UPDATE: Uploaded a new higher resolution version (1920*1080, 320 mb instead of the previous 1280*720, 60mb file). You can download it to bypass Vimeo compression!

A short test video with the Samyang 35mm F1.4 lens, on a Canon 5D Mark 2 (full frame) body.

Beautiful bokeh, very (!) sharp from 1.4 and up, little vignetting!

Great to get close (30cm ~ 11.8 inches) to your subject and use a very shallow depth of field (DOF). Hard to focus. That's why I also installed Magic Lantern AJ 5.0, for the focus circles. Makes life a little bit easier!

Most shots were wide open (F1.4). Some on 2.0.
Fader ND is used at the beginning of the video, later it was not neccessary anymore and I used available light (which was not much!).

Pros:
- Very cinematic picture
- Very sharp from 1.4, and stopped down one bit it is razor sharp. Made some test pictures as well, it is fabulous, on par with the great 70-200mm F4 IS! But then you can come very close (30cm).
- Wide open a little bit of chroma issues on hard edges, again stopped down one bit it is pretty much gone.
- Lovely smooth bokeh. See Philip Bloom's blog for a test picture.
- Price/quality is superb.
- Build quality very good.
- Smooth focus ring.
- Common 77mm thread.

Cons:
- No autofocus
- No visual feedback in camera of selected F-stop (no number).
- No focus confirmation built in Canon version, however for a price of 30 euro's, this can be applied later. Can be useful, even as cinema lens. Very handy during photography.
- Difficult to focus due to shallow depth of field wide open (but apples to all lenses).
- Logaritmic scaled focus. Distance to turn to focus from 30-40 cm is about the same as 3m to infinty. Just a matter of getting used to I guess.
- Heavy, especially on smaller camera's like 550D and so on.

Conclusion:
If you can live with the downside of no autofocus, this is a very very good quality lens for its price! I've heard a rumour that in June prices will rise with about 100 euro because some aspherical lens elements a made in Japan which will become scarse. Only little can be made, so you know what happens, market wise.

Just buy it!

Also, this was a small test for the Cinestyle picturestyle. Very cinematic ungraded.
I spend little time color correcting this, mainly to get it more natural, not to greate a "look". The latitude is awesome ( check the first two shots). Graded with Magic Bullet Colorista II. Yet have to figure out how to get the real red back (a bit unsaturated) in the shot with the "Kip Tandoori" package.

Music by Silence - Follow me.

UPDATE:
Also watch this movie my friend Gerwin Koudijs made with his version of the lens but then on a 550D (T2i) crop body. Look great too! vimeo.com/24024769

UPDATE2:
My friend and I actually used this lens past saturday on a real shoot. It was an event with dancing areas, so pretty dark.

Thanks to cheesycam.com 's review of the Z96, which we of course ordered some time ago, it made the people looked really pretty (with Cinestyle pictureprofile). Shot very dimmed (around 25% power on the Z96) and on about F2.0/F3.5 it was actually pretty ok to focus up close, like 50cm - 1m (ISO 640). Really good looking professional frames!

But, it is still hard to focus from close to infinity due to the long turn and logaritmic(?) scale of the focus distance.

Really LOVE this lens! The only one I used that night! Same applies for my friend Gerwin.

Last time on a similar event I used the Samyang 85mm F1.4 full open with no LED lights. That was harder to focus and really forced me to use ISO 1250.
Downside of that lens is that you need to step away from your subject for about one meter, you don't have as much contact when compared with the Samyang 35mm F1.4!

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