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Bargain bokeh: this f/1.1 lens is just $303!

Bargain bokeh: this f/1.1 lens is just $303!
(Image credit: Machang Optical)

Ultra-fast lenses are nothing new, but ultra-fast lenses at ultra-low prices are definitely out of the ordinary. That's why the new Kamlan KL 32mm f/1.1 has raised plenty of eyebrows, because it costs just $303. 

The Kamlan KL 32mm f/1.1 will be released for Canon, Sony and Fujifilm APS-C cameras as well as Micro Four Thirds bodies. However, it won't behave like a wide-angle lens – rather, it will be more like a nifty fifty in full-frame / 35mm terms. 

• Read more: Best 50mm lens (opens in new tab)

That's because the effective focal length and the aperture (strictly in terms of depth of field, not light gathering capability) are both affected by the respective crop factors of those systems. So the 32mm f/1.1 would become an effective 48.96mm f/1.68 on Sony E and Fujifilm X mounts, 51.84mm f/1.78 on Canon EOS M cameras, and 64mm f/2.2 on Olympus, Panasonic, Blackmagic et al. 

With its standard field of view and lightning-fast aperture, the Kamlan KL 32mm f/1.1 becomes a useful standard lens on APS-C and a light tele on Micro Four Thirds, making it an appealing option for everyday photography and certain portraiture.

A fully manual optic, it boasts 9 elements in 7 groups, with 11 aperture blades for pleasing circular bokeh expressions (read: 'bokeh balls'!). The aperture ring, as with fellow ultra-fast lens the Kamlan 50mm f/1.1 II (opens in new tab), is a clickless affair, so this becomes an affordable and versatile choice for videographers as well – particularly with its 0.4m minimum focusing distance. 

In physical terms the lens measures 92 x 70mm, with a 62mm filter thread, and weighs in at 601g. If it's anything like its 50mm counterpart, it will boast all-metal construction that feels sturdy and solid in the hand – always welcome, but especially at such a low price. 

The Kamlan KL 32mm f/1.1 goes on sale on 12 February at a retail price of ¥32,000, which is approximately $303 / £221 / AU$395. For more information, visit the Kamlan website (opens in new tab).

Read more: 

Kamlan 50mm f/1.1 II review (opens in new tab)
Best Canon lens (opens in new tab)
Best Sony lens (opens in new tab)
Best Fujifilm lens
(opens in new tab)
Best Micro Four Thirds lens (opens in new tab)

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The editor of Digital Camera World, James has 21 years experience as a magazine and web journalist and started working in the photographic industry in 2014 (as an assistant to Damian McGillicuddy, who succeeded David Bailey as Principal Photographer for Olympus). In this time he shot for clients as diverse as Aston Martin Racing, Elinchrom and L'Oréal, in addition to shooting campaigns and product testing for Olympus, and providing training for professionals. This has led him to being a go-to expert for camera and lens reviews, photographic and lighting tutorials, as well as industry analysis, news and rumors for publications such as Digital Camera Magazine (opens in new tab)PhotoPlus: The Canon Magazine (opens in new tab)N-Photo: The Nikon Magazine (opens in new tab)Digital Photographer (opens in new tab) and Professional Imagemaker, as well as hosting workshops and demonstrations at The Photography Show (opens in new tab). An Olympus and Canon shooter, he has a wealth of knowledge on cameras of all makes – and a fondness for vintage lenses and instant cameras.