Review (In Progress): Sony Zeiss 50mm f1.4 (Full Frame E Mount)

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony Zeiss 50mm f1.4 FE product images review (3 of 8)ISO 4001-200 sec at f - 2.8

The release of the Sony Zeiss 50mm f1.4 for full frame E mount cameras begs the question “just how many 50mm lenses does one need?” In truth, just one–but the strategy is a smart one for the company. You see, years ago camera manufacturers used to offer loads of different lens options. You’d get a 50mm f1.8, f1.4, f2, etc. Leica still does this and to some degree, Zeiss does too. But with Sony, you’re getting something different.

This new lens isn’t part of the company’s G Master series of optics and instead it’s a lens that was created in collaboration with Zeiss. It boasts dust/moisture resistance, 11 aperture blades, and other cool features including Zeiss T* coatings that are bound to give you that Zeiss-like look though probably not as clear as their Milvus lineup of lenses.

Editor’s Note: In conjunction with the changes we’ve been doing here on the site, we’re once again changing our review format. First impressions reviews will be completely replaced with a fuller and fuller review that will be updated overtime. Readers will be given notifications on when the full review is complete. Each section will also be rated with stars and an overall cumulative rating. Additionally, comparisons will be made. If parts seem incomplete it’s because they’re still being worked on.

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Review: Nikon D500

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Nikon D500 product images (2 of 10)ISO 4001-125 sec at f - 2.5

For years now, Nikon has said that the higher end lineup of the Dxxxx series of cameras were the replacement for the old D300s. But then they admitted that that wasn’t true, and like a rare find in the lands of Ancient Egypt, photographers got excited all over again with the announcement of the Nikon D500. Indeed, they have great reasons to.

The Nikon D500 is a camera that packs a punch–enough of one to fulfill the needs of both pros and high end enthusiasts. With a beefy build quality, fantastic autofocus, highly revamped ergonomics and a touchscreen on the back, there’s a whole lot that can be accomplished with this camera.

Editor’s Note: we’re trying a brand new review format. Each section will be individually evaluated and then added up for a tally. From there an evaluation will be given. Additionally, we will be making comparisons in each section.

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Sigma’s Biggest Lens Dwarfs its Smallest By Far

SigmaLensComparison-2015-F

Graphic used with permission from Sigma USA

Sigma shared on their blog today a special chart comparing the sizes of all their lenses. The smallest are the lenses designed for mirrorless cameras while the biggest is the company’s 200-500mm f2.8 lens.

To celebrate the end of the year, Sigma is also giving away weather resistant circular polarizers in a new contest. The rules can be found here.

Which One? Fujifilm 35mm f2 R WR vs 35mm f1.4 R

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Fujifilm 35mm f2 WR vs Fujifilm 35mm f1.4 Comparison post images (1 of 5)ISO 4001-200 sec at f - 2.8

Of any comparison of lenses that the Phoblographer has done, this one seems to be the most neck in neck. Lots of readers have been requesting a comparison of the Fujifilm 35mm f1.4 and the Fujifilm 35mm f2 R WR lenses. The f1.4 version has been around for years now, but it’s highly regarded amongst Fujifilm users as a favorite. With the company’s latest announcement of the f2 version, there comes extra features such as weather sealing, a smaller body, and arguably the fastest focusing speed of any Fujifilm lens made as of the publication of this blog post.

But to be very honest, they’re not really that different from one another in terms of image quality.

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Comparison: 50mm vs 85mm Lenses on a Full Frame Camera for Portraits

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Canon 50mm f1.8 STM lens review product images (1 of 2)ISO 4001-125 sec at f - 2.8

We’ve answered this question many times when it comes to technicalities, but there is so much more to photography than just being technical.

The folks over at Weekly Imogen recently published a video doing just that. They compare the Canon 50mm f1.8 and the Canon 85mm f1.8–both are great lenses. Their technical problems aside, there are lots of reasons why you’d use the 85mm lens over a 50mm lens when ti comes to using a full frame camera. 85mm lenses render less distortion, compress bulging parts and tend to throw a lot of the scene out of focus. That means that when you’re photographing a subject, you can make the scene really just focus on them.

Their video is after the jump, but if you’re interested in more then check out our comparison featuring the 50mm f1.4 vs the 85mm f1.8, Weekly Imogen’s own debate on the two, and our field test comparison of the Sigma versions of the 50mm vs 85mm lenses.

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Digital Rev Compares the Autofocus of the Nikon D7200, Canon 7D Mk II and Canon 70D

Screenshot taken from the video

Screenshot taken from the video

Digital Rev recently compared the Canon 70D against the Nikon D7200 and Canon 7D Mk II. Why two Canon cameras? Because the Nikon D7200 is pretty much designed to take on both of them with the 7D Mk II targeting the higher end and the 70D going a bit lower end in some ways.

The hosts play a ridiculous game to test the autofocus system and mention specifics when it comes to the intricacies of the focusing system. It involves playing with the cameras FPS or paintball style where headshots count. This is a creative and fun way of doing it; and eventually it seems like the 7D Mk II and Nikon D7200 are the top contenders.

Check out who wins in the Canon 70D vs Nikon D7200 vs Canon 7D Mk II comparison after the jump.

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DigitalRev Compares the Yongnuo 50mm f1.8 and Canon 50mm f1.8 II

Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 9.41.59 AM

For years, the Canon version was regarded as the best amongst the cheap lenses out there. Sometimes it was under $100 though most recently it’s around the $120 mark. The Yongnuo version is far under that at around $40.

In their test, Kai finds that the Yongnuo 50mm f1.8 is pretty darned good–though the focusing motor is probably one of the most annoying parts. They found the Canon 50mm f1.8 II to be faster to focus by a hair and they also found the Yongnuo to be worse than Canon’s. Oddly enough, others (like Tony Northrup) found them to be comparable.

The rest of the video as well as the results of their test are after the jump.

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A Comparison of How Olympus and Sony’s 5 Axis Stabilization Work

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Olympus OMD EM10 product photos (3 of 7)ISO 4001-60 sec at f - 4.5

Sony and Olympus entered a gentleman’s agreement years ago to start collaborating in closer ways. With the latest announcement of the Sony A7 Mk II, it’s easy to believe that they have the same stabilization process. For many years now, Olympus has held the honor of having the best in-body image stabilization that we’ve seen. Indeed, whenever I need to shoot in impossibly low light, the camera that I reach for is my OMD EM5 paired with a Voigtlander 17.5mm f0.95 lens to shoot at very slow shutter speeds and with the lens wide open. Due to the depth of field and size of the sensor, shooting at f0.95 gives me the full frame equivalent of f2 in focus.

In a situation like that, technology like this could be very advantageous. But that isn’t a reason to discount what Sony is doing with its new 5 Axis Stabilization.

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