Samyang AF 35mm f/1.4 FE - Review / Test Report - Sample Images & Verdict
Lens Reviews - Sony Alpha (Full Format)

Sample Images

Click on an image for downloading the full-size variant.

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed400
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/10.0
Exposure1/320s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed400
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/10.0
Exposure1/250s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed160
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/10.0
Exposure1/200s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed100
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/1.4
Exposure1/2000s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed100
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/4.0
Exposure1/800s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed100
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/11.0
Exposure1/125s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed100
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/2.0
Exposure1/3200s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed200
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/1.4
Exposure1/6400s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed200
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/1.4
Exposure1/400s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed200
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/1.4
Exposure1/125s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed200
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/2.5
Exposure1/8000s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed800
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/2.8
Exposure1/50s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed160
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/10.0
Exposure1/320s

MakeSONY
ModelILCE-7RM2
ISO Speed400
Focal Length35.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/2500s

Competition

The Samyang AF 35mm f/1.4 FE (left) faces some stiff competition in its target market. There's, of course, the Sony/Zeiss Distagon T* FE 35mm f/1.4 ZA. While this one is no slouch either, the Samyang is optically better, less so on the mechanical side. Brand new on the market at the time of this review is the Sigma 35mm f/1.2 DG DN ART. Spec- and price-wise, it is one step up from the two mentioned lenses. It's also more heavy and bigger. Its f/1.2 max aperture and impressive manufacturer MTFs are quite a statement though. Sigma is also offering a 2nd lens in this class - the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM ART - a converted variation of their DSLR lens. Price-wise this is an attractive alternative and it's an impressive performer as well.

Visual comparison courtesy of camerasize.com.

Verdict

To be very honest with you - we didn't have the highest expectations but the Samyang AF 35mm f/1.4 FE smashed them - mostly. The resolution is among the best that we have seen in this lens class. It's already sharp at f/1.4 and downright superb from f/2. Lateral CAs are very moderate, less so LoCAs (Bokeh fringing) albeit that's still rather normal these days. Distortions are next to non-existent when using image auto-correction but just on a medium level in RAW mode. Vignetting is visible at f/1.4 even with auto-correction (much more so in RAW mode) but not much of an issue beyond. The quality of the bokeh is good but not brilliant. This is not limited to the Samyang though - the Sony/Zeiss FE 35mm f/1.4 ZA is actually worse in this respect.
The build quality is impressive but stays just short of professional-grade expectations. Namely, weather-sealing is absent and the finish doesn't feel premium. That being said the all-metal construction is solid. The AF speed is fast and it's near-silent. While the focus ring is very smooth to handle, the actual focusing is a bit on the coarse side in manual (by-wire) mode.
Overall Samyang AF 35mm f/1.4 FE represents an outstanding value and it's awesome to see that Samyang aims to provide this level of quality in a high-speed lens to a broader audience. Just watch out for sample variations.
Optical Quality:    
★★★★★
Mechanical Quality:
★★★★★
Price/Performance:
★★★★★

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