Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

Started 2 months ago | Discussions
thiefofpresence
thiefofpresence Contributing Member • Posts: 697
Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8
10

Just picked up this lens at B&H and deployed to my system in the role of AF normal. Liking it very much, of course because of its fantastically light and small size, optics that look like an homage to the Sony Sonnar 55/1.8.

The AF seems like its was tuned for the version 3.X firmware on my A7iii, and having previously owned Sony Zeiss 55 and 35, I am finding performance to be fast and accurate within a margin of error of Sony Native performance.

Paid the full $399 for it, and am sure that it will be available at times for $299 and be a fantastic steal at that price.

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Sony A7iii | Voigtlander Color-Skopar 21/4 Pancake; Zeiss Batis 2/25; Rokinon AF 45/1.8; Sony FE 1.8/85 | Sony FE 4/24-105 G OSS; Sony FE 4/70-200 G; Sigma 150-600 C

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DenImage Senior Member • Posts: 2,496
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8
3

thiefofpresence wrote:

Just picked up this lens at B&H and deployed to my system in the role of AF normal. Liking it very much, of course because of its fantastically light and small size, optics that look like an homage to the Sony Sonnar 55/1.8.

The AF seems like its was tuned for the version 3.X firmware on my A7iii, and having previously owned Sony Zeiss 55 and 35, I am finding performance to be fast and accurate within a margin of error of Sony Native performance.

Paid the full $399 for it, and am sure that it will be available at times for $299 and be a fantastic steal at that price.

Yeah I mostly agree, but there's a few things I don't like about it. The AF motor is still audible (will be heard by internal mic when recording video), the manual focus ring is too loose (like my Sony 100mm STF), and chromatic aberration is very prevalent.

I paid $385 for mine, so the above compromises are acceptable for the price and compact size and light weight. I purchased it as an less expensive alternative to the Sony FE 55mm which is larger (longer) and heavier, and also has very prevalent chromatic aberration.

I am impressed with the sharpness of the Samyang, both central and edges/corners are excellent from wide open (though less contrast at f1.8). See my brick wall test shots here:

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/4401572

Den

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travelinbri_74
travelinbri_74 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,427
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

I will keep track of this thread and would love to see pics from you all.

I would like to love this lens - although I would have more preferred it at 40 - but so far the few pics I have seen haven't convinced me. Hope to see lots more as it becomes widely available. Great that Samyang is focused on small lenses for the Sony.

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DenImage Senior Member • Posts: 2,496
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8
2

Bad weather here, so it will be a while before I can post some samples.

The images look great in this thread though:

https://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1595630/9#lastmessage

Den

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matrix44 Forum Member • Posts: 84
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

Mine should be here on Monday. Looking forward to playing with it. Paid $340+tax for it with a 15% off discount at Rakuten, so I'll be happy with it as long as it's better than the Sony 50 1.8 that I sold recently.

This will be the only small and light lens in my A7iii kit, so it will see a lot of use if it's half decent. I also bought the incredible 50 ZA 1.4 recently, so I will have the highest quality 50mm out there when I am okay with the size and weight, and now this diminutive 45mm when I need the best portability.

Kris2403 Junior Member • Posts: 33
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

How does it compare to FE 50mm f/1.8 in sharpness, AF, etc.? Thanks

DenImage Senior Member • Posts: 2,496
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

Kris2403 wrote:

How does it compare to FE 50mm f/1.8 in sharpness, AF, etc.? Thanks

I've previously tested the Sony FE 50mm f1.8 so I can post a comparison.

The Samyang has a faster and quieter AF motor but is still slightly audible. It's also noticeably sharper in the edges and corners at wider apertures, but equally centrally sharp. Chromatic aberration and vignetting is equally average in both lenses. The Samyang's slightly swirly bokeh is more pleasing thanks to its 9 aperture blades vs 7 in the Sony, and as yet I haven't noticed any of the reported onion rings. IMO the Samyang's build quality is slightly better than the Sony's, and I prefer its internal focusing vs the Sony's extended barrel focussing.

The Samyang lens offers reasonable and acceptable performance (especially as a compact/light travel solution) and is worth its current asking price. The Sony never made the cut for me, because it had too many compromises.

Den

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vlado29 Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

Would it be completely crazy to replace Zeiss 55/1.8 (that I already own) with this lens? I currently also have 28/2 and 85/1.8. Plan to replace 28/2 with Tamron 17-28/2.8 (had GM 16-35/2.8, but sold it, it was too big for me), then I could cut it with 17-28 on the wide end, 45/1.8 as light walkaround prime (or Batis 40/2 when it gets cheaper) and 85/1.8 portraits/landscape tele...

travelinbri_74
travelinbri_74 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,427
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

I found the Samyang 35/2.8 an excellent performer. If this can match or exceed that lens, it is a winner in my book.

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CyeJoeBob Forum Member • Posts: 71
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

Did anyone experience AF issues. My Samyang 45mm 1.8 can't properly focus at infinity. It always has a slight front focus when focusing at infinity, no matter which AF mode or aperture I choose.

