7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 Lens Review Fuji X Mount:
Recently, I’ve been trying out lower priced third party manufacturers’ lenses, and I have to admit, some of them are pretty cool to use. The last one I reviewed was an Opteka lens with a Fuji X Mount. Today, I want to talk about the 25mm f1.8 lens by 7artisans. I’ve been using this lens for a while now, and it’s been a great match for my Fuji X-T2. At f1.8, it’s a relatively fast lens, and the equivalent focal length is 37.5mm, which is one that many photographers find useful because it is close to a 35mm. It’s also a very compact lens, and balances nicely with most mirrorless cameras. Lastly, the Fuji X Mount version currently sells for just under $80, which is a sweet price considering how much lenses can cost these days. Let’s take a closer look at it.
7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 Lens Build Quality:
So, what did I expect from a 25mm f1.8 lens costing just under $80? Not much to be honest but I was pleasantly surprised. Build quality wise, the 7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 lens is metal, and therefore, offers a very solid feel. The focus ring moves smoothly offering just the right amount of resistance.
↑ Here’s the 7artisan 25mm f1.8 with my Fuji X-T2.
As for the aperture ring, it is the de-clicked type, which I’m not a huge fan of in general. I’m always checking to make sure I didn’t move it accidentally, and with a click type aperture ring, you don’t always have to look at the lens to adjust the settings. If you have the lens set at f5.6 for example, you can move it to f4 without looking based on the number of clicks. The aperture ring on the 25mm f1.8 also skips a bunch of aperture markings between f8 and f16.
↑ The 25mm f1.8 is a very compact lens.
But overall, the build quality is great for the price. While the 25mm f1.8 may not offer the sheer build quality of a Leica lens, for example, it also doesn’t cost nearly as much. Plus, there’s nothing loose here or anything that would make me feel like it’ll fall apart anytime soon.
I also want to say that I love the size, and overall feel of the 7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 lens. The focal length that this lens equates to is 37.5mm, which means it’ll see a lot of time on a camera given that the focal length makes it such a great all-around lens. Good news is that the 25mm f1.8 balances really nicely with my X-T2. It’s also great on other compact bodies like an X-E3 or even an X-T20. As you can see in the photos, it’s very compact; it kind of reminds me of older manual lenses, which is actually what drew me to the lens, and made me want to try it in the first place. At 143 g, it’s also nicely weighted for its size.
To top it off, you can get the 25mm f1.8 in black or silver. The 25mm f1.8 does not come with a hood but with a lens so nicely compact, I’m not sure if I would even use the hood that much. In addition to coming in Fuji X Mount, it also comes in Sony E-Mount, and Micro Four Thirds Mount.
7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 Lens Focusing:
Focusing as I said before is done manually. The 7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 lens is a wide angle, and for the most part, it’s not as difficult to focus as a fast standard or telephoto lens. Plus, the 25mm f1.8’s focus throw isn’t that long, which means you can focus much more quickly.
With that said, there were times when I still had a little difficulty focusing at f1.8. It depends on the situation that you’re shooting in, and my eyes are probably not as good as they used to be :). The X-T2 has focusing peaking but there were times when I had to use a combination of focus peaking, and the magnification feature. Portraits, for example, were an area where I found the magnification feature super helpful.
This, of course, is in no way a fault of the lens. As you’ll read down below, the lens is sharp at f1.8. I’m just giving you my experience just in case there are readers that haven’t used manual lenses before. Others may vary as well. The important thing is you have to find the focus aid or aids that work for you, and it’s worth noting that focusing at f1.8 does get quicker with practice.
7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 Lens Image Quality:
As for image quality, sharpness in the center is very good at f1.8, and as you stop down it just gets better. You can definitely get some great shots with this lens, and there were times when I was completely content with the sharpness, and I never felt like I needed anything sharper like say the XF 23mm f2. However, the 7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 lens is definitely soft in the corners, and while sharpness throughout the image does improve as you stop the lens down, there is still slight softness in the corners at f8.
