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Thread: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

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    Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Can anyone tell me if the Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens is good enough to replace prime lenses, in terms of image quality(sharpness, micro contrast and chromatic aberration) or are prines the way to go on a Sony A7R
    I recently began shooting landscape again and habve been using adapters with Zeiss ZM 18mm, Nikon and canon manual lenses for wides.
    Last edited by felix5616; 1st July 2016 at 14:09.

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Yes it's good enough. For more information see forum.

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Just got mine two weeks ago. Not tested fully against my Batis 25 etc, but seems to hold its own. It's huge but if it replaces my primes (the 25 Batis, the 35 2.8 and the 55 1.8) it will be well worth it. I plan to do some formal testing this weekend.

    However, Guy has already spoken his mind about it in his initial review.

    This is a difficult lens to get hold of though. I had to wait two months for it.
    Too much to list, let's just say I have a bad case of GAS.........
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Replacing two or max three luminous good primes with a huge 24-70/2.8 which looks decent only on the short-normal side of the range does not look very appealing to me.
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    DXO wrote a review and compared it to the Canon and Nikon equivalent : http://www.dxomark.com/Reviews/Sony-...m-in-the-range

    Here is the conclusion :

    Conclusion
    Given the emphasis on the high-grade components and construction to match the maker’s high-resolution sensors, we had high hopes for the Sony FE 24-70mm F2.8 GM, and we weren’t disappointed. It is the best-performing zoom in the maker’s range and can easily hold its own against the new AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm F2.8E ED VR. However, for edge-to-edge to sharpness, the Sony isn’t quite in the same league as the Canon EF 24-70mm F2.8L USM II, but we still have to add the Sony A7RII to propose a fair comparison with the 50 Mpix Canon EOS 5DSR. Nevertheless, the Sony does have certain strengths — better transmission and lower lateral chromatic aberration than many high-grade primes — and while certainly pricey, it’s still a competitive and tempting addition to the range.


    My take on this : if you read between the lines, the review becomes less positive.

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    thanks for the replies, I really appreciate the information here on getdpi

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    I'll keep the 4 native autofocus FE Prime lenses that I have.
    Batis 25/2, 35/2.8, 55/1.8, and 90/2.8 MACRO G OSS.
    Got lucky with all four. No reason for a swap.
    With best regards, K-H.
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    What I am hoping with this lens is that it will replace my primes for things other than pure landscape photography where absolute edge-to-edge quality is paramount. For example, travel, family events and casual walkabout use. Hard to keep changing lenses all the time on such occasions.

    The versatility of the zoom is invaluable sometimes. I did two helicopter shoots in Botswana last month and took the Canon 24-70 (the one that DXO reports being better than the new GM version from Sony) with the metabones adapter on it. It was just not good enough as the AF was not what I wanted and many shots were ruined because of that. You cannot change lenses or do anything while flying in a chopper without doors. I really wish I had this one with me at the time. My other 24-70 is the older Sony/Zeiss f4 version and as most people know it is definitely not in the same league. In fact my copy is a bit soft.

    So for me this is a very welcome lens, despite its size limitations. I plan to do a chopper shoot of NYC next month and it will surely come in very handy again.

    However, I am not going to get rid of my primes any time soon.
    Too much to list, let's just say I have a bad case of GAS.........
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Good luck with your projects.
    Which focal lengths are most useful for your aerial photography? TIA
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    Good luck with your projects.
    Which focal lengths are most useful for your aerial photography? TIA


    Thanks K-H.

    Actually, I had never done any serious aerial photography before. So the first trip in Botswana was a new experience and so thrilling that I signed up for another one in the next camp we went to.

    The helicopter is a small 4-seater unit, the one with a big perspex type of bubble-front. The doors are all removed so you are hanging from a single seat belt and that is something that either scares the life out of you or gives you the thrill of a lifetime.