I'm not sure wheter it is just my sample or a general AF issue.

100% center crop - MF (left), AF-S (middle), AF-C (right)

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Mentt New Member • Posts: 19
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

For a prime lens around 50mm  it has noticeable barrel distortion ... for example cheap Sony 50mm 1.8 is basically distortion free

Peter Foiles
Peter Foiles Senior Member • Posts: 1,788
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

I did have one situation where it would not focus properly on a building 50 yards out but in other cases focus on distant objects seemed OK.

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DenImage Senior Member • Posts: 2,496
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

vlado29 wrote:

Would it be completely crazy to replace Zeiss 55/1.8 (that I already own) with this lens? I currently also have 28/2 and 85/1.8. Plan to replace 28/2 with Tamron 17-28/2.8 (had GM 16-35/2.8, but sold it, it was too big for me), then I could cut it with 17-28 on the wide end, 45/1.8 as light walkaround prime (or Batis 40/2 when it gets cheaper) and 85/1.8 portraits/landscape tele...

Yes it would be crazy.

IMO, performance wise the Samyang sits in between the Sony 50mm f1.8 and the Zony 55mm. It's better than the Sony 50mm, but not as good as the Zony 55mm.

Den

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DenImage Senior Member • Posts: 2,496
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

Mentt wrote:

For a prime lens around 50mm it has noticeable barrel distortion ... for example cheap Sony 50mm 1.8 is basically distortion free

Noticeable if you're looking for it, but it's very minor.

Den

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DenImage Senior Member • Posts: 2,496
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

CyeJoeBob wrote:

Did anyone experience AF issues. My Samyang 45mm 1.8 can't properly focus at infinity. It always has a slight front focus when focusing at infinity, no matter which AF mode or aperture I choose.

I'm not sure wheter it is just my sample or a general AF issue.

100% center crop - MF (left), AF-S (middle), AF-C (right)

Yes, I have noticed the same issue, but only in AF-C mode at infinity.

I will do further testing tomorrow to see if it does the same in AF-S mode, if it does, it's going back 😕

Den

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Mentt New Member • Posts: 19
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

DenImage wrote:

Mentt wrote:

For a prime lens around 50mm it has noticeable barrel distortion ... for example cheap Sony 50mm 1.8 is basically distortion free

Noticeable if you're looking for it, but it's very minor.

Den

To me It is easily noticeable

Jerry R Forum Pro • Posts: 10,731
Do you love the pictures?, Please post some.
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DenImage Senior Member • Posts: 2,496
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

Mentt wrote:

DenImage wrote:

Mentt wrote:

For a prime lens around 50mm it has noticeable barrel distortion ... for example cheap Sony 50mm 1.8 is basically distortion free

Noticeable if you're looking for it, but it's very minor.

Den

To me It is easily noticeable

There's no EXIF data in that photo.

Please post comparison images from both the Samyang and Sony lenses to support your claim that the Samyang has more noticeable distortion than the Sony?

Den

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thiefofpresence
OP thiefofpresence Contributing Member • Posts: 697
OP: Extended experience raises AF issues

thiefofpresence wrote:

Just picked up this lens at B&H and deployed to my system in the role of AF normal. Liking it very much, of course because of its fantastically light and small size, optics that look like an homage to the Sony Sonnar 55/1.8.

The AF seems like its was tuned for the version 3.X firmware on my A7iii, and having previously owned Sony Zeiss 55 and 35, I am finding performance to be fast and accurate within a margin of error of Sony Native performance.

Paid the full $399 for it, and am sure that it will be available at times for $299 and be a fantastic steal at that price.

I just spent a day shooting with this lens, and I have to say, using C-AF and back button focus, I would mash on AF-on set to Wide mode, and there was frequently (if not always) a long lag until I was showing evidence of AF locking. Sometimes, more disturbingly AF would simply fail and I had to release AF-on and "try again".

I realize they can fix this with firmware updates, but in the area of AF prowess, I was let down a little.

I've owned AF 35/1.4 and thought, even with narrower depth of field, that it had an easier time getting a lock than this lens.

I can edit and post some shots, and I am quite happy with the IQ results. All I could personally hope for. But, the AF experience was disappointing today (I'm the first to admit my expectations are nearly unreasonable for a third party manufacturer.

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Sony A7iii | Voigtlander Color-Skopar 21/4 Pancake; Zeiss Batis 2/25; Rokinon AF 45/1.8; Sony FE 1.8/85 | Sony FE 4/24-105 G OSS; Sony FE 4/70-200 G; Sigma 150-600 C

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DenImage Senior Member • Posts: 2,496
Re: Loving Rokinon AF 45/1.8

These are two post processed RAW to JPEG images from my brick wall test of the Samyang FE 45mm f1.8 @ f5.6 taken on my a7rii

The first is with distortion uncorrected, the second is with distortion corrected:

f5.6 image with no corrections

f5.6 image with distortion correction

The bottom image was manually processed +4 Barrel Distortion in DXO PhotoLab.

Lightroom fixes it with +3 Barrel Distortion Correction.

Den

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