Review: Panasonic 50mm f1.4 Lumix S Pro (A Beauty of the L Mount)

The Panasonic 50mm f1.4 Lumix S Pro is an exceptional lens that is held back by a system that needs to evolve.

Something really amazed me during the presentation of the Panasonic 50mm f1.4 Lumix S Pro. They compared it to a Zeiss Otus lens. They specifically said that that’s what they were going for when it came to image quality. To be honest, they’ve either met or exceeded it. Further, they’ve added autofocus and some of the best weather sealing that I’ve seen. With 11 aperture blades at the heart of the Panasonic 50mm f1.4 Lumix S Pro, one could say that it’s doing what the Sony G Master system is striving for. But that would leave out the Panasonic 50mm f1.4 Lumix S Pro’s biggest weakness.

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Review: Sony 20mm f1.8 G (A Fantastic Lens for Everyday Shooters)

The Sony 20mm f1.8 is a versatile lens that will suit photographers who like to shoot a wide range of genres.

When you look at the current Sony E mount lens lineup, and then you take a look at the Sony 20mm f1.8 G, you might be wondering why Sony released this lens when they already have the 24mm f1.4 GM. The specs of the Sony 20mm 1.8 G sound great; in fact, the 20mm f1.8 G borrows a lot of the same tech that’s used in Sony’s more expensive GM options, so it should be a strong performer. On paper, the Sony 20mm f1.8 G sounds like a solid wide lens (it also happens to now be the widest prime lens in the Sony lineup), but how does the lens perform in the real world for $899.99? Let’s find out in our review.

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Review: Tamron 20mm F2.8 Di III OSD (One of the Best Wides for Sony)

With the Tamron 20mm f2.8 Di III OSD, a photographer is getting a lot for their money, including distortion.

The Tamron 20mm f2.8 Di III OSD is part of the trio that the company announced last year. It’s lightweight, weather-sealed, and priced at only $349. This lens is pretty much an impulse buy. You’re not only getting Tamron’s level of fantastic build quality, but also great images that you’re going to love. Of course, this isn’t a lens for everyone: not every photographer needs a 20mm lens. But if you shoot landscapes or buildings, then then the Tamron 20mm f2.8 Di III OSD is a lens that can keep your overall travel pack very light. It’s got some issues with distortion, but that can be fixed.

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Review: Canon RF 70-200mm F2.8 L IS USM (A Work of Art)

The Canon RF 70-200mm f2.8 L IS USM is arguably one of the most innovative zoom lenses made for Mirrorless.

After first laying eyes on the Canon RF 70-200mm f2.8 L IS USM nearly a year ago, I wasn’t sure what to expect when the review unit came in. What I didn’t realize is that it would quickly become one of my favorite telephoto zoom lenses. What’s more, it’s the first 70-200mm f2.8 lens I seriously considered purchasing. The secret to the Canon RF 70-200mm f2.8 L IS USM is the size. It becomes larger when it’s fully zoomed in, but, when set to 70mm, it’s shockingly small. Attach it to the Canon EOS R, and you can easily stuff it into a messenger bag. Then consider the image stabilization, Canon’s lens character, and the beautiful image quality it delivers. And let’s not forget that it survived a photo walk in the rain. In comparison to Sony’s option, the Canon RF 70-200mm f2.8 L IS USM is much more practical.

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Review: Sony 200-600mm f5.6-6.3 G OSS Super Telephoto (Sony FE)

The Sony 200-600mm f5.6-6.3 G OSS Super Telephoto lens is an ideal companion for Sony mirrorless shooters specializing in sports and wildlife photography

The Sony 200-600mm f5.6-6.3 G OSS Super Telephoto lens covers a versatile focal range that allows you to photograph subjects that are typically hard to reach. Naturally, this is a lens that belongs in the hands of sports and wildlife photographers. For a lens covering such a long focal range, the Sony 200-600mm f5.6-6.3 G OSS is surprisingly lightweight and relatively compact. Sports and wildlife photographers will surely appreciate the 200-600mm’s reliable autofocusing capabilities. Paired with the latest Sony Full Frame Mirrorless cameras, it’ll make short work of acquiring and tracking fast-moving subjects.

