13th November 2015, Singapore – Fisheye lenses is probably one of the fun lenses that many love for its ridiculous barrel & optical distortion. However, it is also one of the (rather) expensive lens to get. As the appointed Samyang Ambassador for Singapore, one of the lenses that was issued to me is the Samyang 12mm F2.8 ED AS NCS Fisheye. I own several fisheye lenses from Canon, Nikon, Sony & Sigma so using a Samyang will be challenging (or I thought). Like other Samyang lenses, it is manual focusing, but like other fisheye lenses, it is a fisheye lens. You may thought I am being lame here but however, it is what it is.
Before I carry on, one must understand that fisheye lenses are further divided into 2 types. The Circular Fisheye & the Diagonal Fisheye. (Circular Fisheye only show the image in the centre with a black circle while diagonal fisheye covers the full image.) I shall leave the circular fisheye lenses out of this article. Next to remove from this article will be the fisheye lenses designed for crop sensor cameras, as these lenses belongs to a different breed and I am going to further remove Fisheye Zoom lenses too (sorry Canon). What I am left with will be the Full Frame Fisheye Prime Lenses and now it is fair for me to start.
My full frame (all diagonal) fisheye lenses includes Nikon 16mm F2.8 AF FX Fisheye, Sony 16mm F2.8 Fisheye, Canon EF 15mm F2.8 Fisheye & Sigma 15mm F2.8 DG Fisheye. But what makes the Samyang 12mm F2.8 ED AS NCS Fisheye so different from the rest is the focal length (apart from its manual focus incarnation). At 12mm on a Full Frame body, it is so much wider than what other makers had produced so far. Let’s take a closer look.
The Samyang 12mm F2.8 ED AS NCS Fisheye is light weight (530gm) and fairly compact. If fact is almost the same size as the rest of the auto-focusing fisheye gang (70.2mm x 77.2mm). It has no less glass elements than the rest with an optical structure of 12 elements in 8 groups – including goodies like 03 ED glass and 02 Aspherical glass – I was like “WOW! You Serious?”. The 7 blade apertures starts focusing from as close as 20cm and from F2.8 to F22 infinity which is what other fisheye does. What you will love to know will be, the Samyang 12mm F2.8 ED AS NCS Fisheye is priced at a tiny fraction of the rest of the fisheyes. So how does the Samyang stack up to the rest in terms of image quality and ease of use? Check out the photos.
Image: Inside Capitol, Singapore. Shot by Samyang 12mm F2.8 ED AS NCS Fisheye.
Image: Esplanade Car Park, Singapore. Shot by Samyang 12mm F2.8 ED AS NCS Fisheye.
The Samyang 12mm F2.8 ED AS NCS Fisheye clearly is a performer here. Night scenes or Indoor, it shot like a pro lens and the images are crispy-contrasted and very sharp. I love the color hues that it produces too. The focusing ring is rather smooth and the properly ratio-ed so focusing it manually was a breeze. I like the fact that the Samyang 12mm F2.8 ED AS NCS Fisheye is wider than any of the fisheye lenses that I own and it did not disapppoint. And when you have accepted that manual focusing is not everything, this fisheye is so easy to use that I am sure no one will fault the Samyang 12mm fisheye. I must also admit that after a night out with this lens, I had fell hopelessly in love with it. You will too.
Get your Samyang 12mm F2.8 ED AS NCS here.
About Samyang Singapore
Samyang DSLR lenses are exclusively distributed by Alan Photo Trading – a photography retailer and photography equipment distributor for many brands in Singapore. Alan Photo had been serving the local photography community since 1987 and they are one of the top 5 camera retailers in Singapore. A firm believer in honest deals & long term customer relationships, the brand operates on integrity and customer satisfaction. Today, Alan Photo is one of the most recognizable & respected retailers/ distributor for photographic equipment in Singapore. Follow Alan Photo on their Facebook here or visit their website here.
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