Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 lens review: This budget-friendly, ultra-wide lens gives the big boys a run for their money
posted Monday, September 30, 2013 at 2:54 PM EST
The Rokinon 14mm ƒ/2.8 IF ED UMC ultra-wide angle, full-frame lens was recently put through its paces in our test lab. Introduced as a replacement for the briefly-available "MC" version, this "UMC" models aims to improve issues with ghosting and flare thanks to new multi-layer coatings. Like other Rokinon camera lenses, the 14mm lens is fully manual, meaning there's no autofocus, as well as no aperture control from the camera. Shooters must manually adjust the lens aperture with a clicked ring, similar to early film SLR lenses.
Eschewing these modern features -- as well as image stabilization and electrical circuitry for communicating with the camera body -- Rokinon focused purely on optics and gave this lens a bargain-basement price. (Note: There is alternate Nikon mount version with a focus confirmation chip, available at a slightly higher price.) Retailing for around $330, the Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 stands in stark comparison, for instance, to Canon's 14mm f/2.8 L-series lens, which carries a $2,200 price tag.
The lens is designed for full-frame cameras, but mounts on sub-frame DSLRs as well, at the cost of that ultra-wide perspective. As with other Rokinon glass, it comes in a wide variety of lens mounts including Canon, Nikon, Sony Alpha, Pentax, Samsung NX and Olympus Micro Four Thirds.
Suffice it to say, the performance of this lens pleasantly surprised us and we think it's definitely worth more than its $330 price point. If you're in need of an ultra-wide, full-frame lens, and don't mind "roughing it" with manual focus and aperture control, this lens should definitely be near the top of your list. Head on over to SLRgear to read our in-depth Rokinon 14mm lens review with a full rundown of our test results and analysis.
In the meantime, check out a small sample of real-world images captured (below) with this lens by our lens specialist Rob.