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Thread: 55 1.8

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    Senior Member ecsh's Avatar
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    55 1.8

    I just got notification that the 55 1.8 lens is now in stock at B&H. Anyone getting one of these babies?
    Joe

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Done Will have it on Thursday.

    Victor

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Thursday here 2...

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    Re: 55 1.8

    I have extremely high expectations for this lens..... I have read reports that it occupies a space near the mighty Otus. I will find out soon enough.

    Victor

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Look forward to seeing some images. Right now I don't have a 55mm on my Nikon system but maybe it would be nice on the Sony system. Hmmm

    My patience is growing thin waiting for UPS to delivery my goodies even worse my espresso is on the same truck and I ran out today. Damn this is not good. LOL

    If this is close to the Otus its a done deal for me for 1k. No question
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    Re: 55 1.8

    I'm thinking about getting this lens at I don't have the exact fov and I do want at least 1 AF lens...
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    Re: 55 1.8

    The Photoblogger has a "review". Review: Sony 55mm f1.8 (Full Frame E Mount) - The Phoblographer

    The lens looks to be excellent optically, and build quality seems good. I'll probably pick one up as my sole AF lens for my a7r. My one objection is the size.

    I purchased the vertical grip to balance the camera with some of my DSLR lenses, and the 55/1.8 too looks like it would benefit from a beefier body.

    Photo from The Photoblogger


    Graham

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    Senior Member Ron Pfister's Avatar
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    Re: 55 1.8

    It is pretty darned big. Perhaps it *is* a mini Otus, after all…
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    Re: 55 1.8

    I don think it's much larger than a telephoto or super fast specialty M lens like the newer (Noctilux, 75 Lux, 35 Nokton etc.) The hood makes it look larger.
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    Re: 55 1.8

    I have a feeling many folks have my thought of having at least one native lens on board. This maybe it. Not sure why they did not have the 24-70 ready at launch, that would be a big seller for them.

    I wish they did a 28 prime and this 55. Perfect setup
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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    I have a feeling many folks have my thought of having at least one native lens on board. This maybe it. Not sure why they did not have the 24-70 ready at launch, that would be a big seller for them.

    I wish they did a 28 prime and this 55. Perfect setup
    I thought it was kind of odd to have 2 wide to short telephoto options initially. I thought one of those should've been a 12 to 16- 35 option if not a semi fast portrait like a 100/2 or so.
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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by HiredArm View Post
    I don think it's much larger than a telephoto or super fast specialty M lens like the newer (Noctilux, 75 Lux, 35 Nokton etc.) The hood makes it look larger.
    It looks about the size of a 55lux with adapter. A big plus is the weight, around 260grams (approx 1/2 lb). Should find out when I get it in my hands by Friday hopefully.

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    Subscriber Member tashley's Avatar
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    Re: 55 1.8

    I have mine, been shooting with it a fair bit on a 'getting to know you' basis and will report back soon...
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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    I have mine, been shooting with it a fair bit on a 'getting to know you' basis and will report back soon...
    Looking forward to it, Tim. You're my favorite guinea pig, er I mean early adopter.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Yea love seeing someone ELSE spend the money before me for ONCE. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Subscriber Member tashley's Avatar
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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Colson View Post
    Looking forward to it, Tim. You're my favorite guinea pig, er I mean early adopter.

    Joe
    You are too kind! Oink!

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Here's a few from today with the 55mm F1.8 - but none from which I would draw any real conclusions.

    Fist impressions: it is very nice but yet again, I think I have a dodgy copy of a Sony Zeiss lens. I need to test it properly but I think it's softer on the left when focussed on centre, and focus falls a little closer on the left than on the right.

    I shot for a couple of hours walking around and I tried a variety of focus modes (flexible spot, zone, face, single, continuous in various permutations) and for anything that is moving all I can say is either forgeddit or pre-focus. I shot 21 frames using continuous, both with and without face detection, of people moving painfully slowly on a congested ice rink and not one shot was anywhere near focus, barring one of a father and child who were effectively stationary.

    Anything with bright or flashing lights is a no-no with AF, it just gets confused.

    A shutter speed of over 1/125th is needed to be reasonably sure of no shake.

    Rendition looks to be very nice and I think that a properly centred copy might give the 50 Lux a run for its money. OOF is nice, there's a tiny touch of CA, distortion is low, flare resistance seems good.

    More to come. Here's a gallery that I'll add to, mostly with full sized images developed from RAW in LR 5.3 and with sharpening at 50/0.6/70/20 which is a touch lower than I use for the D800E.













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    Subscriber Member tashley's Avatar
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    Re: 55 1.8

    And one more, with a 100% crop:



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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    Anything with bright or flashing lights is a no-no with AF, it just gets confused.
    Isn't that the general problem with the way the AF works with these cams? Focus on the background instead of the person.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    A shutter speed of over 1/125th is needed to be reasonably sure of no shake.
    That's what I find with the 50 Lux on the A7R. 1/2F seems to work.

