Comparing 35mm – Mitakon F0.95 II, 7artisans F1.2, Fujinon XF F1.4

I was shooting with Fujinon XF 35mm F1.4 for a long time, until Mitakon Speedmaster 35mm F0.95 Mark II release. That ultra fast manual lens quickly became my favorite and also primary tool for most pictures. I’ve sold Fujinon XF 35mm F1.4 just in few weeks after Mitakon purchase. Then 7artisans 35mm F1.2 appeared on the market. It also became my favorite, and it nicely pairs with Mitakon for different shooting situations for already 6 months.

I’ve recently decided to purchase Fujinon XF F1.4 lens again and compare it with that two manual lens.

sXIZ76856

Obviously all these three lens are very different from many perspectives: focusing, sharpness, contrast, background, max aperture, weight, size, price, durability, etc. But the most important – they form significantly different pictures. And it’s always subjective choice which picture you like more.

First, front look of all three lens: Mitakon 35mm F0.95 II , 7artisans 35mm F1.2 , Fujinon XF 35mm F1.4 R

sXIZ76853

Following set of pictures are 1:1 4000×4000 centers from 6000×4000 Jpeg photos taken from tripod with Fujifilm X-Pro 2 (Provia, NR -3, custom WB, ISO200).

F0.95 (only Speedmaster can take it)

35_Z_7art_XF_F0.95

F1.2 (Speedmaster, and 7artisans only)

35_Z_7art_XF_F1.2

F1.4 (Finally all three lens samples: Speedmaster, 7artisans, Fujinon)

35_Z_7art_XF_F1.4

F2 (You may notice “focus shift” of 7artisans shot, it’s caused by optical aperture effect, real focus remains the same)

35_Z_7art_XF_F2

F2.8 (focus shift of 7artisans is more visible here)

35_Z_7art_XF_F2.8

F4

35_Z_7art_XF_F4

F8

35_Z_7art_XF_F8

F16

35_Z_7art_XF_F16

Brief Conclusions

Focus shift

I didn’t notice one very interesting thing during my previous comparison of Mitakon 35mm F0.95 II, 7artisans 35mm F1.2, Voigtlander 40mm F1.4 . Obviously 7artisans 35mm F1.2 has optical “focus shift” on different aperture values. Same effect can be observed on ZEISS Sonnar C 50mm F1.5 ZM T* lens for Leica M – focus center is shifting when aperture value is changed. It’s good to know when you are using 7artisans 35mm F1.2 – don’t forget to re-focus if you changed aperture value. It’s quite expected because 7artisans optical formula is super close to Zeiss 50mm F1.5 Sonnar.

Center Sharpness

Both Mitakon and Fujinon are very sharp lens in the center even wide open. 7artisans is significantly softer at F1.2-F1.4 and will work great for the cases where more dreamy and less detailed look is required.

Border Sharpness

Fujinon is designed to be sharp in borders even at F1.4. Both Mitakon and 7artisans can’t reach that level until very closed F value. Also it looks like Fujinon sharpness field is more flat but a bit deeper, while Mitakon has more curved sharpness area. 7artisans is not designed for borders, but i can be relatively sharp there once stopped down to F8-F16.

21 comments

  1. Your work is very appreciated here. I’ve order the Mitakon. I’m a little bit afraid of sample variation, but crossing fingers that my copy is as good as yours!

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    • Do you have any information on how 7artisans 35mm f1.2 compares to Voigtlander Nokton 35mm f1.2? I am looking to replace my 7a 35mm f2 with a faster lens…

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      • Speaking about Voigtlander 35mm F1.2 version II (chrome snap-on hood mount) it is few times larger, heavier and expensive comparing to 7Artisans 35mm F1.2 because it is a Full Frame glass made for Leica. It has better resolution and contrast on Fuji X sensor because best central part of optics is in use. OOF look nice, though aperture is not round when stopped down – 10 straight blades, so OOF light circles are not so smooth like with 7Artisans.

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  2. Thanks for the paper. Did you notice a transmission difference at the same aperture ? I mean : same dialed aperture -> same ISO and eventually same exposure compensation in post, right ?

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    • Yes, the light transmission is different wide open on all lens. Most ultra-fast aperture lens have some level of vignetting, and different number of glass surfaces. It’s quite expected to see lower light pass. F0.95 and F1.2 don’t deliver 1 and 1/2 step brighter exposure due to that. The top benefit of using that fast apertures – is thinner subject isolation. As for the video purpose that lens will show something closer to T1.2 and T2 wide open.

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      • I’m also very interested in this. I’d rather have better transmission than a narrower depth of field, so if for example the Mitakon was only a little or no brighter at F0.95 than the Fuji at F1.4, I’d choose the Fuji as it’s easier to focus and provides enough isolation, in my opinion.

