Laowa Introduces Unusual New T8 2x Pro2be Macro Tube Lenses

Four different types of tools are shown on a black background.

The Venus Optics brand Laowa has announced the arrival of its highly specialized T8 2x Pro2be Macro tube lens, which offers three unique lenses in one device.

This extremely distinct lens combo is designed for an array of unusual photo and cinematic uses and has been built with particularly specialized uses in mind.

For starters, the T8 2x Pro2be Macro Tube lens is really a combination of three different optics that each offers its own specific capabilities. They’re being released by the brand as a 3-in-1 package offer, but are also being sold individually.

Interestingly, the specifications of all three lenses are identical despite their obviously different physical designs. These differences are because of the different shooting angles each offers.

First of all, there is the direct view lens, which looks the most like a normal camera optic (though it’s still radically different). This model in particular is also very similar to an existing Probe lens from Laowa.

The other two lenses in the T8 2x Pro2be Macro Tube lens combo consist of the 35-degree view lens and a Periscope view model that offers a 90-degree view of subjects.

The 35-degree lens lets users capture cinematic high and low-angle shots while keeping their camera straight. This means that for example, you can use this lens to shoot downward on subjects while keeping your camera below them and perfectly straight.

The 90-degree model on the other hand looks just like a miniature periscope for cameras and lets you take close photos of things elevated above the camera while keeping it straight.

Each of these lenses is tubular and adjustable, though they’re all roughly 50 centimeters or 19.7-20 inches long. They’re all also roughly 3 cm or 1.2 inches wide across their main tubes.

On the other hand, despite their nearly identical lengths, each lens has a different weight because of its design details. Thus, they have a weight range of 1,024 to 1,068 grams or 2.3-2.4 lbs.

Overall though, these differences are pretty small considering the unique capabilities of each lens in the T8 2x Pro2be Macro Tube trio. As you can see in the videos and images, each one is designed with its own specific purposes in mind.

The three lenses are also fairly rugged, with a tough metal design and plenty of waterproofing.

According to Laowa, 14.4 inches or 36.6 cm of each lens’s thinnest part from the end downward is completely waterproof, with a red ring delineating where waterproofing ends for each of them.

Included hardware also lets you unlock each lens right between its red waterproof marking ring and each one’s lens mount. This means that users can rotate each lens for different shooting angles and perspectives.

All three lenses also have the same design for their controls. These include manual focus rings and manual aperture control. The three lenses range in aperture from T8 to T40 and have an aperture throw of 50 degrees.

On the other hand, their focus ring throw sits at 150 degrees and includes measurement marks for magnification ratios and distance measurements (in metric units.)

For both aperture and focus rings, there are hard stops for each end. These lenses also have a maximum 2x magnification ratio at 4mm.

Internally, the lenses differ from each other in certain ways. For example, the direct view lens and the 35-degree model share an internal design with 33 elements in 24 groups. The 90-degree version however consists internally of 34 elements in 25 groups.

A set of black and blue tubes with a blue handle.

At this point, you might be wondering what these lenses are for. Basically, it depends. Overall their use cases all involve very versatile macro photo and video niches that differ slightly for each lens.

Photographers and filmmakers can however use these highly elongated, thin lenses to shoot objects from very unusual angles or very closely without being too intrusive.

What’s more, the 24mm focal length of the T8 2x Pro2be Macro Tube lens combo means that their optics allow excellent macro shooting capabilities.

These macro capabilities could make these lenses ideal for capturing videos and photos of tiny animals, small hidden corners and of course small products from unusual angles and in odd settings comfortably.

Another cool potential use of the lenses is for shooting objects underwater: Because they’re extremely elongated and waterproof right down to their mounting structures, you can slide one of these lenses into a pond or aquarium for interesting close-up shallow-water shots.

Laowa’s 24mm focal length of the T8 2x Pro2be Macro Tube lens combo is already available from online retailers in several versions for different camera formats including Arri PL, Canon EF, Canon RF, Nikon F, Sony FE, Leica L and Nikon Z mounts.

The lenses are fairly pricey at $2,849 for the direct view edition, $3,149 for the 35-degree model and $3,349 for the periscope edition.

Or if you want all three, they’re available together with their own hard case for $8,499. This combo price seems steep but it actually cuts $850 off the cost of buying them separately.

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Shotkit Journalist, Writer & Reviewer

Stephan Jukic is a technology and photography journalist and experimental photographer who spends his time living in both Canada and Mexico. He loves cross-cultural street photo exploration and creating fine art photo compositions.

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