This is currently the widest available native lens option for Fujifilm G-mount cameras. The new Laowa 17mm f/4 GFX has a field of view equivalent to 13mm in 35mm format (113°). Featuring a close-to-zero distortion and 86mm filter thread, this lens is ideally suited for landscape, architecture & interior photography. The 21 elements in 14 groups design with 2pcs of aspherical & 3pcs of Extra-low dispersion elements successfully help to control the distortion & chromatic aberrations to the minimal.
Widest available lens for Fujifilm G-mount cameras, Fujifilm’s new medium format camera system which started with the release of the 50-megapixel GFX 50S.
Fujifilm’s medium-format sensor is larger than a full frame sensor, so you need longer focal lengths to get equivalent angles of view. When comparing smaller-format APS-C cameras with full frame we’re used to applying a crop factor of 1.5 to get an ‘equivalent’ focal length on the smaller camera, but with bigger sensor of the GFX the crop factor is less than 1 – it’s 0.79, to be exact.
This means that 17mm on the GFX is actually equivalent to just over 13mm on a full-frame camera, so the new Laowa 17mm is a very wide lens indeed. This is especially impressive for a medium format camera, where the lenses are larger and you don’t normally get the extremes of focal length and optical design seen on smaller format cameras.
Fujifilm makes its own lenses, of course, but the widest currently on offer is the GF23mm F4 R LM WR, which is equivalent to an 18mm lens in full frame terms. That’s pretty wide, but nowhere near as wide as the new Laowa.
As with other Laowa lenses, you need to be aware that there’s no autofocus nor even automatic diaphragm control. This means going back to manual focus and manual exposure, but that’s not great hardship for the kind of considered photography the GFX is designed for, and it means the Laowa 17mm f/4 GFX Zero-D is likely to cost a good deal less than Fujifilm’s own lenses – though pricing has yet to be confirmed.
The ‘Zero-D’, by the way, indicates ‘zero distortion’; this is a premium optical design consisting of no fewer than 21 elements in 14 groups.
Laowa 17mm f/4 GFX Zero-D specifications
Focal Length: 17mm
Max. Aperture: f/4
Min. Aperture: f/22
Angle of View: 115 degrees
Format Compatibility: Medium Format
Lens Structure: 21 elements in 14 groups
Aperture Blades: 7
Min. Focusing Distance: 20cm
Max. Magnification: 0.28x
Filter Thread: 86mm
Mounts: Fujifilm G
Availability: Mid/late 2018
More information: Laowa website