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Lens review

Samyang AF 50 mm f/1.4 FE

7 November 2016
Szymon Starczewski

11. Summary

Pros:
  • good image quality in the frame centre,
  • acceptable image quality on the edge of APS-C and full frame,
  • lack of any problems concerning lateral chromatic aberration,
  • negligible distortion,
  • low vignetting on smaller APS-C sensor.

Cons:

  • soft image at the maximum relative aperture,
  • too high longitudinal chromatic aberration,
  • huge coma, visible even on stopping down the aperture by 2 EV,
  • some problems with spherical aberration,
  • unsatisfactory performance against bright light,
  • distinct vignetting on full frame.

The Samyang AF 50 mm f/1.4 FE seems to be a bit less successful lens than its reflex camera brother with the same parameters. Still the latter, even if not so good as other contemporary 1.4/50 rival lenses, was cheaper than them so its price quality ratio looked rather sensible. The autofocus-equipped model, though, is by about $300 more expensive than its manual equivalent; it means, with its weaker performance, it cannot be assessed equally well.

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In the case of the FE system it would be difficult to speak about a wide choice of cheap lenses. Not so long ago the Samyang AF 50 mm f/1.4 FE was the cheapest standard with autofocus available and that fact held promise of a significant sale volume. After the launch of the Sony FE 50 mm f/1.8 the situation doesn’t look so rosy anymore; it seems without a distinct lowering of the price the Samyang won’t enjoy a huge market share.