Yongnuo has made their name in this industry with their cheap alternative products, which started with speedlights and lighting but has now expanded into lenses. Their lenses have been known to be built incredibly cheap, with outdated lens optical designs and AF motors. But in terms of the actual image quality from these very cheap lenses, it has been mostly noted to be fairly decent, in some cases even good.
If Yongnuo did come to market with a 50mm F/1.4 design this would either be the first time they have released a lens still being sold new by Canon or it would be the first time the company has used an optical design of their own. Either scenario would be a big deal for differing reasons, but ones worth taking note of.
Most think these Yongnuo lenses are re-engineered Canon lens copies, and so if that is the case, should Yongnuo release the 50mm F/1.4 with an identical design to Canon’s it would be a shot right across Canon’s bow, and one that, you would think, team red would respond to with every legal avenue available to them. For what it’s worth, the 50mm f1.8 that Yongnuo released earlier is essentially the same thing as Canon’s older 50mm lenses.
I am honestly a little surprised there has not been any major action by Canon against Yongnuo to this point, even if not for the assumed copying, but for designing all of their products to be virtually identical to Canon products. But as we all know, going after Chinese companies can be a tricky business and in some cases; a game of whack-a-mole.
It will be interesting to see if this new 50mm F/1.4 from Yongnuo does come to market soon, and if it follows the other designs and ‘borrows’ from Canon.