Samyang 45mm F1.8 AF FE E-mount lens review by addy landzaat
|addy landzaat#44550 date: Jul-12-2020|
flare control: 4
|ownership:||I own this lens|
|compared to:||Sony and Minolta 50/1.4|
Canon 50/1.8 and 50/1.4
Sigma 35/1.4 ART
|price paid:||€399,- new|
|positive:||Small, light and sharp|
|negative:||Lousy build, uncertain AF-C and minimum focus distance|
|comment:||This is a problematic lens IMHO. It is really sharp, but there the advantages end for me.|
Build: the (visible) build is somewhere between the Canon 50/1.8 II (cheap plastic) and the Sony 28/2. It is simply not good enough for a €399,- (or €349,- after cashback) lens IMHO. I do not understand people giving it a 5 for build.
MFD: I find I am struggling with the Minimum Focus Distance. I keep going back when I take a close up picture. I do not have this with my Minolta/Sony/Canon 50mm lenses. They also have a 45cm MFD, but while that seems fine in a 50mm lens, it is a problem for me here, because this lens is wider. The Sigma 35/1.4 has a MFD of 30cm, that is fine. For me, this lens should have had a 40cm MFD (YMMV)
Focus: AF-S is fine, but I usually use AF-C and it does not work well. It regularly pumps, even in good light. I also find the behaviour not intuitive: maybe it just behaves different from my Sony lenses. But in all, the AF-C experience is not pleasant.(disclaimer: firmware 1; should be better with firmware 3)
Focus noise: Focus is clearly audible. It is fine, but it is not "quiet" or "silent".
Focus breathing: the lens suffers from focus breathing. As I (mostly) use it for stills, I would normally not mind for a 45mm lens - but as it can pulse when it tries to focus, it really is annoying.
Bokeh: This is quite personal, but it is not my favourite out of focus rendering.
Firmware dock: Like I said, AF-C with firmware 1 is problematic, but you need to buy a dock to get decent AF. Not good.
Colour: Modern colour, not quite my taste, but it is good.
chromatic aberration: Saw some colour fringing in high contrast scenes. I have seen better and I have seen worse.
Sharpness: Well, excellent in the centre, might be less in the corners - but for general use, it is fine.
It could've been a great lens, but to me, it is not. I tried it during the 2020 July challenge for one week and it has some strengths. I can see some people like it for specific reasons like if you want a sharp and light lens. But in general, IMHO it does not live up to some of the reviews I have seen.