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Perfect Lens Even for Shooting Food, Samyang AF 135mm F1.8 FE

Nic Taylor

Photographer from England

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Samyang AF 135mm F1.8 FE mounted on Sony A7RIII

Samyang kick off another new year with another exciting new lens, the AF 135mm F1.8 FE. I was excited to get my hands on and try out this new lens, as it’s a focal length quite a way outside my usual focal length range for the type of work I shoot. I normally shoot with the 50mm, 75mm, or my macro lenses which are 90mm and 100mm. Why do I shoot with two macro lenses that have very similar focal lengths, I hear you ask. Well, the 100mm has 2:1 magnification, so is very useful to get some seriously close-up shots with incredible details. Although I must say I hardly ever use that feature - I digress. I also own a 70-200mm, but I cannot remember the last time I took that to a commercial shoot, so shooting with this 135mm lens would kind of take me out of my comfort zone and make me think differently while shooting with it.

The original (manual focus) 135mm F2 lens from Samyang was released back in 2015 and is rated highly amongst portrait photographers and astrophotographers in terms of bang for buck performance. It was always a very capable lens, and I’ve seen numerous stunning images captured using it. It’s not a lens that I’ve used, however. This new lens is a completely new design and construction but adds auto-focus and an extra third of a stop of light to the maximum aperture.

Build Quality

Build quality is on par with Samyang's other AF lenses, with the main construction being made of high-quality plastics and a reasonable weight (for this type of lens) that feels good in the hand when mounted to my camera with added battery grip. The Samyang AF 135mm weighs in at 772g which is quite a bit lighter than other brands’ AF 135mm lenses (One is at 950g and another is 1130g). Size-wise, it's very similar to the other brand’s much expensive AF 135mm lens, but a little smaller than another brand’s AF 135mm lens. It comes with a lightweight cylindrical type lens hood which has a bit of a rubbery coating around the front edge.

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Features

It features a focus hold button, a custom switch (featured on the last few new Samyang lenses which allows adjustment of aperture via the large focus ring), and also a focus limiter switch, a first on Samyang lenses. In addition to a feature first debuted by Samyang on their AF 24mm F1.8 lens released last year, this lens also has the Astro Focus mode which when activated the lens will automatically move to the infinity position after the LED has blinked once. This is a feature I haven't tested as to where I'm based in the UK I have found it difficult to get good astro images due to light pollution and poor weather conditions at this time of year. It has weather sealing to protect the lens from light rain and dust and the front of the lens features an 82mm filter thread.

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Bokeh

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LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F4.5
SPEED 1/200 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment
zoom
LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F4.5
SPEED 1/160 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment

The lens has an aperture range from f1.8 up to f22 with 11 aperture blades, which make the lens capable of producing images with that beautiful, buttery Bokeh (out-of-focus parts of the image).

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LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F6.3
SPEED 1/160 sec
ISO 160
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment
zoom
LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F5.6
SPEED 1/160 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment

It features a minimum focusing distance of just 69cm (from subject to the sensor) which is quite close for a lens of this type and allows you to really fill the frame with your subject and get some nice close-up shots with that awesome smooth bokeh that will really separate your subject from the background. This will work great for me shooting food.

High Resolution

It features a complex construction of 13 elements in 11 groups. Three of which are extra low-dispersion lenses, two high refractive lenses, and an ultra-precision aspherical lens which all help control chromatic aberration enabling the lens to produce stunningly sharp images with beautiful colour rendition.

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LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F5
SPEED 1/160 sec
ISO 80
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment
zoom
LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F5.6
SPEED 1/160 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment

Autofocus Performance

The lens takes advantage of Samyang's fast and quiet Linear Stepping Motor (STM) to minimize focus breathing when focusing from close-up all the way through to infinity.
As you can see on the image, AF performed great to track the lady moving away from camera.

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LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F5
SPEED 1/160 sec
ISO 80
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment
zoom
LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F1.8
SPEED 1/80 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Aperture
priority
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment

Conclusion

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LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F5.6
SPEED 1/125 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment

During my relatively short time with this lens up to the point of publishing this short review, I thoroughly enjoyed using this beautiful piece of glass. It's quite a lot larger and heavier than the lenses I'm used to shooting with, but then again it's totally different from the lenses I tend to gravitate towards for my day-to-day work.

It also produces a different look as it compresses the images a lot more and separates the subject from the background even at quite narrow apertures (depending on the distance from the subject), whereas wider focal length lenses would have more in focus at the same aperture.

Autofocus performance is very good on this lens. I love that you can toggle the focus limit depending on how far your subject is away from you (a feature I have on one of my macro lenses).

Images are sharp, and I like how you can get in close and shoot some really nice detail shots, which is perfect for the sort of work I shoot. In terms of price point for Samyang lenses, it's certainly one of the most expensive AF lenses, but you're getting a lot of lenses for your money especially when you take a look at the prices of its competitors then it makes it a no-brainer.

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LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F2.8
SPEED 1/800 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Aperture
priority
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment
zoom
LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F5.6
SPEED 1/160 sec
ISO 160
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment
zoom
LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F5
SPEED 1/160 sec
ISO 160
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment
zoom
LENSES AF 135mm
F1.8 FE
CAMERA SONY
ILCE-7RM3
DIAPHRAGM F5.6
SPEED 1/160 sec
ISO 125
EXPOSURE Manual
PHOTOMETRY 135mm
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY Multi
segment

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森养最佳标准画角提案解析

从人与人之间的关系乃至为了营造美丽的空间而布置装饰品时都需要保持适当的距离。那么,为了更好地欣赏美术或摄影作品,我们应该保持多少距离?

答案是相当于“作品框架对角线的长度”的距离。

표준화각 자료 이미지
표준화각 자료 이미지

为了将作品完整地纳入视野并予欣赏,保持相当于作品对角线的距离为宜。如果距离过近,将大于人眼可集中精力的50°视角而无法取的良好的欣赏效果。

为了最佳欣赏效果与最佳视角而保持理想距离也适用于摄影技术。在拍摄静止画像的摄影技术中,将等于摄像面对角线长度的焦距镜头定义为标准镜头。数码相机的全帧传感器尺寸为36x24毫米,其对角线距离约为43.26毫米,标准镜头应为多少毫米以下的最理想答案可以称为“接近43.26毫米的数据”,而难以断定是至今被视作标准镜头代名词的“50毫米”。

以往与胶片对角线长度相仿的45mm画角镜头较为常见,随着SLR相机大获成功,为了保留可容纳反射镜的空间,50mm被视作标准镜头。但是,最近随着无反相机底边大幅放大, 鉴于无反相机法兰距短的特点,需要将标准镜头的画角以45mm再度予以解释,由此开始研发AF 45mm F1.8 FE。 与35mm画角镜头相比,三阳的AF 45mm F1.8 FE将畸变现象降至最低,且比55mm画角拍摄范围宽,为人物、风景、建筑物及宠物等各种主题摄影呈献令人满意的效果。

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6D
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77D (9000D)
760D (8000D / Rebel T6s)
1300D (Kiss X80 / Rebel T6)
1200D (Kiss X70 / Rebel T5)
200D (Kiss X9 / Rebel SL2)
800D (Kiss X9i / Rebel T7i)
700D (Kiss X9i / Rebel T7i)
100D (Kiss X7 / Rebel SL1)
650D (Kiss X6i / Rebel T4i)
600D (Kiss X5 / Rebel T3i)
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DSLR / Full Frame
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D810A
D4S
D750
D810A
DSLR / APS-C
D7200
D500
D3300
D5500
D5600
D3400
D7500

* Cameras released within 5 years from 2019 are tested.

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