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Thread: GM Lenses

  1. #1
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    GM Lenses

    I've had my A7R II for a couple of weeks now and while I'm still getting to grips with it, I'm very happy with camera and very impressed with the output. All the new GM lenses look on paper and in the handfull of image samples I've seen look extremely impresssive. However, is it just me or is anyone else nervous about spending so much on these GM lenses given we don't really know what Sony has ultimately planned for its camera division?

    Currently I Metabones all my Canon glass and don't own any native E mount glass which works ok for the majority of work I do. Now if Sony makes a U turn (like A mount) or released a pro grade A9 with a totally different lens mount, a native E mount lens designed for a tiny mirrorless camera would be almost impossible to adapt to any other system.

    It might because I'm a long term Canon shooter and only just jumped on the A7 bandwagon or is it I always used a Sony for holiday snaps that it worries me......not sure?

    Any words or reassurance before ordering the GM 70-200?

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: GM Lenses

    It's really simple. It's far better than the 40k investment in MF than a 10k one you put in Sony and your never going to lose your total investment on the Sonys. There on the pedal with FE mount. Leica R users took a bath but I don't see Sony completely dropping the FE line there making very good revenue on it.
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    Re: GM Lenses

    No matter what anyone purchases(cameras or anything) the risk of what tomorrow may bring is always there( there in no guarantees that the other companies will stay in business either). If one owns and enjoys it is far better than waiting to own on what tomorrow may bring. Tomorrow (for some) may never come, one just never knows.
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    Re: GM Lenses

    If you're feeling uncertain, don't buy it right now.

    Why would they mess with FE mount? It seems to be increasing their market share in a way that A-mount never did.
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    Re: GM Lenses

    I don't want my OP to sound negative or down on Sony as I truly think my A7R II is a breath of fresh air, the tech inside it is wonderfulland IQ stunning but I guess the transition from Canon to Sony was just so simple and the only hardship was buying the overly expensive Metabones adapter. A massive attraction to the Sony for me was that virtually any none E mount lens ever made can probably be adapted in some way to the A7 but buying native lenses feels like I'm being locked into the Sony Alpha system.

    Never had issues with buying Canon mount lenses (which pre A7 was locked to Canon) but with Sony it feels like a risk for some unknown bizarre reason? I know its a pittance compared to my old Phase/Arca system but I'm not really wanting to swap systems every few years (exaggeration).

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    Re: GM Lenses

    I owned a Leica DMR and replaced it with a Sony A900. I also nearly bought an Aptus back just before the XF came out. I fully understand your concern.
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    Senior Member MikeEvangelist's Avatar
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    Re: GM Lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill_Green View Post
    I owned a Leica DMR
    I always wanted one of those, but in hindsight I'm glad I couldn't afford it at the time.

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    Re: GM Lenses

    I would say establish the return policy carefully. Should be 30 days no questions asked. Then when you get your copy check it carefully to be sure the lens is properly centered. I would use a variety of subjects, including some longer infinity shots.

    If you have good copies the E mount lenses are very good. But many have had to deal with decentered lenses, even including the latest 21/2.8. Let's hope the GM are made more consistently than previous FE lenses.

    But you can't take it for granted if strong performance is important to you.

    "Trust but verify"

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    Re: GM Lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by uhoh7 View Post
    But you can't take it for granted if strong performance is important to you.

    "Trust but verify"
    Its not a question of trust and has never been a consideration for me as I'm sure Sony will not allow the GM lenses to be anything but tip top performance considering the market these are aimed squarely at. Additianally, I don't think Sony are alone with lens issues as some Phamiya lenses I used with my Phase gear had massive sample variation.

    I just feel concerned being locked into the Sony system with no real exit plan if all changes like I currently have with my Canon lenses.

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    Re: GM Lenses

    There is always a bias between euphoria and frustration, when you buy something great but expensive. If something stop performing as it should...

    I started the FE-mount-buy-in with an a7 in december 2013. I never regretted my decision. Since then, I shot many more pictures in the same time then ever before. It's very difficult to me, to let my a7rii at home, even if I just go to the grocery.
    My Sony FE setup: A7, A7RII, 28-70/kit lens, 16-35/4, 21/2.8 loxia, 28/2, 55/1.8, 90/2.8. I did no replacements, because there was no need to. The a7, the kitlens and the 28 are good, the rest of the equipment is just exceptional. The 85/1.4 is on order.

    The FE system is a big success. They started the GM series now and Zeiss is on there boat. I would hesitate to buy into Canon at the moment, but not on Sony FE.
    Last edited by seb; 26th February 2016 at 01:42.
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    Re: GM Lenses

    I get your concern, and wouldn't just dismiss it out-of-hand.

    System swaps are always fraught with concerns. Selecting newer players, or less populous brands, run the real risk of being hard to exit later. I've experienced this with Leica R, Contax N, and Sony A mount systems. MFD systems are notorious for providing a scalding financial bath ... but in that case, I avoided "rack and ruin" because of the way I covered costs while using the gear for commercial work ... something I could not do today.

    Canon and Nikon are much easier to exit because there are so many cumulative users that make up the used market. We can't gauge things by this forum's interest in FE mount tools in terms of potential resale should Sony bail on the system, or invent a new camera out of the blue, or what-ever reason we might want to exit the A system, or are forced to leave it.

    Another problem with more exotic and expensive gear is that the potential buyer is not only rarer, they often have the means to buy new rather than a slightly discounted used version. The exception to that has been Leica M, but that is due to the breathtaking jumps in price which makes a used M lens more attractive.