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    Rendition looks to be very nice and I think that a properly centred copy might give the 50 Lux a run for its money. OOF is nice, there's a tiny touch of CA, distortion is low, flare resistance seems good.
    High praise indeed. My interest in this lens would be for the AF, so if the AF is dodgy, I'll pass.

    Tim, thanks for posting these and I look forward to more of your observations on this lens. I haven't written it off.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Isn't that the general problem with the way the AF works with these cams? Focus on the background instead of the person.

    yeah, there's a lot of that going on. For shooting a Christmas fair, you really need a Leica...

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    yeah, there's a lot of that going on. For shooting a Christmas fair, you really need a Leica...
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    Re: 55 1.8

    [QUOTE=tashley;555888]Here's a few from today with the 55mm F1.8 - but none from which I would draw any real conclusions.

    Fist impressions: it is very nice but yet again, I think I have a dodgy copy of a Sony Zeiss lens. I need to test it properly but I think it's softer on the left when focussed on centre, and focus falls a little closer on the left than on the right.

    I shot for a couple of hours walking around and I tried a variety of focus modes (flexible spot, zone, face, single, continuous in various permutations) and for anything that is moving all I can say is either forgeddit or pre-focus. I shot 21 frames using continuous, both with and without face detection, of people moving painfully slowly on a congested ice rink and not one shot was anywhere near focus, barring one of a father and child who were effectively stationary.

    Anything with bright or flashing lights is a no-no with AF, it just gets confused.

    A shutter speed of over 1/125th is needed to be reasonably sure of no shake.

    Rendition looks to be very nice and I think that a properly centred copy might give the 50 Lux a run for its money. OOF is nice, there's a tiny touch of CA, distortion is low, flare resistance seems good.

    More to come. Here's a gallery that I'll add to, mostly with full sized images developed from RAW in LR 5.3 and with sharpening at 50/0.6/70/20 which is a touch lower than I use for the D800E.


    Tim, thanks for posting these. I am holding off on this lens until I see what your conclusion is.

    I note in the image of the pylon thingie there are concentric magenta rings. Was this flat-fielded? If yes, the flat field process has issues. If no, the camera has issues. The most obvious ring does coincide with the riders so perhaps we are seeing a "spew trail".

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Yea love seeing someone ELSE spend the money before me for ONCE. LOL
    No no! Let's keep it that way, I am always keen to learn how you balance family peace with your GAS.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    I wear a helmet Georg , keeps the baseball bats from making big dents in my head. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamB View Post
    The Photoblogger has a "review". Review: Sony 55mm f1.8 (Full Frame E Mount) - The Phoblographer

    The lens looks to be excellent optically, and build quality seems good. I'll probably pick one up as my sole AF lens for my a7r. My one objection is the size.

    I purchased the vertical grip to balance the camera with some of my DSLR lenses, and the 55/1.8 too looks like it would benefit from a beefier body.

    Photo from The Photoblogger


    Graham

    It's not big. It balances perfectly on the A7 body without the grip. The lens hood is large but it's smaller and lighter than the 28-70 kit lens. Got mine today. Weather is poor but here's one that I like.



    Building stone by bcaslis, on Flickr
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    Re: 55 1.8

    B&H stock was gone in a nano second ... snooze you lose

    Bet Sony wasn't ready for the demand this A7/A7R is creating.

    Bet other camera makers weren't either ...

    - Marc
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    Re: 55 1.8

    +1..... snooze and you sure lose. Mine gets here this afternoon.

    Victor

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Victor you just been elected the official GetDPI guinea pig on the 55. You are to proceed directly into creative mode with it and have some fun. You better post images or I'm coming after it. LOL

    By the time I saw that notice it was long gone at B&H
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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Victor you just been elected the official GetDPI guinea pig on the 55. You are to proceed directly into creative mode with it and have some fun. You better post images or I'm coming after it. LOL

    By the time I saw that notice it was long gone at B&H
    That is a very smooth way to encourage someone to post some pictures instead just words!

    Werner U has been posting shots taken with the 55/1.8 already.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Lol my morning espresso fun talk. Lol
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    Re: 55 1.8

    does anyone else hate the beer can moderne look of the zeiss/sony lenses?

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    does anyone else hate the beer can moderne look of the zeiss/sony lenses?
    I thought I was the odd one out!

    I can not stand the looks of the Otus, and the ones they make for NEX' as well. Modern?!

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Currently in stock at Amazon

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Just saw that myself anyone have a spare grand. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    does anyone else hate the beer can moderne look of the zeiss/sony lenses?
    Hey if I can't drink on a gig I can at least imagine having beer. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    does anyone else hate the beer can moderne look of the zeiss/sony lenses?
    Thats true, but make the stuff modern or retro there will be someone complaining.
    Though the look of the ZE native lenses is not my very favorite, the quality of the lens is exceptional and on the cam the whole looks consistent and clean.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Victor you just been elected the official GetDPI guinea pig on the 55. You are to proceed directly into creative mode with it and have some fun. You better post images or I'm coming after it. LOL

    By the time I saw that notice it was long gone at B&H
    Will do.....

