A nose for great photos? AstrHori 28mm f/13 macro probe lens is launched

AstrHori 28mm F13 2X Macro lens
(Image credit: Astrhori)

AstrHori has just announced the official specs for the 28mm f/13 2X macro probe lens which was leaked last week. It's now been confirmed the lens will be available in the following mounts: Sony E, Fujifilm X, Nikon Z, Nikon F, Canon RF, L-mount and PL-mount. Notably, Canon EF mount is notably missing from the list.

Those familiar with the similarly unusual-looking Laowa 24mm f/14 2x macro probe lens will notice just how closely these two wide-angle probe lenses resemble one another. Both lenses feature an extremely long, thin barrel which is designed for a very particular purpose; to get insanely close to your subjects and capture shots no other lens can. Unlike most lenses, probe lenses have a built-in LED ring light at the front of the lens enabling you to illuminate your subjects when you can't use an external light source. 

• These are the best macro lenses for capturing your subjects really close up

If you shoot portraits or landscapes, chances are you won't have any need for this lens but for content creators who regularly shoot food, or small items such as jewelry or who want to capture shots underwater, this lens is a really affordable alternative to the Laowa version. Thinking outside the box about your shots is key to using this lens but you will definitely be able to capture exciting content that those without this lens couldn't. 

With a maximum aperture of f/13 and a minimum aperture of f/40, you'll have to make sure your sensor is spotless because any marks on it will show up. It has a 75° angle of view, a minimum working distance of 10mm, a minimum focusing distance of 0.48m to infinity and offers a 2:1 maximum magnification.  The optical structure is formed of 21 elements in 16 groups and a 7-bladed diaphragm. 

Weighing 698g it certainly isn't the lightest macro lens about but it's almost definitely one of the longest at 45.7cm (the Laowa equivalent is 40.8cm). However, a user-friendly design means it can be separated into two parts and the main body part can be used independently of the aperture and focus ring which feature a cine focus gear for use with cine focusing devices. 

Although designed for full-frame cameras it could be used on APS-C bodies with a crop factor of 1.5x making it a 42mm full-frame equivalent. The very front of the lens is completely waterproof allowing you to submerge it just beneath the water up to 25cm. A built-in LED ring on the front of the lens makes it really easy to illuminate subjects, especially when used underwater and the LED is powered by a USB port on the lens barrel. 

The Astrhori 28mm f/13 2X macro lens is now available to buy from Amazon for $739/£649 (around AU$1,160) - roughly half what the Laowa equivalent would set you back. 

Check out the best LED light panels and the best tripods which will help you take even better macro photos!

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Hannah Rooke
Staff Writer

Having studied Journalism and Public Relations at the University of the West of England Hannah developed a love for photography through a module on photojournalism. She specializes in Portrait, Fashion and lifestyle photography but has more recently branched out in the world of stylized product photography. For the last 3 years Hannah has worked at Wex Photo Video as a Senior Sales Assistant using her experience and knowledge of cameras to help people buy the equipment that is right for them. With 5 years experience working with studio lighting, Hannah has run many successful workshops teaching people how to use different lighting setups.