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Does the Viltrox EF-M 23mm f/1.4 worth buying for Canon m50?

Updated: Jan 16, 2022

Unboxing Experience If you are a fan of minimalism like I am, this will be the first positive point. You don’t get a top-of-the-line box, but it's rugged, small enough to be stored on any shelf and it's white, so clearly visible on that basement where you keep all your boxes. You'll find a nice pouch to avoid some scratches while transporting it on a backpack for instance. The lens comes well protected and it's ready to go!

Built Quality/Materials/Usage Common sense, and experience, tell us that when you buy an item that is at an affordable price point some tradeoffs have to be taken. Build quality and materials are generally the first that suffer from shortcuts.

Luckily this isn’t the case with the Viltrox 23mm. It’s completely made of metal, even the bayonet or the provided lens hood. So it feels quite sturdy on the hands. At a first glance, it looks like a solid lens that gives us some confidence and doesn’t feel cheap at all. Those 260 are also well balanced.

You’ll also find a USB port that gives us peace of mind knowing that from time to time some updates will be available. So there’s a bonus there.

The usage is pleasant just out of the box. You have a very welcome aperture ring (also has an Automatic position) and a very smooth and large focus ring as well. The first one is nice because gives an analog feel to the shooting experience like you have on the Fuji lenses. Also, it's quite helpful because on the Canon M50 you only have a dial to use as aperture/exposure compensation. So you can program it to the EV and the ring serves its purpose.

Like other Canon lenses, the Viltrox has very efficient autofocus with the STM system, which works very silently and is almost inaudible. That’s a plus for video use or when you are on locations where discretion is a rule. The stepper motor technology is a nice addition. Technical Data

Distortion/ Vignetting /Resolution It has a slight vignette at its maximum aperture of f/1.4, and a falloff around 0.6EV that disappears entirely at f/2.8. Though in Lr or Ps you can compensate it quite easily, even quicker if you use the available correction profile. In my opinion, it’s perfectly tolerable and even gives to some sort of images a character, some sort of analog image that I like. On video like said earlier, there isn’t any big issue at all by using the STM or manual focus. The sweet spot of this Viltrox is from f/4 to f/8 and manageable till reaching f/11. Using it at the widest apertures wasn’t also an issue at all, because even at f/1.4 the center resolution is quite usable, either for stills or video. The bokeh is also quite pleasing with its 9 aperture blades. You’ll find purple fringing on high contrast situations, like many expensive lenses. Again, just tweak it on Lr and it quickly disappears. Like another lens that allows us to use a very shallow depth of field, it’s great to find new compositions around us.

Final Thoughts At the first, I wasn’t very convinced, because I had high hopes in the past for other competitors and it never reached the expectations. Yet I’m pleased to see that this lens is quite solid, in many aspects of it.

The only things that I noticed, and are solved with a click, are a slight vignette and purple fringing when shooting harsh backlit subjects. Sincerely you can’t ask more at this price point.

So, what’s the usability of this 23mm? This 36.8 mm equivalent focal on FF is a true jack-of-all-trades lens. Whatever your needs are you will have one of the most versatile, portable, and with low light capabilities at this price range, by far.

Versatile and low-light capable it's a great add-on to your trusty Canon ef-m mount cameras. As seen in the examples, I’ve used for many purposes delivering consistency to the final product. The bokeh that comes out of this 23mm, when used with open, is soft and gentle with the forms that create. Sometimes backgrounds became a mushy aglomerade of shapes unpleasant to the eye. But not here, luckily.

After all that why do we give the Viltrox AF 23mm f/1.4 STM EF-M a solid 4.5/5, being an excellent and safe choice.

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