Leica announced the original +1 Macro-Lux Diopter last year and it has quickly become the go-to clamp-on diopter for a wide range of productions. If you didn’t catch the announcement at NAB 2016, I’ll recap for you really quickly… The Macro-Lux +1 is essentially a super high quality clamp-on diopter. If you’re not familiar with diopters, think of them as a very quick way to achieve closer focus than what’s normally possible. A +1 is a pretty standard magnification which is why Leica released this one first. Now you can achieve even greater artistic goals with the +0.5 and +2 Macro-Lux.
Traditionally, diopters allow you to focus much closer, but at the expense of image quality. But what happens when Leica designed and manufactures such a product to typical Leica standards? You get a product that performs better than any other diopter on the market. I’ve seen a lot of cheap diopters over the years and I usually expect to see some degradation in resolution, especially in the corners – but the Leica Macro-Lux line of products nearly eliminate this compromise. Even stacked three deep (see above), image quality is well maintained.
So what’s the catch? There are, of course, limitations to this particular product. It only clamps onto 95mm lenses (or 80mm with an exclusive Duclos Macro-Lux Reduction Ring) and it’s relatively expensive compared to lower quality diopters, weighing in at $1,500. But beyond that, it’s quite simply a good, well made piece of glass. So which one is best for you? All of them! Remember, all of the Macro-Lux diopters are stack-able giving you up to a +3.5 diopter for extra dramatic close focus effects. The results are something you need to see to believe. The closer you bring your focus, the more dramatic your bokeh becomes as a result.
The original Macro-Lux +1 as well as the new Macro-Lux +.5 and Macro-Lux +2 are all available to order directly from Duclos Lenses. Shipping begins April, 2017. We’ll be sure to grab some additional samples during NAB 2017.