    You are not allowed any loose items, so no lenscaps/hoods/baseball hats etc. You cannot change batteries or cards or lenses during the flight which is usually an hour or less. The wind is so high and the chopper vibrates so much that the camera and lens shake quite a bit.

    You use two camera bodies with two lenses. Initially I took the 1DX with a 100-400 but that proved a bit too bulky so on the next trip I took a Canon 7D2 and a 70-200. The second camera was the A7RII with the 24-70 (Canon with metabones adapter). You switch cameras as the chopper goes up or down and you want closeups or a wider view.

    Almost all of the imaging can be done with something from 24-200mm range but a few closeups would need slightly longer reach. It all depends upon what you are shooting and how you want to compose the images. The pilot takes the chopper up higher if the animals seem to be disturbed by its presence. Elephants in general are quite sensitive. You also cannot go down if there are any game drive vehicles in the area. I would say the average altitude was around 300 ft although we did go as high as 600 ft at times and dropped down to just over 100 ft in places where we could.

    If you can take just a single lens it would be the 70-200.

    Here are a couple of shots from the Botswana trip. Red Lechwe in swampy water and a small herd of elephants.

    The first is taken at 200mm with the 100-400 lens, the second is at 70mm with the 7D2 and 70-200 lens, with an effective FL of around 110mm.


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    Too much to list, let's just say I have a bad case of GAS.........
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Many thanks for the explanations and the terrific images indeed!
    Based on your descriptions I think an A7r2 with FE 90/2.8 MACRO G OSS, shot with AF-C and one of the "Flexible Spot"s might be interesting as well.
    Of course, Zoom lenses give you more flexibility.
    I am looking forward to the delayed Sony FE 70-200/2.8.
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    Many thanks for the explanations and the terrific images indeed!
    Based on your descriptions I think an A7r2 with FE 90/2.8 MACRO G OSS, shot with AF-C and one of the "Flexible Spot"s might be interesting as well.
    Of course, Zoom lenses give you more flexibility.
    I am looking forward to the delayed Sony FE 70-200/2.8.
    Since the chopper is several hundred feet away from the subject(s), f5.6 gives enough DOF, it's the shutter speed that needs to be at least 1/1000 to compensate for the wind and vibration. A zoom is definitely way more useful. For my second trip I took the Batis 85 on the A7r2 but the shots were limited because of this. However, the superior resolution of the Sony allows for more creative cropping as composition is not always easy with aerial photography.

    I agree, the native 70-200 will be a great lens to try.
    Too much to list, let's just say I have a bad case of GAS.........

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Quote Originally Posted by Pradeep View Post
    Since the chopper is several hundred feet away from the subject(s), f5.6 gives enough DOF, it's the shutter speed that needs to be at least 1/1000 to compensate for the wind and vibration. A zoom is definitely way more useful. For my second trip I took the Batis 85 on the A7r2 but the shots were limited because of this. However, the superior resolution of the Sony allows for more creative cropping as composition is not always easy with aerial photography.

    I agree, the native 70-200 will be a great lens to try.
    Another option to consider for aerial photography of this type is the Sony A Mount 70-400 zoom with an adapter. I used this lens on an A7RII last Summer in Botswana and Zambia and was very pleased with it. I used it exclusively on a helicopter trip over the Okavanga Delta. I actually found that, even at 400mm, I did not have enough reach to isolate the wildlife as much as I wanted. (The pilot was very insistent about staying fairly high above the ground so as to not disturb the wildlife...a big issue.)
    Attached Images Attached Images    
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Quote Originally Posted by hcubell View Post
    Another option to consider for aerial photography of this type is the Sony A Mount 70-400 zoom with an adapter. I used this lens on an A7RII last Summer in Botswana and Zambia and was very pleased with it. I used it exclusively on a helicopter trip over the Okavanga Delta. I actually found that, even at 400mm, I did not have enough reach to isolate the wildlife as much as I wanted. (The pilot was very insistent about staying fairly high above the ground so as to not disturb the wildlife...a big issue.)
    Lovely pictures, Howard. I really like the giraffes - sadly I couldn't anything good with these guys.

