Samyang 8mm F3.5 Asph IF MC Fisheye CS A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 37    1 2 >>
reviewer#20397 date: Oct-28-2015
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:None
price paid:250 USD New
positive:Light, solid build, good sharpness and color.
negative:No filters available. This wide takes practice to avoid getting your feet in the shot :-)
comment:This is the same lens as the Rokinon 8mm which is the one I have. It's quite sharp, and for the price unbeatable.

It would have been nice if it was chipped so it could save the lens info in the meta data, but it's not a deal breaker.

Don't worry that it's manual focus because pretty much everything past 6 ft is infinity and pretty sharp. Focus peaking helps prove this point..

Flare is more than possible if the sun isn't behind you completely. Even when it's off to the side it can catch enough of the front element to cause flaring.

Be careful with the front element, the lens cap is good during storage, but during use you can easily scratch it. There aren't any filters for protection, or for modifying.

Not a lens you'll use every day (unless you shoot landscapes a lot), but it's a lot of fun and gets some great shots.

Best uses: Landscapes, Real-Estate, Artistic.
reviewer#12176 date: Mar-10-2015
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Zenitar 16, Samyang e-mount 8
price paid:£220
positive:The full-fishy experience on APS-C. Affordable.
negative:Fixed hood (some models don't have this). Size.
comment:Wide and bulbous. I tend to use this on my NEX-7 with an LA-EA1 adapter, where it works very well, but I do feel rather envious of those who bought the faster e-mount version of this lens - not for the extra stop but for the size difference. Mine has the fixed hood, which prevents it being used to full effect as a circular fish-eye on full frame.
reviewer#11522 date: Dec-4-2013
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 10-20 4-5.6 EX DC.
price paid:2000 SEK new = 300$
positive:Great distance of focus, great build quality. Easy to use with my SLT camera, always bright viewfinder.
negative:Manual focus, manual aperture. But I can set the focus to 1m and f=5.6 and then forget. Have to take it easy with the front lens since it is not possible to protect with a filter.
comment:Great sharpness, easy to operate, fun lens. Brand of my lens is "Dörr". Only difference to Samyang is the printing on the lens, and front lens protection. Colors are better than Sony almost as vivid as Minolta 1985/86 generation
Better corner sharpness than the Sigma.
reviewer#11400 date: Oct-23-2013
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:I have no comparison at this focal length.
price paid:$229 USD new
positive:Well built and a lot of fun. Good distortion control for this type of lens. Almost limitless DoF.
negative:Need to exercise care of front element. No communication with camera, no EXIF.
comment:This is not an everyday lens for me, but it is too good to call a novelty lens. It is well made and seems rock solid. It is not auto focus, but that is not important. I pretty much leave it at 3 feet and everything is sharp. You must manually set the aperture, but with EVF, that is not a problem. Of course, there is massive distortion with a lens of this focal length, but the design gives some control when I am careful to keep things level. Metering is tricky due to the wide view. I generally use Manual.
reviewer#11331 date: Sep-6-2013
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.1
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony 16mm
Minolta 20mm
Sigma 10mm Fish
price paid:189GBP
positive:Price
Build
Easy of Use
Sharp (5.6 Up)
Very Light
negative:Focus needed sorting out of box
Soft(ish) at 3.5
Lens hood
comment:I bought this lens for a wedding after using a Sigma 10mm Fish a few months earlier at another wedding.

First off, out of the box I was disappointed with the focus and sharpness. However after reading some posts online and adjusting the focus, I love this lens.

The build is very good and I have been caught in a heavy rain shower with it attached with no issues. The only negative about the build is the lens hood, it feels cheap and tacky.

The lens is sharp after f/5.6 and easy to use on the A77 but harder to tell whether correct focus has been achieved on the A200 or non focus peaking equipped camera.

I have had allot of use out of the lens, weddings, portraits and landscapes and would recommend it to anyone looking for a cheap, easy to use, well built fisheye.
reviewer#11287 date: Aug-3-2013
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tokina 11-16mm f2.8
Minolta 20mm f2.8
price paid:250 USD (new)
positive:Price
Distortion
Simplicity
Solid build
negative:Low light
Front element exposed
comment:This is a very fun lens with all manual controls. I fiddled with my infinity focus adjustment, but was never totally satisfied with results in viewfinder or LCD. On computer IQ is good, just looked soft in camera. Don't know how to explain better.

