This 50mm f/0.75 lens is super fast, but makes a Lensbaby look sharp!
posted Friday, March 7, 2014 at 2:36 PM EDT
People love super-fast prime lenses. The famed Zeiss 50mm f/0.7 is the stuff of legend, a Noctilux will set you back more than $10,000 for f/0.95, or you can get a Hyperprime for a bit more cheap. But what would you say to a 50mm f/0.75 that you could get for less than $1000?
De Oude Delft Rayxar is actually a modified x-ray lens, so not designed for traditional optics at all. Because of that, it has some supremely bizarre behaviors, but is still all but the fastest piece of glass that you can slap on the front of a camera. JapanCameraHunter recently profiled the lens, modded to fit a Leica M mount, and with a barrel so wide that it blocks the viewfinder.
Not only that, but because of its medical origins, the lens is permanently fixed at f/0.75, and at a 2 meter focal point—no focusing or adjusting allowed. Combine the two, and you have a sliver thin area of focus that's vanishingly difficult to get right.
But how do the images look? You can see some here, and here are some taken by photographer Aldo Navoni. To put it bluntly, they're extremely soft and warped, and a little reminiscent of the dreamy visuals of a Lensbaby. Frankly, it looks to be more trouble than its worth, based on those images. Nevertheless, it's very cool to see people adapting odd and bizarre lenses like this, just to see what they'll do.