7Artisans announces its first AF lens, and it's a nifty(?) fifty!

7Artisans AF 50mm f/1.8
(Image credit: 7Artisans)

7Artisans is a lens manufacturer that has exclusively focused on high-quality, manual-focus lenses – until now.   

7Artisans has just announced its first AF lens, the 7Artisans AF 50mm f/1.8 for full frame. We have seen a recent shift from lens manufacturers who have previously focused on MF lenses, with TTArtisan, Sirui, and Samyang all now with an AF lineup for the best mirrorless cameras. 7Artisans have now followed suit, with a fan favorite nifty fifty.

7Artisans AF 50mm f/1.8 | https://weibo.com/u/5236048381 (Image credit: federation of independent photographers)

Officially teased on the 7Artisans social media, we got a first glimpse at the new AF lens. Attached to a Sony A-series camera, the image states that it will be available for Sony FE mount, but it doesn't provide much else in the way of information.

The first thing I noticed was the size of the lens. For a 50mm f/1.8, it looks on the larger side, and as the current manual focus, 7Artisans 50mm f/1.05 is fairly petite for its extremely low aperture, this was surprising. One of the benefits of a 50mm lens is its small form factor, so it begs the question "Why is this lens so long?" In addition, 7Artisans lenses are often constructed entirely of metal and glass, offering a professional and robust feel. Add that to the size, the weight may make this lens a not-so-shifty nifty fifty!

7Artisans AF 50mm f/1.8 | https://weibo.com/u/5236048381 (Image credit: federation of independent photographers)

Unofficially, some rumors have emerged providing further details on the lens. Thanks to photographs of the lens seen in a Twitter post from @MajunMajuns (via Asobinet), we know that it will also be released for the Nikon Z-mount as well as the Sony E-mount (FE), likely at the same time.

The images provide different angles of the lens, from which we can see the front information. These details include a 62mm filter thread, a minimum focus distance of 0.5m, and an aperture ring from f/1.8 to what looks like f/22.

In a world where almost every lens manufacturer offers a 50mm f/1.8, it is a bit of a head-scratcher as to why they have developed one that is larger than most on the market. However, little is known about the lens and I will hold any judgment until the official details emerge, which I expect will be very shortly, with a scheduled December 2023 release. After that we'll see if it makes our list of the best 50mm lenses.

As a fan of 7Artisans' existing lenses, I am excited to see more of this and other AF lenses from the company.

For more helpful information see our guides on the best Sony lenses and the best Nikon Z lenses

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Kalum Carter
Staff Writer

Kalum Carter is a UK-based photographer, writer, and photo editor. Kalum has been working as a freelance photographer for the best part of ten years, covering a wide range of assignments for well-known brands and publications in areas including portraiture, fashion, and documentary. 

Between commercial assignments, Kalum is currently working on a personal photography project exploring his connection to the Gower region of South Wales UK, as part of an MA in Photography from The University of West England.