Voigtlander has launched a new, super-fast lens exclusively for Fujifilm X-mount cameras. The Voigtlander NOKTON 35mm f/0.9 is a manual focus lens, but is equipped with electronic contacts for camera-lens communication that enables IBIS (in compatible cameras), parallax correction, and the recording of lens EXIF data.
The aperture diaphragm is comprised of a whopping 12 blades, which when combined with the huge f/0.9 diaphragm diameter should mean bokeh is about as soft as it gets.
Despite the huge aperture, Voigtlander has managed to keep the lens very compact at 64.9mm long, with a 72.7mm diameter, and an overall weight of 492g. Contrast this to a lens like the Nikon Z 58mm 0.95 Noct (admittedly a full-frame lens, but one with a similar effective focal length, maximum aperture, and manual-only focussing) which is more than four times heavier than the NOKTON 35mm f/0.9, and 153mm long.
To maintain the best possible optical performance, the lens incorporates a ground aspherical front element, and a double-sided aspherical element further back. According to Voigtlander, the use of ground aspherical - rather than the more common molded aspherical - elements means the glass has a higher melting point during manufacture, and therefore can be shaped to a higher refractive index, thereby improving image sharpness. The overall optical stack consists of 10 elements in 8 groups, mounted within an all-metal lens barrel.
Voigtlander claims the focus ring has an "accurate feel", which is more necessity than nicety with a lens this fast. Set the aperture wide open at f/0.9 and depth of field will be extremely shallow, even though the lens's focal length isn't particularly long. For accurate manual focussing, a long-travel focus ring is a must, otherwise you risk sailing right through the focal plane with just a few millimetres of focus ring rotation. Minimum focus distance is 0.35m, and filter size is 62mm.
Where most third-party lenses like this are built with a selection of different mount options, Voigtlander states that the NOKTON 35mm F0.9 has been designed exclusively for X mount.
The Voigtlander 35mm f0.9 NOKTON is available to pre-order now, with an RRP of £1,199, and availability slated for August. US pricing has yet to be revealed.