Samyang is announcing today two new additions to their lineup of lenses: the XP 14mm f2.8 and the XP 85mm f1.2. The company and its sister Rokinon have created only manual focus lenses for years, but the Korea based company has been making strides with autofocus optics very recently too. These two options are manual focus only.
According to the press release:
The XP 14mm F2.4 takes no compromise for image quality. It has 18 glasses in 14 groups including six glasses of four different special optics. The lens is designed to maximize the resolution and minimize the distortion. This optimal performance creates impressive image quality from centre to corner of image. Especially, the refractive lenses effectively adjust the path of light and deliver maximum amount to the sensor for clear and vibrant image.
The F1.2 of 85mm is, by far, the brightest lens in existing full frame DSLR lenses, securing the fast shutter speed. The beautiful bokeh, creamy background and extremely high resolution captures fine details of the model. It has ten elements in seven groups with three special glasses. Samyang Optics R&D Centre selected the elements and number of glasses with the utmost prudence to deliver excellence in performance even with the bright F1.2 system.
These lenses are being billed as the company’s highest end options. With that in mind, the 14mm f2.8 and the 85mm f1.4 that the company had before are being one-upped. Those lenses are already quite sharp and have a very unique color rendition that makes a Rokinon/Samyang what it is. Something about pixel peeping images shot with these lenses feels bleeding sharp.
Considering that these lenses are also designed for DSLRs, then they’ve got a lot of competition. Sure, they’re very affordable compared to many of their autofocus options, but these two lenses are meant for slow, careful styles of work. Landscape photography with the 14mm and the portraits with the 85mm are carefully setup and styled. Just look on Instagram. One could argue that manual focus shouldn’t be a problem at all. However, I still hope that these lenses will be available for mirrorless cameras. Focus peaking from pretty much everything out there will be a nice feature that will help make their use much easier.
Both lenses will go on sale in December, and cost around EUR 949. No word on American prices yet.