It wasn't long ago that Chinese lenses were synonymous with, well, crap. But with brands like Venus Optics, Zhongyi, and 7Artisans we are beginning to see high quality, unique lenses that have very few compromises.
The new Laowa 100mm f/2.8 2:1 was recently reviewed by Christopher Frost to beautiful results. Christopher pushes the lens to the max, testing it on the Canon 6D, Sony A7RII, and Sony A5100, the last of which giving an incredibly high pixel density for an extreme test and it shines.
While the lens begins to get diffraction at F8 when focusing close, and when shooting closer you have to open up your shutter this is the same with literally every macro lens out there because of, well, physics. Venus Optics describes this lens as apochromatic, meaning that they have done their best to eliminate chromatic aberration and, judging by Chris' sample images, they have done a darn good job.
One of the biggest downsides to this lens seems to be that it seems to flare easily, but the lens should ship with a lens-hood and the unique 2:1 macro ability while being so sharp, even at 2.8 is really a feat of engineering especially at $450 USD.
While the lens is Manual focus only, with electronically controlled aperture, I don't see this as a bad thing, as a focus-by-wire situation or even autofocus at these distances would make getting any macro shot a nightmare to capture.
Overall, this lens seems like a fantastic, affordable, lens without too many competitors in its category. What do you think of this new 2X macro lens? Are you going to be picking one up?