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Rokinon 8mm Fisheye vs Rokinon 12mm Fisheye Lens Review

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Rokinon 8mm UltraWide Angle Fisheye Lens for Canon

We are back with a new post on the spectacular and most affordable fisheye lenses you can find on the market today. Yes, we are talking about the Rokinon fisheye lensese offer. We will have a look at the general specs and key-features of each Rokinon fisheye lens chosen for this post: Rokinon 8mm fisheye lens and Rokinon 12 mm fisheye.  After acknowledging all these essential data, we’ll provide you with a comparison between the two models and help you make the best choice.

What Is the Best Rokinon Fisheye Lens for Canon: Rokinon 8mm or Rokinon 12mm Fisheye?

As a quick fact about the brand name, not many users know that Rokinon is just another name for Samyang. Samyang Optics is a Korean company which produces lenses that can be mounted on Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Fujifilm, Olympus, Panasonic, and so on. The manufacturer may confuse buyers as they release camera equipment under different brand names. Most probably you will find the same Rokinon fisheye branded Samyang too, or Bower, Vivitar and Falcon. The Rokinon lenses are usually a bit less expensive than Samyang and Vivitar.


Rokinon 8mm UltraWide Angle Fisheye Lens for Canon
Rokinon 8mm f/3.5 Fisheye Lens for Canon EF DSLRs

This Rokinon fisheye stands for a fine and extremely affordable ultra wide angle lens. It is comparable with any other model out there on the market today as concerns image sharpness and overall performance.

Name: Rokinon FE8M-C 8mm f/3.5 Ultra Wide Angle Fisheye Lens  

Type: full frame extremely wide angle prime lenses created to be mounted on Canon SLR cameras.

These Rokinon fisheye lenses produce rectangular images with typical fisheye distortion.

Digital Imaging Format: APS-C/ DX.

Release Year for this Model: 2015.

Price: $240 – $300.

General Specs for Rokinon 8mm Fisheye Lenses

  • Focal Length: 8 mm (short).
  • Maximum Aperture: f/3.5.
  • Minimum Aperture: f/22.
  • Angle of View: ultra-wide 167° diagonal FOV (it is 180 degrees for other camera brands).
  • Closest Focusing Distance: 1 ft. (0.3 m).
  • Focus Type: Manual.
  • Lens construction: ten elements in seven groups + one aspherical lens.
  • Weight: 0.98 pounds (443 g).
  • It comes with built-in flower-shaped hood.


  • Rokinon 8mm fisheye lens is probably the most affordable photographic fisheye on the market.
  • Apart from making for a convenient choice money-wise, this ultra wide angle lens creates dramatic and sharp images. Photographers can achieve that unique fisheye perspective and look at high quality.
  • These Rokinon lenses are able to correct chromatic aberration due to the aspherical lens. This translates into distinctive fisheye images.
  • It also controls ghosting and the amount of flare due to the flower-shaped hood and multi-coating.
  • It allows for quality close-ups because of the minimum focusing distance of 12 inches.
  • Easy-to-use manual focus & well-built focusing ring.
  • Works great outdoors, when shooting in natural light.
  • Ideal for sky pictures as it renders the blue color scheme amazingly.


  • The Rokinon 8mm fisheye lens is not zoomable.
  • For some users it might be tricky to set the aperture and focus manually. But there are tons of tutorials for that, isn’t it?
  • It does not provide image stabilization.
  • It doesn’t allow for filter to be used because of its rounded shape.
  • The images get darker in low lighting conditions.
  • On full frame sensors it may produce the vignette effect.

Product: Rokinon 12mm f/2.8 Fisheye Lens for Canon EF DSLRs

Rokinon 12mm Fisheye Lens for Canon
Rokinon 12mm f/2.8 Fisheye Lens for Canon EF DSLRs

The Rokinon 12mm fisheye lens takes us to another level of lens performance and user experience.

Name: Rokinon 12mm f/2.8 Ultra Wide Fisheye Lens for Canon EOS EF DSLR Cameras

Type: prime lens designed for full frame cameras.

Format: full frame fisheye; works well on APS-C sensor cameras as an 18mm lens.

Price: $450 – $600.

General Specs for Rokinon 12 mm f/2.8 Fisheye Lens

  • Focal Length: 12 mm.
  • Maximum Aperture: f/2.8.
  • Minimum Aperture: f/22.
  • Angle of View: 180° (diagonal FOV).
  • Closest Focusing Distance: 7.9 inches (0.2 m).
  • Lens construction: twelve elements in eight groups (two aspherical elements, three elements made of ED glass).
  • Weight: aprox. 1 pound (500 g).


  • The Rokinon 12 mm fisheye lens has an impressive optical performance and a full frame sensor coverage.
  • The lens create high quality pictures at extremely wide perspectives.
  • Great color accuracy.
  • It includes removable flower-shaped lens hood, removable lens pouch and lens caps.
  • Rokinon offers one year warranty for this lens.
  • It allows shooting at extremely close focusing distances.
  • The two aspherical lenses counter chromatic aberration effectively.
  • Ideal for landscape and architecture photography. It can produce exceptional panoramas.
  • Well-designed and solid lens overall.


  • The manual focus can be challenging for many users.

It wouldn’t be fair to compare this brand with renowned names like Canon or Nikon when it comes to fisheye lens technology. But let’s be honest! The Rokinon lenses are twice cheaper and achieve almost the same quality and performance. From this point of view, Rokinon fisheyes make for the best first fisheye lens you can experiment with.

The Rokinon 8mm fisheye is definitely an underrated lens. It works well with both digital cameras with APS-C image sensors and cameras with full frame sensors. Of course there is a difference between the two digital imaging formats. While for the first category, the lens produces full-frame images, for the second type of cameras, the images will be semi-circular. Some user prefer the semi-circular look, but most photographers go for the first option.

As regards the Rokinon 12 mm f/2.8 ultra wide angle fisheye lens, it offers an enhanced user experience due to its upgraded optical design. As compared to Rokinon 8mm, it comes with Ultra Multi Lens Coating and anti-reflection Nano Crystal Coating. These have the role to reduce flares and ghosting. Thus in low light conditions, the Rokinon 12 mm lens performs better than the other. Of course, the improved results are to be seen as concerns the price too. But compared with other brands, the Rokinon lenses are a bargain.

All in all, both Rokinon 8mm fisheye and Rokinon 12mm ultra wide angle lens are great for creative photographic experiments. Also, both fall naturally into the ‘best buy fisheye lens’ category. If you decide on trying out any of these Rokinon fisheye lenses, don’t hesitate to come back and share with us how it went. We’re happy to interact with our readers. Good luck and happy shooting!

Image Sources: 1, 2.



Don Phillips

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