Samyang/Rokinon 35/1.8. Good value, overall average lens

Started 3 months ago | User reviews
someguy50 Regular Member • Posts: 406
Samyang/Rokinon 35/1.8. Good value, overall average lens

I've been playing with two copies of the Samyang / Rokinon 35 1.8 with latest firmware for about 2 weeks now. Paired my a Sony A7C.

At <$300 during Prime Day, and $350~ regular, this lens presents a good value considering its aperture and size.

I very much appreciate its minimal weight and size. I love the rigid case it comes with too. Its customizable switch to be able to have aperture control in the ring is also really nice. The price is very enticing considering it features an internal autofocus.

The things I don't like...

I have two copies of the lens, because I figured the first must be defective. Every review I read said it had silent autofocus. Two copies tell me this isn't entirely true.

While it doesn't have a loud "bzz bzz" focus you might find in older lenses, this is definitely not a silent autofocus. It has a small whine and occasional chirp you won't find in Sony's nicer lenses, for example. Both copies have this AF noise. I have the Sigma 30 and 16 1.4 for Sony's APSC bodies for example, and  those are noticeably quieter - but even those aren't entirely silent like Sony's nicer lenses.

Secondly, the autofocus speed and accuracy itself is merely "ok."  I assumed the AF would be able to keep up as my past (sony) lenses did, but I don't find that to be the case.

At first I thought the lens wasn't very sharp, but after taking very deliberate shots to check sharpness - that wasn't the case. It's sufficiently sharp, especially at its price (don't pixel peep).

What was happening was frequent slight mis-focuses. I have younger kids, so the use case is AF-C and a lot of movement. Again, no real issues with my nicer Sony lenses or Sigma 16/1.4.

Overall, it's a return for me - and I'll be forced to fork over more money for Sony's 35mm for my style of shooting.

Samyang AF 35mm F1.8 FE / Rokinon AF 35mm F1.8 FE
Prime lens • Sony FE
Announced: Sep 14, 2020
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