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Boutique Third Party Brands


There are a number of small lens makers who have been developing lenses particularly for modern mirrorless cameras.  Most of these (but not all) are budget, manual focus alternatives.

June 15, 2020 7Artisans 55mm F1.4 Review + Image Gallery

Photography is expensive, so a lot of the gear that I end up reviewing is often outside the budget of many people.  Fortunately there has been a rise in the past 3-4 years of what I classify as “boutique third party brands”.  These are smaller startup lensmakers who don’t have a widely established rep [Read more...]

May 27, 2020 Pergear 35mm F1.6 Image Gallery & Review

Pergear has delivered another ultra-cheap lens to follow up on the Pergear 25mm F1.8, that I reviewed earlier this year.  That lens roughly corresponded to a traditional 35mm focal length on full frame (37.5mm), while the new lens, the Pergear 35mm F1.6, has an 52.5mm equivalent focal length, making it a “normal” [Read more...]

May 13, 2020 TTArtisan 11mm F2.8 Fisheye Review and Gallery

Fisheye lenses are out on the extremes of photography.  Whereas often I’m evaluating lenses and critiquing if they have distortion, fisheye lenses are really all about embracing the distortion and using it in creative ways.  It’s not for beginners, and certainly can be used poorly, but there are also a lot [Read more...]

February 25, 2020 Pergear 25mm F1.8 Image Gallery

I’ve been interacting with Pergear for a couple of years now as a distributor of other brands, then a retailer of those brands, but now they have gotten their feet wet with actually producing a Pergear branded lens…and at a serious bargain!  The Pergear 25mm F1.8 sells for only $68 USD, making it perhaps the [&h [Read more...]

January 9, 2020 Yasuhara Anthy 35mm F1.8 RF Review

With any new camera system there is a vulnerable period where the quantity and quality of lenses available for the system can either make or break its momentum.  Canon has been weathering that storm on its “R” full frame mirrorless platform, where of the ten RF mount lenses from Canon at this point, only two [&h [Read more...]

January 2, 2020 Yasuhara Anthy 35mm F1.8 RF Image Gallery

With any new camera system there is a vulnerable period where the quantity and quality of lenses available for the system can either make or break its momentum.  Canon has been weathering that storm on its “R” full frame mirrorless platform, where of the ten RF mount lenses from Canon at this point, only two [&h [Read more...]

November 6, 2019 Brightin Star 12mm F2 Image Gallery

Brightin Star is the somewhat oddly named brand (I suspect this is a Chinese idiom that gets lost in translation) that has started to produce a variety of budget manual focus lenses for a number of the popular mirrorless camera systems, including Sony, Fuji, Canon M, and m43.  The Brightin Star 12mm F2 caught my […] [Read more...]

June 21, 2019 Viltrox AF 85mm F1.8 STM Review

The Viltrox AF 85mm F1.8 STM is the first full frame autofocus lens from Viltrox designed for Sony FE…and I’m the first reviewer in the West to get my hands on one!  The 85STM sports a beautiful build quality (very premium) along with a STM autofocus system.  I’ll be exploring how Viltrox has does in [Read more...]