        One thing that makes this trickier to test is that fuji do vignette and sometimes exposure adjustments that are baked into the raw.

        If you have the time, I’d like to see a test I’ve not been able to find anywhere else: take shots at equivalent settings and apertures, but for the Fuji lens set the aperture then disengage it slightly so that the camera doesn’t recognise it as being attached. This was we can compare shots with the same settings and without Fuji’s corrections in order to better compare transmission.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Very interesting comparison, thanks. I just got the 7artisans 35mm 1.2. I am wondering how different the bokeh is between the 7artisans and speedmaster? According to depth of field calculator the difference between f0.95 and f1.2 is negligible, so I wonder why you say they are useful for different purposes? I find myself using the 7artisans all the time now on my xpro1 as its small and fast, would I be better off with the speedmaster? Seems like little advantage for considerable more outlay?

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    • Thanks for the feedback. The big difference of these two lens is the OOF look. If you take shot from Mitakon and 7Artisans at same F1.2 – first one will render larger OOF circles and more smooth blurring. Mitakon has better sharpness and optical corrections of border areas and often works better if I need more details in frame borders. I like both lens very much. Like you said 7Artisans 35mm F1.2 is compact and fast – I’m also using often to have lighter set. I’d recommend you to observe larger set of images from both lens on e.g. Flickr to have better idea what do you personally like more.
      One more notable difference is – Mitakon is actually 32mm lens, while 7Artisans delivers exact 35mm angle.

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  4. Can 7artisans 1.2 fit to this purpose?
    I plan to buy Fji X-T30 with one manual focus all purpose lens (90% as light travel camera: landscapes, photojurnalism, people and low light).

    The 1.2 is appealing to low light photos, so it is a must to have something under 1.4 (otherways I could go for x-100f model).

    Softness and distortion… are a real issue for this lens?
    What lens does fit better to use as all purpose fast lens?

    Note: I was using Canon 6D with 35mm f2 as travel camera before.

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    • Hi. Your question is very good! : )

      It looks like you are looking for 23mm lens, because 7Artisans 35mm F1.2 delivers angle of view which you had with 50mm lens on your Canon 6D.

      I think after 6D+35mm f2 the Fuji X100 series would work best for travel, delivering same view angle, similar crispy clear image with high details. Excellent high ISO performance compensates f2 maximum speed. I used Nikon D600 + 35mm F2 prior to Fuji typically shooting at ISO800-ISO1600 indoor, with Fuji I’m using up to ISO3200-ISO6400.

      I used X100S as a single travel camera, it was very positive experience, its 23mm F2 lens worked for most situations.

      For X-T30 I’d also explore following options:
      – XF 23mm F2, XF 27mm F2.8 – for high level of details, better contrast and IQ.

      If you are like me looking for manual focus only, then I’d consider Voigtlander 28mm F2. Personally I converted broken Fuji XF 28mm F2.8 to manual focus, and it’s now great set for single travel.

      If I got it wrong and you are actually looking for 35mm MF lens for Fuji X-T30, then one more interesting alternative I tried after writing this article is Voigtlander 35mm F1.7 – it may be better all purpose MF lens than 7Artisans 35mm F1.2.

      Regarding softness and distortion of 7Artisans – it is very noticeable, especially after shooting with much more expensive fast lens. You just need to try it to understand if that IQ is acceptable in a favor of having F1.2, pleasant MF and very compact size.

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  5. so should I sell my 7artisans to get the Mitakon? 🙂
    I’m getting a used deal and the price is double of the 7artisans

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    • It depends on your shooting preferences : ) Both Mitakon and 7Artisans are very interesting lens producing unique looking pictures. If you switch to Mitakon be prepared for also larger and much heavier set to use.

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  6. Hello Yuko! Great posts as always, I have a bit of a question regarding the 7artisans 35 f/1.2

    How is the transmission compared to the Fuji f/1.4? Because if it is at least the same I would rather buy the 7artisans vs. the Mitakon as it is much smaller and lighter. Thank you!

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    • Hello Ali, I don’ thave XF 35/1.4 and Mitakon lens anymore to compare. These days I’d recommend to research and consider 7Artisans/Risespray 35mm F0.95, or TTArtisan 35mm F1.4.

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      • Thank you for the reply, I’ve tried browsing the net but found little comparison of the T-stop for the 7Artisan 1.2 so I was just wondering whats your experience with it if it’s more of a T/1.4 or a T/2

        Thank you for the info though! I’ll try finding other resources to look into before buying the 7artisans 35mm f/0.95 or f/1.2 for the lowlight

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