Lens review

Samyang AF 24 mm f/2.8 FE

11 September 2018
Arkadiusz Olech

11. Summary


  • good image quality in the frame centre,
  • moderate lateral chromatic aberration,
  • slight distortion,
  • sensible performance against bright light,
  • not especially bothersome coma,
  • fast and accurate autofocus.


  • barrel seemed to be fragile,
  • weak image quality on the edge of the frame,
  • significant spherical aberration,
  • presence of moustache distortion,
  • monstrous vignetting,
  • unpleasant out-of-focus areas.
Knowing the parameters of the tested lens and its price (around $400) we didn’t expect any miracles. Such an instrument cannot and will not break any resolution records, its vignetting will be significant and also its image quality on edges of the frame will leave a lot to be desired. Still we think Samyang optics constructors agreed to one compromise too many. The 2.8/24 FE model didn’t have even one very good result in our test and practically in every category we could find reservations, sometimes very serious ones.

In order not to sound baseless let me number them. The image quality in the frame centre can be considered good but the edge of the detector leaves a lot to be desired; the fact that you have to close the lens down to near f/8.0 on the edge of the small APS-C sensor is really too much. Lack of low dispersion elements means both longitudinal and lateral chromatic aberrations are clearly visible, perhaps not always and not distinctly but still. Spherical aberration contributes noticeably to a weaker performance near the maximum relative aperture. Distortion doesn’t look bad if you just take dry numbers into account but they were achieved by introducing moustache distortion. High vignetting in such a construction is unavoidable but in our opinion it didn’t have to reach almost 4 EV. Small elements of the lens, proper blackening and good coatings made the performance against bright light acceptable in most of cases but the lens had still one slip-up – in one position of sun in the frame the majority of area in the photo was overexposed. Mind you, you still have to add to that not exactly nice blurry areas.

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Samyang with their AF 35 mm f/2.8 FE model proved that they can produce small, shapely, cheap and optically good lenses. It’s a real pity the Samyang AF 24 mm f/2.8 FE didn’t follow the example of its older cousin.