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Sony FE 16-35mm f/4 ZA OSS Vario-Tessar: Aperture Series, Yellow Blue Bike

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The subject matter might seem mundane, but the results are distinctively not so.

I shot a variety of other comparisons and series today, but my work is halted until I determine what is causing a pronounced focus shift: optical, or is it a lens or camera firmware bug or just plain bug?

These two aperture series at 21mm an 25mm duplicate the problem and another at 35mm (not published) also does. It is a serious behavioral problem, and it has to be tracked down before I can proceed further with the 16-35/f4. Possibly it could involve the Sony A7R firmware version (cameras shipped right now are arriving with version 1.01), so the next step is to move to version 1.10, which is not so straightforward.

Update: I ran a controlled close-distance test at 35mm using the A7R with firmware update to version 1.1. I cannot reproduce the issue in that one test. It’s Gobble Day today, but by tomorrow I hope to have done some more shooting with firmware 1.1 to see if the problem has been cured; my working theory is a camera bug in version 1.01 firmware.

Update 2: well, another series with firmware 1.1 at 24mm shows clear focus shift. To be published after the turkey has been gobbled (I eat late).

Update 3: reproduced at 24mm with firmware 1.1 on a scene mimicking the 25mm scene below. To be published. Clearly there is no firmware fix.

Sony A7R + Sony Vario-Tessar T* FE 16-35mm f/4 ZA OSS @ 21mm @ f/4
Sony A7R + Sony Vario-Tessar T* FE 16-35mm f/4 ZA OSS @ 25mm @ f/5.6

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