Hands on: Samyang AF 24-70mm f/2.8 FE review

The Samyang AF 24-70mm f/2.8 FE lens is the brand's first autofocus zoom for its 50th anniversary

Samyang AF 24-70mm F2.8 FE lens
(Image: © Future)

Early Verdict

Samyang has already made some pretty tasty AF primes in the FE mount, but its first zoom is a bold statement of intent, especially as the f/2.8-speed 24-70mm leaves nowhere to hide, as very high performance standards have already been set. Samyang has made the grade here, and that’s very good news for Sony Alpha shooters who might like a premium 24-70mm f/2.8 zoom that’s not quite such a big hit financially.


  • +

    Near-flawless performance

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    Robust build

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    Well priced


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    Heavy beast

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    More than expected distortion

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With its recent string of autofocus primes – mostly for Sony’s FE/E mount – Samyang has established itself as a mainstream contender in what is now a very competitive market: lenses for mirrorless cameras. So it makes sense that Samyang should take the next step and build its first autofocus zoom lens in the mirrorless era... and also its first 24-70mm f/2.8 model. It arrives in time to celebrate the company’s 50th anniversary of its founding in 1972. 

Yep, Samyang is 50, but there are plenty of photographers – and videographers – just discovering what the South Korean lens maker is capable of. It flew under the radar for quite a while, but its manual focus primes – representing massive value for money given their performance and price – have earned it a loyal following among those who did discover the brand... often by accident.

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Paul Burrows

Paul has been writing about cameras, photography and photographers for 40 years. He joined Australian Camera as an editorial assistant in 1982, subsequently becoming the magazine’s technical editor, and has been editor since 1998. He is also the editor of sister publication ProPhoto, a position he has held since 1989. In 2011, Paul was made an Honorary Fellow of the Institute Of Australian Photography (AIPP) in recognition of his long-term contribution to the Australian photo industry. Outside of his magazine work, he is the editor of the Contemporary Photographers: Australia series of monographs which document the lives of Australia’s most important photographers.