Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2

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Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2
– Featuring Guest Reviewer Tommy ChiaL1001031A.jpgImage: Guest Reviewer Tommy Chia with the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 mated to his Canon 5D MarkIII.  

 
03rd Feburary 2017, Singapore – Samyang recently released the the NEW Premium Line lenses in the form of 14mm F2.5 & 85mm F1.2 for Full Frame cameras. For this review, we appointed Professional Aerial Photographer Tommy Chia to review the Premium MF 85mm F1.2. Samyang has built a strong following through the last 5 years with its very affordable and high quality lenses and had released many lenses to match up for today’s thirst for high-resolution and high quality digital images. The start of Samyang’s Premium line optics with the 2 most sought-after focal length lenses is probably the smartest thing to do as Samyang has always churned out surprises when the photography industry least expected it.

Before we proceed with the review, I would like to (again) share that if you ended up here looking for technical in-depth review, then you are certainly in the wrong place. Over here we are only keen how the lens behaved & performed, the image quality etc. If you are cool with this, read on.

The NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 was not modeled after any other lenses of a similar focal length. It was designed from ground zero and with the professional photographer in mind. When we received the 2 new premium lenses from Samyang Singapore, we couldn’t decide if the pair looks closer to the like of Zeiss or Xeen. The 85mm is pretty large at 98.4mm (height) x 93mm (length) and weights 1050gm. While the numbers shows a Goliath, the lens was pretty much manageable. The handling, lens build, the design ergonomics everything spells PREMIUM! It feels expensive to the touch while operationally the 85mm F1.2 is very easy to use & manage.


Internally, it’s designed with a 9 blades (rounded iris type) aperture and focuses from F1.2 to F16. Optics comes in 10 elements in 7 groups and the lens starts focusing from 80cm. (Minimum focusing distance). The lens front accepts 86mm screw-on filters and the retail box comes with the standard dedicated hood and pouch with some paperwork.

We passed the Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 to Professional Aerial Photographer Tommy Chia and let’s hear what he have to say about the new Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 lens.

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Reviewing Samyang PREMIUM MF 85mm F1.2
– by Tommy Chia
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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.

When Editor AL passed the Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 to me, my first impression is no doubt the size & weight. However when I research further about this lens, there are a lot of glass elements within the lens and similar focal length * spec-ed lenses by other brands are also massive so this is common actually. And I must add that I thought the Editor was trying to pull my leg by passing me a Zeiss lens and claimed it to be a Samyang. (lol!) Yes, it feels & handles exactly like a Zeiss, believe it or not.

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.


The lens is very well constructed and certainly feels upmarket. The focusing ring is ultra smooth and the focus ratio is perfect for getting subjects into focus fast and accurate. Very comfortable to use and easy to handle. The body was constructed with a full metal alloy material that feels cool to the touch and it uses a 86mm filter at the front. As a long time user of MF lenses (I have at least 15 MF lenses – including Samyang’s earlier releases!), I have always enjoy shooting with MF lenses. It gives me full control & accuracy on the focus which I love so much. 

Since I started shooting (and later professionally) in 1974, all we had in those days were MF lenses.
This review unit came in Canon EF Mount and I mated it to my Canon EOS 5D Mark III – now, there’s some getting used to be done as all my Canon EF lenses are AF units. However after spending 5 minutes with it, it’s so easy to use.

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.


The shallow depth of field created by the F1.2 separates your focused subject away from the background seamlessly giving the bokeh a fantastic & smooth blur. While many of you may argue that the 9 blades apertures is pretty much doing most of the job in tangent to the focal length, I agree & disagree. Although there are many 85mm lenses with apertures opening from F1.2 to F1,4 (I shall omit the F1.8-F2 here.), there is no identical lens in this segment that creates a similar effect. Take another 85mm F1.2 lens and have them set to the same settings and compare the images you will see the differences. Each of these 85mm lenses has a characteristic of its own. For the Samyang Premium 85mm F1.2, the bokeh is ingeniously addictive. (You can see from all the images posted on this article.)

 

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.

Like all MF lenses, there’s no image stabilizer of any sort, I decided to have some fun and have the Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 mated to my Sony a7RII and to take advantage of the Sony’s in-body image stabilizer. It works perfectly and its a difference experience altogether! The 85mm is a mid-telephoto range and with this Samyang’s minimum focusing distance of 80cm, I was able to juice the magnification ratio to its limit, I got up close (optically) with flowers and gotten really sharp and interesting images while off-focus bokeh just simply tempted me to shoot more & more.

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Image: Tommy mated the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 to a Sony a7RII via adaptor.

Honestly, the bokeh is so beautiful that one simply forgets how massive this lens is. And the images produced are so beautiful that I am actually engrossed with what I had produced with this excellent lens. Most of us uses a F1.2 lens because we want to use it at F1.2, hence most of the time when I was out doing this review, I was shooting at wide open F1.2 most of the time.

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.

 

And so, just a day before I return the lens, a friend was willing to model for me. Without an assistant and without a reflector, this 85mm is a performer in low light scenes. It’s close to evening but I was able to shoot easily. See the next few images of my kind friend!

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.

At this point, I was so thrilled with the new Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 and I am sure many like-minded professional photographers will be eager to lay their hands on this magnificient lens. Looking at the images that I have shot, I noticed that there are not even a faint sign of chromatic aberration or any distortion on this lens, all I saw was high quality images produced by this lens.
Do check out all the images on this review article – you may click on the image and select view as 100% to appreciate the quality of the images.

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.

 

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia. 

 

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Image: Shot using the NEW Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 by Tommy Chia.

In conclusion, the new Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 is a lens that was designed and built for professional photographers and for those serious amateurs who wants the best image quality possible. The solid build coupled with high quality glass elements, this lens will be a serious competitor in the 85mm segment and popular among the portraitures circle. Although I have no idea how much this lens will be retailing, from my understanding of Samyang (remember I have a couple of earlier Samyang lenses), it will surely be priced to sell. As this is a Premium line, do not expect the price to be too low (stop thinking of those 85mm F1.8 lenses), but it will be competitively prices against the 85mm F1.4-F1.2 range this I can assure you. While I yearn for more time to be with this lens, deadline’s up and I have to return to Editor AL. This lens will be in my shopping list for this year! Go get it guys!
– Tommy Chia.

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Tommy Chia, Professional Aerial Photographer.

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Editor’s Note: Thank You Uncle Tommy for the great in-depth user review. I had personally tried using the Samyang Premium MF 85mm F1.2 and Uncle Tommy had nicely sum it all up for me in his review above. For the rest of you – try it for yourself – and be surprised by the excellent result!

OK Guys, Buy your Samyang Premium Line lenses here.

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About Ourshutterjourney.com
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About Editor AL

About The Web Editor: http://about.me/shutterjourney
This entry was posted in Accredited Merchants, Brand: Canon, Brand: Others (Cosina, Carl Zeiss, Leica, Mamiya, Samyang, Vivitar, Zenitar,etc), Brand: Sony, Carl Zeiss, Featured Photographers, Featured Photography Merchants, Group Test & Reviews, Photography Articles & Videos, Samyang, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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