Xeen vs the much cheaper Rokinon Cine DS lenses

Here is a video where I test the Xeen and Cine DS lenses (both made by Rokinon).

Each Xeen lens incorporates built-in, cinema-style focus and iris gears that share common positions, making for fast lens changes. The 24, 35, 50, and 85mm lenses feature a maximum aperture of T1.5 and an 11-bladed iris. The 14mm features a maximum aperture of T3.1 and has a 9-bladed iris, while the 16mm features a T2.6 maximum aperture and an 11-bladed iris. The 135mm is still fast at T2.2 and incorporates an 11-bladed iris.

As these are cinema lenses, the iris is designed to be clickless, allowing smooth aperture pulls. All the Xeen lenses have the common 114mm front diameter which allows for quick lens changes, as you don’t have to swap out anti-reflection donuts, or adapters to use the same matte box.

My conclusions:

Both the Xeen and Cine DS lines of Rokinon lenses appear to deliver the same sharpness.

Actually, I believe that all these lenses are internally the same. It is just that the Xeen line uses the standard (and much larger) exterior housing.

Also, based on the videos I’ve filmed, the sharpness, color rendition, distortion and breathing effect seem to be the same. I will provide you with concrete video examples in a future review.

So, it seems to me that the high price of the Xeen lenses is due to the industry-standard exterior build, rather than the image quality.

Here is where you can buy the Xeen and the Cine DS lenses:

Rokinon Xeen Cine lenses on BH Photo, Adorama, eBay, Amazon, Amazon Canada

Xeen Complete Cine Lens Bundle (14, 16, 24, 35, 50, 85, 135mm) on BH Photo

Rokinon Cine DS lenses on BH Photo, Adorama, eBay, Henry’s, Amazon, Amazon Canada

I own a bundle very similar to the following (I have one fewer lens):

Cine DS Lens Bundle (24, 35, 50, 85mm) on BH Photo

Below you will find the test results with each lens at different T-Stop settings. (Click the images for full resolution images.)

4 thoughts on “Xeen vs the much cheaper Rokinon Cine DS lenses”

  1. Tom,

    The 24 @ 2.8 <= is supposed to be soft at the edges, but I am not seeing that in the video. As you shot with both the Xeen and less expensive Cine lens did you feel the 24mm was a sub-par lens wide open (as compared to the 50 or 85)?


  2. I have been using the Cine DS Rokinon lens because I could afford it. I am building my kit for filming using the 85mm and 35mm and using the occasional 28-70AF Sony lens. The quality in my opinion is fantastic. My next buy I hope would be to get a wide angle. Because I am getting into close quarter shooting i.e. taking shots of the driver or passenger, it would be nice to have the same brand plus my cage setup on my JTZ w/ matte box is ready for quick change. Thanks for doing the comparisons and really helping me make good decisions.

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