Budget Ultra-Wide: the Bower 14mm/f2.8
In the right hands, a 14mm ultra wide-angle lens can produce incredibly dramatic imagery, especially travel landscapes and all the tight places you've never quite been able to squeeze into the frame using the kit zoom that came with your DSLR. But ultra wide-angle lenses—especially the faster f/2.8 versions—are often out of the price range of many enthusiasts. Thanks to Bower, you can now crack the 28mm wide-angle barrier for well under $500. How "well" under $500? How'z about $426? Got your attention yet?
The Bower 14mm /f2.8 ultra wide-angle lens is available for use with APS-C and full-frame* DSLRs from Canon, Nikon and Sony/Minolta AF, as well as APS-C format DSLRs from Pentax and Samsung. Along with a fast-for-its-focal length f2.8 maximum aperture, the Bower 14mm ultra-wide has a whopping 114-degree angle of view (AOV) when used with a full-frame DSLR, and a not-too-shabby 92.5 AOV when used with APS-C format DSLRs from Nikon and Sony/Minolta AF DSLRs (89-degree AOV with Canon-mount APS-C form DSLRs).
The Bower 14mm/f2.8 ultra-wide is designed to capture dramatic landscapes, architecture and interior photgraphy. It contains 14 elements in 12 groups, including two aspherical and two ED elements designed to better ensure high levels of optical performance, minimal lens flare and chromatic aberrations.
In addition to a broad AOV, the Bower 14mm/f2.8 also features a minimum close-focusing distance of 11 inches (0.28 m), which allows for dramatic close-ups.
* Note: Though this lens is designed to cover the imaging sensor of a full-frame DSLR, it is better optimized for use with DSLRs containing smaller APS-C format sensors. As such, you might notice softer focus and some light fall-off towards the edges of the frame when using a full-frame DSLR. If you do plan on using this lens with a full-frame DSLR, we recommend you set the lens no wider (faster) than f/8 for optimal image quality.