Lens review

Samyang 35 mm f/1.4 AS UMC

Samyang 35 mm f/1.4 AS UMC
30 March 2011
Arkadiusz Olech

1. Introduction

Full frame 35 mm lenses with f/1.4 aperture are very interesting and important photographic devices. You can say they are as important as 1.4/50 class standards – but definitely less popular. Why are they so important and interesting then? Mainly because of their versatility. Such a lens is, up to a point, a very universal tool on full frame - so universal in fact that if I had one pick of lenses to take my photos with I would choose a 1.4/35 model exactly. On APS-C/DX sensors, for a change, a 35 mm lens becomes the equivalent of a standard device, so its usage is on that account clear.

Why are 35 mm instruments less popular than 50 mm? The price is the main problem here. A classic 50 mm lens, even as fast as f/1.4, is quite simple to produce as it consists of just several optical elements; you almost never need expensive low-dispersion glass or any aspherical elements. Passing from 50 to 35 mm and keeping the f/1.4 aperture complicates the situation a lot. A 35 mm lens usually features at least 10 elements, some of them made of special kinds of glass so they can cost over for times as much as 1.4/50 lenses. Small wonder they are much harder to come across in photographic bags of amateur photographers.

As the price is the main issue here, it is hardly surprising that the announcement of Samyang, concerning the launch of a 1.4/35 device, was met with huge interest in the photographic circles. 3.5/8, 2.8/14 i 1.4/85 models produced by that company showed clearly that they can offer instruments with a very good price/quality ratio. The Samyang 35 mm f/1.4 AS UMC has been sent to us not so long ago, courtesy of the Foto-Tip company so we can share the results of our test right now. We hope you will enjoy your reading!

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Samyang 35 mm f/1.4 AS UMC  - Introduction

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