↑ The 25mm f1.8 makes a great lens to carry around all day. If I remember correctly, this was taken at f8.
↑ This was taken at f1.8, and it is very sharp.
Color and contrast are also pretty decent though, and while the 25mm f1.8 may not quite match more expensive lenses in these areas, the quality is much better than I expected from a 35mm equivalent f1.8 lens costing just under $80. Again, there were a lot of images I took with this lens that I was very happy with. Look at the bridge picture below, for example. It’s very sharp, and color and contrast look great.
↑ This was taken somewhere between f8 and f16 (remember there are no markings between these two aperture settings).
↑ This is a 100% crop of the photo above. As you can see, this lens can definitely pick up a lot of detail.
↑ This was taken at f1.8. I was a little off focus here.
Other characteristics worth mentioning is that there is some barrel distortion, and some noticeable vignetting. While vignetting does get better as you stop the lens down, I found it doesn’t really completely disappear until around f8. But in normal shooting situations, I don’t know if you would even see the vignetting much once you start stopping down. It’s only if you’re shooting a white wall where you’ll notice it more, and really, how many of us are going to be shooting white walls all the time ;)? As for flare, depending on how you angle it towards the sun, it may exhibit the occasional flare but overall, I didn’t have many issues with this.
↑ This was a shot I took at f5.6.
↑ As I said earlier, the 7artisan 25mm f1.8 is a great lens to bring along with you all day not just because of its size and weight but also because of its focal length, and aperture speed.
In terms of bokeh, the 7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 lens actually has a 12-blade rounded diaphragm that helps produce a very smooth look. There are no complaints on my part in this area. There are no weird shapes or harshness in the bokeh at all. Everything does blend away very smoothly in an almost classic way but keep in mind that this is still a wide angle lens. You won’t be getting ultra shallow depth of field like you would from a longer telephoto lens.
↑ This lens’ optics are great for the price.
↑ Here’s one more taken at f1.8.
Overall, you may not be getting optical perfection here but you’re also paying less than $80, and for this price, it’s a great little lens. You’ll produce some awesome results with this lens, and I’m not just saying that. I sincerely enjoyed using it not just because of the way that it feels and operates but also because I liked what came out of it.
7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 Lens Pros And Cons:
7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 Lens Pros:
- Decent build quality for the price.
- Compact and Nicely weighted.
- No need for adapters for most popular mirrorless cameras; the lens comes in many different mounts.
- Focusing is quick.
- Great image quality for the price.
- A 25mm f1.8 for less than $80.
7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 Lens Cons:
- De-clicked aperture ring.
- No f-stop markings skipped between f8 and f16.
- If you’re looking for absolute perfection in terms of optics, you may want to consider something else but keep in mind you’ll be paying a lot more.
7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 Lens Verdict:
Overall, I think for the price, you’re getting a great deal here. The 7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 lens is not perfect; I’m not a fan of the aperture ring, for example, and image quality while very good, doesn’t compare as well to say the Fuji counterpart.
↑ While this lens does come in black and silver, I am definitely a fan of a silver lens on a black body :).
With all that said, the the 25mm f1.8 costs less than $80, and for this price, it has quite a lot going for it. It’s compact and weighted nicely making it a great lens to use with the Fuji bodies or other mirrorless cameras. Seriously, I absolutely loved how this lens felt on my X-T2. I found the overall balance to be even a little better than with Fuji’s own XF 23mm f2 mounted on my X-T2. The image quality is also great when you consider the price, and with an f1.8 aperture, it’s also a fast lens. Plus, if you’re new to manual focus, and are looking for a way to get into it without investing a whole lot, the 25mm f1.8 is a fantastic option. The best thing is it’s X Mount, so you don’t even need an adapter. So, bottom line is I’d recommend this lens for anyone wanting a lower priced option for a 35mm (or in this case 35.7mm) equivalent lens.
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7artisans Photoelectric 25mm f1.8 lens in: