Samyang Launches Two New Super-Fast Primes

Samyang Launches Two New Super-Fast Primes

In the United States, you might know them better as Rokinon. Samyang Global, the Korean optics manufacturer, has announced two new lenses that may come as a bit of a surprise. While they have been producing quality manual lenses for a variety of mounts, they haven't done much that the mainstream manufacturers haven't already in terms of focal length, aperture, or cinema capability, though their price points have always been far more reasonable. With these new releases however, that has changed. 

85mm f/1.2

This isn't a new idea exactly. Canon has been doing this for decades and Mitakon made a manual 85mm f/1.2 lens already. The real crowd-pleaser with this lens is Samyang's promise that it will "out-resolve" 50-megapixel sensors and is a capable match for 8K cinema cameras. Personally, I've never been thrilled with the 85mm f/1.2L's resolving power, so this could be a gamechanger. Prices have yet to be announced, and so far, there are no plans to release this lens in other mounts aside from Canon EF. My only conceivable issue is the 86mm filter thread. For a lens that will certainly need an ND filter in many situations, an 86mm thread will make finding and affording one quite difficult. 

14mm f/2.4

You read that right, an f/2.4 aperture on a 14mm, full-frame prime. You could argue that Samyang/Rokinon are most well known for their amazing 14mm f/2.8 available for a wide variety of cameras. Astrophotographers and landscape photographers alike have raved about the lens for the corner-to-corner sharpness and resolving power. If this new lens is anything like its predecessor, this could be the ultimate wide-angle lens. While pricing is yet to be announced, Samyang has never released a lens with a high price point. Expect these to be reasonable options if their relatively special purposes fit your work. No pricing or official availability date have been released by Samyang either. 

Spencer Lookabaugh's picture

Spencer Lookabaugh is a lifestyle and portrait photographer located in Columbus, Ohio, as well as an employee of Midwest Photo Exchange. He is a firm believer in printing, shooting film and digital, and the power of photography. He also shoots landscape work in his spare time.

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Good luck manual focusing at F1.2 😁

It's easier to manually focus really fast glass than slow glass. I've never had issue with my 85L or 50L, and with the 5DII MF was pretty much what was required as focus/recompose doesn't work at f/1.2. Granted the Eg-S focusing screen helped a lot, but I'd imagine that the focus peaking available with mirrorless (and for Canon via Magic Lantern) would make manual focus just as easy.

If anything, they're certainly beautiful to look at.

And yeah, 85mm f/1.2 MF is definitely a studio lens. But it had better perform.

That 14mm obviously has some significant distortion. Not the most rectilinear lens I've ever seen... I wonder about the trade-off for half a stop. Is it worth it? Wouldn't you rather have straight images. The 85mm on the other hand...1.2....yum. Of course, Canon users won't be impressed. But I am. Why not. Every little bit...!!! ;-)

The sample image is definitely concerning!

The current 14mm has W shape distortion which is impossible to correct if you're shooting video like I did. Granted, for stills it's an amazing super wide lens.

I own both the Samyang 85mm 1.4 and the 14mm 2.8, both purchased for less than $200 USD each. Not sure what the point of these lenses is...unless we're looking at a significant increase in performance.

Interesting. I'd be interested in the price of the new Samyang 14mm 2.4. It would also be interesting to compare the t-stop in comparison to the current 2.8 versions out there. I've already got the 85L 1.2 so I have no purpose for a manual focus 1.2 lens.

Wide angle without filter mount ... curious :)