Samyang XP 10mm F3.5 hands on review

Samyang's new ultra-wide DSLR lens feels a real class act

Early Verdict

We can't wait to try this new lens out in the field to give it a proper test, but if the optical quality is as good as its mechanical construction and finish, the Samyang XP 10mm F3.5 could be very special indeed.


  • +

    Ultra-wide angle of view

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    Full frame coverage

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    Build quality and finish


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    Manual focus only

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    No depth of field markings

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We first reported on the Samyang XP 10mm f/3.5 at Photokina 2018, but now we've had a chance to try out one for real at The Photography Show 2019, and our first impressions are very positive. The Samyang brand might once have been associated with lower-cost optics, but this lens has clearly been built to a very high standard. The metal barrel has a smooth, matt finish and opens out into a wide integrated petal lens hood – which protects the Samyang's huge convex front element.

This is a manual focus lens, so the focus ring has a direct mechanical action rather than the fly-by-wire focus system used by autofocus lenses. It's smooth across its full range of travel and feels perfectly weighted. Being a manual focus lens, it has a longer angle of travel making precise distance settings much easier. The only disappointment is that it does not have depth of field markings, so you can't easily set the optimum hyperfocal distance for landscape shots or estimate 'zone focus' settings for street or architectural photography – two of the key  areas this lens is designed for.

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Rod Lawton

Rod is an independent photography journalist and editor, and a long-standing Digital Camera World contributor, having previously worked as DCW's Group Reviews editor. Before that he has been technique editor on N-Photo, Head of Testing for the photography division and Camera Channel editor on TechRadar, as well as contributing to many other publications. He has been writing about photography technique, photo editing and digital cameras since they first appeared, and before that began his career writing about film photography. He has used and reviewed practically every interchangeable lens camera launched in the past 20 years, from entry-level DSLRs to medium format cameras, together with lenses, tripods, gimbals, light meters, camera bags and more. Rod has his own camera gear blog at but also writes about photo-editing applications and techniques at