Field test by Andrea Cittadini
Petzval 55mm 1.7 MKII Bokeh Control

For some weeks now I have a new creative opportunity in my lens park, the Petzval 55mm 1.7 MKII Bokeh Control by Lomography.
I did the first operational test only few days ago during a wedding photo shooting in Umbria.
I used the “S” version with the “E” connection for Sony on an Alpha 7 MKIII.

It is a beautiful, compact and performing lens. It has three control rings positioned along the lens body. In order, starting from the front, we find the Bokeh Control ring, the aperture ring and finally the focus ring control.
The latter, being positioned very close to the small body of the Sony Alpha 7 MKIII, is difficult to control and forced me to hold the lens upside down in order to operate effectively and quickly.

The Petzval 55mm 1.7 MKII Bokeh Control is an entirely manual lens that requires, to be fully appreciated, an extreme precision in focusing.
This aspect could be very very difficult to control with an optical viewfinder of a traditional reflex camera. With a mirrorless this problem is partially eliminated by electronics using the “contour effect” to identify the precise position of the focus.

Once the hand is taken the Petzval 55mm it is a fun and effective lens. I also used it during dances in a very low light conditions and the results are amazing and, sometimes, unpredictable.
The lens was born for portraiture in my opinion and offers as excellent bokeh performance with half-length portraits or close-ups. Photographing distant subjects or panoramas does not enhance the pronounced or characteristic Petzval bokeh effect.

A lens that was to be part of my lenses park also considered my passion for antique photography and which, I’m sure, will give me great satisfaction in the future 🙂

Below there is a small gallery of photographs taken during the wedding photo shooting.

Make your choice and get the best photo shoot of your life!