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Author Topic: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review  (Read 30986 times)

TWI by Dustin Abbott

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Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« on: October 01, 2013, 11:53:27 AM »
Hello, friends.  I have just completed and published my fairly extensive review of the Rokinon/Samyang 14mm f/2.8 lens.  Some of you have been asking questions about the lens as I have been posting pictures from it over the past couple of weeks.  Hopefully this will answer them. Thanks for your time:

http://www.dustinabbott.net/2013/10/rokinon-14mm-f2-8-wide-angle-review/

6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« on: October 01, 2013, 11:53:27 AM »

TWI by Dustin Abbott

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6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

J.R.

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2013, 12:16:47 PM »
Nice review. Makes me want one as well.

BTW, I loved Roger's (lensrentals) take on this lens as well -

Quote
I should mention I’m a bit of a Rokinon fan. I own their 14mm because at $379 I think it’s an insane bargain for a very sharp lens. For that price, compared to $2,300 for a Canon 14mm, I’m more than willing to give up autofocus, accept some barrel distortion, and consider it disposable. If it breaks getting a new one won’t be much more expensive than the standard repair cost for a Canon 14mm and less than the repair cost of a Nikon 14-24.
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TWI by Dustin Abbott

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2013, 12:24:45 PM »
Nice review. Makes me want one as well.

BTW, I loved Roger's (lensrentals) take on this lens as well -

Quote
I should mention I’m a bit of a Rokinon fan. I own their 14mm because at $379 I think it’s an insane bargain for a very sharp lens. For that price, compared to $2,300 for a Canon 14mm, I’m more than willing to give up autofocus, accept some barrel distortion, and consider it disposable. If it breaks getting a new one won’t be much more expensive than the standard repair cost for a Canon 14mm and less than the repair cost of a Nikon 14-24.

That's a pretty good point.  Right before I published I went trolling and read quite a few of other reviews on the net.  I was really surprised to find a mixed bag out there.  I was primarily surprised to hear some people claiming that it wasn't very sharp at all.  That sounded really weird to me, as some of the most reputable sources (and my own experience) told a very different story.  It left me asking if either there was that much sample variation (which I haven't really heard) or, perhaps, user error?

All I know is that some people I trust (including Roger, Photozone, even DXo) and also my own experience says that this lens is fantastically sharp.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2013, 01:02:03 PM »
You might want to look into a LensCoat Hoodie to replace the lens cap.  It's made of neoprene, so it'll fold/compress on itself in your pocket.  It is a bit of a pain to put back on the lens (two hands needed), but it works better for me than the original lenhood.  I have an extra small one (fits lenses with diameters of 2.75-3.25 in) that fits over my UWA lens (not the Rokinon 14mm, but the idea is the same).

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2013, 01:31:37 PM »
Has anyone had experience with the cine version of this lens? I understand that it does have a slightly narrower maximum aperture, but its ring is declicked which could provide dual purpose for video if the build quality and optics are comparable.
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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2013, 01:35:27 PM »
Has anyone had experience with the cine version of this lens? I understand that it does have a slightly narrower maximum aperture, but its ring is declicked which could provide dual purpose for video if the build quality and optics are comparable.

The aperture is identical, it's just given in t-stops instead of f-stops.

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2013, 01:35:27 PM »

bleephotography

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2013, 01:54:26 PM »
Has anyone had experience with the cine version of this lens? I understand that it does have a slightly narrower maximum aperture, but its ring is declicked which could provide dual purpose for video if the build quality and optics are comparable.

The aperture is identical, it's just given in t-stops instead of f-stops.

Oh, didn't even notice that, thanks! So other than the declicked aperture ring, it looks like they're basically the same lens. I might just give the cine a go...
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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2013, 02:05:33 PM »
Right before I published I went trolling and read quite a few of other reviews on the net.  I was really surprised to find a mixed bag out there.  I was primarily surprised to hear some people claiming that it wasn't very sharp at all.  That sounded really weird to me, as some of the most reputable sources (and my own experience) told a very different story.  It left me asking if either there was that much sample variation (which I haven't really heard) or, perhaps, user error?

There was an earlier version with similar specs but different optically that apparently wasn't as sharp.
If gear matters: 5DII, 7D, G11, Samyang 14/2.8, EF 24-105/4, EF 35/2.0IS, EF 50/2.5 macro, EF 85/1.8, EF 200/2.8II, EF 400/5.6, Ext 1.4x, Lifesize conv, Ext tube EF25, 430EXII, 270EX, Yongnuo 603C

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2013, 02:15:30 PM »
You might want to look into a LensCoat Hoodie to replace the lens cap.  It's made of neoprene, so it'll fold/compress on itself in your pocket.  It is a bit of a pain to put back on the lens (two hands needed), but it works better for me than the original lenhood.  I have an extra small one (fits lenses with diameters of 2.75-3.25 in) that fits over my UWA lens (not the Rokinon 14mm, but the idea is the same).