    I looked at my aerial images from Botswana just now. Over two one-hour trips I took almost 2000 shots, of which only 87 were at 400mm, and only about another 120 over 200mm. Thus, only 10% of my shots were over 200mm, and this even with the 7D2 adding on a crop factor advantage. Perhaps it was the pilot. The second guy we had was more 'adventurous' although still following strict guidelines about avoiding stressing the animals.

    The one big problem I found was getting the long 100-400 lens with the 1DX to remain steady even at shutter speeds of over 1/800. It was much easier with the 70-200 f4 lens.

    The other thing I suppose is what kind of shot one is trying for. Overall with my wildlife imaging I am now more into the 'animal in the habitat' than 'animal in the frame' kind of photos. Thus, especially with aerial photos, I wanted a slightly wider view.

    Here are a few more:

    This one is the only shot I have of a Sitatunga (aerial or otherwise). He was running hard in one of the channels and even at 225mm he is not particularly sharp. Had I zoomed in any closer it would not show the surroundings much, plus I am sure it would have produced a shakier image. Taken with the 100-400 lens on the 1DX. The image is uncropped, at 100% of original size.


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    This is at 330mm and really wouldn't have wanted it any closer. I did crop out about 15% from the corners to remove lechwes that were cut off .


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    Finally, this one is one of the very few at 400mm. Here too, the context is barely obvious, on one of the wider shots of these hippos, the channel coming into the hippo pool and the animals creating a white, frothy 'wake' on the water is much more obvious and to my eye more interesting. However, I also like the hippos viewed from this angle and maybe I could crop into just two of them. But if you notice, the images are again not really tack sharp even at 1/1250. Again, completely uncropped image, at full size.

    All said and done, I really enjoyed this, looking forward to a similar trip over NYC next month.


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    Too much to list, let's just say I have a bad case of GAS.........
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Quote Originally Posted by Pradeep View Post
    Lovely pictures, Howard. I really like the giraffes - sadly I couldn't anything good with these guys.

    I looked at my aerial images from Botswana just now. Over two one-hour trips I took almost 2000 shots, of which only 87 were at 400mm, and only about another 120 over 200mm. Thus, only 10% of my shots were over 200mm, and this even with the 7D2 adding on a crop factor advantage. Perhaps it was the pilot. The second guy we had was more 'adventurous' although still following strict guidelines about avoiding stressing the animals.

    The one big problem I found was getting the long 100-400 lens with the 1DX to remain steady even at shutter speeds of over 1/800. It was much easier with the 70-200 f4 lens.

    The other thing I suppose is what kind of shot one is trying for. Overall with my wildlife imaging I am now more into the 'animal in the habitat' than 'animal in the frame' kind of photos. Thus, especially with aerial photos, I wanted a slightly wider view.

    Here are a few more:

    This one is the only shot I have of a Sitatunga (aerial or otherwise). He was running hard in one of the channels and even at 225mm he is not particularly sharp. Had I zoomed in any closer it would not show the surroundings much, plus I am sure it would have produced a shakier image. Taken with the 100-400 lens on the 1DX. The image is uncropped, at 100% of original size.


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    This is at 330mm and really wouldn't have wanted it any closer. I did crop out about 15% from the corners to remove lechwes that were cut off .


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    Finally, this one is one of the very few at 400mm. Here too, the context is barely obvious, on one of the wider shots of these hippos, the channel coming into the hippo pool and the animals creating a white, frothy 'wake' on the water is much more obvious and to my eye more interesting. However, I also like the hippos viewed from this angle and maybe I could crop into just two of them. But if you notice, the images are again not really tack sharp even at 1/1250. Again, completely uncropped image, at full size.

    All said and done, I really enjoyed this, looking forward to a similar trip over NYC next month.


    Click image for larger version. 

