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Thread: Sony A7r and the WATE

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    Member ThomasZ's Avatar
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    Sony A7r and the WATE

    Hi all,

    first post here. As a landscape photographer (some shots) I am considering the Leica WATE 16-18-21 as my new wide angle lens for the A7r. From what I've read, it seems to work well with the Sony. But regarding the price, I hesitate a bit buying it. If anybody of you who owns this lens can post some full sized images, I could compare them to my trustworthy D800/14-24 combo.

    Also, I'm of course interested in your opinions about this, especially in comparison to the mighty Nikkor.

    Thanks in advance
    Tom

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Tom I don't have the WATE anymore but it is said to work well on the A7r from my understanding and it's certainly a lot smaller and lighter than the 14-24 and moreover a easier adapter to use as well. Nikon G to Sony E adapters use a aperture mechanism that you really don't know what aperture your at in use. I sold off all my Nikon glass because of this.

    BTW welcome to the forum .
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    I use it on my A7r and am pleased with the results. I really only use it at 16mm, which makes me consider the Zeiss 15mm occasionally, but the WATE is better on the edges, smaller, lighter, and it's like getting an 18mm and 21mm thrown in for free!

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    Senior Member rayyen's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    I do landscape mainly with my tech cam and digital back. I use 7R too and WATE is my choice for wide angle. Small, light, corner to corner sharp. I just love it. Will show some of my photos when I'm back home with a desktop computer.
    Leica | Angenieux | Alpa | Hasselblad | Phase One
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Nikon G to Sony E adapters use a aperture mechanism that you really don't know what aperture your at in use. I sold off all my Nikon glass because of this.
    I know what you mean. I've bought the Nikon->Nex novoflex adaptor and was amazed by the possibility to use my Nikkors with the A7r. Until I realized how clumsy that works. Shooting without any real clue about the aperture is not that funny.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Quote Originally Posted by rayyen View Post
    I do landscape mainly with my tech cam and digital back. I use 7R too and WATE is my choice for wide angle. Small, light, corner to corner sharp. I just love it. Will show some of my photos when I'm back home with a desktop computer.
    Raymond, you have amazing images on your website. Looking forward to the WATE pics.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Tom I don't have the WATE anymore but it is said to work well on the A7r from my understanding and it's certainly a lot smaller and lighter than the 14-24 and moreover a easier adapter to use as well. Nikon G to Sony E adapters use a aperture mechanism that you really don't know what aperture your at in use. I sold off all my Nikon glass because of this.

    BTW welcome to the forum .

    Well, I do know what apertures I am using with the help of the in-camera light meter.

    Focus steadily at something with constant ISO. One can then start at the open or closed-down end of the aperture. Then I watch through the viewfinder and count factors of two (1 stop difference) of exposure times changing as I change the aperture. Stop at the desired one. Works every time!

    BTW, I have both lenses. The WATE is better in the corners but not as wide.
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Senior Member rayyen's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    here you go : )

    Leica | Angenieux | Alpa | Hasselblad | Phase One
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    Senior Member rayyen's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Leica | Angenieux | Alpa | Hasselblad | Phase One
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    Senior Member rayyen's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Leica | Angenieux | Alpa | Hasselblad | Phase One
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    Senior Member rayyen's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Leica | Angenieux | Alpa | Hasselblad | Phase One
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    beautiful pictures, Raymond!
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Beautiful, Raymond. Thanks!
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    I could kick myself for selling this one years ago.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    From what I've read and seen the WATE works great on th A7r. But a new one costs 4400€ here in Germany, so I think I will wait for the announcement and tbe first reviews of the Sony FE wide-angle zoom. Hopefully it will have a better optical quality as the 24-70.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Quote Originally Posted by rayyen View Post
    Wonderful images, Raymond...and, you're much younger than I thought you'd be!
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    Senior Member rayyen's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Thanks all 7R-buddies

    I really like this small handy camera (compare to my usual set up: Max + Rodie + DB), it's very comfortable in my hand even when I go hiking on mountain, I can carry it all day without need to put it back inside my backpack with WATE.

    IQ, fantastic, what can I complaint, 36MP, razor sharp corner to corner, can count little leave from foreground to background.

