Samyang announces full-frame AF 135mm f/1.8 lens for Sony mirrorless cameras

Samyang AF 135mm f/1.8
(Image credit: Samyang)

Samyang Corporation, which also sells its lenses under the Rokinon brand in the US, has recently expanded its autofocus f/1.8 series line-up, has now introduced the AF 135mm F1.8 FE lens, equipped with various additional functions to meet the new demands of many people who have used the existing MF 135mm F2.0 lens. 

The new AF 135mm f/1.8 FE telephoto lens is said to be optimized for portraits, astrophotography, landscapes and video shooting. It includes popular features, such as focus lock button and a custom switch, but also Samyang’s new focus range limiter switch. It will be available in Sony FE mount, but can also be used with APS-C Sony mirrorless cameras.

With this announcement of the new Samyang/Rokinon AF 135mm F1.8 FE, the Auto Focus F1.8 FE series now includes: 24mm, 35mm, 45mm, 75mm and 135mm focal lengths, completing the line-up, from wide-angle to telephoto.

(Image credit: Samyang)

The AF 135mm f/1.8 FE uses a large-diameter 11-blade aperture to provide smooth background blur and effectively allows separation of the subject from the background, by using a shallow depth of field. It is also equipped with am Ultra-precision Aspherical lens, which delivers natural and refined bokeh. 

Using this smooth bokeh, you can freely create images highlighting your subjects against stunning backgrounds, whether shooting portraits, close-ups or even cityscapes. Tracking subjects accurately and quickly, the AF also operates quietly and smoothly when shooting video thanks to its Linear STM (Stepping Motor) makes it perfect for both photographers and videographers who are looking for quieter and more accurate controls when focusing.

Important features of this lens include a customizable: Focus Hold button, Custom Switch and Focus Range Limiter. The custom switch can be set to allow adjustment of the aperture silently by rotating the focus ring, using the optional Lens Station, you can set up the mode to suit your own preference along with more functions that will be added through firmware updates in the future. while the focus button hold is enabled by pressing the button on the lens and it will keep the lens locked to that focusing distance. 

(Image credit: Rokinon)

Last but not least, is the focus range limiter, which only operates in AF mode, but can be useful to speed up focusing once the distance from an object has been determined, the focus range limiter can be moved forward or backward to select the focus range as follows:

Full: The AF range is set between infinity and the minimum focus distance of 0.69m. 

0.69m - 2m: The AF range is set between 0.69m and 2m, suitable for close-up shooting. 

1.5m - : The AF range is set from 1.5m to infinity, which is suitable for normal shooting.

Although this is a 135mm telephoto, Samyang has managed to effectively control aberration at all focusing distances. It has also achieved a minimum focus distance of just 69cm (2.26ft) and a maximum magnification of 0.243x for close-up photography.  All-in this lest sounds like it will be a great asset to any photographer or cinematographers tool kit. 

The lens goes on sale in March for $999 / £799. Australian pricing is yet to be confirmed but that converts to about AU$1,400.

Read more:

Samyang AF 24mm f/1.8 FE review
Samyang AF 35mm f/1.8 FE review
Samyang AF 75mm f/1.8 FE review
Best Samyang lenses
Best lenses for astrophotography
Three prime lenses for portraiture 

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Sebastian Oakley
Ecommerce Editor

For nearly two decades Sebastian's work has been published internationally. Originally specializing in Equestrianism, his visuals have been used by the leading names in the equestrian industry such as The Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), The Jockey Club, Horse & Hound, and many more for various advertising campaigns, books, and pre/post-event highlights.

He is a Fellow of The Royal Society of Arts, holds a Foundation Degree in Equitation Science, and is a Master of Arts in Publishing.  He is a member of Nikon NPS and has been a Nikon user since the film days using a Nikon F5 and saw the digital transition with Nikon's D series cameras and is still to this day the youngest member to be elected into BEWA, The British Equestrian Writers' Association. 

He is familiar with and shows great interest in street, medium, and large format photography with products by Leica, Phase One, Hasselblad, Alpa, and Sinar. Sebastian has also used many cinema cameras from the likes of Sony, RED, ARRI, and everything in between. He now spends his spare time using his trusted Leica M-E or Leica M2 shooting Street photography or general life as he sees it, usually in Black and White.