Voigtlander Ultra-Wide Heliar 12mm f/5.6 Aspherical II on Sony NEX - Review / Lens Test Report - Sample Images & Verdict
Lens Reviews - Sony Alpha/NEX (APS-C)

Sample Images

The following samples are not corner-corrected via post-processing. Please note that the lens does not provide EXIF data. Most of the images were taken at f/8.

Click on a thumbnail to view the original file (opens in a separate window). Please note that the originals are FULL SIZE samples (=several megabytes) thus requiring a significant amount of bandwidth so please take care of the limited resources here.

Make SONY
Model NEX-5
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length
Aperture: f/1.0
Exposure 1/250s
Make SONY
Model NEX-5
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length
Aperture: f/1.0
Exposure 1/320s
Make SONY
Model NEX-5
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length
Aperture: f/1.0
Exposure 1/160s
Make SONY
Model NEX-5
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length
Aperture: f/1.0
Exposure 1/320s
Make SONY
Model NEX-5
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length
Aperture: f/1.0
Exposure 1/1000s
Make SONY
Model NEX-5
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length
Aperture: f/1.0
Exposure 1/400s
Make SONY
Model NEX-5
ISO Speed 800
Focal Length
Aperture: f/1.0
Exposure 1/30s
Make SONY
Model NEX-5
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length
Aperture: f/1.0
Exposure 1/800s

Verdict

The Voigtländer Ultra-Wide Heliar 12mm f/5.6 Aspherical II is one of the very few ultra-wide angle options available for Sony NEX albeit only usable via Leica M to Sony NEX adapter. The lens is extremely sharp in the image center and still good in the image borders/corners. Distortions as well as lateral CAs are very well controlled for a lens in this class. The primary weakness of the Heliar is the heavy amount of light fall-off combined with a slight color shift in the image corners. These two issues are mostly correctable but this requires a manual step - e.g. either in Photoshop or via CornerFix. However, if you're not willing to care it will be probably a better idea to stay clear. The build quality of the Voigtlander lens is very good and a joy to use in the field. Regarding the slow max. aperture and the rather long min. focus distance its scope is mostly limited to maximum depth-of-field applications but this is probably fine for most users anyway. The pricing is quite steep for a non-dedicated lens but on the other hand it doesn't get any smaller and more light-weight (for the time being).

Optical Quality:
Mechanical Quality:
Price/Performance:
      
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