Evaluating the three Sirui Sniper lenses has been intriguing, as they diverge from the usual design ethos of edge-to-edge sharpness for stills or video. These APS-C, AF lenses are Sirui’s first venture into f/1.2 lenses at this price point.
The overall quality of the lenses is impressive, boasting solid build quality. The ceramic white finish, while not my personal preference, has garnered positive reactions from others, making it a surprising hit.
Initially, I had reservations about the image quality, but thorough testing in various settings revealed their true potential as creative tools for modern photographers and videographers. The f/1.2 aperture is technically challenging to execute, and Sirui has admirably succeeded in delivering its intended effect. These lenses excel in subject-focused photography or videography, where the foreground is crisp and the background is softly blurred.
However, if you expect these lenses to be versatile for both portraiture and landscape photography, you may be disappointed. They perform well at apertures of f/5.6-f/11, with f/8 being the sweet spot. Landscapes shot at f/1.2, though, tend to lack detail and clarity.
I’m impressed with the build quality, large aperture, stunning bokeh, and background blur. The lenses integrate seamlessly into video rigs, and the AF, particularly in continuous mode, is effective thanks to the STM motor. For a first foray into AF lenses, these are remarkable. However, it’s essential to understand that they are specialized for creative, not general-purpose, use.
Check out the review of the full Sirui Sniper lens kit here