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Just snagged one at Amazon and I was gonna post about it but alas someone beat me to it.
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    Re: 55 1.8

    I've given mine a good going over and have some preliminary conclusions.

    Sharp wide open, improves to the sweet spot of F4 to F5.6, diffraction quite noticeable at F8.

    Very good but not perfect resistance to flare and CA

    Quite low colour shading effects

    Nice bokeh, generally round looking but in at least one shot, pentagonal. Go figure.

    Just over medium contrast.

    Mine is (grrrrr) decentered. The third Sony Zeiss lens in a row where the first copy I had should not have passed QC IMHO.

    Here's a growing gallery with Lens Cast shots (with and without corrections on) and flare and bokeh and CA examples, and some focus shift tests that imply there is indeed a tendency for the field of focus to move backwards but for the subject to remain in good focus as you stop down. There are also near and far aperture series, best from bracketed.

    The camera totally missed focus with this lens in good light a small number of times, not something I was seeing with the 35mm F2.8..
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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    I've given mine a good going over and have some preliminary conclusions.
    Thanks Tim. I downloaded a couple of the photos from your gallery to view at 100%. I could count the bricks on the buildings behind The Empress. Contrast and bokeh look good. I especially like the rendering on the image of the woman in red sitting next to the path/road along the sea.

    I just ordered the lens from Amazon. Should be here on Saturday.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Tim, a decentered lens is something I won't tolerate. That will be one of the first things I test for when I get mine. Its a real shame that regardless of manufacturer decentering slips by QC...... or I really should say they LET it slip by.

    Victor

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Victor, take a look at the brick wall examples if you have time - and maybe the harbour series too. They are all downloadable as 100% size jpeg from RAW. I am curious to see if other people's tolerance for decentering is similar to mine!

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    Re: 55 1.8

    a question i have always had lurking...
    typically if shooting a landscape, even an urban landscape, there are always parts of interest at varying object distances. in addition, using the brick wall as a paradigm implies that focus is the same across the wall even though trig tells us the object distances vary L.C, R. (consider the hasselblad "true focus" solution).

    which leads me to think there is no such thing as a "plane of focus"

    ??

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    Victor, take a look at the brick wall examples if you have time - and maybe the harbour series too. They are all downloadable as 100% size jpeg from RAW. I am curious to see if other people's tolerance for decentering is similar to mine!

    Took a look at a couple from the harbor series @1.8 and 4.0. I see the left edge is a little off. Same for the Candy Floss shot.

    As an aside, I am so sad that my 50 Summilux ASPH is suffering at the edges at large apertures, haven't really tried/tested it stopped down yet.

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    Re: 55 1.8

    Could someone please elaborate a tad what the tell tale signs of a decentered lens are?
    Many thanks.
    With best regards, K-H.
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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    a question i have always had lurking...
    typically if shooting a landscape, even an urban landscape, there are always parts of interest at varying object distances. in addition, using the brick wall as a paradigm implies that focus is the same across the wall even though trig tells us the object distances vary L.C, R. (consider the hasselblad "true focus" solution).

    which leads me to think there is no such thing as a "plane of focus"

    ??
    I've written endlessly about this elsewhere and there's no straight answer… but brick wall shots are useful because they show asymmetry.

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    Subscriber Member tashley's Avatar
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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    Could someone please elaborate a tad what the tell tale signs of a decentered lens are?
    Many thanks.
    Sure: if you get parallel to a planar target and shoot it with focus on centre, and notice that the left and right or top and bottom or some opposing diagonal pair are differently sharp, you probably have a decentering. Most lenses of 50mm and wider I take delivery of have a little of this problem, avoiding it totally is beyond the manufacturing tolerances that are economic. I see it sometimes on Zeiss lenses, rarely on Leica, and quite a lot on less famous brands.

    If you download each of the brick wall shots I linked to and layer them in Photoshop or flip between them in LR, you will see what I mean with this 55mm F1.8 and doing the same with the harbour shots, (where the corners aren't visible in the planar scene so just look at the central section from left to right) you'll see the left side is consistently softer.

    I disagree that the candy floss shot tells us anything: the subject is far from planar and you can't tell that it reaches the edges in the same plane as the plane of focus so for an F1.8 shot, it is likely not to have enough DOF for the bag on the left side to look hyper-sharp near the edge of the frame.
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    Senior Member Joe Colson's Avatar
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    Re: 55 1.8

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    a question i have always had lurking...
    typically if shooting a landscape, even an urban landscape, there are always parts of interest at varying object distances. in addition, using the brick wall as a paradigm implies that focus is the same across the wall even though trig tells us the object distances vary L.C, R. (consider the hasselblad "true focus" solution).

    which leads me to think there is no such thing as a "plane of focus"

    ??
    The simple answer to your question is no, "plane of focus" is a myth just as "depth of field" is a myth. That point at which you focus will be the sharpest point in the frame. The closer the subject is to the camera, the more pronounced the difference in sharpness will be between the center focal point and the edges. If the subject is near infinity, "plane of focus" becomes more truth than fiction. That's my 2 cents.

    Joe
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