Anybody who has tried to capture a tall building with a wide-angle lens will know just how hard it is to avoid the phenomenon of converging verticals, where the building seems to lean in on itself. The solution to this technical problem is to use a tilt-shift lens and now Laowa has announced the widest version available to full-frame cameras.
The 15mm f/4.5 Zero-D Shift offers a 110° angle of view and serves up a ±11mm shift amount (or ±8mm when used on medium format cameras), which will correct converging verticals, leaving you with straight lines in your architecture photography.
The Laowa 15mm f/4.5 Zero-D Shift can operate with full-frame and medium format cameras thanks to a huge ⌀65mm image circle and features a ‘17 elements in 11 groups’ design that also includes two pieces of aspherical element glass. A special coating on the front element helps reduce ghosting and flare, too.
Amazingly, the Laowa 15mm f/4.5 Zero-D Shift features a very close minimum focus distance of just 20cm, further opening up creative doors for photographers and the five-bladed aperture design can create 10-point sunstars from light sources in the scene when used with a mid to smaller aperture.
Fairly compact in design, the 15mm f/4.5 Zero-D Shift tips the scales at just 579g and measures 10.3cm long. With manual focus, it’s sure to be a hit with architecture photographers and includes a rotation function that enables photographers to change the direction of the shift by pressing an unlock button. Laowa explains this gives photographers more flexibility in composing the image (in both landscape and portrait orientation) and the lens barrel can be rotated through 360° with clicks every 15°.
The 15mm f/4.5 Zero-D Shift, which will carry a price-tag of $1,199, is available in Canon EF and Nikon F mounts now, but Laowa has explained that fitments for Canon RF, Nikon Z and Sony FE mount will be arriving in February 2021, so mirrorless shooters don’t have too long to wait.