Billginthekeys wrote in post #14096419
People are trying to explain to you that though under a perfect set of conditions isolating only one part of a lens' performance it may appear to have "weaknesses," in the real world most of the time you either won't be using the lens under conditions for those weaknesses to appear, and even if you are the likelyhood that they will actually be a detriment to a REAL image (not a picture of a printed out piece of paper), is almost impossible on any lens of the caliber you are talking about; say the 35L.
You insist that the corner sharpness of the 35L at F1.4 is a detriment to the lens, correct? Why? At F1.4 you will have a very thin depth of field, isolating one subject, and the rest of the image will melt into a creamy bokeh. Boken is by definition not sharp, not in focus, the opposite of sharp. Unless you have a habit of framing your subjects in the extreme corners of your focal plane (and then subjecting them to distortion, vignetting, ect.) the corners of the shot will be completely smooth at F1.4. So how can a unsharp area not being as sharp as other unsharp areas be bad? It just doesn't make sense. That, as we are trying to tell you, is one of the many differences between a test chart and the real world.
That is not to say test charts are worthless. Lets say I have a 70-200 2.8 IS and a 2X II TC, and I think the results are just "okay," and I want to see if there is a notable improvement in image quality by purchasing a 70-200 2.8 IS version 2 and a 2X TC III. I can go, bring up the comparison, and see if the change in results looks substantial enough for me to go out and drop an extra thousand dollars on that trade. Again, that is one example in my book where a test chart would be useful.
I am not here to insult you personally, but if you claim to have been a photographer for 28 years, how did you buy equipment for you gear before the internet and test charts? Did you ever with your film equipment draw lines on a piece of paper, take pictures of them with different lenses, then examine the results under a microscope to make vague and questionably important notes about the results of those tests? I am betting you didn't, in fact I am betting that sounds silly, but yet that is exactly what these review sites do now, simply because they can.
You keep saying "exceptional prices but not exceptional quality for the price." But you keep fixating on only ONE aspect of the lens, wide open corner sharpness performance. If that is truly the most important thing to you, and you don't mind not having autofocus, by all means go save the money and buy the Samyang. Ohh, and if you are willing to pay "exceptional prices" if you are getting "exceptional quality" and you are willing to live without AF, look at the results from Canon's newest wide angle TS-E lenses.
Well, I think several of you have got my OP in the wrong perspective and others have got it right. I'm not in any way trying to pontificate about this because I'm not a pro photographer nor I teach photography nor I live from photography. When I want to buy a camera or lens, I first try to get all the information about the devices, including tests and users opinions. Because of my location, I have to be very careful, since for me it is very difficult to try lenses and then return them to try another. All the lenses and cameras in my signature, besides the 18-55 kit lens, have been selected in this way and I'm very happy with my current bag. When looking for a fast wide angle lens for my 5DMKII (at f1.4) I'm considering taking pictures of groups of people (at family meetings), where the lighting is poor and you are forced to use ISO3200 or higher to get the job done. Of course I can use a tripod and/or a flash and get my pictures with a f4 lens (such as my 70-200). A 24 or 35mm prime at f1.4 on the 5DMK2 would nicely serve that objective. I have no problem in using manual focus, since in the film days that was the only way of taking pictures. Now on that wide angle lens I'm looking for the best quality and, for sure, that includes both the 24L and 35L at a considerable price. Those lenses are mechanically excellent and the optics are also excellent at the center. The only problem of those lenses is that the edges are not at the same level. It is true that DOF can mask some of these weaknesses, but in my intended use they could be a problem. Tests and users opinions on the Samyang 35 f1.4 indicate that this lens can be a good optical alternative to the Canons, while lacking a lot of features the 24L and 35L have.
The lenstip review conclusion of the Samyang is quite revealing about this:
"In this summary you can write just one thing: aces of the photographical market, it’s high time you got down to work seriously! If Samyang is able to launch a 540$ lens which, when it comes to the image quality, is only slightly worse than the Canon 35L, which can compete on equal terms with the Nikkor 1.4/35G and leaves far behind the Sony 1.4/35G; if such a lens is able to correct the lateral chromatic aberration, coma and vignetting the best of all instruments in this group and it is not worse when it comes to the distortion and astigmatism correction, what else could be said here?"
Canon 5D MKII, Sony A7, Canon EOS M, Canon 7D, Sony A6000, Canon 50d with grip, Canon 400D with grip, Bower 14 f2.8, Bower 35 f1.4, EF 40 f2.8, Tokina 12-24 f4, EFM-22 f2 STM, EFM 18-55 f3.5-5.6 IS STM, EFS 18-55 f3.5-5.6, Tamron 28-75 f2.8, EF 85 f1.8, EF 100 f2.8L IS, EF 70-200 f4L IS, EF 75-300 f4-5.6, Sigma 150-500 f5-6.3, Sony E 16-50, Sony FE 28-70