One of the biggest complaints with cameras that have Micro 4/3-sized sensors and smaller is that the narrower field of view makes it very difficult to compose wide shots without using lenses so wide that they induce cringe-worthy distortion.
In September, SLR Magic introduced their 10mm T2.1 HyperPrime Cine, a lens that largely alleviates this issue. We've already seen that the GH4 pairs extremely well with this lens in a test from filmmaker Seb Farges. Seb wasn't the only filmmaker to get his hands on a pre-release version of the 10mm T2.1, however. Benjamin Lebeau also put this promising wide angle option through its paces on his Blackmagic Cinema Camera, and the results are, well, promising.
Here's Lebeau's piece, which is lovely and extremely well crafted, especially for a lens test.
Video is no longer available: vimeo.com/110024810
In his description of the video, Lebeau had this to say about how the lens, and the accompanying SLR Magic 77mm Variable ND, held up under his testing.
The lens is sharp, with a little bit of softness when wide open (of course). If you don’t want any softness, you’ll need to stop down to around T4-5.6, which was used in almost every shot with a bright sky. Night shots were wide open.
I was pleasantly surprised that [lens distortion] was very, very subtle, even in pan and tilt shots. It’s only visible on the corners, and on wide shots it’s practically imperceptible unless you’re defocused. Some people might shrug this off because you're getting 24mm and 20mm in equivalence, but people forget that the true *perspective* doesn't change, only the crop. If you took almost any other lens under $800 this wide and stuck it on your camera, you'd have some ugly fisheye. So props to Noktor for that.
If you plan on doing any shooting during the day, the 77mm SLR Magic Variable ND filter is essential. I've seen some people complain about vignetting or "cross effect" on variable NDs, but I found no such issues. A couple of the sun shots used the maximum setting, just to prove that point.
Although we're still waiting for the SLR Magic 10mm T2.1 HyperPrime Cine to be officially released to the public, the original press release said that it was probably going to begin shipping toward the end of October, so barring any crazy manufacturing delays, it's likely that we'll see it soon.
The SLR Magic 10mm T2.1 will retail at $799 and is currently available for preorder through B&H.