Review Street Shooter of Choice - Voigtlander 15mm 4.5 Heliar II + TAP

JonathanF2

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This review isn't about one lens or one adapter, it's about two items combined to create an unlikely duo of the Voigtlander 15mm 4.5 Heliar ver. II + Techart Pro Adapter (TAP). I'm reviewing these two items in conjunction, because one without the other wouldn't be possible. The Voigtlander 15mm f/4.5 Heliar ver. II + TAP have become my go-to combo when it comes to shooting street photography and urban environments. When combined, the pair become the smallest auto focusing ultra wide angle lens in existence, also made possible with the technology found in the Sony A7/R II/III and A9 cameras.

The other reason I like this combo is due to to the imperfection of it all. It's neither very accurate, fast and it doesn't even work all the time. It's the kind of combination that makes photography fun again! There are better lenses, both manual and auto focus. Though the Voigtlander 15mm ver. II appeals to me mainly due to it's small size and rough-around-the-edges personality. It also shows it's teeth with excellent center sharpness when nailing focus. The TAP isn't exactly reliable as well, in fact I had to dismantle one, rip it's guts out and put it back together while throwing in some gaffer tape for good measure.

I consider this combination my street shooter of choice, because it's not something anyone can just pick-up and shoot with. It's like Bruce Lee with his nunchakus or Manny Pacquiao and his 8oz Cleto Reyes puncher gloves. It's a very specific tool, for a very specific use. It's something you sharpen your teeth with when in gritty, high contrast, close quarter environments. Sure you can use small format cameras, but when you want to shoot FF, have auto focus and go wide/small, this is the way to go! ;)

* It's also worth noting the new Sony FF cameras with BSI sensors greatly reduce the color cast issue with the previous generation of Sony cameras.

The Sony A7 III + TAP + Voigtlander 15mm 4.5 Heliar II:
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181228_VOIGTLANDER_15_A7III_TAP_FRIOLO_001 by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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181228_VOIGTLANDER_15_A7III_TAP_FRIOLO_002 by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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181228_VOIGTLANDER_15_A7III_TAP_FRIOLO_003 by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

A few samples with the CV15 + TAP:
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181228_MELROSE_FRIOLO_012 by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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Photo Shoot with Model Elmira Mirzayanova / December 08, 2017 by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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Street Photography of Bangkok Thailand by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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181228_MELROSE_FRIOLO_015 by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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Street Photography of Bangkok Thailand by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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180609_DTLA_STREETS_FRIOLO_06 by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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Street Photography of Bangkok Thailand by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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180609_DTLA_STREETS_FRIOLO_01 by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr

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181228_MELROSE_FRIOLO_002 by Jonathan Friolo, on Flickr
 
Last edited:

JonathanF2

TalkEmount All-Pro
Joined
Aug 16, 2014
Messages
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Location
Los Angeles, USA
TAP with an CV ultrawide. That's something I hadn't thought of. I like it. Maybe it's time for me to get a TAP adapter.
I think from previous reports on here, your CV 21mm 1.8 should focus well. Though the 12mm f/5.6 might have issues focusing due to the slower aperture. The speed and accuracy of the TAP is dependent on several factors including lens f-stop, focal length and physical weight.
 

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