2 days after Christmas…. I decided to go for something wider than my existing 17-40 UWA on my 5D mk III body. But the cost of EF 14mm f2.8 is quite prohibitive at a whooping $3000

Being a hobbyist and not usually shooting this wide all the time, this cost is unjustifiable even with my twisted logic of ‘justifiable’ :p

But after tons of reading materials online, I came across the Samyang 14mm f2.8. It’s a full manual lens and have lots of distortion (mustache). But the cost is nearly 7 times cheaper. I think I can live with those distortions with abit of Lightroom distortion correction.

If you aren’t looking very carefully at the above photo, I don’t think you can see the distortion… But if you know where to look for, you will see it thou.

My first impression of this lens


I feel that the sharpness of this lens is extraordinary. It’s definitely sharper than my 17-40.

Colors wise, it’s almost the same as my 17-40. But I would need to test it out when the lighting is more ideal (preferably in the day). The above photo is a test shot for the 14mm during the BLACK hour. The colors were quite horrible, which was why I framed it for B/W

Auto Focus, none. it’s MANUAL FOCUS!!! I have  to make almost a full turn to turn from 0.28m to infinity. This is great, as it allows fine tuning of the focus. I usually suck with manual focusing.


The downsides….There is no electronic contacts for the lens to communicate with the body. So you are basically screwed for the metering, live view etc. But just 1-2 test shots and you will be able to fine tune the settings. So, nothing too troublesome :p

Because there are no electronics contacts, in Lightroom it will just show ‘-‘ for aperture and focal length. This doesn’t bother me in anyway…

If you are not going to use correction profile, the mustache distortion may be abit too obvious when you have straight lines like horizon, buildings in the center frame. So, back when I’m processing the photo, I need to download the Samyang 14mm profile for it. To do so, just download the Adobe Lens Profile Downloader (http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/detail.jsp?ftpID=5492). So, it’s a few clicks and the distortion is almost gone.

As far as the cost/quality ratio goes, this is definitely one of the bargain lens for hobbyist who wants to step into the Ultra UWA region.

I’ll be looking forward to using it soon for some landscapes…

That’s it for now…