Aspheric, fast normal lens
The Voigtländer 40 mm/1:1.2 Nokton is a fast, manual lens, intended as an all-rounder walkabout prime lens that can shoot a variety of subjects comfortably. It straddles the gap between two common focal lengths for standard/normal lenses: 35mm and 50mm.
This is a first look article focusing on the specifications, exterior as well as initial impressions regarding the lens.
According to Voigtländer, it is the world`s first full-frame 40 mm lens with an aperture of f/1.2, while retaining a compact size. The optical formula includes two aspherical lenses, and the photographer can rely on optical performance and enjoy a smooth bokeh at the maximum aperture.
On an APS-C sensor, the lens provides an effective focal length of 60mm, which means the lens can still be used as a quasi-standard lens.
Interestingly, although the aperture ring has 1/3 stops, the lens also allows for a stepless aperture change during video applications.
The lens comes with a metal hood that is quite small and unobtrusive, which means it is possible to leave the hood on the lens all the time without making the camera look too bulky.
|Focal length||40 mm|
|Minimum aperture (F)||22|
|selective aperture control||available|
|Lens construction||8 elements in 6 groups|
|Angle of view||55°|
|Minimum focus||0.35 m|
|Maximum reproduction ratio||1:6.2|
|Maximum diameter||70.1 mm|
|Electrical contact: Exif data transfer||available|
|Manual focus assistant||available|
|Filter size||58 mm|
|Others||Selective Aperture Control System, Front cap, Rear cap, Lens Hood|
Photos (unboxing, lens)
The following photos show the full unboxing experience, and the lens in various angles, as well as mounted on a Sony α9.
This is probably one of Voigtländer’s most popular E-mount lenses in their range and I am not surprised as it is quite versatile for many shooting situations, is relatively compact and light, and has a large aperture enabling beautiful smooth shallow depth of field shots.
On a full frame body, it is perfect for street and general purpose photography.
On an APS-C body, it acts as a slightly narrow normal lens and also suitable for some portraiture shots.
The full metal design of the lens barrel gives a nice solid feel and the lens is relatively easy to focus using peak focusing on any recent Sony E-mount body. I am planning to shoot mainly using the Sony α7R which is my go-to body for manual focusing lenses as it has a relatively good viewfinder and above average sensor resolution.