    Honestly I'm really looking forward to the new 9R Hope it's a MF digital with a size like Mamiya 7
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Couple of WATE images on A7r. First at 18mm if memory serves, second at 21mm. Great lens.
    _DSC1594.jpg photo - luvwine photos at pbase.com

    20140111-_DSC09532.jpg photo - luvwine photos at pbase.com
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    Senior Member rayyen's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE



    One taken tonight
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Wow! Rayyen, very imaginative and nicely executed!
    Bill
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    I have a WATE and find it is an incredible lens with the A7r. I loved it so much I bought a MATE and that one was not a good choice

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Quote Originally Posted by rayyen View Post


    One taken tonight
    What the Heck is that Raymond? I am puzzled what the brown flat surface and structure going from top to bottom on the right in the picture might be.

    Sorry for ranting, but there is something seriously worng with humanity if people need to live that way. Looks like a nightmare straight from the Matrix Trilogy.

    Great and very disturbing shot!

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    Senior Member CharlesK's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Wonderful images Raymond!!

    I have been loaned a WATE to try out with the A7r, and I have to say this is the best WA setup have had. It is light, ergonomic, and I was about to buy the Leica T to compliment my M, but I have decided to invest in the WATE, and keep the A7r's. This lens is very complimentary with Sony's sensor. I have tried all the other Leica M WA's, and I was not happy. It seems the WATE, just works!!

    Some shots from this mornings walk at Elephant rock, Currumbin beach.

    A7r and WATE









    Charles Kalnins
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Wow. That looks indeed great. Can we see a 100% corner crop, please? Please, please, please?
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    These are corkers, Charles! Sony should have done something similar instead of a 'bound to disappoint' WA zoom.

    A stack of smart guys are already deploying their favourite high end wide angles with the a7r for landscapes - Sony dropped the ball for this key market demographic for all of 2014, most likely. For impact, WAs need to assault the viewer with micro-contrast tightly handled across the tone range.

    If Zeiss cannot aim up with a light and handy manual focus wide as good as the WATE - even at $2000 or so - I must consider trading a bunch off to get one of these as a 'final solution' to the WA dilemma. A great example of a fabulous older lens of the highest order waiting for the space age of Sony sensors to arrive! thank you again.
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Charles - Raymond
    I guess you've just doubled the price of secondhand WATEs.
    It makes no difference to me, as you couldn't prise mine out of my cold dead hands.

    Raymond - I just love the Waves and Sky shots next to each other excellent.

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Took a look at the data sheets for the WATE; it's terrific with a little midframe wave - but covers right to the edge at a very high level of resolution indeed, good vignette control too for an M lens. Exc centres from f4 with a gentle fall-off, and has the typical Distagon distortion pattern at the wide end, but the kicker is that at 21mm distortion is down to a nice flat curve, max of just 1.5%.

    Other big A7r user advantages: Leica M adapter, so in length only an extra 10mm not 26mm like the typical DSLR adapters; and weight of just 335 grams. Overall, maybe half the weight and size of an adapted Zeiss Distagon. It must feel like a part of the camera...

    No one reads nerdy forums, jono, lol. (I hope)

    PS the folks at 3D Kraft like it too:

    UPDATED: Ultra Wide Angle M-Mount Lenses THAT WORK On Sony A7R (Leica "WATE" Tri Elmar 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH and Voigtlander Ultron 21mm f/1.8 ASPH)

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    I keep coming back to look at these images from Raymond and Charles. So impressive, and they're just JPEG's on a monitor. I'd love to see prints. I bet they're special. It appears that the WATE and A7R may be THE pairing for WA. Now would be a good time to win the lottery.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Love to have one but another great choice a little longer and I'm really thinking of just breaking down and getting it again is the R 21-35 3.5 I think it is. Had that one too and just pisses me off I sold some of these gems in the past.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    I guess I should not sell my WATE.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    2500 l take it. Lol
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Senior Member CharlesK's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Thank you everyone for the kind words

    I must thank you Raymond for posting your images and perspective, as this is the reason I decided to try out the WATE!

    Phillip, I agree that Sony has dropped the ball on decent WA primes, and also for other primes. I am not in the market for zooms, but I know a lot are. Nevertheless, nothing really stands outs, other than the FE 55 and lesser extent the FE 35. Awesome Sony sensor, but they need more lenses!!!

