with CLIPREVIEWED learn the articleSony FE 35mm F1.4 GM Expands G Master Lens Line
Sony is introducing its fourth 35mm prime lens for the full-frame a7 camera series, the first of its focal length to be marketed under the premium G Master (GM) banner. This class of lenses promises strong sharpness from edge to edge, attractive bokeh, and pro-grade build quality.
Introduced during this year’s virtual CES, the Sony FE 35mm F1.4 GM houses bright, moderately wide-angle optics in a polycarbonate barrel, complete with dust, splash, and fluorine protection, and a de-clickable aperture control ring.
It’s the fourth 35mm prime for the system, joining the Zeiss FE 35mm F2.8, FE 35mm F1.8, and Zeiss FE 35mm F1.4. It matches the latter in maximum aperture, but sports an all-new optical formula to meet the needs of today’s high-resolution cameras, and to minimize unwanted optical effects.
Sony promises that the new lens will capture photos with very little, if any, visible chromatic aberration—that means no purple or green color shifts distracting from the natural blur you’ll get when making images at wider apertures and closer focus distances.
The angle of view is moderately wide, but has many adherents. It’s a popular focal length for documentary, reportage, and event photography, to name a few.
It’s not one we typically look to for macro shots, but the FE 35mm F1.4 GM does have a decent close-up capability as well—it can autofocus to 10.6 inches (27cm) and gets to 9.8 inches (25cm) when focusing manually. The focusing element is moved with dual linear motors for quick, quiet focus.
It’s a relatively compact prime, smaller (3.8 by 3.0 inches) and lighter (1.2 pounds) than the Zeiss 35mm F1.4. Its front element has a bit of a curve to it—Sony bills it as an extreme aspheric (XA) element—but 67mm threaded front filters are still supported.
The 11-blade aperture ensures that defocused highlights are rounded, even when narrowing the f-stop for more depth of field.
Sony expects the lens to ship in mid-February and is pricing it around $1,400 in the US. Canadian photographers will pay more, $1,900 CAD.
Sony’s other FE 35mm lenses, including the Zeiss F1.4, will remain in market. A Sony representative tells us the cost of the Zeiss lens is likely to be repositioned.
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