Noktor versus Olympus 12mm video comparison by Seb Farges (and review by ThePhoBlographer)

Seb Farges compared the two Olympus and Noktor 12mm lenses on a GH2. Seb writes: “The Olympus seems to be sharper, but the Noktor has a more strong “cinematic” feeling. The Noktor seems to be a little more wider than the Olympus.” I think the real highlight of the Noktor is the macro function, this is really something you don’t see often on a wide angle lens. I have been also told that Philip Bloom helped the SLRmagic company to design that lens.

And ThePhoBlographer (Click here) posted the full Noktor 12mm review: “This new lens is extremely good. It’s sharp wide open, exhibits minimal distortion, vignetting very slightly, and has an excellent construction. If anything, my only major complaints are that it may be a bit too heavy for some users and that the focusing and aperture rings turn in separate directions.“.

One more news: SLRmagic is looking for 30 volunteers who can help them by creating video footage and image samples. SLRmagic will offer them a slight discount before the official release in November/December. Contact them at sales@noktor.com.

The new Noktor is not available for preorder yet. It will start shipment in late November. The other Noktor lens, the 50mm f/0.95 is in Stock on eBay (Click here) and on the Noktor website. As you know the Noktor project is now owned by SLRmagic.

Other SLRmagic lenses for Micro Four Thirds:
SLR Magic 12-36×50 ED Straight Spotting Scope lens (w/ hand grip) is now available on eBay (Click here).
SLR magic 11mm f/1.4 lens you can preorder on eBay (Click here).
Toy Lens 26mm f/1.4 lens on eBay (Click here).
SLR Magic 35mm f/1.7 MC lens on eBay (Click here).

New Panasonic GH2 hacked video test (and US/Europe deals)

The video on to has made by Gabriel de Bourg (found via Personal-View.com): “This is a test of the noise levels of a Panasonic GH2 with Driftwood’s “GOPStoppa” (176mb GOP1) patch. With the higher bitrates the camera resolves a lot better, but this applies to noise too. While it looks sharper, it also becomes clearer. Hence I wanted to do a test on the different noise levels. It was shot with the lens cap on using Nostalgic (-2, -2, 0, -2), shutter speed at 50 and white balance at 5600K. I’ve boosted the mids in After Effects, using Magic Bullet Colorista II. The original ungraded originals are avaiable here: megaupload.com/​?d=5M4N08F1. Something I noticed is that it seems that ISO values based around 160 no longer seems to be the least noisiest, with ISO 320 performing very poorly. It surprised me, but after recording a new clip I got the same results.”

P.S.: A new Panasonic GH2 Cage at thysstd.

USA deals:
The GH2 price is slowly dropping. Third party resellers are selling the GH2 with 14-140mm lens for a “floating” price between $1370 and $1400 at Amazon (Click here). The Leica 25mm f/1.4 lens is still in Stock at Adorama (Click here). The Four Thirds (!) Leica 25mm lens is in Stock for $699 at Amazon (Click here). Something else: The Fuji X100 is now in Stock at Amazon (Click here).

Europe deals:
The Nokton 25mm f/0.95 lens is in Stock for 719 Euro on eBay (Click here).

More Noktor 12mm f/1.6 tests…

Seb Farges shot the video on top with the new Noktor 12mm f/1.6 macro and cinematic lens: “This is, to my opinion, an incredible lens, fast and wide, and there is no visible distortion. The focus and aperture rings are very smooth. It is all made in metal. XXX There is in my test a small vignetting in the outside shots due to the use of a 62mm L.C.W variable ND filter (with a 58mm/62mm step up ring). To avoid the vignetting you’ll need a 67mm or a 72mm filter with the right step up ring, because remeber this is a wide lens!

Bert Stephanie (Click here) also shared his first impressions about the lens: “I’ll leave the pixel peeping to others but at first glance, I think the optical quality, sharpness and distortions seems to fit my needs.

The new Noktor is not available for preorder yet. It will start shipment in late November. The other Noktor lens, the 50mm f/0.95 is in Stock on eBay (Click here) and on the Noktor website. As you know the Noktor project is now owned by SLRmagic.

Other SLRmagic lenses for Micro Four Thirds:
SLR Magic 12-36×50 ED Straight Spotting Scope lens (w/ hand grip) is now available on eBay (Click here).
SLR magic 11mm f/1.4 lens you can preorder on eBay (Click here).
Toy Lens 26mm f/1.4 lens on eBay (Click here).
SLR Magic 35mm f/1.7 MC lens on eBay (Click here).

New Panasonic GF2/GF3/G3 firmware. 45-175mm vs 45-200mm video comparison

panasonic lumix g x vario pz 45-175mm video test from Roderick Kar on Vimeo.

Panasonic just released the new firmware for the GF2/GF3/G3 cameras. You can download it here: http://panasonic.jp/support/global/cs/dsc/download/index.html. The new version 1.1 added the function for using the new power zoom X lenses, the Panasonic 14-42mm X lens and the Panasonic 45-175mm X lens.

Our reader Roderick Kar made the video comparison you see on top and posted some image samples on Flickr (Click here). And you can see the “transparent” version of the X lenses at DC.watch (Once on the site scroll down to see the pics).

According to Panasonic both lenses should be available in October but I wouldn’t bet on that. The Panasonic-Leica 25mm f/1.4 was supposed to be available in US and European stores in August but only very few lenses have been shipped to “western” countries in late September. And are now still out of Stock at Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay. Until now Panasonic cameras and lenses always have been in Stock 2-3 months after the announced availability month.

Panasonic 14-42mm X lens at Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay.
Panasonic 45-175mm X lens Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay.

Noktor 12mm f/1.6 hands-on (Straight Spotting Scope on eBay)

There is a double hands-on review of the new 12mm f/1-6 Noktor lens:
You can read the first hands-on at ThePhoBlographer (Click here): “How does the lens feel? It’s very well built: all metal body and quite heavy for a micro four thirds lens. But it’s not overpoweringly heavy.
And the second hands-on has been written by Steve Huff (Click here): “I can see that at f/1.6 it is a little teeny bit soft at the edges but still looks VERY nice. By f/2 it sharpens up and is just about flawless. Also this lens has VERY LITTLE distortion. Oh, did I mention it also doubles as a macro lens?”.
If you are interested in getting this lens there is still NO preorder option yet. The only Noktor lens that ships right now is the Noktor 50mm f/0.95 on eBay or on their website.

Spotting Scope lens in Stock:
The other news is that the SLR Magic 12-36×50 ED Straight Spotting Scope lens (w/ hand grip) is now available on eBay (Click here).

Other SLRmagic lenses for Micro Four Thirds:
SLR magic 11mm f/1.4 lens you can preorder on eBay (Click here) Toy Lens 26mm f/1.4 lens on eBay (Click here) SLR Magic 35mm f/1.7 MC lens on eBay (Click here)