That is a good suggestion.  I'll take a look at it, because I certainly don't always carry a bag into the field.  I will often use either a Cotton Carrier type harness or a Black Rapid.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

TWI by Dustin Abbott

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2013, 02:16:28 PM »
Right before I published I went trolling and read quite a few of other reviews on the net.  I was really surprised to find a mixed bag out there.  I was primarily surprised to hear some people claiming that it wasn't very sharp at all.  That sounded really weird to me, as some of the most reputable sources (and my own experience) told a very different story.  It left me asking if either there was that much sample variation (which I haven't really heard) or, perhaps, user error?

There was an earlier version with similar specs but different optically that apparently wasn't as sharp.

That's interesting, and certainly explains the huge discrepancy in reports.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2013, 02:23:54 PM »
Has anyone had experience with the cine version of this lens? I understand that it does have a slightly narrower maximum aperture, but its ring is declicked which could provide dual purpose for video if the build quality and optics are comparable.

The aperture is identical, it's just given in t-stops instead of f-stops.

Oh, didn't even notice that, thanks! So other than the declicked aperture ring, it looks like they're basically the same lens. I might just give the cine a go...

Also note that the focus and aperture rings are geared for use with video rigs, this make it a bit more difficult to use for regular photography or manual video focusing.
6D, 60D, 17-40L, 70-200L 2.8 IS II, 24-105L, Sigma 35mm 1.4, 40mm Pancake, Helios 44-M4 (55mm f/2), 1.4X Extender III, 430EX II, Yongnuo YN-622 Flash Triggers.
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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2013, 02:58:47 PM »
Congrats on a really nice review.  I really like this lens (I have the Pro-Optic variety) and you cannot beat it for the price.

I would like to comment on one thing you mentioned, the build quality.  Having dropped and broken and tried to repair one of these, they are not as "robust" as they feel.  Some of the parts that move the diaphragm a relatively flimsy and easily bent.  And the ring holding these parts in place are "spot glued" and made out of plastic.  The result is that if they ever come apart, you will not get them to function properly again.  Struggling with glue and shims can get it back together, but the diaphragm function will never be right once the flimsy plastic breaks or the metal parts get bent.  At the price of the lens, it is not worth a "professional" repair.

However, my solution was simple.  I could not wait to get another one and replaced this with a duplicate Pro-Optic version of the Samyang.  I just tell myself never to drop it again!

 ;)

Bottom line is that I would recommend this lens to anyone looking for a 14mm that does not break the bank, and in fact, can exceed the IQ found in some much more expensive wide angles out there. 
5d Mkiii; Eos-M (with M-22mm, M-18-55, and EF adapter); 50 f1.4; 40 f2.8; 24-105 f4; 70-200 f4 IS, 70-200 f/2.8 IS  ii; 100L f/2.8 Macro; 1.4x iii; 2.0x iii; 28-105ii; 17-40; Pro-Optic 14mm f2.8; 100-400L; 300mm f/2.8 ii; 430 EXii and a whole lot of stuff

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2013, 02:58:47 PM »

TWI by Dustin Abbott

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2013, 03:10:53 PM »
Congrats on a really nice review.  I really like this lens (I have the Pro-Optic variety) and you cannot beat it for the price.

I would like to comment on one thing you mentioned, the build quality.  Having dropped and broken and tried to repair one of these, they are not as "robust" as they feel.  Some of the parts that move the diaphragm a relatively flimsy and easily bent.  And the ring holding these parts in place are "spot glued" and made out of plastic.  The result is that if they ever come apart, you will not get them to function properly again.  Struggling with glue and shims can get it back together, but the diaphragm function will never be right once the flimsy plastic breaks or the metal parts get bent.  At the price of the lens, it is not worth a "professional" repair.

However, my solution was simple.  I could not wait to get another one and replaced this with a duplicate Pro-Optic version of the Samyang.  I just tell myself never to drop it again!

 ;)

Bottom line is that I would recommend this lens to anyone looking for a 14mm that does not break the bank, and in fact, can exceed the IQ found in some much more expensive wide angles out there.

Thank you for this "real life" observation.  This is the kind of thing that most reviewers (like myself) wouldn't know unless something similar happened.  We judge a lens by feel and the apparent quality of the moving parts, but don't necessarily know the internal construction or how it would react to a bit of "violence".

The fact that you replaced it with a second copy also says something significant!
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2013, 03:27:44 PM »


Thank you for this "real life" observation.  This is the kind of thing that most reviewers (like myself) wouldn't know unless something similar happened.  We judge a lens by feel and the apparent quality of the moving parts, but don't necessarily know the internal construction or how it would react to a bit of "violence".

The fact that you replaced it with a second copy also says something significant!

I just need to not trip over my tripod leg again!  BTW, loved your pics, as well.
5d Mkiii; Eos-M (with M-22mm, M-18-55, and EF adapter); 50 f1.4; 40 f2.8; 24-105 f4; 70-200 f4 IS, 70-200 f/2.8 IS  ii; 100L f/2.8 Macro; 1.4x iii; 2.0x iii; 28-105ii; 17-40; Pro-Optic 14mm f2.8; 100-400L; 300mm f/2.8 ii; 430 EXii and a whole lot of stuff

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Re: Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Review
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2013, 03:27:44 PM »