In low light found better luck with wider aperture lenses but that only makes sense. This lens is a bargain and hard to beat for occasional use. Wish it was full frame.
reviewer#11176 date: Jun-2-2013
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 2
overall: 4.3
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tokina 11-16 f2.8
price paid:300$ CDN
positive:For the price, it's a pleasant surprise the quality of the photo I obtain with it! Fun to use and a very creative lens. Tried it on my A100 that was IR modified with no Hot Spot, on my A900 I had to use the APS-C option to get the best result, it's not a Full Frame Lens. I would not recommend it as a professional lens. It take some practise to get the focus on perfect. Pre-processing is surprisingly sharp, and with a bit of Tweeking in PSP-RAW post-proces I had superb result.
negative:No AF contact on the back of the lens, but then again, it's a very basic lens; and don't loose that lens cap, the front glass is very exposed as are all Fish Eyes. You get good sharp result without any post-processing, but I would recommend post-process all photos to obtain maximum sharpness.
comment:
missing
reviewer#10893 date: Feb-1-2013
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:N/A
price paid:250 USD (new)
positive:Affordable.
Great build quality.
Nice image quality.
Fun. Fun. Fun.
negative:Manual focus.
It's a difficult to tell if the subject is in focus or not.
EXIF data missing from shots
comment:It's a fun lens. However for me it's not easy to be sure if I have my subject in focus (for close up photos). After reading MediaArchivist excellent review (below), I have a new found interest or rather courage to go out and use this lens a little more. I own the Pro-Optic model.
reviewer#10612 date: Oct-22-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tokina 11-16/2.8
price paid:315 USD (new)
positive:-Cheap
-Light
negative:-Manual focus
comment:Soft at F3.5, have to step down at 5.6 for track sharp.
DOF is very deep, is no problem for u to shoot under manual mode.
reviewer#10604 date: Oct-19-2012
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:¥20,000 (new)
positive:Great focal length
Sharpness close up and infinity *see comments*
Build quality
Price
Detachable hood
negative:Needs adjusting from the store
Lens cap while works, is a bit crap
comment:Bought this lens online for a bargain (¥20.000).
When it arrived, immediatly I was impressed with the look and the build quality.
Read about focusing issues online, and sure enough mine was waaay out.
To get a relatively sharp focus on an object 2ft away, had to set the lens to infinity.
So as per internet tutorials, I measured a subject at 2ft away, focused it (at infinity) loosened the 3 smalle scews under the focus ring, and moved the focus ring to 2ft.
Boom, I now have an incredibly sharp lens! Focus at 1ft is tack sharp, as is infinity.

Love this lens now, don't want to take it off! The colours, contrast is all very decent, easily comparing to high end lenses!

Mine is the "CSII" version that supposedly has updated optics and a removable hood.

At 3.5, the shots are very usable, sometimes appear quite sharp (not what i read elsewhere?) but from 5.6, this lens shines.

Beautiful lens once adjusted, I think it should be in everyones camera bag!
reviewer#10527 date: Sep-21-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 10-24 F3.5-4.5
price paid:266 € (new)
positive:The Price, well built, light weight, small. Easy to squeeze in your photobag
negative:Sharpness wide open
comment:This is an easy to handle compact value for money lens. Higlt recommended for those who want to shot cheap but with a high quality picture
reviewer#10525 date: Sep-20-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 17-50/2.8, 200-500/5-6.3, 70-300/4-5.6, 90macro/2.8 Sony 50/1.8
Sony 55-200
price paid:£150 used
positive:*Great build quality
*Fisheye on a budget
*Sharp
*Distortion is not overdone
negative:*Lens hood is non removable
*f3.5(f2.8 would be better)
comment:Great fisheye lens for the price, excellent center sharpness. I use this as a landscape lens at f11 aswell, as I cant afford a Tokina 11-16, and with some distortion correction and crop, it works well. Good for urban scenes too
reviewer#10524 date: Sep-20-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 17-50/2.8, 200-500/5-6.3, 70-300/4-5.6, 90macro/2.8 Sony 50/1.8
Sony 55-200
price paid:£150 used
positive:*Great build quality
*Fisheye on a budget
*Sharp
*Distortion is not overdone
negative:*Lens hood is non removable
*f3.5(f2.8 would be better)
comment:Great fisheye lens for the price, excellent center sharpness. I use this as a landscape lens at f11 aswell, as I cant afford a Tokina 11-16, and with some distortion correction and crop, it works well. Good for urban scenes too
reviewer#10377 date: Jul-13-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:289 USD (new)
positive:Good, solid build
Excellent image quality
Low price
negative:Manual
EXIF data missing from shots
Max f/3.5 (2.8 would be nice)
comment:This is an excellent lens. Don't let the all manual operation scare you off, set your camera to A (aperture) mode, and you will be fine. The projection of this lens is stereographic, whereas most fisheye lenses are equisolid. Pictures with this lens have a slightly more even balance in area between the center and edges when compared to other fisheye lenses with similar specs. The Wikipedia article on fisheye lenses has much more detail :)

