More From Broadcast Asia 2014, With Very Brief GH4 Thoughts

P1020446I dropped by Broadcast Asia 2014 again, and this time Panasonic did not boot me out. Unlike many others Panasonic did not just have a booth, they had a whole room to themselves! The outer ring of the room was filled with different technology demonstrations, including this massive video wall. Who wants a bunch of these for their next photography exhibition?

Continue reading More From Broadcast Asia 2014, With Very Brief GH4 Thoughts

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailby feather

Sony Announces FIVE(!) Full-frame E-mount “FE” Lenses to Go With the A7 and A7R

Sony FE lenses
Sony FE lenses

Hot on the heels of the highly-anticipated full-frame mirrorless cameras, the A7 and A7R, Sony has also released FIVE(!) new full-frame E mount lenses. Dubbed “FE”, these lenses were designed to match the newly released A7/A7R cameras. Among them, three are premium (read expensive) lenses with the Zeiss branding, namely the FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Carl Zeiss Sonnar *T, FE 35mm f/2.8 ZA Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* and the FE 24-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Carl Zeiss Vario Tessar T*. The last two are an inexpensive FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS mid-zoom kit lens and a FE 70-200mm f/4 G OSS telephoto zoom.

Along with the five new lenses, Sony has also updated one of their popular lenses into the 70-200mm f/2.8G SSM II. The lens features a faster AF speed and a new and improved ‘Nano AR’ coating said to be resistant to moisture and dust.

And now, what everybody is wanting to know: the price. The EF 24-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS will be a kit lens to the A7 and won’t be sold separately, though we are sure it’ll somehow make its way into the channels. The 35mm f/2.8 ZA Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* will cost US$799 and be available in December 2013. The 55mm f/1.8 ZA Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* will cost US$999 and be available from January 2014. Finally, the 24-70mm f/4 ZA OSS will cost US$1199 and be available from February 2014. No pricing information is available for the 70-200mm f/4 OSS at the time of writing.

Though not as astronomical as their Leica counterparts, these Zeiss lenses still look pretty expensive. I am not sure if they are good enough to justify their cost. But like their Leica counterparts, I am sure there will be enough people clamouring over then anyway.

YS: Best part is, they’re all made in Japan anyway. Also, look at the size and weight for most of the lenses. Almost all of them are equivalent to their SLR counterparts. So much for a lighter system, eh? Personally the biggest omissions are wide-angle primes: This is the area where mirrorless lenses will be smaller and lighter due to not needing a retrofocus design. Without them the new system is just another case of small camera with big lenses – a Sony favourite, it seems.

(Image credit: Sony press images)

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailby feather

Sony Tries to Make Good Lenses: Sony Zeiss E 16-70mm f/4 and E 18-105mm f/4 G Lens, Also Paints E 50mm f/1.8 in Black

One of the main problems with the NEX system is, simply put, horrible horrible lenses. Check any decently done Imatest bench of the E mount lenses. Or heck, just test them yourself, pitting them against your favourite lenses. They remind me of the infamous Nikon 43-86mm lens. It’s 2013, yet some of the quality of the lenses reminds me of 1973.

Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS

Sony clearly are listening, so they have have come up with a pair of lenses to address that. The first is the Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS. Mouthful of a name, but the Zeiss name, even if it is Sony-made, should ensure some quality. The only good NEX lens is another Zeiss, the 24mm f/1.8, so this should bode well. Of course, the downside is that the Zeiss name means it is going to be more expensive: Expect it to arrive in September for US$1000. More if you’re in Europe. Eep.

Sony E PZ 18-105mm f/4 G OSS

The next lens is the E PZ 18-105mm f/4 G OSS lens. As this is a G lens, there is also an implied sense of quality. As the name implies, this will be a power zoom lens, making it suitable for video work. Arrives in December for US$600.

Sony E 50mm f/1.8 OSS

Finally Sony is releasing the E 50mm f/1.8 OSS in black. This trend of “silver-first” lenses is a bit annoying, I have to say. Arrives in September for US$300.

Of course, it still doesn’t solve the other problem of honking huge lenses on tiny bodies.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailby feather