Mike Kobal

January 13, 2010

Brand new Voigtlander pancake lenses for Canon, quick look on Canon Eos 5D mark II

UPDATE: full size comparison shots at different aperture setting (shot on 5D mark II) can be downloaded from here.
If you are looking for small, high quality lenses

for your Canon Dslr’s, look no further, they are here! The
Voigtlander Utron SL II 40mm 2.0 is totally amazing. Sharp wide open on the a full frame sensor, slight vignetting is visible, but that is to be expected, and pretty much flawless once you stop down to 4 and 5.6. The 20mm 3.5 Color Skopar SL II is not far behind, although the edges are not sharp wide open on the 5D2. Stopped down to 5.6 it produces amazing results. Just love them, the built quality is first rate, manual focus ring is very smooth and a joy to operate. I am using mine on the 5D mark II and the 7D.Check the short video for to see how they look mounted on the camera and compared to the Sigma 50mm 1.4 and the Canon 28mm 2.8 (one of the smallest lenses in the Canon line up). Photozone posted a review/MTF test of the 40mm, tested on a Nikon D300. If you find this information helpful, please consider helping me maintaining this blog by purchasing your gear through my product links to B&H. It will cost you nothing and allows me to keep adding! Or consider making a direct donation using PayPal

Thank you.

Filed under: Gear Reviews — mike.kobal @ 3:06 pm


  1. I had no idea that anyone made pancake lenses for Canon.
    I still prefer my Pentax lenses over all my Canon Lenses.
    I have a couple of the Pentax pancake lenses and love them.

    Comment by Rob — January 14, 2010 @ 1:03 am

  2. Hi mike, sorry to burge this questions on your comments but I’m about to spend some dough on the 7D and I’m a bit unsure about which the lenses to buy. I have already a tele (canon 70-150, f4-5.6), so no point spending more on teles, but I was thinking if to buy: canon 50mm f1.4 (340 euros) + canon 28mm f.28 (190 euros) + tokina 11-16mm f.28 [aps-c] (500 euros) OR a sigma 30mm [aps-c] (420 euros) + the tokina. I’m unsure if a 50mm 1.4 is a vital lens to have. I think it is, but people told me wonders about the sigma 30mm 1.4, and if I buy that there is no point on the 28mm.


    Comment by andré m. — January 14, 2010 @ 7:50 am

  3. Great video review! Well produced. Keep them coming.


    – Sara

    Comment by Sara Churchill — January 14, 2010 @ 6:39 pm

  4. Pleasant and lust provoking video – please don’t do it again ;-)


    Comment by Peter Dahms — January 27, 2010 @ 1:37 am

  5. Thanks for the very interesting review!

    Grüße aus Wien

    Comment by Peter — February 3, 2010 @ 11:13 am

  6. I forgot to say: this is for instance a great lense using with a glidecam where you can cut down on counterweight cause each gram/ounce counts twice…

    Comment by Peter — February 3, 2010 @ 11:27 am

  7. thanks und Danke ;) glad you guys find it useful.

    Comment by mike.kobal — February 8, 2010 @ 11:41 am

  8. Hi Mike,

    The video was very helpful. I was wondering if Voigtlander lenses:

    -Voigtlander SL Series I 125/2.5 APO-Lanthar;
    -Voigtlander Nokton 58mm f/1.4 will work with Canon EOS 550D or 5DM2?

    Working with DSLRs will be my first experience, though had some feeling with Nikon D5000, learned from other sources and classes, so I feel I am ready “to hit the road”. I was planning to get Zeiss Planar 50mm f/2 or 100mm f/2 Planar, but when I found in Photozone about Voigtlander, I thought these lenses are what I need: quality of Zeiss but very affordable.

    Thank you in advance,

    Ema Lee


    Comment by Ema — May 2, 2010 @ 3:46 pm

  9. Ema, I love the Voigtlander lenses, they are great. I rented the 58mm 1.4 in Nikon mount a while ago, excellent. I am sure the 125mm won’t disappoint either. good luck

    Comment by mike.kobal — May 4, 2010 @ 8:58 pm

  10. Mike, I have a question:

    How the 20mm 3.5 Color Skopar SL II and 5D Mark II work together in HDR photos?

    (I mean, if AEB works fine and things like that…)


    Comment by Rod — January 8, 2011 @ 9:55 am

  11. Rod, works fine, AEB works just like on a Canon lens, the lens communicates everything to the camera body just like a Canon lens except you have to manual focus.

    Comment by mike.kobal — January 9, 2011 @ 1:00 pm

  12. hi, i am using canon eos 450D, and i am thinking about buying either Voigtlander ULTRON 40mm F2 SL II Aspherical or Canon ef28mm f/1.8 USM. can you make some brief comments on both lenses? many thanks.

    Comment by Kevin — January 19, 2011 @ 6:44 am

  13. both very good, Voigtlander is better wide open, if you can live with no af, go with the voigtlander.

    Comment by mike.kobal — January 19, 2011 @ 1:32 pm

  14. Hello Mike !
    Sorry, my question is a bit off-topic.
    Did you compare your Sigma 50mm with the Voigtländer 58mm ? How would you rank them in terms of sharpness at wide apertures ? Which one is the most pleasurable to use ? Why did you choose the Sigma ?
    Best Regards.

    Comment by Fred — January 31, 2011 @ 10:31 am

  15. both very good, prefer 50mm over 58mm

    Comment by mike.kobal — January 31, 2011 @ 10:42 am

  16. OK.Thank you.

    Comment by Fred — January 31, 2011 @ 10:56 am

  17. they are very good, wide, easy to focus – maybe too easy because longer distances does not anymanual focusing.
    sometimes i get a message that data transfer to camera is not possible.

    Comment by aa — September 17, 2011 @ 5:34 am

  18. hello mike
    a question for you, what choose between zeiss distagon 35mm f2 and voigtlander ultron 40mm f2 ?
    sorry, my english is not very good.

    Comment by alex vl — October 30, 2011 @ 3:01 pm

  19. hey alex, difficult to decide, they are both very good, mechanical quality excellent on both, no difference, optical quality very much the same and I personally really like 40mm over 35mm and would go with the Voigtlander, much better value and excellent image quality.

    Comment by mike.kobal — October 30, 2011 @ 3:14 pm

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