Rokinon 85mm f/1.4 Aspherical Manual Focus Lens

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Rokinon 85mm f/1.4 Aspherical
Manual Focus Prime Lens

Rokinon 85mm f/1.4 Aspherical MF LensRokinon 85mm f/1.4 Manual Focus Telephoto Lens The Rokinon 85mm f/1.4 Manual Focus Lens is a special effort in the independent lens manufacturer world, being a popular focal length for serious portraiture combined with an extra large f/1.4 maximum aperture. Most independent manufacturer lenses are either zooms or very short or long focal length fixed lenses. With the appropriate mount, this lens is appropriate for Canon, Pentax, Sony  and Nikon FX "full frame" cameras in addition to their 15.6 x 23.7mm "APS-C" style digital 'DX' SLR cameras, and works similarly upon the cameras as later-model Nikon manual focus lenses. This lens is precision manufactured in South Korea.

With a 35mm equivalent focal length of ~127mm and that f/1.4 aperture on  this Rokinon 85mm lens opens up photographic opportunities you'll never get with your zoom. Capture close portraits of singers on dark stages with only spotlights on their faces, and those background lights will be soft cascades of low-contrast coloring. With the big f/1.4 opening, you'll have enough light to stop subject motion. Or try it in brighter conditions at fast shutter speeds and low ISOs to make great shots of people in front of blooming trees, with background flowers almost looking like paintings. It isn't easy nailing manual focus at f/1.4-2.0 (nor for that matter is it easy for an AF system), but you'll get better with practice, and soon be making many snaps that stand out in a crowd. Typical internet price: $257.00.

An f/1.4 lens is not usually as efficient as the same manufacture's f/1.8 or f/2 lenses, even when both are stopped down to f/5.6. the lens with the wider aperture is heaver and more expensive, so don't choose it as your standard unless you are planning a great deal of photography poor light conditions. There' plenty of reasons for using a wide aperture, but avoid buying a lens with an aperture wider than you need.

If you can manage with f/1.8 or f/2, I much prefer the present Nikon 85mm f/1.8 AF-D which sells for just a few more dollars than this Rokinon 85mm, has autofocus and a higher mechanical quality. For manual focus, I have a preference for Nikon's classic manual focus 85mm f/2 AI-S, still the smallest 85mm Nikon and sells used for less than this Rokinon lens.


This lens was truly created with large-aperture shooting in mind. Though a fine performer with plenty of contrast and resolution at f/5.6-f/11 apertures, it is at its best shooting between f/1.4-2.8, where it presents a high-peak-resolution focus point surrounded by lower resolution/contrast out-of-focus areas. Rather than just sharpness all around, for many pictures it is this stark drop off in resolution and contrast that effectively draws a viewer's eye towards a subject.

Bright f/1.4 aperture
Aspherical lens element provides high quality images
Fully multicoated optics
Ideal portrait lens
Low weight relative to many 85mm f/1.4 lenses
Smooth helicoid manual focus action
Internal focusing means that lens length remains constant during focusing (lens front also does not rotate)
Made in South Korea

Lens Includes

Rokinon 85mm f/1.4 Manual Focus Telephoto Lens
Front & Rear Lens Caps
Lens Hood
Lens Pouch
1-Year Warranty

Lens stylePrime lens
Max Format Size 35mm FF  
Lens focal length85 mm  
Stabilization type No  
Camera mount Canon EF, Four Thirds, Pentax KAF, Sony Alpha, Samsung NX, Nikon F (FX)  
Angle of view 23.9 x 16.1 (WxH)
16.1 x 10.8 (WxH) w/ APS-C (15 x 22mm) cameras
Aperture (lens diaphragm)
Largest aperture opening F1.4  
Smallest aperture opening F22.0  
Includes aperture ring Yes  
Total Elements 9  
Number of Groups 7  
Coatings / special elements 1 aspherical element  
Minimum focus distance 1.00 m (39.37")  
Autofocus type No  
Full time manual focus Unknown  
Lens distance scale Yes  
Depth of field scale No  
Physical features
Overall weight539 g (1.19 lb)  
Lens diameter 78 mm (3.07")  
Overall length 75 mm (2.94")  
Sealing No  
Filter thread size 72 mm  
Tripod collar included No  
Notes Length and weight depend on mount; numbers given are for Canon version. Nikon mount comes in 2 types, with the later 'AE' version supporting auto exposure modes.


Rokinon, Samyang, Vivitar, Opteka, etc., June 21, 2009

By Cottage Photography (NJ)

This review is from: Rokinon 85mm f/1.4 Aspherical Lens for Nikon D40 D40x D50 D60 D80 D90 D200 D3 D300 D700 Digital SLR Cameras (Electronics) I have the Rokinon version of this lens. It is great! I use it on a Nikon D700 and have compared it with the Nikon AF 85mm f/1.4 (which I had rented for a weekend to test) and I much prefer this lens to the Nikon.

When I used the Nikon AF version, I found myself having to manually focus to get the plane of focus just where I wanted it and so decided I really didn't need to pay extra (almost a $1k more) for the AF feature. So the only thing that would make sense for paying more was if the Nikon's Image Quality was significantly better... it wasn't. In fact, at f/1.4 (which is where you will be shooting this lens 99% of the time, else why buy an f/1.4 lens) I found the Rokinon/Opteka to be sharper and have more contrast than the Nikon.

There are a lot of reviews to be found on the inter-net for this lens. Some express concern for obtaining a good "copy". I am sure this lens is not as consistent in its build quality as Nikon is, but I got lucky right out of the chute with my first one. It is amazingly sharp, mechanically sound, and the IQ is just what I needed it to be (bokeh is wonderful).

Bought mine through ebay. Great store with quality customer service.

For the price, you really can't go wrong.

Rokinon 85mm f/1.4 Aspherical MF Prime Lens

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