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Review: Tamron 24mm F2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Sony FE Mount)

The Tamron 24mm f2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 is a compact, affordable ultra-wide-angle prime lens for Sony Full Frame Mirrorless shooters.

Introduced late last year, the Tamron 24mm f2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Model F051) is part of a trio of affordably priced prime lenses designed for Sony Full Frame Mirrorless cameras. Lightweight and compact, the Tamron 24mm f2.8 is also weather-sealed, sports a magnification ratio of 1:2, and can focus as close as 4.7 in (12 cm). We’ve been putting the final production version of this ultra-wide-angle lens through a bevy of real-world tests the last few weeks. Available for just $349, find out how the Tamron 24mm f2.8 performed in our full review.

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Review: Olympus 12-45mm f4 PRO (F8 and Be There!)

The Olympus 12-45mm f4 PRO embodies the ideals that WeeGee spoke of in photography.

You may be wondering why I’m channeling a WeeGee quote around the Olympus 12-45mm f4 PRO review. The reason why is because of the depth of field. Wide-open at f4, this lens has the equivalent depth of field of a full-frame lens at f8. However, it has the light-gathering abilities of f4. So with that said, a photographer can go around and shoot at an f8 equivalent and get lots of great moments perfectly in focus. Add to that this lens’ weather sealing, small size, and performance and you’ve got a lens that will prove itself very useful. While this is a great lens, it reminds me that Olympus really needs fast aperture zoom lenses too.

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Review: Tamron 35mm f2.8 Di III OSD (Sony FE Mount)

The Tamron 35mm f2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 is an excellent and cost-effective prime lens option for Sony Full Frame Mirrorless shooters

The Tamron 35mm f2.8 Di III OSD was introduced last year. It’s part of a trio of compact and affordably priced prime lenses designed for Sony Full Frame Mirrorless cameras. The Tamron 35mm f2.8 is a lightweight and compact prime that’s said to be weather sealed. It focuses as close as 5.9 in (15 cm) and a reproduction ratio of 1:2, the Tamron 35mm f2.8 lets you get up close and personal with your subjects. For the past month, we’ve been putting the final production version of the Tamron 35mm f2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Model F053) through its paces. Find out how it fared under real-world conditions in our full review.

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Review: Sigma 70-200mm F2.8 DG OS HSM Sports Lens (Those Colors!)

The Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 DG OS HSM Sports lens is great for what it is, but it wouldn’t be my first choice.

2019 was the year I hoped that DSLR lenses like the Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 DG OS HSM Sports would be replaced by smaller and lighter Mirrorless lenses. (This piece was written in 2019 and published in 2020.) And quite honestly, if the Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 DG OS Sports lens is any indication, then I’m excited to see what Sigma produces for Mirrorless cameras. This lens focuses quickly, accurately, and maintains focus when adapted to a Canon EOS R. But no matter what you’re using it on, you should know that this is a big lens. However, you should also know that this is a Sigma lens. And to that end, it’s one of the best on the market.

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Review: Panasonic 70-200mm F4 OIS Lumix S Pro (It’s Fast!)

The Panasonic 70-200mm f4 OIS Lumix S Pro isn’t a bad option for the photojournalist.

Many of you are of the philosophy that you hate zoom lenses, but the Panasonic 70-200mm f4 OIS Lumix S Pro is genuinely one of the most capable we’ve tested for the system. Thus far, I’ve found it to be the fastest focusing lens for L mount. That’s great news for photojournalistic photographers in addition to those who shoot weddings and events. You’re going to get great photos from it, but be sure to make a lot of space in your camera bag. Combined with the size of the Panasonic S1, you’ll see that it’s really large.

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Review: Sigma 60-600mm F4.5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports

The Sigma 60-600mm f4.5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports is a lens lots of photographers will find super useful.

Wildlife photographers are really the ones who are going to love the Sigma 60-600mm f4.5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports. In truth, very little is as great as getting some of that fantastic morning light in a shot with gorgeous wildlife. This lens is built for exactly that. Not only does it autofocus quickly, but it’s built solidly. And while there is nothing wrong with this lens, I wonder why it was made for DSLRs. In fact, I find it almost to be a waste. Mirrorless cameras are just so much more capable and that would have easily extended the capabilities of this lens.

