All the Fun You Can Have With a 14mm Lens!

Once in a while I like to take out my super wide angle lens and do some landscape photography with it, but then even that becomes boring after a while, so today I tried to do some macro photography with it, and funny results happened! I have a 14mm F2.8 Samyang lens that I bought from off of Evil-Bay a couple of years ago. It was a good investment, I got it for a reasonable deal at the time, and the picture quality is surprisingly good. I did have a purpose for buying the lens.

Lens Cleaner - Aug 3 2014 Weblog Image

I wanted a good lens for doing interior shots for inside homes and buildings. At the time I was very much into architectural photography, and needed a lens that would work inside rooms, closed spaces and confined areas, plus getting the most field of view as possible without going into a fish eye lens. My research pointed me towards this lens, based on the budget I had at the time.

Getting the Samyang 14mm, F2.8 to work with my Sony A77 Alpha meant that I must operate the lens in full manual mode. The Sony A77 does not recognise the lens either, so I had to override the lens detection mode for the camera to work properly with it. However, the lens does respond quite well ergonomically–smooth focus ring, F-stop ring is good and snug, and the lend hood is permanently attached to the lens body. A good solid lens.

i can taste it already - Aug 3 2014 - Weblog Image

Normally the minimum focus distance is about 30cm, but I have been able to get it as close to 5cm, however, it means a lot of tweaking. The distortion from the lens is not that bad. You get the infamous moustache effect when you take a photo of anything with vertical and horizontal lines in it, but with some creative composition techniques, you can hide most of those distortions. But then there are times when you want the fish eye distortion in your shots, and in fact, exaggerate it as much as possible.

The Hand - Aug 3 2014 - Weblog ImageYes, The Hand!

You think the image looks weird of my hand, well you should see it while looking through the viewfinder, while walking around. In this shot, my wrist is touching the lens hood, and I am cranking the minimum focus distance to its maximum, using F2.8, a wide open aperture. You can get some crazy results from a good wide angle lens. I may consider buying an 8mm fish eye lens, but for now I will continue to play with this lens.

3 Thoughts on “All the Fun You Can Have With a 14mm Lens!

  1. Alex Angelis on Monday, August 11th, 2014 at 9:22 am said:

    Hello Tom,
    I have just purchased a Sony A77II and I am interested in buying a Samyang 14mm f/2.8 lens. Could you please e-mail me the exact settings of the camera step by step?
    Thanks in advance!
    Alex/Greece

  2. Hi Alex,

    Congratulations with your new Sony A77II! It is a good solid camera.

    The first thing you need to remember is that Samyang 14mm f/2,8 lens is a full manual lens. No auto focus, manual f stop, just you and the focus and f stop rings. So you need to operate the camera in full manual mode.

    1. “M” mode
    2. Shut off autofocus
    3. Switch viewfinder to live view – you will find it in the menu settings.

    And that should do it. There are other settings that you can use, depending on what type of shooting you are doing, but these are the basic steps you need to do to work with the lens.

    Happy shooting!

  3. Thank you Tom. The procedure seems pretty easy. All that is left for me is to find a little monkey like yours to clean my lens!
    I wish you all the best.

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