    I never thought I would opt for the WATE, as I already have the 21 SEM with the M240. But, I was close to pulling the pin on the A7r's, but having the WATE, completely changed my mind. It is better than I expected, and some ways better than the 21 SEM in rendering and color, on the M240.

    Like yourself Jono, I don't think I will part with the WATE !!
    Last edited by CharlesK; 8th May 2014 at 00:12.
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    2500 l take it. Lol
    Very generous Guy!
    Ok, next time you are in NYC let me know you can borrow the wate.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Actually I would go more but no where near 4700. Its good but not that good.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    The A7r and WATE is one of my favorite combinations. Of course, the WATE also works well on my M9, NEX-5N, NEX-7, EM-5, and EM-1. For some images I found it necessary to apply a Lens Cast Correction (LCC). When shooting the correction image one has to tape up the spared out corner of the lens hood though to avoid reflected light from the translucent piece of plastic infront.
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Love to have one but another great choice a little longer and I'm really thinking of just breaking down and getting it again is the R 21-35 3.5 I think it is. Had that one too and just pisses me off I sold some of these gems in the past.
    Disappointing I thought Guy. I had one for a bit and it was fine in the middle, but not in the corners (on the m240 this was) they aren't cheap either.

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    Senior Member biglouis's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Ummm.... just a thought but for those of us not willing to pay upwards of 3 grand on a WATE you can still get some pretty good usage out of a CV Heliar 15/4.5 - which is a very small and light lens.

    A7 + CV15/4.5



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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    You guys kill me... just when I think I'm going to sell all my M gear, I read something like this thread and it causes me to pause...

    I have the Leica R 19mm II lens... does anyone have that and the WATE? I'd love to see a comparison of the two on the a7R.

    Maybe I should sell off all the M gear and buy the WATE, then sell the 19 and 28 and... well, hell, I can't figure out what to do. I do know the M9 is going, though. Just need to take some snaps and get an ad placed for it on the B&S forum.

    ---Michael
    a7r, a7rII, FE 16-35, FE 24-70GM, FE 70-200, Loxia 21mm, 35mm, 50mm

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Not sure I would sell the Leica 19 for the WATE. The Leica 19 is a special lens. I had it twice and if it was not for money need of other stuff i would never had sold it twice. But if you are thinking about it place a ad. I need to sell my freaking printer. Im thinking of selling my new Zeiss 25mm F2 and Metabones III adapter that goes with it and get the 24mm F2 Sony Zeiss as I am almost all A lenses right now except for the 55 and Im on my way to go buy the damn 28-70 right now. I still need a zoom and the 24-70 is nice but its a 27mm -65 zoom and its not for high quality shooting but PR crap and it will sit on the A7 or A6000. I just rented the A6000 and with the Sony 4 adapter like the A7 and A7r it is limited to AF points in the middle but the FE lenses are AF heaven as the AF points go right to all the edges and it tracks nice too.
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Not sure I would sell the Leica 19 for the WATE. The Leica 19 is a special lens. I had it twice and if it was not for money need of other stuff i would never had sold it twice. But if you are thinking about it place a ad. I need to sell my freaking printer. Im thinking of selling my new Zeiss 25mm F2 and Metabones III adapter that goes with it and get the 24mm F2 Sony Zeiss as I am almost all A lenses right now except for the 55 and Im on my way to go buy the damn 28-70 right now. I still need a zoom and the 24-70 is nice but its a 27mm -65 zoom and its not for high quality shooting but PR crap and it will sit on the A7 or A6000. I just rented the A6000 and with the Sony 4 adapter like the A7 and A7r it is limited to AF points in the middle but the FE lenses are AF heaven as the AF points go right to all the edges and it tracks nice too.
    I've actually been thinking about selling the 24-70 and just going with the 28-70.The 24-70 is good enough but not worth three times the price IMO. I prefer the wider angle of the 24 (it's pretty decent with Lightroom lens profile) but perhaps the 16-35 will satisfy me. Just depends on how fast the local store can get FE lenses in which generally isn't fast for whatever reason.
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    One thing none of us may be factoring in is the almost-announced FE 16-35 f4 zoom.

    Or the FE 21/2.8 or the FE 25/2 on the roadmap. If they are ever realised they could be useful lenses.

