Laowa’s New 1.5x Anamorphic Zooms Have a Special, Unique Design

Laowa Nanomorph anamorphic zoom lens

Venus Optics, maker of Laowa photo and cinema lenses, has announced two new anamorphic zoom lenses, the Laowa Nanomorph 1.5X Anamorphic 28-55mm T2.9 and 50-100mm T2.9.

When used together in a kit, the anamorphic zoom lenses offer 3.6x zoom, providing cinematographers a versatile and flexible zoom range from wide-angle to mid-telephoto perspectives.

Of note, the Nanomorph series zooms, like Laowa’s prior Nanomorph lenses, are designed for Super 35 (APS-C) cameras. However, at about the 65mm focal length, the 50-100mm T2.9 lens covers a full-frame image area, albeit with a “slight” vignette.

The pair of new zooms boast a constant 1.5 times squeeze ratio, meaning they can produce a 2.39:1 aspect ratio on 4:3 sensors. Achieving a stable squeeze ratio throughout the zoom range required Venus Optics to develop a one-of-a-kind patented anamorphic design. The company promises its new lenses avoid the “anamorphic mumps,” which is when the squeeze ratio changes during zooming. It’s the anamorphic version of “focus breathing.”

Speaking of focus breathing, these lenses promise to avoid that as well. The 28-55mm Nano Zoom focuses as close as 45 centimeters (1.5 feet), enabling reasonably close shots. Both lenses feature a 270-degree focus throw, unified gear positions, and robust build quality. The zoom rings have 100 degrees of throw.

They also share a size and shape, ensuring consistency within a workflow. The 28-55mm T2.9 lens weighs 1,513 grams (3.34 pounds), while the 50-100mm T2.9 is 1,500 grams (3.31 pounds). The lenses have the same diameter, although the 28-55mm is two millimeters (0.08 inches) longer. Without getting into the weeds, they’re both about 188 millimeters (7.4 inches) long.

Like prior Laowa anamorphic lenses, the Nano Zoom duo features changeable lens mounts, with options including Sony E, Canon RF, Nikon Z, Fujifilm X, and L-Mount. They ship with Arri PL installed by default. They also come in various flare colors: amber, blue, and silver.

Despite being treated very much as a two-lens set, customers can purchase the Laowa Nanomorph 1.5x Anamorphic Zoom lenses separately. Starting today through April 11th, the lenses are available exclusively through Indiegogo, starting at $2,399, a 20% discount. The two-lens set is as little as $4,059, or 30% off. There was also one lucky videographer who grabbed them both for just $1, but that deal has, unsurprisingly, been snatched up. The lenses are expected to start shipping in April.

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Image credits: Venus Optics