I have found this lens superb for outdoor landscapes. In particular, a series of portrait oriented images makes stitching a panorama easy. I have made several sets of HDR images which were then stitched together and the results were breathtaking (I have been told).

I have been using the "HD" version, branded as a Samyang, with a removable hood. There is also a "Cine" model with a removable hood, aperture labeled in "T" stop (as opposed to f/stop), and geared control rings. I don't know if the optics for these versions are improved-- but the removable hood means it works on a FF camera! On my a99 I get almost a full circle image, which is, to say the least, pretty cool!

Highly recommended.

(Update: the text of my Dyxum review, verbatim, has been used by Samyang in their printed literature! There is a PDF on their website if you are curious. I could not be happier to help promote this lens, it really is a gem.)
reviewer#9814 date: Jan-18-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 3
overall: 4.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 10-20mm
ZA 24-70mm
price paid:Euro 289
positive:Sharp!!
Distortion is nice for fisheye
Price
negative:Nothing for the this price.
Infinity was at 2.5 mtr.
comment:Nice to work with, back to the old days.
Dynamic pics. My first fisheye.
Needs very carefull exposure in landscape.
Take care off feet and shadow off yourself.
Adjusting the lens:
Roll the rubber half back to the camera.
Set the lens sharp with liveview, on infinity.
That was on the scale 2,5 mtr.
Then look for 3 tiny screws, make them lose.
Leave the big one alone!!
Set scale to infinity, make screws secure again, and rubber back.
Its realy easy. And I have a very sharp lens.
Happy shooting!!
reviewer#9783 date: Jan-13-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I have experience with this lens
compared to:Tokina 11-16mm
price paid:
missing
positive:Best value fisheye lens
Great build for price
Fun to use
negative:Soft at f3.5 (not ideal in low light)
comment:Rented the lens for a week and tried it with a few of my normal shoots. Being a fully manual lens is not a problem, especially on the A77 where focus peaking confirms your focus. Stopping down it's very much a 'set and forget' lens. Very well suited for outdoor shooting.

I found it was less suited for low light work. I shoot a lot of live music where the distortion can make some interesting shots. The lens is a little soft at f3.5 and sometimes that's not enough to freeze any action. My Tokina 11-16 2.8 is a bit more flexible for that sort of shooting.
reviewer#9780 date: Jan-12-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.3
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:$250
positive:Fun Lens
Outstanding price
Quality build
Gets you back to the roots of photography.
negative:If you keep your expectations in line with the price there are no negatives. DON'T LOOSE THE LENS CAP!!!
comment:After mounting it on my 77 and changing some of the menu options (e.g. release without lens-yes) this became a 'set and forget' lens for the rest of the evening. I walked around an indoor venue with typical mixed lighting conditions with the Rokinon set to focus at 2 feet with the aperture at 5.6. This lens also prompted me to do a couple of firsts with my camera. I discovered cameras have a Professional (P) mode, and the Live View really does work. Happily snapping everything in sight I was very pleased with the large depth of field and unique effects the fisheye affords. Further testing this weekend with hopefully better lighting conditions.
After having this lens for six months I'm finally beginning to really appreciate it. In daylight it's extremely sharp. On sunny days the 'sunstar' effect is fantastic for adding drama to shots. I dropped the lenscap in the ocean a few weeks back. You cannot find a generic replacement cap on eBay, Rokinon finally got back to me the repalcment was $20 shipped.
reviewer#9619 date: Nov-23-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.9
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:sony 18-55mm, minolta 16mm fisheye
price paid:250 USD (new)
positive:APS-C dedicated
180° view
Unbeatable price
Flare control
Sharp especially at f/5.6-8
Nicely build
Great colors
negative:Fixed lens hood
Minimum focus distance of 30cm only
All Manual, but not really a negative point to me
comment:If you're reading reviews here, you probably already know about the "stereographic" feature of this lens so I won't bother you with technicalities.

