Comparing Fish-Eyes : Rokinon 7.5mm vs Zuiko 8mm (FOV and look)

Started Jan 25, 2013 | Discussions thread
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RoelHendrickx Forum Pro • Posts: 25,588
Comparing Fish-Eyes : Rokinon 7.5mm vs Zuiko 8mm (FOV and look)

OK, call me stupid, but I bought a second fisheye lens.

I already owned the digital ZD8mm FE in FT mount.  Great lens.  Love working with it, also on E-M5.

And yet I got seduced and, on impulse, purchased the (manual) Rokinon 7.5mm FE in µFT mount.

I've tried rationalizing my reasons here :

Being now in the position to show some stuff from both fish-eyes, I thought to post a few things that might be interesting.

Don't expect pixelpeeping or essays on relative sharpness or chromatic abberations from me.

I don't do that stuff.  You  can trust the various reviews that float the www.

What I can show you, is a view of both lenses mounted on my E-M5 (shot with iPhone).

The ZD8mm requires, of course, the MMF-3 adapter, so that makes the combo still bigger.

Build quality of the Zuiko is legendary.  And it is of course weathersealed.

But the Rokinon also feels very solid and well made.

The difference in size and weight is pretty spectacular (and one reason for my purchase).

In fact, the size of the Rokinon is SO SMALL that I will really need to adjust how I hold my camera-lens combo, or I am going to get an awful lot of shots with my finger in the frame...

With the Zuiko, I had to watch out for my own feet, but at least my left hand had ample room.

This is particularly the case when the horizontal grip is mounted.  The extra grip real estate extends almost as far as the front element of the lens.  Hard to get rid of another finger (of left hand) in that area without it showing up in the frame.  This continues to amaze me.

Another thing I can show is the relative FOV : I wanted to know if that 0.5mm really makes a difference.

Well yes, it does.

Here is the tripod shot of our meeting room with the Rokinon.  I lined up the shot to get the top arch of the lighting fixture and the side of the right-side painting next to the edges of the frame:

And here is the shot, from the same tripod position (maybe with a bit of wiggle from the mounting/dismounting of lenses, but basically the sensor stayed in the same spot), with the ZD8mm:

Note how that top arch and the right side of the painting are not in the frame anymore.  Also significantly less plant on the left side.

Now, I did figure out that this difference is NOT ONLY the result of the 0.5mm difference.

The front element of the lens is also roughly 6 or 7 cm more removed from the sensor plane, and I supposed that this also accounted for some of the difference.

So what I did, is realign my viewfinder view with the top of the lighting rail arch and with the right side of the painting (by moving my tripod a few centimeters backwards):

The result is a shot that looks more like the first, but is still noticeably a bit less wide.  Pay attention to the left and bottom sides, of course : the left side painting is closer to the edge of the frame and there is less plant visible.

So that 0.5mm extra does indeed make a difference.

And there is also a practical issue : the ZD8mm needed to be 6 or 7 cm further away from the scene to capture a view that was as close as I could get it.

This does not matter much in most shooting conditions, but it does make a practical difference, when one is trying (as happens to me quite frequently) to get as much as possible of an interior into the frame by pressing one's back against a wall or in a corner of a room.  In those circumstances, the Rokinon will really show more.

Anyway, I thought this might interest some.

I hope to show more interesting fisheye shots soon.

I also already figured out that the Rokinon will be much easier to handhold with one hand only, for those contortionist angles that I sometimes employ.  Easier for video too, but that is not really my concern.

Nevertheless : the Zuiko (for those people lucky enough to already have it) remains a great lens, also for use on µFT.

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Roel Hendrickx
lots of images:
my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara:

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