Venus Optics has released the Laowa 12-24mm f/5.6 manual focus zoom lens for full-frame mirrorless cameras in Canon RF, Nikon Z, Sony E and Leica M mounts.

Venus Optics has billed it as an ‘ultra-compact zoom lens’ that offers an angle of view from an ultra-wide 121.9° to 84°.

It weighs 497g, has a diameter of 69.4mm and an overall length between 84mm and 95.6mm (depending on the lens mount).

It has a closest focusing distance of 15cm and Venus Optics bills the lens as, ‘perfect for travel and landscape photography.’

Laowa's 12-24mm F5.6 lens in M-mount fitted to a Leica body

The Laowa 12-24mm F5.6 lens in M-mount, fitted to a Leica body

Five-bladed aperture

The new 12-24mm zoom is designed with a five-bladed aperture, which is said to produce a ‘stunning 10-point Sunstar’ when the aperture is ‘slightly stopped down.’

The full-frame wide-angle zoom also accepts screw-on filters.

The lens comes with an adapter ring that you can use with 77mm filters. The adapter ring also doubles up as a lens hood.

The optical make-up of the lens is 15 elements in 11 groups.

Those 15 elements include two aspherical elements and three ED elements.

The front element includes a ‘Frog-Eye Coating’ (aka FEC), which repels dust and water.

The Laowa 12-24mm F5.6 - note the curved front of the wide-angle zoom lens

The Laowa 12-24mm F5.6 – note the curved front of the wide-angle zoom lens

Control rings

The lens has three control rings – a focus ring, a zoom ring and a manual aperture ring.

The largest of these is the focusing ring.

The lens includes an engraved focus scale in imperial and metric units.

The zoom ring is marked at 12mm, 14mm, 16mm, 18mm, 20mm, 22mm and 24mm focal lengths.

The manual aperture ring with is marked markings at f/5.6, f/8, f/11, f/16 and f/22.

You can watch a short film about the Laowa 12-24mm F5.56 lens below…

Laowa FFii 12-24mm F5.6 C-Dreamer – key specs

  • Format: full frame
  • Focal length: 12-24mm
  • Maximum aperture: f/5.6
  • Angle of view: 84° – 121.9°
  • Lens structure: 15 elements (two aspherical, three ED) in 11 groups
  • Aperture blades: Five
  • Minimum focusing distance: 15cm
  • Maximum magnification: 0.4
  • Focus mode: Manual (MF)
  • Filter thread: ø77mm
  • Dimensions: ø69.4mmx84mm (M), ø69.4mmx91.6mm (RF), ø69.4mmx93.6mm (E), ø69.4mmx95.6mm (Z)
  • Weight: 497g (with no hood or front/rear caps)
  • Mounts: Canon RF, Leica M, Nikon Z, Sony E

Availability & pricing

The Laowa 12-24mm F5.6 is available to purchase via Venus Optics and authorised resellers.

The lens is £729 in Canon RF, Nikon Z and Sony E mount versions.

The exact price for the Leica M-mount version is yet to be confirmed, but may be slightly more than £729.

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