Lensbaby Introduces the Edge 80 Optic

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posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 at 9:50 AM EST

Lb-edge80.176x200While the new Lensbaby Edge 80 resembles the recently released Sweet 35, it's a completely different optical experience. And we're not just talking about the focal length, which happens to be ideal for portraiture. First, the Edge 80 is a flat field optic. Second, it includes macro focusing as close as 17 inches.

Like the Sweet 35, it features a 12-blade internal aperture, making it a breeze to change the slice of focus on the fly.

While compatible with the Lensbaby Composer Pro, Composer, Muse, Scout and Control Freak, on the non-tiltable Scout it functions as an 80mm flat-field lens only. But on the tiltable housings, it adds a slice of selective focus you can manipulate with the internal aperture.

Read our review for sample shots and a full description.

Press Release

Lensbaby Introduces the Edge 80 Optic

Edge 80 gives photographers extraordinary creative control over depth of field

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Lensbaby announces today the availability of its 80mm Edge 80 Optic, the newest addition to its Optic Swap System. This new optic is compatible with the Lensbaby Composer Pro, Composer, Muse, Scout and Control Freak and will transform any of these bending lens bodies into a tilt lens that delivers a selective slice of sharp focus through an image. Like the Lensbaby Sweet 35 Optic, the Edge 80 features Lensbaby's internal 12-blade adjustable aperture.

"The Edge 80 Optic allows photographers to create images with quality that is on-par with some of the best lenses I've ever used. Like a great lens mounted on a view camera bellows, you can make spectacular 'straight' photos with the Edge 80 pointed straight ahead and then, when you want a different look altogether, fluidly tilt the lens to create a razor sharp slice of selective focus through your image," said Craig Strong, Lensbaby President and Co-Founder. For more information, visit the Edge 80 hub.

How It Works

The Edge 80 provides a flat field of focus that, pointed straight ahead, takes photos that are sharp from edge to edge. Tilting the Edge 80 allows photographers to create vertical, horizontal and diagonal slices of focus through the image. Objects in both the foreground and the background can be in focus within that slice. Photographers can control the size of the slice of focus by changing the 12-blade aperture.

For example, f2.8 will produce a thin slice of focus with abundant blur. f22 will produce a very wide slice of focus with just a small amount of blur. The Edge 80 allows photographers to quickly and seamlessly change the 12-blade aperture from f2.8 through f22, simply by rotating the dial on the front of the optic. An incredibly versatile portrait lens, Edge 80 can also be used to great effect in any situation that lends itself to selective focus -- from food photography to giving landscapes a "miniature" appearance. To better understand how tilt, aperture and focus affect an Edge 80 image, visit the Edge 80 Optic simulator.

With the addition of Edge 80 to the Optic Swap System, Lensbaby provides photographers with yet another way to creatively control depth of field. A photographer needs only to buy one Lensbaby lens to gain access to a system offering 8 interchangeable optics that each give different ways to control depth of field and other creative effects -- an unprecedented system within the world of photography.

With the Edge 80, photographers can control a flat field of focus that becomes a slice of sharpness through the photo when the lens is tilted. With Lensbaby's Sweet 35, Double Glass, Single Glass and Plastic Optics, photographers can control a curved field of focus that brings one area of the photo into sharp focus with other areas at the same depth of field falling off into blur. The Pinhole/Zone plate provides infinite depth of field, the Soft Focus optic delivers a sharp image with a soft overlay from edge to edge, while the Fisheye Optic provides a 160 degree angle of view on the world.

Specifications

Edge 80 Optic Product Specs:

• Focal Length: 80mm

• 12-blade internal aperture, controlled by a dial on the front of the optic

• Aperture range from f2.8 through f22

• Flat field of focus optic (when tilted, creates a slice of sharp focus, bordered by blur)

• Compatible with Lensbaby Composer Pro, Composer, Muse, Scout and Control Freak lens bodies*

• Minimum focusing distance: approximately 17" when the optic is extended forward in close focus mode and fully tilted

• Maximum focusing distance: Infinity

• Five multi-coated glass elements, in four groups

• 46mm front threads**

* The Edge 80 Optic is not compatible with the Composer with Tilt Transformer for Micro 4/3rds and Sony NEX Cameras.

** The Edge 80 Optic is not compatible with current 37mm Lensbaby accessories.

The Lensbaby Edge 80 Optic is available for $300 from http://www.lensbaby.com and Lensbaby-authorized photo specialty stores worldwide.

About Lensbaby

Lensbaby is a Portland, Oregon based manufacturer of award-winning Creative Effects SLR camera lenses. Lensbaby was launched in February 2004 by Craig Strong, a professional photographer and the inventor of the patented Lensbaby Creative Effects SLR lens system. Lensbaby sells to photographers all over the world through its Web site, http://www.lensbaby.com, by calling (877) 536-7222 / (971) 223-5662, at tradeshows, in leading photo retailers and through a growing global network of international distributors.

(See our review at http://www.imaging-resource.com/ACCS/lensbaby-edge80/ -- Editor)