7Artisans 35mm f1.2 Review and Comparison to Vintage Lenses

This review of the 7Artisans 35mm f1.2 is by someone (me) who doesn't review lenses. I have a simple system of comparing my vintage and other manual lenses. For more controlled testing there are a couple of other reviews by established lens reviewers on Google and YouTube. The purpose of this review is to compare the lens, especially at f1.2 and f1.4, to vintage lenses. And see how I feel after owning it for 6-12 months.

7Artisans 35mm f1.2 Review - click here to see current price on Amazon

Amazon reviewers give the lens 4 stars out of 5 and there a few different listings for it in different mounts; for Fuji FX mount, Sony E mount, M43 and Canon M mount. The price at the time this article was published in July 2019 is $145. You might find it a bit cheaper ordering on eBay but will likely have a longer wait.

I recommend looking up the reviews on Google for samples as they will probably have done it properly. But I have just done my very basic test, scoring the sharpness at close range and at infinity. The results are what the reviews say. But I feel like because I am into vintage lenses, what they said in the reviews made me expect worse e.g. ghosting/glowing wide open.

the 7Artisans 35mm f1.2 is perfect for lowlight and nights out


The lens does ghost/glow wide open but it is much less than my Super Takumar 50mm at f1.4. The Tak is sharper, but last night I used the 35 in street photo focal lengths and it was much less noticeable. I felt like there was no problem using at f1.2, whereas I always want to stop the bigger f1.4 down to f1.8 or f2.

The resolution/sharpness of the lens is low, like they say in the reviews. At f1.4 the Super Tak is clearly much sharper. However, the 35 scored slightly higher because of the lack of the glow. I remember commenting last night that at f1.2 the 35 is more like the beautifying effect (clarity turned down), which for people seems fine. Will be using on the street in the day soon. So might have more to say about this.

7Artisans 35mm f1.2 Bokeh Example


The bokeh is unique and has its own character, see the yellow shot below. It is not ultra smooth but it is heavy and has it's own "look".

This lens has really unique bokeh

Where is the 7Artisans 35mm f1.2 Best?


The 35 is sharpest at f5.6 and f8 where it is about the same sharpness as my Fuji 16-50mm II kit zoom i.e. perfectly acceptable. I gave it 7+ out of 10 and -8 at f8 for sharpness. But it is usable wide open at f1.2 as I gave it -6/10 which is my baseline for acceptability.

After owning this lens for quite a while I have sold it. I just couldn't be bothered manually focusing it and just didn't use it enough. Plus I have started using the Fuji 27mm f2.8 pancake which isn't much wider and isn't much more expensive. But I am into street photography. If you are into portraits then the 7Artisans 35mm f1.2 will be a great choice.

I will still be keeping other manual lenses which are easier to focus like the Minolta Rokkor PF 55mm f1.8. Or cuter like the Industar 69 28mm f2.8 which I use hyperfocal focusing for at f11, despite it being optically inferior. The 7Artisans beats most of my vintage lenses and is the only f1.2.

the 35mm f1.2 in a jazz club with Fuji's classic chrome film simulation


I wouldn't use this lens on landscape or anything else where sharpness is critical. I would use it for portraits as the lack of sharpness isn't too bad and the the thinner DOF gives subjects great subject separation.

It is definitely worth considering at the current $145 price tag. I sold mine for $80 and it went too fast (I undervalued it). Probably should have been $95 used in mint condition.

Red street photos from Chiang Mai for June 2019

These were actually taken in the past but I have a lot to get through and not much time to re-size new ones for the web for fast loading. Enjoy some Chiang Mai photography from when I was a novice street photographer. All influenced by the color red:

a Chinese temple in Chiang Mai Chinatown

At Chiang Mai market under a red umbrella

People love their pets in Chiang Mai and this doggy rocked that red sweater 😉

I really like this photo  of 2 army guys hanging of a red truck (songthaew) which was taken near the Chang Phuak (north) bus station

I love faces with character in Thailand, especially if they are smiling like this nice lady

Tanin market just north of Chiang Mai's Old City has some amazing, but possibly very spicy dishes for locals and daring foreigners (tip: Thai dishes with red in are usually hot).

This monk was dressed in a very bright orange, which worked well with the tomatoes under the red umbrellas from the ladies above at Waroros Market. 

Chiang Mai Markets Photography



Bubbly guy selling food at a night market in Chiang Mai, just north of the old city.

This was a heavy crop, using a vintage lens, but I loved his face peeking out of the colorful clothes racks.


One of the many friendly market sellers inside the main indoor market in Chiang Mai (Waroros)

Not sure if this lady was tired after a hard day at the market, or perplexed by something? 😀
A used camera stall, you can find lots of vintage camera lenses and film cameras from various sellers in Chiang Mai

Thailand Street Photography in Black and White

I don't recall if this attractive woman was captured in an airport or mall

A nice old man whose shop I buy iced tea ingredients from

Stylish dude in basement car park

Cute kid with his mum on a motorbike

A character at the rainy bus station in Udon Thani on our way back from a Thai visa run


Street Photos in Laos and ThailandLaos Tuk Tus look

Laos Tuk Tuks look a little different 
Mochi ice cream buns are delicious


We love the colors in the markets and I love making teas and tisanes

Taking a photo of Aiyah along some bells at a temple in the Old City

Rounded shapes which appealed to me in a mall

Chiang Mai Photography - 5 random shots

lots of characters bussing around the streets of Chiang Mai

Missed focus but I like the calmness of the monk

Aiyah buying some delicious Pad Thai - she has to specify no peanuts

Chiang Mai is quite flat, perfect for cycling

I thought I would experiment with this one and actually quite like it, what do you think?

Makati in Manila Street Photography

This is where it all began for me last year. I started with my phone on the first day and then took the Panasonic G7 out with the 12-32mm kit zoom the next day. I was hooked on street photography immediately and bought a black permanent marker to blacken my G7's Lumix branding to be more stealthy.

It was the best time of the year to be in Makati, the Philippines central business district, because it was Easter's Holy Week and nearly everyone was out of town. If you need to visit Manila this is the time to go.

I was nervous on my first day doing street photography in Makati, hence the wonky image and motion blur



This is my favorite from the set, love that attitude hehehe.

Street selfie

B&W felt right for my first couple of days, this place is rarely this quiet.