly low almost impossible to notice, but when we zoom in, in post production, it's different, we saw a lot of comatic abberation, in f/2.8 it's a little bit better, but the coma continuous there, getting most better F/5.6 to closest apertures.
One ultra wide angle lens isn't designed for macro photography, with the 18mm minimum focus distance and the fast aperture of f/2.8 helps this lens to have a gorgeous boken, (combination of maximum aperture, focal length and minimum focus distance).

With the higher the number bladed aperture diaphragms better is the Sunstar Effect. .​​​​​​​Another great feature, the 7 aperture blades diaphragm. The Laowa 12mm F/2.8 came with 7 aperture blades, first tought was that the effect would not be great, but was a wrong thought, this lens suprised me a lot in this feature, i loved the stars made by this lens, and let me tell you that in F/8 made a surprising sunstar effect

I’m very impressed with the Laowa 15mm f/2.0 lens. Second wide lens of Laowa and brand made a awsome work.
You can Buy the Laowa 15mm F/2.0 at 720€ , you can bu it in Loawa Webstore, and you can also consult the World Laowa dealers here.
The Laowa 15mm f/2 Zero-D is an easy recommendation. It offers enviable image quality with an even more enviable aperture – and its distortion control makes it suitable for professional architectural work. 
For me the bigest  problem was the comatic abberation, they could made a better work in this camp, other small problem for me was the loose of sharpness in corners at f/2.0.
It beats competing lenses in terms of price and holds its own against them in performance, arguably exceeding them in terms of the applications made possible by the aperture speed. So it is a lens that you can easily take with you and that you can easily work with., and the option to also work with gradient filters.
All those factors together make this 15mm unique and well worth the  price.

- Great sharpness through the aperture range
- Solid construction, with no plastic parts
- The lens is easy to store and wear thanks to a compact design
- No apparent chromatic aberration, which is rare and exceedingly impressive

- Astrophotography Coma 
- Little Smooth Corner at F/2.0

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