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Review: Tamron SP 35mm F1.4 Di USD (A Great 35mm for Portraits)

The Tamron SP 35mm f1.4 Di USD is an absolutely fantastic lens that should have been made for Mirrorless cameras.

Though the Tamron SP 35mm f1.4 Di USD is designed for DSLRs first and foremost, it’s a wonderful lens. But, I feel like the design of an otherwise positively phenomenal lens was wasted on a DSLR. If this were made for Sony E mount, Canon RF, Leica L mount, or even Nikon Z mount, it would have limited itself less. With great weather sealing, a small build quality, and some of the most beautiful image quality I’ve ever seen from a Tamron lens, I’m scratching my head wondering why this was made for Canon EF and Nikon F mounts.

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Review: Sony 16-55mm F2.8 G (The Best Lens of 2015 in 2019)

The Sony 16-55mm F2.8 G is one of the best options for APS-C cameras, and it should have come out in 2015.

In my eyes, the Sony 16-55mm F2.8 G is a great lens that should have come out many years ago. A utilitarian option for photographers steadfastly committed to the a6000 series of cameras, this lens is small, got great build quality, good image quality for what this is, and it offers convenience. But, in 2019 when this lens was released, Sony should have innovated a lot more. Quite honestly, it shows that even though Sony is an extremely innovative company, in some ways they’re still catching up.

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Review: Tamron 35-150mm F2.8-4 Di VC OSD (Canon EF on EOS R)

With the Tamron 35-150mm f2.8-4 Di VC OSD, photographers are getting a great package zoom.

The Tamron 35-150mm f2.8-4 Di VC OSD is a lens that I needed some time getting used to. This happened before I even touched it. I mean, why these choices of focal lengths? I know lots of folks adore the 35mm focal length and I folks love the 150mm focal length for macro work. However, these choices in focal lengths are an odd package. But, despite my personal gripes, this is a fantastic lens, with great image quality, weather sealing, a small size, a lightweight, and a good feeling. I’ve only got one issue; something I discovered when using the Tamron 35-150mm f2.8-4 Di VC OSD in the field.

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Review: Nikon Z 85mm F1.8 (A Beautiful Lens in So Many Ways)

The Nikon Z 85mm f1.8 is an exceptional lens held back by only one problem.

Portrait photographers that work in a studio are going to adore the Nikon Z 85mm f1.8. I must admit, every time a Nikon unit came in for review, I sighed. We often get these great lenses that are stellar all around but limited by a questionably archaic and perplexing camera system. Why were we given only a single CFast card slot? Why did they make their lenses turn the opposite way on a camera than every other lens? Most importantly, why can’t the autofocus system be what it is with their DSLRs? At least with the Nikon Z 85mm f1.8 it won’t matter much if you’re using it for portraits. It exhibits exceptional image quality in every way imaginable. And, it has the build quality to back it up. So, while Nikon has worked incredibly hard on these nearly class-leading lenses, they can only go so far.

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Review: Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8 L IS USM (This Lens Will Grow on You)

The Canon RF 24-70mm f2.8 L IS USM is the lens that will really help to make this camera system. 

Every camera system is made or broken by the quality of their 24-70mm lenses, and the Canon RF 24-70mm f2.8 L IS USM convinces us that the RF system is a solid system. Not only will photojournalists appreciate the autofocus speed and image quality, but they’ll also admire the build quality. The point of mirrorless was to be smaller and lighter, and the Canon 24-70mm f2.8 L IS USM does just that. At the same time, portrait photographers will really like the quality it renders. The lens is sharp, but not sharp to the point where clients will be problematic with the quality of their faces or anything like that. Both types of photographers will like how durable the lens is. Beyond that, everyone will like the image stabilization it offers and its pretty fair price point.

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Review: Canon RF 28-70mm F2 L USM (One of the Best Zooms Around)

Though the Canon RF 28-70mm f2 L USM is a monster lens, it’s arguably the best full-frame zoom on the market.

When I first laid eyes on the Canon RF 28-70mm f2 L USM, I wrote it off in my head. It’s a monster in size, but when use it for a long time, you begin to realize that it’s manageable. There is no image stabilization, and that will be a problem for many newer photographers. However, the lens has a lot of strengths. Besides being built like Brock Lesner in his prime, it has some of the best sharpness we’ve ever seen from a zoom. Couple this with the f2 aperture throughout the entire range, and you’ve got something unique in the market. This is part of what Canon is doing to survive, and though everyone gives Canon a lot of grief for recycling older camera sensors, I believe their lenses are the best on the market. Of course, this is reflected in the price.

