Canon users, especially newcomers, probably don't know Canon EF 50mm f / 1.8, because this lens offers very good quality and low price.
This lens is currently sold for about 2.5 million VND, with many people being cheap for a fix tube of good quality. However, recently Yongnuo, a company famous for its cheap flash types, has launched the 50mm f / 1.8 with a cheaper price, only 40 USD (equivalent to 850 thousand dong). So at a price less than half, can Yongnuo's lens be competitive with Canon's "genuine" products?
Yongnuo's lens (above) and Canon look very similar
Looking at the style of Yongnuo lenses, many people will confuse it with Canon lenses, because they are almost identical. From the design, the size to the lettering position, caption or AF / MF switch is very similar. However, the internal structure of these two tubes has many differences, PetaPixel "operated" a Yongnuo lens and confirmed this.
When placed side by side, Canon's lens is a little smaller, but when plugged into the camera, two large lenses are equivalent.
Photographer Jay Leavitt used this lens with a Canon T3i (600D) camera, the DSLR is affordable and suitable for beginners. Often this is the person who will be interested in Canon's 50mm f1.8 lens.
He used these two lenses directly to evaluate certain aspects such as sharpness (in the center, corners and borders), flare, bokeh and purple fringes. The camera is placed on a tripod, and changes the lens after each shot. Here are some specific evaluation images:
1. Definition: Three composite images were taken at f / 1.8, 2.8 and 5.6. Photo from Canon tube on top, photo from Yongnuo tube below.
High definition in center, better Yongnuo tube
Top left corner. Yongnuo tubes are sharper from f / 1.8, and also give brighter images despite the same settings
Right side. Yongnuo tube is still a bit sharper
In terms of sharpness, it can be seen that Yongnuo's lens is better than Canon tube, even at the largest aperture of f / 1.8.
2. Flare: The camera is taken when facing towards the sun, focusing on the leaf area on the right corner. Above shot taken at f / 1.8, the bottom image is f / 5.6.
The glare of the Yongnuo tube is wider, but there is more "shape" than the Canon tube.
3. Bokeh: Canon 50mm f / 1.8 tube has only 5 aperture blades, so when the aperture is closed, the bokeh is not round, beautiful. In terms of parameters, the Yongnuo tube excels with 7 aperture blades.
The layout of this image is also very simple. A black curtain is perforated and placed at the door toward the sun. The camera is placed at a distance of 2m, the left-to-right image is captured in 1.8, 2.8 and 5.6. Photos from the Canon tube are on, photos from Yongnuo are below.
As can be seen from the f / 2.8, the pentagonal shape of the Canon tube began to show clearly, it didn't look good. This phenomenon can be seen clearly in f / 5.6. Meanwhile with 7 blades, bokeh from Yongnuo tube looks much easier to see.
4. Purple border: This is a common problem in inexpensive tubes, because the glass surface is not coated with special layers to reduce purple fringing. To evaluate purple fringing, Leavitt captures black objects on a white background.
The Yongnuo 1.8 tube has a slightly less purple border than Canon tube.
However, at gate 4, the Canon tube was a bit more dominant.
The reviews above show that in terms of optics, Yongnuo's tubes are not inferior to Canon's "genuine" tubes. We will continue with actual shots with this tube.
Use and take actual photos
With real photos, Leavitt uses T3i when shooting at night and in the studio, then using Canon 60D with outdoor photo.
One phenomenon he encountered was that Yongnuo's lens always deflected if using live view and set the AF mode, but if you switch to MF there is no problem. With the evening street shot, the machine sets ISO at 3200, f / 1.8 and speeds from 1/100 to 1/400 second.
Practical experience shows that the ability of this tube to focus is quite good, in about 100 images, there are only 3-5 non-standard strokes. Focus speed is also quite fast, although the T3i is not excellent in this regard.
Some evening photos with Yongnuo 50mm f / 1.8
This lens continues to perform well in a studio environment. Even when setting the focus point at the corner, the tube still focuses fast and standard.
Photo taken at f / 1.8
Photo taken at f / 2.5
With an outdoor photo set, Yongnuo lenses had to spend several hours under the snow but still function normally. Bokeh of beautiful tubes, and good focusing ability.
Some photos taken outdoors
Through the above assessments, it can be seen that the quality of Yongnuo 50mm f / 1.8 lens is not inferior to the legendary Canon EF 50mm f / 1.8 lens. At nearly twice the price, Jay Leavitt has found no reason to recommend using Canon tubes instead of Yongnuo tubes.
However in Vietnam there are no stores that sell this lens. To purchase, you will have to order from eBay for about 1.8 million. Considering the inconvenience of ordering and waiting for the goods to arrive, you should add a bit of money (from 200,000 to 800,000 VND) to buy Canon lenses, with genuine warranty.
Recently, Yongnuo has just introduced a 35mm f / 2 lens for Canon, and will introduce more lenses for Nikon this year. If it continues to maintain the quality and price as it is now, Yongnuo will have a foothold in the market of cheap lenses in the next few years.
According to PetaPixel, Shooting on a Budget