This is a cheap lens but a very impressive one. With its 180° view on APS-C sensors, you're on for a lot of fun shooting. The distortion obtained is actually very harmonious and pleasing to the eye, you can work around it if you are careful about composition (place your subject right on the lens'"horizon" and you'll get distortions only on the sides, hence the "stereographic" bit mentioned above). It does need good light for color and contrast, I've been shooting with it for several months now and as you get used to the "whole manual" part of this fisheye, you'll manage to be positively surprised with the results pretty much all the time. I've took it for a spin on a night photography field trip and it works like a charm.

I leave it on f/8 and play with the focus ring depending on composition. It helped me being able to better evaluate distances, so that can't be bad.

There's no flare issues - nothing you can't control - and it's built like a tank.

The only thing that could be an issue is the ridiculous lens cap and the fixed lens hood. The lens cap looks like a cheap Pringles' cap and the hood is fixed and way too small. Better than nothing but because of that you should always try to walk around with the cap on, you never know if someone walks right by you and touches it, scratches it, etc.

Given the price and the quality you get, you shouldn't dismiss this lens before trying it out at least once. It's simply amazingly fun and good.
reviewer#9310 date: Aug-6-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 3
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:£199.99
positive:Superb Fisheye
Sharp
Easy to use, even though fully manual
Excellent build
negative:Flare
Cheap cap
Front glass easy to mark
comment:I bought this lens new for £199.

The lens is fully manual, no A/F or contacts to communicated with camera.
When used with my A700 and in Apeture mode, the lens only needs to be stopped down using the manual focus ring on the lens and the camera will work out the correct shutter speed.

Normally seem to use at -1.0 exposure comp or more.

Around f8, the lens is super sharp. I set to 1.5meters and the focus is fine.
Lots of sun flare if angled incorrectly, but a great fisheye lens and great colours, rich and punchy and super sharp between f8-f11, good at f5.6 too

Highly recommended for APS-C Sony
reviewer#9253 date: Jul-24-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Konica Minolta 17-35 D
price paid:230 Euro (NEW)
positive:Sharp
Good optics
Nice colors
Build
Nice MF ring
Cheap
negative:The lens cap attaching is awful.
No electronic connection with the camera.
comment:(First sorry for my English, that's my first review)

I own the Rokinon variant of this lens about 4-5 days.
I'm really surprised from the optical quality for this type of lens.
I find it very sharp even wide open, the build quality is great, the focus ring is smooth.
The flare control and CA are good too.

On A700 works really good in Aperture priority, the camera sets the correct shutter speed.
When You catch so much in the frame sometimes is really hard to keep some parts from blowing and get the perfect exposure, I use AEL like spot metering on the brightest part of the frame and then re-frame the shot.

I give 4 for build rating only because the lens cap, it's really chunky.
There is not electronics, so You don't have aperture info in the exif, its always f/1.


Here are some full sized shots from me with A700, this lens just amazes me with it's sharpness and good colors:

