DSLR, mirrorless and Micro Four Thirds users can all enjoy Lensbaby’s latest creative offerings
Amy Moore gets her hands on the Lensbaby Sol 45 mirrorless variant. For more videos, visit our YouTube channel.
Lensbaby has announced two new prime lenses, the Sol 45 and Sol 22. The Sol 45 has a 45mm focal length and is an f/3.5 fixed aperture prime. It’s available for both DSLR and mirrorless bodies, and can be used with APS-C and full-frame cameras. The Sol 22 is a 22mm fixed f/3.5 aperture prime which has been designed solely for Panasonic and Olympus Micro Four Thirds systems.
The Sol 45’s DSLR and mirrorless variants are fundamentally the same lens, however, they do display some physical differences. For DSLR cameras with Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony A and Pentax K mounts, the Sol 45 takes the form of a small pancake lens, measuring just 39mm deep. For mirrorless cameras – Sony E and Fujifilm XF mounts – the lens is a larger 64mm deep, to allow for the same amount of creativity and artistic effects.
The Lensbaby Sol 45 is available in a variety of fits. The mirrorless variant (left) is slightly larger than the pancake DSLR variant (right).
The lens has a metal body and the front tilts to a maximum of 8.5 degrees – this makes isolating your subject far easier than on lenses with a larger degree of tilt. Even when using the lens on bodies with APS-C sized sensors, the main point of focus stays within the frame for maximum ease of use.
Picking out subjects in the centre of your frame couldn’t be easier, thanks to the lens’ central locking mechanism. Simply turn the tilt ring clockwise until it clicks and the point of focus will return to the centre of the frame. To unlock, just twist anti-clockwise and the lens will have its full range of tilt available again.
For those looking for even more creativity, Lensbaby has attached two bokeh blades to the front of the Sol 45. Depending on how they are manually positioned in the lens’ field of view, they can help to add lots of different textures and lines to the bokeh.
The Lensbaby Sol 22 is designed for Panasonic and Olympus Micro Four Thirds systems.
Although the Sol 22 is technically a 22mm prime, it provides the same look to images as the Sol 45. Due to the different size of a Micro Four Thirds sensor, Lensbaby had to design the Sol 22 so that you could still keep the effects and out of focus areas within the smaller frame. The Sol 22 operates exactly the same as the Sol 45, meaning it can produce interesting and creative results easily.
About the Author
Amy Moore is Wex Photo Video’s Technical Editor for Photography. She enjoys numerous types of photography, especially landscapes and meteorological photography.