Lomography announced new RUSSAR+ 20mm f/5.6 lens for L39/M mounts

Leica_M6-with-Lomography--RUSSAR+-ART-lens Lomography--RUSSAR+-ART-lens-by-Zenit
Today Lomography announced their new 20mm f/5.6 RUSSAR+ ART lens for L39 and M mountsThis lens is a rebirth of the legendary 1958 Russar MR-2, the mother of all modern non-SLR super wide-angle lenses. The lens is designed by Lomography and manufactured in Russia by Zenit. The Russar+ is compatible with all L39/M mount analogue and digital cameras. The lens is made from brass and is chrome-plated.

You can now pre-order the RUSSAR+ for $649.00 at lomography.com. Additional information after the break.

Video presentation:

Technical specifications:

  • Focal length: 20mm
  • Aperture: f/5.6 - f/22
  • Minimum image circle: 44mm
  • Field of view: 94 degree
  • Flange distance: 27.8mm (M mount)
  • M mount frame line triggering: 28mm
  • Closest focusing distance: 0.5m
  • Filter thread requirement: 49mm
  • Distortion: ~ 0.09 percent

Analogue sample images:

Lomography  RUSSAR+ ART lens Sample images analogue 1 Lomography  RUSSAR+ ART lens Sample images analogue 2 Lomography  RUSSAR+ ART lens Sample images analogue 3 Lomography  RUSSAR+ ART lens Sample images analogue 4 Lomography  RUSSAR+ ART lens Sample images analogue 5

Digital sample images:

Lomography  RUSSAR+ ART lens sample images digital 4 Lomography  RUSSAR+ ART lens sample images digital 3 Lomography  RUSSAR+ ART lens sample images digital 2 Lomography  RUSSAR+ ART lens sample images digital 1

Press release:


A rebirth of the legendary 1958 Russar MR-2 - The mother of all modern non-SLR super-wide-angle lenses.

Celebrating a ground-breaking optical design: The New Russar+ is a rebirth of the Russar MR-2 lens, which was masterminded by and named after M. M. Rusinov, the father of all modern super-wide-angle lens design. Due to its fantastic optics, near-perfect distortion control and illumination, the Russar+ offers stronger technical performance than comparable lenses on the market.

Real Russian Character from a Wide-angle Wonder: The Russar+ has high-quality Russian optics for sharp photos full of warm, vibrant colors, vignettes and bursting with unique character. With a 20mm focal length, the Russar+ is perfect for street photography, architectural shots and landscapes.

Updated Features & Compatibility Galore: With its modified lens tube construction and multicoated finish, the Russar+ is compatible with all L39/M mount analogue cameras and digital mirrorless cameras and tons of other cameras using adapter mounts! Crafted from brass and chrome-plated, it has near-perfect distortion control, great illumination and a beautiful, compact lens design.

Designed by Lomography and manufactured in Russia by Zenit, the Russar+ (L39/M mount) is a brand new super-wide-angle lens and a pioneering update on the 1958 Russar MR-2. The original Russar MR-2 was a truly groundbreaking super-wide-angle lens; it was the masterpiece of and named after Mikhail Mikhailovich Rusinov, once the Chief Optical Engineer at Zenit, who devised its fantastic optical scheme. This innovative and revolutionary optical system allowed for brighter wide-angle photos by utilizing aberrational vignetting in the corners for more illumination across the whole image. It was patented in 1946 and laid the foundations from which super-wide-angle lenses have since been designed.

The New Russar+ celebrates this pioneering tradition of the original Russar MR-2 and also incorporates significant design improvements. Years of high quality optical engineering experience at Zenit and the innovative design updates from Lomography have resulted in a lens which is a wonderful hybrid of old and new. The original Russar was made out of aluminum whereas the New Russar+ is handcrafted out of brass; this makes the Russar+ more rigid and durable. This glorious reinvented lens has a brilliant, compact design and is also multicoated to reduce flare and surface reflection. Plus the Russar+ has a modified lens tube construction to make it compatible with a whole host of different digital and analogue cameras.

The New Russar+ is the perfect wide angle lens for sharp shots bursting with the unique quality that only a lens manufactured using the finest Russian optics can bring. This is the special character of Russian optics which Lomographers first discovered when they started shooting with the legendary LC-A over 20 years ago! Each Russar+ Lens is produced using handcraftsmanship, love and wonderful Russian glass.

With its ultra-wide 20mm focal length, the Russar+ allows you to capture the beauty of the world from stunning perspectives; it’s perfect for street shooting, landscapes and architectural photos, as well as those up-close-and-personal portrait shots. Take it to your favorite mountain escape, a bustling city street, an idyllic and isolated beach or with a gang of friends in a cramped car – wherever you journey to with the Russar+ by your side, it’s certain you’ll shoot photos that are sweeping, majestic and filled with a truly authentic and unique personality!

Part of the special optical character of the Russar+ comes from its manual functionality. Shooting with the New Russar+ lens is an intimate and creative experience which encourages the photographer to enjoy every moment; from turning the focusing wheel and manually setting your aperture, to the instant you click down on the camera shutter, the entire process of photography becomes more magical and special.

Pre-orders for this wonderful new Art lens are on a first come first serve basis; it is currently planned that pre-ordered lenses will be delivered in July 2014.

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  • Vivek

    A pity that they did not design an external aperture control. Also, the charm of the feather weight aluminum is lost. 🙁

    Great price though!

    • guest

      At least one RF Nikon WA lens has its aperture ring like this.

      • Vivek

        I have a few that (Russian, Zeiss, Nikon) have aperture controls like this. I have also seen at least one prototype lens (either the Russar or Orion-15) that sports an external aperture ring. A missed opportunity, IMO.

    • Ironymous

      My 35mm Jupiter is like this. I quite like it as it makes it harder to nudge by accident. Not so good if you prefer to use shutter priority, though.

  • Chris Knight

    How does it compare to the Voigtlander wide-angle lenses (which are in the same price ballpark, although the 21mm is significantly more expensive and much larger)? (And I kinda like the aperture ring design, I don’t know how many times I’ve turned the aperture ring of a lens accidentally thinking I had the focus ring.)

    • Vance Lester

      The Voigtlander 21mm f4 ltm is much cheaper at $420 WITH a finder. It’s not really fair to compare the 21 f1.8 against this.

      • Ironymous

        With a finder for that price? Do you have a link? I’d be intersted to buy one. The ones I have seen go for slightly higher, with no finder.

        • Vance Lester

          I saw that price on the cameraquest website. Keep in mind this is the LTM mount, so an adapter is needed for mounting on an M.

  • Phil Brown

    $649? You can get a Super Angulon for that.

  • Jon

    My Skopar LTM on M5. Like it much better.

    • Jon

      And size difference is moot point imo

  • daniels film

    very exciting news. what a beautiful lens. I love that it retains all of its classic Russian look. love it.

  • Heiko Bertram

    unique Russian character. What’s that?

    • Puttin

      Drunk fisheye ? Anyway be careful with those ru lenses they can invade… U know Russian character.

  • The flare looks very well-controlled. Looks good from my seat!

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