Photo Gear,  Travel

Tips for Using the Rokinon 7.5mm Fisheye Lens with the Olympus OM-D

The Rokinon 7.5mm F3.5 Fisheye Lens for Micro Four Thirds is manufactured by Samyang and is also sold as Samyang and under the name Bower.  The Rokinon is a completely manual lens with manual focus.  The aperture is changed with a ring on the lens (just like the old days).  With the Rokinon, you will need to shoot in manual mode on your camera.

Blue Lupine Patch, Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore

Overall, the lens has a really solid build while remaining small (1.9 inches) and relatively light (6.9 ounces).  What's really great about this lens is the price.  Amazon lists the lens for $287, while the Panasonic 8mm fisheye lists for more than double the price. 

The photos in this blog were taken with the Olympus OM-D E-M1 and the Rokinon 7.5 mm fisheye lens.  Click on the photos for a larger image and more information on the photo.

Performance

I found the lens to be sharp across the frame.  It is also relatively easy to get the entire image in focus due to the large depth of field by setting the focus to the infinity setting on the focus ring.  I also found only minimal chromatic aberration in the images.  The photos can be rather distorted due to the 180 degree field of view of the lens.  However, the distortion can be corrected in Lightroom or Photoshop if you don’t want that fisheye look.  This should also be a good lens for night star photography

St Joseph Lighthouse and Pier, Michigan

Tips

  • As you shoot with smaller apertures, the viewfinder becomes darker and hard to focus.  Try focusing first and then stopping down the aperture. 
  • Focus peaking also still works with the Rokinon and can help with focusing.  I have focus peaking mapped to the fn2 button on the Olympus OM-D E-M1.
  • If it is bright outside, focus using the electronic viewfinder.  You can also zoom in using the viewfinder.  I have zoom mapped to the fn1 button on the Olympus OM-D E-M1.
  • Zooming in on the LCD screen can also help with manual focus.
  • You will need to shoot in manual mode with the Rokinon 7.5mm lens.  Once you set the aperture, adjust the shutter speed and ISO to set the right exposure.
  • Once you set the aperture and focus, move your left hand back to the camera body.  This is one short fisheye lens.  This will help prevent your hand from being in the photo.

Old Glory Fisheye

Written by Martin Belan

Related Posts
Olympus OM-D E-M1 and E-M5 a Visual Comparison
The Olympus OM-D E-M1 and Panasonic 100-300mm lens for Travel Bird Photography
The WiFi Feature on the Olympus OM-D E-M1

2 Comments

  • Greg Conquest

    I'm trying to use the Samyang 7.5mm fisheye lens on my em5ii, but as soon as I halfway press the shutter button, the image stabilization starts going crazy. The image is dancing around unbelievably. I tried changing shooting mode from Anti-shock to single, but that didn't help. Putting the camera into manual mode also has no effect. … Oh, I found the solution! Menu – Settings C – Image Stabilizer S-IS Auto – press right. At the bottom of that screen, you can see "Focal Length". I had to manually change this. Press right again and you can change that from 8mm to 1000. I don't remember the default, but I had been trying a 400mm mirror lens (it was no better than the Olympus 14-150mm, so I had returned it). Once I set this to 8mm, the problem was gone 🙂

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