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    Very nice images. I think your pilot was flying much lower! I wasn't trying to take close ups of the animals. I also wanted to place them in the landscape. However, it's a fine line between putting the animals in the landscape and yet not making the animals so small that they become lost in the frame.
    As beautiful as the Okavanga Delta is at ground level, it is simply breathtaking from a helicopter.
    hcubell
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Quote Originally Posted by hcubell View Post
    Very nice images. I think your pilot was flying much lower! I wasn't trying to take close ups of the animals. I also wanted to place them in the landscape. However, it's a fine line between putting the animals in the landscape and yet not making the animals so small that they become lost in the frame.
    I agree.

    If I remember correctly, the first flight was a bit higher overall and yet these images are all from that one. The Pilot definitely did not come down at all and none of the animals we saw were in any way stressed (as far as we could tell). We saw hardly any elephants that morning though. I think he said the lowest he came down to was 300 ft.

    The second flight was up and down all the time, with occ. as low as 150 ft. However, there were a lot of elephants and we had to stay either far away or high enough as they tended to get upset rather easily.


    As beautiful as the Okavanga Delta is at ground level, it is simply breathtaking from a helicopter.
    Agree completely. Can't wait to get back someday.
    Too much to list, let's just say I have a bad case of GAS.........
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    OK, back on topic.

    I did some very unscientific testing today. Compared the new Sony 24-70 2.8 GM lens with my Canon 24-70 2.8 MkII and the Batis 25 1.8, the Sony/Zeiss 55 1.8 and the Batis 85 1.8.

    For those who are still on the fence I would say if you can find it, and don't mind the price and the heft, this is an absolutely bloody marvelous lens. Guy was right, it is truly a gem, DXO be damned.

    I shot the following scene in my backyard at f2.8, f4, f5.6 and f8. Focal lengths were 24, 25, 50 and 70mm.

    At all focal lengths it beats the Canon hands down.

    At 24mm, wide open it performs better than the Batis 25 (which I've been in love with since I bought it). However, the Batis catches up by f5.6 at which point it is a tad (very minimally) sharper.

    At 50mm wide open it blows the Sony/Zeiss 55 1.8 out of the water (don't like that phrase but it is very apt here). The Zeiss only manages to come up on par at f5.6

    At 70mm vs Batis 85mm I must confess the Batis has a slight edge but only just and by f5.6 the GM catches up.

    To my eyes, the contrast, the color rendition is also superb. I did not test for bokeh perhaps another day.

    Here is the scene I shot, with a USAF target as the center point. As I said, it is not scientific.



    Will post 100% crops in a bit.
    Too much to list, let's just say I have a bad case of GAS.........
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Quote Originally Posted by felix5616 View Post
    Can anyone tell me if the Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens is good enough to replace prime lenses, in terms of image quality(sharpness, micro contrast and chromatic aberration) or are prines the way to go on a Sony A7R
    I recently began shooting landscape again and habve been using adapters with Zeiss ZM 18mm, Nikon and canon manual lenses for wides.
    One person's good enough is another's unsatisfactory. Rent or try one in store if possible.

    FWIW I've only remembered reading glowing reviews by the people that own it. That says more about the lens IMO than the contrary opinions of those that don't own it and have no desire to. Again though what's good enough for you may not fit into the criteria of others.
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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    I am only posting a few images, don't wish to flood this thread. Will add more if anybody needs to see more of a particular lens.


    This one is the center crop at 24mm

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    Corners at 24mm

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    Center crop at 70mm

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    Too much to list, let's just say I have a bad case of GAS.........

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    What a wonderful thread, Sony hit some homeruns with the G Master series...
    the HepKitty

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Without a doubt if I could only have one lens for my A7rII it would be the 24-70GM

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    Re: Sony FE 24-70 f/2.8 G master lens

    Quote Originally Posted by Viramati View Post
    Without a doubt if I could only have one lens for my A7rII it would be the 24-70GM
    Without a doubt. At this point I have it paired with a Canon EF100L macro and EF 70-200 f2.8L mark II. I am thinking of adding the Batis 18.

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