    For me, I can't yet justify the price of these lenses when weighted against the use I'd get, or the image qualities reward they might provide. I have an adapted ZA 24-70/2.8 that fits my occasional mid-zoom needs, I don't use long zooms like the 70-200/2.8GM, and if I need a longer lens I'd prefer a fixed 135/2. That leaves the 85/1.4GM I would have a use for ... a focal length that a number of makers do well ...
    and I do wish Sony-Zeiss had offered a 85/2 companion lens to the 55/1.8 in the same sort of ergonomic configuration and consistent image characteristics as the 55 rather than the Batis. This points out the lack of consistency of the lens offerings for the A cameras. I suppose these GMs are an attempt to correct this issue ... but unlike the FE 55/1.8, they are huge on the A camera, and expensive.

    All that said, it all comes down to money doesn't it? If you buy the expensive GM lenses, are okay with the size, and use them well and often, what's the problem? The ONLY value in any of this stuff is in the using... not the collecting and investing.

    - Marc
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    Re: GM Lenses

    My A7R II is constantly attached to a tripod so the size of the camera or lenses attached is of little importance and if the A7 had been the size of my 1DS3 or Olympus Pen I'd still buy any lens regardless of size or weight as long as it was as good as I hope all the GM glass will be. I regard my A7 as a great sensor onto which I can place some great glass.

    I'm thinking of getting an Actus to use some MF glass with the A7R II and the new Canon auto mount means all sorts of EF glass can be used. If one day I want to get a MFD back again (possible looking at used prices) some of the EF mount glass can be used with a MFD back on the Actus which is great and adds to the flexibility of the system. However, buying native E mount glass means they can only ever be used on a Sony mirrorless camera because of the very short flange distance and as good as the GM's might be, they become a one trick pony.
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    Re: GM Lenses

    Well said, but if your are thinking about the resell value, why even buying it? Do the math with the amortisation.

    I'm a technical geek and like to use new innovations. But I perfer quality and usability too. Why should I buy a new cellphone, when the one, I bought two years ago, still fullfill my needs? The same is with a camera system. Don't think about the resell value, think about your personal amortisation time. Let's say I'm doing stuff around photography for 4 hours a day for 3 years now and I was investing in anything about 10'000$ (cameras, lenses, computer, display, flashes, SD-cards, tripod,...). So my hobby will cost me a little more than 2$/hour. Are I'm willing to pay that?
    I think a gym subscription or skiing is much more expensive.
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    Re: GM Lenses

    The A7R II will still be a potent image making tool many years from now.
    Lots of E mount cameras will be available for decades to come.
    The E/FE mount is proving hugely successful for Sony.

    Personally, I would not worry too much, because the photos you want to take are a present issue and the system is getting better and better. If you want to reduce risk, buy second hand lenses and then you will lose very little should you resell them later.

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    Re: GM Lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by gazwas View Post
    I've had my A7R II for a couple of weeks now and while I'm still getting to grips with it, I'm very happy with camera and very impressed with the output. All the new GM lenses look on paper and in the handfull of image samples I've seen look extremely impresssive. However, is it just me or is anyone else nervous about spending so much on these GM lenses given we don't really know what Sony has ultimately planned for its camera division?

    Currently I Metabones all my Canon glass and don't own any native E mount glass which works ok for the majority of work I do. Now if Sony makes a U turn (like A mount) or released a pro grade A9 with a totally different lens mount, a native E mount lens designed for a tiny mirrorless camera would be almost impossible to adapt to any other system.

    It might because I'm a long term Canon shooter and only just jumped on the A7 bandwagon or is it I always used a Sony for holiday snaps that it worries me......not sure?

    Any words or reassurance before ordering the GM 70-200?
    If you are a Canon user and hope to use the A7r with something like the Actus or the HCAM T Master, then you should look for posts by Eric Kaffehr in this Sony forum : he has started some interesting threads about using the A7r with Canon lenses.

    This could be a start, but he has started several other threads and also posted short reviews and samples of what he is getting :

    http://www.getdpi.com/forum/sony/576...ony-a7rii.html

    If I remember correctly, he appreciates the Canon 16-35mm F4 for its large image circle and also got the 24mm TSE (but that lens didn't seem to produce the results he was expecting : may be he got a bad copy)
    Last edited by Annna T; 26th February 2016 at 10:19.
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    Re: GM Lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by seb View Post
    Well said, but if your are thinking about the resell value, why even buying it? Do the math with the amortisation.
    Its not about the initial cost or resale value because as a full time working photographer, my equipment is quickly paid for and I'm all too familiar photography equipment is no investment having shot MFD/tech camera for 10 years and recently sold it all. I'm not a big fan of buying/swapping kit all the time - you wouldn't realise the anguish I had not buying the very comfortable and familiar 5Ds instead if the A7R II. I'd shot Mamiya RZ/645 all my professional career so choosing Phase was a no brainer with my first digital back (lightphase) and the others never really got a look in.

    Maybe because E mount is so new that I'm so twitchy and stuck in my stubborn ways and I just need to get over it.
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    Re: GM Lenses

    How do you find transitioning from Phase Arca (I assume Rm3di) system to Sony?

    I'm thinking of the opposite. I have a MFDB SLR system and also a compact Sony E system, however I keep wondering about getting into technical camera and lenses for the ultimate wide angle performance.

    For wide angle images, I mostly shoot very slowly and plan carefully, I don't need all the modern convenience (light weight, AF, high ISO) but I long for the utmost IQ. I feel moving from Phase Arca to Sony must have been somewhat disappointing in this regard? Or do you feel the wide lenses of Sony is holding their own against the Rodenstock?

    Love to hear your perspective on this.

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