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Review: Canon RF 85mm F1.2 L USM (Canon RF Mount)

The Canon RF 85mm f1.2 L USM is a bulky, expensive lens, with superb image quality that more than justifies its price of admission.

One of Canon’s biggest strengths has always been its ability to create consistently excellent lenses targeted at professionals, and the Canon RF 85mm f1.2 L USM is no exception. With their RF Mount system, Canon has chosen to tackle the Full Frame Mirrorless market from the opposite direction of Sony. Instead of focusing on industry-leading cameras first and slowly building up a portfolio of lenses like Sony did, Canon has elected to introduce premium lenses out of the gate while they work on developing newer, more advanced Full Frame Mirrorless camera bodies. Only time will tell if their strategy will pay off, but one thing is for sure: the RF Mount lenses we’ve seen are some of the very best on the market. The Canon RF 85mm f1.2 L USM was designed with portrait photographers in mind, and boy does it create some truly stunning portraits. By virtue of being an f1.2 lens, the Canon RF 85mm f1.2 L USM is bulky and has the weight (and a US $2,699 price tag) to match. If you’ve got deep pockets and won’t settle for anything but the very best, the Canon RF 85mm f1.2 L USM will not disappoint.

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Review: Tamron 17-28mm F2.8 Di III RXD (Almost G Master Sharpness)

The Tamron 17-28mm F2.8 Di III RXD is a lens that wide-angle shooters may not want to remove from their Sony cameras.

When I was testing the Tamron 17-28mm f2.8 Di III RXD lens, I almost never wanted to take it off of my camera. Believe it or not, it wasn’t because of the image quality (although it’s good in and of itself), but it’s size. It felt like a lightweight prime that wasn’t overly mammoth. It was a nice reminder of what mirrorless cameras are supposed to be: smaller and lighter with the lenses to suit them. With an $899 price point, I think the photographers who go for the Tamron 17-28mm f2.8 Di III RXD are going to be very happy. Pros and enthusiasts alike will appreciate the fact that it can survive heavy rainfall and continue to pump out great images. Couple this with how quickly it focuses and how reliable the lens can be, and you’ve got a winner. If I’m getting your hopes up though, you should note that this isn’t a G Master lens.

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First Impressions: Tamron 35mm F2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Sony FE Mount)

The Tamron 35mm f2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 is an affordable and lightweight lens many Sony Full Frame Mirrorless shooters will want to consider

Last week at the annual PhotoPlus Expo in New York City, Tamron unveiled a trio of compact and lightweight prime lenses designed from the ground up for Sony’s E Mount Full Frame Mirrorless cameras. One of the lenses in this prime trio is the Tamron 35mm f2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Model F053). The newly announced Tamron 35mm f2.8 follows the same design philosophy of balancing a small footprint while maintaining portability that we’ve seen in the company’s excellent 17-28mm f2.8 Di III RXD and 28-75mm f2.8 Di III RXD zooms for Sony Full Frame Mirrorless. At just 7.4 oz, the Tamron 35mm f2.8 is remarkably lightweight. It’s also quite compact in size at only 2.5 inches in length (the 20mm and 24mm f2.8 primes also share the same exterior design and dimensions).

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Review: Sigma 14-24mm F2.8 DG DN Art (The Colors Are a Dream)

No, the Sigma 14-24mm f2.8 DG DN Art isn’t the same lens as the DSLR version.

If you were to spring for one wide-angle zoom lens with a fast aperture on the market, chances are you’d go for the Sigma 14-24mm f2.8 DG DN Art. Sigma is arguably the best lens maker of our time even if you need to lift weights to use them. And with the case of the Sigma 14-24mm f2.8 DG DN Art, you’re going to get fantastic image quality. The cityscape, landscape, event, and travel photographers who use this lens will appreciate that it can more or less stay mated to your camera while providing a lot of versatility. It’s not a portrait lens, so if you’re the type of photographer who avoids photographing people, then the Sigma 14-24mm f2.8 DG DN Art is probably your choice.

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