Samyang lens global has just announced a new manual focus lens for mirrorless aps-c camera users the Samyang 85mm f1.8 ED UMC CS lens, this will be available in Sony E, Fujifilm X, Canon EF-M and Micro Four Thirds mounts. Information for full specs was unavailable at the time of writing this review but here is what I can tell you.
- Maximum aperture f1.8
- Minimum aperture f22
- 9 lens elements in 7 groups
- Manual focus
- Filter thread of 62mm
- Metal lens mount
- Approx 85mm long
- Weight approx 300g
Some information direct from Samyang lens globals press release
“The Samyang MF 85mm F1.8 ED UMC CS is designed with 9 elements in 7 groups – the lens delivers a high resolution from the centre to the corners of the image. A high-refractive lens and an extra-low dispersion lens along with an ultra multi coating help minimize chromatic aberrations and unnecessary light dispersion, the lens is ideal for portraits with beautiful out of focus through a floating system. Provides a wide range of usage with crystal resolution and bright aperture. The compact and light-weight design offers the portability and comfort needed for a long day. This lens would be the best choice for daily photographers who want to capture everyday moments with a high-resolution.
The Samyang MF 85mm F1.8 ED UMC CS features the various availability and creatives for shooters through optical performance, it’s ideal for portrait and also close-up photos such as food, snap, landscape, and etc. Have more fun with Manual Lens. Manual focus lenses provide the excellent image quality and beautiful blurred background images. Especially the MF 85mm F1.8 ED UMC CS lens is perfect for the shooters who want to have more fun with expressing their characteristics through the images.
Compact design with lightweight (300g)
The Samyang MF 85mm F1.8 ED UMC CS weighs in about 300g and measures about 8cm long without the hood and rear cap. However, the shooters can expect attractive results of emotional and unique images with excellent resolution anytime and anywhere with this compact lens.
Samyang MF 85mm F1.8 ED UMC CS will be available from September 2018″
The new Samyang MF 85mm f1.8 ED MC CS is built just like the other Samyang mirrorless specific aps-c lens such as the 12mm f2 ncs cs I reviewed here and looks just like them too, keeping consistency in design. The lens comes in a cloth pouch like almost all Samyang lenses, a centre pinch type lens cap, a rear lens cap and a plastic lens hood.
The lens itself is made of a high quality plastic, the same material that Samyang’s other mirrorless aps-c lenses are made of and has a solid metal lens mount, I really like the lens mounts on these Samyang mirrorless aps-c lenses as they give the lens a quality feel but most of all provide a really good solid mount to the camera.
In use the lens is compact and well balanced on my Sony a6500. On the a6500 I much prefer these mirrorless aps-c specific designed lenses as the reason I own the a6500 is it’s size, so this new lens for me is a very welcome addition to Samyang’s line up. The focus ring is very smooth and feels kind of “dampened” think old quality film lenses. The aperture ring clicks positively in half stop increments from f1.8 -f22, I like the aperture ring on this lens as it allows you to mechanically select the aperture, great for time-lapse shooting.
Above, a few images of the Samyang MF 85mm f1.8 ED UMC CS, mounted on the Sony a6500 it makes for a nice compact package and looks great.
This lens will likely be of most interest to portrait photographers it is a nice focal length for this use and the f1.8 aperture will make it nice and easy to blur distracting backgrounds and isolate the subject, portrait photography is not my strong post but here are a few simple portraits to show how it performs.
The images above are all shot wide open at f1.8 .
OUT OF FOCUS AREAS
A couple of images to show how the lens renders out of focus areas, no ugly surprises here.
Here are some images to show vignetting, I did not notice any problems with overly heavy vignetting but you can see there is some in these images. In real world though I did not notice it at all and any vignetting would be very easily correctable.
At f1.8 you can see some vignetting of the corners.
At f2 there is still vignetting
AT f2.8 there is very little sign of vignetting, it is there but barely.
F4 no vignetting
An 85mm lens is probably not the first thing that comes to mind as a general walk around lens but it’s size and weight makes it a decent option for this and it is quite easy to keep in the kit with you at all times, I carried it around with me to a few days to see how it performed in different scenarios, here’s some images.
The Samyang MF 85mm f1.8 is fantastic for astrophotography I tested it with my Sony a6500 mounted to my skywatcher Star adventurer eq mount (star tracking mount), it did a great job, usually I would stop down a lens slighty for this purpose but I was happy enough with performance to shoot it wide open at f1.8.
I will be writing an Astrophotography specific review with coma examples, un- edited files etc for this lens that I will link at the end but here’s some of my thoughts. The lack of coma wide open is impressive, the lens is able to capture a lot of light with this fast aperture which is really useful for an aps-c sensor allowing you to lower the iso for less noise. The protected nature of the front element resisted lens fogging on the night I took images, I’m not saying you will not get fogging but it did seem to resist this quite well. Here are a couple of images created from multiple stacked files.
The Samyang MF 85mm f1.8 ED UMC CS is a nice addition to Samyang’s mirrorless aps-c line up, it is built quite well and performance is great wide open. Obviously it will really appeal to portrait photographers but I can see it being popular with a wide range of mirrorless aps-c users due to it’s small size, ability to give some real reach and easily isolate subjects with it’s fast aperture.
Price here in Australia will be approx $549 with availability from retailers within the next week.
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