HANDS ON: The New Voigtlander 15 f/4.5 V3 VM lens – Quick 1st test vs the V2

HANDS ON: The New Voigtlander 15 f/4.5 V3 VM lens – Quick 1st test vs the V2

Lens now available and in stock at CAMERAQUEST.COM

Just arrived! The all new Voigtlander 15 f/4.5 Version 3 Lens, in VM mount (Leica M Mount) and so far so good! As we all know, Version 1 and 2 had issues when used on a Leica M camera or the Sony A7 series as we would get colored magenta edges or massive vignetting. Voigtlander HAS indeed seemed to fix this issue in the new version of the 15 f/4.5 Lens. While the lens is a little larger, and a little more expensive at $750, it seems to perform MUCH better on the Sony A7II vs the old version of this lens.


It actually JUST arrived to my house 20 minutes ago. First thing I did was take it out and do a quick side by side test. One shot with the new V3 lens and one shot with the older V2 lens. The new version has no colored edges or issues which means we finally have a usable 15mm wide-angle prime for our A7 and M cameras that will not break the bank!

Next week I will post real samples from this lens on the A7II, A7s and Leica M 240.

SIZE: New V3 on the right vs the older V2 on the left



For now, one quick sample – full size images shot on the A7II. This is a TEST shot, not a “photograph” that has any meaning.

The original seems to do OK on the A7II but with dark corners and edges. The new version clears that up. Looks good, so I can not wait to test this lens thoroughly on the A7II and Leica M 240. 

Right click each image and open in a new window for full size file



Two shots to show no issues at the edges on the A7II, AT ALL! 2nd shot is ISO 4000 with Zero NR – click for larger




  1. Hello Steve, I would love to see one of your crazy comparisons with the Zeiss 15mm f.28 distagon!

  2. I received my CV15/4.5 III yesterday. The lens is sharp including in the corners. And while there is some CA wide open, it is easily cleaned up in Lightroom. I’m really liking this lens . . . especially its size versus the Zeiss Distagon 15/2.8 that I recently sold.

    I posted a couple of sets of images on Fred Miranda:


    What’s really amazing is the minimum focus distance when mounted on an A7II with a VM-E helicoid adapter. I was literally and inch or two from the top of the fire hydrant with the helicoid expanded:


  3. Wow, didn’t realise how much larger it got from Version II, guess fixing it for digital sensors requires it to be larger (and I guess makes a point that we’ll never get small lens like for film cameras due to digital sensor requirements). My only beef with it is, why is the hood still integrated! 🙁

  4. Awesome. I’m excited. I just bought an A7II with the Zeiss 35 2.8 not too long ago and decided to buy this voigtlander as my second lens for this system over the weekend. Getting it tomorrow. I can’t wait to test it out.

  5. I was pretty sure that model II was problematic on the A7.
    How come it looks fine on tha A7II if they have the same sensor ???

  6. I really like that last shot. 🙂

    From what I can tell, this lens would have a maximum distortion of less than 0.5% (no lens should have even 0.25%, but I digress). Of course I’m just guessing based on these few images.

    Here’s the thing: this would make a great shift lens, with an appropriate adapter, for Micro 4/3 cameras, if the distortion is very low. Shift lenses – good ones, that is – for the Leica format (or ‘full frame’) are not cheap. But this lens is relatively cheap. Use it in conjunction with the OM-D E-M5II’s 40Mpx mode, and you have one heck of an architecture camera.

    Now, if Voigtlander can produce a lens this good at 12mm, that’s even better. 🙂

    • The 12mm already works great on both the Olympus M4/3 bodies as well as several DX mirrorless bodies… I use it on my EOS M’s (first version) as well as My E pm2’s and EP 1’s… No vignett or discoloration what so ever..

      • Yea, APS-C and smaller sensor, but it is a full frame lens. The point is 15mm. On 4/3 you get 30. No longer a wide angle. On APS-C you get 23mm or so. So those sensors do not use the edges of the lens, at all. You also miss out on what this lens is made for – ultra wide. Id never use this as a 30mm as it is a slow aperture lens.

        • Sorry Steve…Not sure if you were refering to me,.. I was commenting on Karim D Ghantous statement…..

          “Now if Voigtlander can produce a lens this good at 12mm, that’s even better” ….

          I use my 12mm on the APS C bodies…. the 12mm gives about 19.4mm FOV…(for Canon) and about 18mm FOV on Fuji/Sony… wide enough for most folks…And it is a very sharp lens … I am not about to discard it just because I do not own a Sony or Leica FF body yet.. And it does get mounted on one of my Olympus M4/3 bodies from time to time as well (24mm FOV).

          Eventually I will get FF mirrorless. All of my “M” mount glass gets mounted on whatever “skinny body” I feel like using for the moment.. I owned the original 15mm/Bessa L combo back in the film days because it was much cheaper than buying a Nikon 14mm for my Hotel work.. The only reason I would buy a 15mm again is if and when I get a FF mirrorless body…Thats if my 12mm no longer works well because of too many MPX or being to close to the sensor etc… sorry for the confusion on my part.. Cheers!!

    • I agree! Would be interesting even with APS-C. With the A7r in crop mode you’d still get 16MP and a 22mm equivalent shift-lens with 6mm shift vertically and 4mm horizontally. Cropping to be done at the editing stage of course.

      With a m43 camera, you’d get approximately a 30mm equivalent (as the ratio is not 3/2 it is more or less depending at which measure you look at, height, width or diagonal) and plenty of shift left.

      Not sure the m43 flange distance would allow a shifting mechanism in the adapter, though, looking at how thin the M/m43 adapters are.

    • It should but I don to have an R to test it on. The old version was no good on the A7, so the fact that it is on the A7II shows it should do well with ANY A7 body. Will be testing on the Leica M this week as well as if it works great on the M, it will be HUGE and well worth the cost for M shooters.

      • The earlier Voigtlander 15/4.5 VM II has only cast problem (sensor directivity) and CA by refraction through the IR filter on A7r. Capture One Pro 7-8 with a flat field test image (and its CA auto correction) corrects all perfectly and more. It is far sharper than any superwide or zoom for DSRL even at border/cornders. The new one has essentially less cast…

  7. Sounds and looks like a winner…Someday I will finally dump my very cheap 5D’s (mk1) and get one of the Sony FF bodies….I own the Voigtlander 12mm version II.. the 7S still looks promissing for the 12mm lens and of course the 15mm… Just curious… did you ever get reasonable results with the Voigtlander 12mm on the A7 II ??? I am cheap so right now I use both the 12mm f5.6 and 21mm f4 Voigtlanders on my little EOS M’s.. But on the other hand.. The 15mm should be plenty wide on full frame…

  8. Steve, be interested to know your thoughts of this against the Zeiss 16-35 f4; more expensive but perhaps better for the A7 user? Keep up the great work: I owe you a new article soon, I’ll get on it when I’m back from Vietnam.

      • I’m with Hiren, the top left corner shows significant smearing of the photo with the trees. So does the bottom left corner.
        Looking at it with an iMac monitor and an iPad retina.

        FYI I’m a CV fan, owning the 35 1.2, 40mm ZF Ultron and soon coming 40 1.4 SC.

        I think you should try this new 15mm Voigt lens on a 35mm film camera (Leica, Zeiss Ikon, Bessa) to see how it performs on those. Use Ektar 100.

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