    LouisB

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    A 21/2 or 21/2.8 would cover 90% of my wide angle needs but the 16-35 is on my radar. It would possibly allow me to swap my 24-70 for a 28-70, sell off my Rokinon 14, and my 70-200/2.8 towards a 70-200/4.
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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Maybe one good reason for me to get the 28-70 and if needed get the 16-35. I have the Sony 20mm 2.8 I just bought used in NY and its not bad. My one concern is the A77II as that maybe the A7 replacement. So Im trying to buy with A mount in mind as well. The real problem here is we need those 79 AF points and that tracking tech in our A7's and more important Sony getting off there *** and fixing this A to FE adapter so we can use the AF points like our FE lenses can do. This center cluster is bugging the crap out of me . It bugged me with Nikon too so Im fighting this little battle and the A77II looks to be the answer. When you folks get a chance look at the AF pattern on the A77II it goes all the way out there and so does this rented A6000 i have this weekend but won't work on the damn A lenses. Im getting pissed and thats not good for Sony. LOL

    Im ready to jump down someones throat.
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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Let me bitch some more. On playback the A7 series its a 2 press to get in to zoom the dang A6000 one hit of the button goes right to 100 percent and fast as heck to. Zoom to focus still 2 presses say on C1 button but its lightning fast. I maybe buying one of these and one big reason the 55 is a 82.5mm F1.8 lens that is lightning fast to AF. My same focal length on the A7 is the 85 1.4 A lens and slow to do it and worse the AF point on a vertical will not hit someone's face the A6000 with the 55 1.8 will nail it in a heart beat.

    You can see my frustration with a lack of FE lenses. Im not switching systems again and staying with Sony but I need to be in some engineers ear when they design these things. They need photographers on staff.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    I think the adapters were a stopgap solution until native lenses are released. I think you have a specialized need that admittedly many of us enthusiast have. As for the A77 or other A mount cameras - it may be a great fit for you if it works accordingly for your needs. I think it's only a matter of time before Sony completely drops the SLT in favor of just making a mirrorless A-mount camera as it just makes more sense to me provided the body is still ergonomic.
    Sony Visible Light & IR Photographer
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  47. #47
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    I dont disagree one second with you either and totally agree we are buying time. I know my needs are very specific but I know many many hobbyists and Pros are hoping for some of the same things so I don't feel unique here. I agree its a new system and i jumped maybe a bit fast but I do not regret it for a second. Im only bitching to get the word out as i am calm as as can be on it. Im used to workarounds so its not like I am leaving images on the shop floor. Everything is getting done, i would like it as well as others in a more proficient way.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    BTW I am enjoying the folks here on the Sony forum if I have not said it before it is a great bunch of folks that really work hard at helping each other. Everyone gets along swimmingly. Got to love that.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com
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  49. #49
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    I dont disagree one second with you either and totally agree we are buying time. I know my needs are very specific but I know many many hobbyists and Pros are hoping for some of the same things so I don't feel unique here. I agree its a new system and i jumped maybe a bit fast but I do not regret it for a second. Im only bitching to get the word out as i am calm as as can be on it. Im used to workarounds so its not like I am leaving images on the shop floor. Everything is getting done, i would like it as well as others in a more proficient way.
    Agree on the need/desire for more native lenses. It's the one thing making me apprehensive to sell my M9P that I otherwise love but truthfully can be replaced by a complete FF mirrorless while financing a digital MF system for max IQ when wanted/needed. I agree that the flexible spot AF is pretty sweet but I sold all of my A mount stuff except my 70-200/2.8 when I got my A7 and A7r. The 55/1.8 is a gem. The 35/2.8 is very good for most. A 75-120/2 or 75-120/2.8 Macro with focus limit switch would be a sweet addition as well if IQ is close to the other FE primes.
    Sony Visible Light & IR Photographer
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  50. #50
    Senior Member rayyen's Avatar
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    Re: Sony A7r and the WATE

    Charles, your pictures are awesome, hope I can visit Australia some day.
    I like the last one of yours very much : )

    jonoslack, thanks for your compliments, I love those shots very much too.

    As said I carry 7R, WATE and a small tripod when I go trail running, here are some photos I've taken when I saw some beautiful places.

    Leica | Angenieux | Alpa | Hasselblad | Phase One
    www.raymondchak.com
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