Zhongyi Mitakon 50mm F0.95 User Review
First of all, I need to apologize for the late appearance of this follow up report. In my last Zhongyi Mitakon 50mm F0.95 VS 50mm Noctilux 0.95 preview, I said I will do a follow up review on this lens. I have been so busy for past months, but anyway, here is the follow up review.
Before you continue to read this review, I want to say in this review you won’t find any crazy “sharpness compare charts”, “MTF graph” or any 400% zoom corps. I just want to review this lens base on my personal usage, and what I think about this fantastic lens. I will talk about this lens in the following sections: lens handling (size and weight), lens performance(personal thoughts on sharpness and bokeh), and overall conclusions. I hope you would like it.
This lens is huge! Yes, huge!!!
As a manual prime lens, this lens is very big. The size is the reason I don’t like to bring this lens with me all the time, I would just want to take the lens with me if I want to shoot some large aperture bokehs. Other than that, this lens would stay at home most of time. But don’t get me wrong, this lens is huge when compare with other prime lenses, but for a F0.95 lens, you expect the size won’t be small.
When the lens mounted on my Sony A7, the combination makes the set looks very different. Full-frame mirror-less system is design to be small and compact, but when you use this lens is different. My favorite set up for my Sony A7 is Voigtlander VM 40mm Nokton 1.4, the reason is very simple, the size. The Sony A7 with VM 40mm Nokton is very small in size and very light in weight. I could carry the camera with me all day long without feeling tired. But when I use this Mitakon 50mm F0,95 with me, I would only take a walk on streets for maximum 2 hours. After 2 hours, I rather need to take a break or need to change the lens.
Again, don’t get me wrong. When you use this lens, you know what you getting in terms of size. But you know you wouldn’t care the size when you like to shoot 0,95 aperture photos.
The weight is similar to Leica Noctilux 0.95, very heavy. Specially when you hold it in hand, you would feel its build quality and you can feel it has some crazy glasses. Every time I use this lens, I would hold the lens instead of the grip on the camera.
Due to the weight, it’s not easy to rotate the lens for focusing. But the lens is smooth, you just need to rotate it a bit harder than a normal manual lens.
This lens has click-less aperture ring, personally I don’t like click-less aperture rings. Because I need to check the aperture ring has been moved or not very often, but this is a great plus point for those people want to use this lens for video shooting, you won’t get the click noise in your video.
Because this lens is click-less, it also means you could set the aperture as any stop you wish, it doesn’t have to be half stop or 1/3 stop away. But from my personal thoughts, no one would buy this lens to use it on F16 or F8, we all like to shoot wide open.
This lens need some practice to focus well, it doesn’t need a long time to get used to it, but it need some practice. The lens is big and heavy, and Sony A7 cameras doesn’t have the Leica Range-finder focusing system, we need to magnify the focus point to check if it is on the spot or not. And because of the F0.95 aperture, the DoF is very very tiny when your subject is not far away.
After about a week since I got the lens, I got used to its focusing. If you want to get this lens, don’t worry much about it, you will nailed it after a few days.
This lens is sharp, the only downside I have fund is when the subjects with 1 meter range, the sharpenss drop a bit, not by much, but I can noticed the difference.
Center part of the picture always sharp, I would say it is very sharp for a lens shoot at F0,95.
Steve Huff at his review of this lens, he mentioned a problem, the lens has some strange bokeh at some points. I noticed sometime the bokeh could be different at some lighting situations, I haven’t came up with a conclusion to say when it will produce strange bokeh, sometimes it has, sometimes it’s doing well. If you have a same lens, just keep it mind, and please share it with us. And I will continue to see if I can noticed a reason/conclusion.
Other than “strange bokeh issue”, the lens does produce some fantastic, creamy bokeh. And I think this is the reason of 99% people buying this lens.
This lens have some lens flare, it similar to Noctilux F1. I can’t complaint about it becasue I only paid about 800USD for a 0.95 lens. Here are two tips I have, get a good lens hood (I think Zhongyi is sending a lens hood if you buy a new lens), and remove the UV filter during the night.
The lens is good, as I said in my last preview tested VS Noctilux 0.95 . It has come pros and cons, but for the people really want to have lens they might already know all the cons parts about the lens.
It might take some time to practice for focusing, but it’s not hard. It might have some flare issues or strange bokehs at some points, but you just need to spend about 800USD for this lens, you won’t hate the cons so much.
For video shooters, the lens is great to have. It has F0.95 aperture, and it has click-less aperture ring.(And Personally I think this lens is design for video shooters. )
Overall, this lens is good to have because of the price.
I will write another follow-up review for this lens in the future. And here are some more photos taken by this lens.