http://alphaforum.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=65&t=500
reviewer#9168 date: Jun-22-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:No comparison!
price paid:289 USD (new)
positive:Sharp
Inexpensive
Well built
Easy to use
Great color
negative:Very poor Instruction Manual
comment:Just got the Rokinon brand version of this lens for my Sony A700 and Sony A77. What a fantastic lens!!!!!!!!!
This lens actually works in program 'P' mode, providing AUTOMATIC exposure control with the Sony cameras, contrary to what the Instruction Manual states.
Set the camera to 'release without lens' and the ISO to 'auto' and focus to 'manual'. Turn SSS off.
Set the aperture on the lens to f5.6 or f8 and the distance to about 2 feet and you are all set to get extremely sharp photos from inches away to infinity.
The camera will automatically adjust the shutter speed and ISO to suit the lighting conditions! Use -0.7 exposure compensation outdoors and +0.7 exposure compensation indoors to get spot on exposures.
Keep in mind that the exif data will not be correct since this lens is not chipped.
I initially bought this lens as an inexpensive 'gadget' lens expecting it to spend most of its time in the camera bag. Boy was I wrong!
This lens is slowly becoming my favorite lens and I am even using it as a portrait lens!
It is the sharpest lens that I own!
The 8mm Samyang is a special lens that produces "stereographic" images with the unique characteristics of Proportional projection that preserves the proportions of three dimensional objects in a two dimensional image space better than either an ultra-wide rectilinear lens or a fisheye lens.
Thus, a spherical object appears to remain spherical, not egg shaped or squashed, anywhere in the image, regardless of where it is located in the field of view.
As soon as you look through the viewfinder of a camera with this lens attached you will see how unique this lens is and undoubtedly become hooked!
It is indeed a rare occasion when the least expensive lens just may be the best!


reviewer#9091 date: Jun-5-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:150euros (Used)
positive:- Build like a tank !!
Cheap.
- big distortion as expected for a fish-eye.I put the maximum!
- Very sharp from f/8
- Considering the very wide angle, flare is pretty well controlled.
negative:- Manual aperture
- not chipped
comment:I really like that lense. Easy to take some funny pictures with my familly and friends.
For those worried about no AF. Franckly speaking that kind of lense does not need!
If you have the chance to get that lense, do not hesite a second, take it!
reviewer#9061 date: May-29-2011
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:the wide end of a kitlens
price paid:€240 (new)
positive:- price
- versatility
- needs almost no focussing past 5.6; pretty sharp
- pleasantly warm colours in full sunshine
- distortion
- little CA past f5.6/
negative:- very very soft at full aperture
- only 'M' mode
- colours arent really special without sunshine/bright light source
comment:My only grudge with this lens is that you need some good lighting for good colours and contrast, or a very long shutter speed; even so not a very big problem because this lens works very very well with sony's SSS... makes shooting at 1/3s easy!

i called this fixed focal length lens versatile.. which may puzzle you; but composing is a heap of fun, as it is easy to add/omit things from the image (take half a step back/forwards) and it is the only lens i have that can make a good overview-picture of a really small space, where the kitlens is too narrow.

Another thing- i really like the distortion; it is oddly 'harmonious'- making walls on the edges rounded, but not distractingly round. Even people/faces/items in the picture arent overly stretched or rounded- given that you dont take a picture of things closer than 30cm or put a face/body right at the edge of the frame.

Conclusion: the lens isnt a work of art, but it works well for me and damn its fun to use!
reviewer#8970 date: Apr-28-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:~285€ (new)
positive:-Angle of view
-Price
-Build
-Sharp
-Fastest "AF" of the world, when stopped down to F8 ;)
-Very good flare control 8mm
negative:-I don't like the lens cap (and it's hard to get any other that fits)
-No filter attachable (no IR shots possible)
-You can see any dust, dirt or fingerprints on the front-lens if aperture is stopped down more than F5.6
-Lens hood is not easily removable for fullframe or film camera
-Not chipped
-Sometimes strong purple fringing
comment:Strong distortion is not a bug, it's a feature :)
reviewer#8694 date: Feb-24-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 3
flare control: 4
overall: 4.3
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 10-20, Sony 18-70
price paid:207 EUR
positive:A ton of fun, built like a tank, colour(!!), small, sharp!!
negative:None
comment:This is special! I thinks it's pretty difficult to rate the distortion because it IS a fisheye and the distortion is part of the fun. One of the first things I noticed was colours. In many respects it reminds me of Minolta-colours. Popping, clean and vibrant. Stopped down a bit it's a no-brainer to use even though it's manual everything. Only regret is that I hestitated to buy it.

