Samyang AF 12mm F2.0 review

This Samyang / Rokinon ultra-wide autofocus prime lens for Sony and Fujifilm APS-C cameras is great by day, or by night

Samyang AF 12mm F2.0 E
(Image: © Future)

Digital Camera World Verdict

Engineered for astrophotography as well as for general ultra-wide-angle shooting, this Samyang autofocus lens delivers a 99.1-degree viewing angle on Sony’s mirrorless crop-sensor (APS-C format) camera bodies. It’s compact and lightweight, well-built with the inclusion of weather-seals, boasts highly impressive image quality and is very affordable, making it a great buy at the price.


  • +

    Excellent image quality

  • +

    Fast and virtually silent autofocus

  • +

    Good build quality with weather-seals


  • -

    Fringing and vignetting can be noticeable if uncorrected

  • -

    Hood isn’t reversible for more compact on-lens storage

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Samyang launched its ultra-wide 12mm F2.0 NCS CS lens back in 2014. Although popular, and available in a variety of mount options including Sony E, it’s a fully manual lens, so you can only set the aperture and focus distance by using the lens’s onboard control rings, and there’s no electronic communication with the camera. Given that we’re in the 21st century, that might seem a bit backward to many photographers. The new AF 12mm lens adds full electronics for camera-driven aperture control, transmission of EXIF data, and a linear stepping motor for autofocus. At launch, it’s the only ultra-wide-angle autofocus prime lens on the market for Sony E-mount APS-C format cameras.


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Matthew Richards

Matthew Richards is a photographer and journalist who has spent years using and reviewing all manner of photo gear. He is Digital Camera World's principal lens reviewer – and has tested more primes and zooms than most people have had hot dinners! 

His expertise with equipment doesn’t end there, though. He is also an encyclopedia  when it comes to all manner of cameras, camera holsters and bags, flashguns, tripods and heads, printers, papers and inks, and just about anything imaging-related. 

In an earlier life he was a broadcast engineer at the BBC, as well as a former editor of PC Guide.