I'm not sure how it rates on flare control yet but I haven't had the chance to shoot in the sun with it yet. Winter is like that around here!:-(

Update: Had a chance to shoot in the sun today and I'm very impressed by the flare control! Very impressed!!
reviewer#8692 date: Feb-23-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:everything else
price paid:$259US
positive:very sharp at f/8
very inexpensive
lovely colour/contrast
great flare control
good, solid build
negative:none, once you get used to using a manual lens
comment:I use this fisheye lens regularly on my A500 and A200, and am always thrilled with the results, to say the least. This is a very sharp lens that is built like a rock, and looks good too!

Some people initially seem to struggle a bit with the logic behind focusing, but really it is oh so simple. Set the aperture ring to f/8 and leave it. Set the focus ring to about two feet and leave it. There, that's it! Everything from a foot to infinity will be razor sharp. I have more fun with this lens than all of the rest of my arsenal combined.

And if you ever start to tire of the fisheye look, just defish using the Fisheye Hemi plugin; it does a fantastic job of straightening things out without degrading the image at all.

All in all, an outstanding lens at a terrific price point. This Samyang lens goes by many names, such as Rokinon, Falcon, Opteka, Vivitar, Bower, Polar, to name just a few. They are all identical, so it is just a matter of getting the lowest priced one you can find. They can be found easily online for under $300US.
reviewer#8620 date: Feb-6-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:179 gbp(new)
positive:robust.
sharp at f8
negative:manual focus
comment:This is my first fisheye lens,and you know what its really a great addition to have! The distortion is very good and no CA(i think). Obviously s very nice lens to bring for a party and scenery shots.
reviewer#7752 date: Jul-29-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony 11-18, Sigma 50/1.4, Sigma 70-200/2.8.
price paid:€230 (new)
positive:-build quality
-sharp!
-great colours
-manual aperture ring
negative:-not chipped
comment:Great fisheye lens, IQ is just as good as more expensive Sony/Sigma lenses.
I like the manual aperture ring because when making a time lapse you wont get any flickering due to an auto iris.
Pity it does not support SSS, but not too big of a deal, because of its massive angle of view.
A true bargain!
reviewer#7682 date: Jul-11-2010
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Peleng 8mm
price paid:~200 GBP (new)
positive:+Well made
+Good detail
+Good fisheye effect
+Excellent flare/glare control
+3 year warranty
+Does exactly what it should with minimum fuss
negative:-You have to pay exta attension to keep the front clean?
-Not chipped, so some compatability issues with most Alpha cameras
comment:Used the Peleng for around a year, which was a joy, but this is the far better lens in my opinion. The Peleng would give you nasty blobs of glare and flare. It would too give shaded corners on APS-C, which means you either had to crop or do some messy processing.

The Samyang solves both of those issues and produces beautifully clean images - no fuss at all. The resistance to glare and flare is actually remarkable, probably the best I've seen in any lens.

This lens can have a great impact and for very little money compared to other good quality SLR lenses. And don't be fooled by the price, this may be manual aperture and focus, but the optics are great quality. Goes without saying, manual focus/aperture is no issue with a lens this wide.

I'm buying a new Alpha camera later this year, so did some DIY work on my Samyang (Falcon) 8mm to help with compatability. I made a new mount, with a chip in it, so the camera now knows what it is. This basically ensures it will fire in AP mode, but also helps me recognise it with software.
reviewer#7678 date: Jul-10-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:CZ 16-80
Sony 50/1.4
Tamron 90mm MACRO
Tamron 18-200/3.5-6.3
Sony 18-55
SOny 16mm Fisheye
price paid:$300
positive:Great Build
Unbelievable sharpness
Cheapest and BEST fisheye you can get
Nice color
negative:None at all
comment:Each time I use this lens I am amazed what it cost me. This lens is so sharp - it really surprised me. In fact it's one of the sharpest lenses you'll EVER use. For $300-$400AUS it's is a bargain. I think it's sold in the USA under about 2 or 3 different brands but they are all the same lens. The only concern I had before purchasing this lens was the manual focus. The first time you use it however, you'll see that you rarely have to use it as the focus is everything from 30-40cm to infinity. Just a wonderful lens!
reviews found: 37    1 2 >>

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 37
  • sharpness: 4.51
  • color: 4.51
  • build: 4.70
  • distortion: 4.65
  • flare control: 4.35
  • overall: 4.55

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