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Sony GM Lenses: World-Class Performance, Why Look Elsewhere?

re: Sony FE 50mm f/1.2 GM Examples: Backyard
re: Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM Examples: Backyard and Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM Examples: Tigger

James K writes:

The new Sony GM lenses are extremely nice performers.  The color quality is beautiful.  Sony is at the top of their game.  Lucky me.  My 50 f/1.2 GM will probably arrive on Friday.  I have been shooting some images with my 85mm f/1.4 GM.  A wonderful optic.  The 85 image quality fits in with the new GM series.  Focus is slower but not a problem for me.

DIGLLOYD: all of the recent (past ~3 years) Sony GM lenses are standout performers that would be my first choice in their focal length for autofocus, and in most cases (maybe all) for performance as well.

The Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM, and Sony FE 50mm f/1.2 GM are stunning performers. See my recent example images from both—the sharpness and bokeh and color correction are second to none, resulting in stunning clarity and lifelike rendition—terrific visual impact.

So I really want to acquire the 35/1.4 GM and 50/1.2GM. WOW. When lenses perform so well that I feel an urgent desire to own my own samples, that‘s unusual—and I evaluate a lot of lenses.

In other words, you need not look any further than Sony GM lenses. There are a few exceptions here and there such as the Sigma FE 105mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art, and several of the Voigtlander APO lenses, but they have drawbacks, like size/weight (Sigma) and focus creep (Voigtlander FE APO).

I have yet to test the Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 GM, but I expect great results from it.

Not all the GM lenses are excellent, for example the Sony FE 70-200mm f/2.8 GM has been a disappointment and is badly in need of a revision. It’s just not good enough for the Sony A1 or Sony A7R IV. But it’s an older/earlier design.

Glenn K writes:

I agree that Sony is producing world class primes in the G and GM series. They also have a set of world class zooms... unfortunately, except for the 12-24 and 100-400, the rest are 3rd world class.  The f/4s are way behind Nikon and Canon, and the f/2.8s are inconsistent.  Sony really needs to up their game here. Their most recent efforts like the 12-24 and the 16-55 G for APS-C show that they can do it.

DIGLLOYD: yep, the earlier-design zooms need total redesigns using current Sony tech.

Below, the distracting bright background could be a problem, but the Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM makes short work of it, turning it into pleasingly smooth bokeh with near-nil magenta/green color bokeh and ultra-smooth transitions.

California Buckey flower spike
f1.4 @ 1/320 sec handheld IBIS=on electronic shutter, ISO 100; 2021-05-08 19:32:03
Sony A1 + Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM
RAW: LACA corrected, +20 Whites, +10 Clarity

[low-res image for bot]
Wild oats gone to seed
f1.2 @ 1/5000 sec handheld IBIS=on, ISO 100; 2021-05-07 18:51:23
Sony A1 + Sony FE 50mm f/1.2 GM
RAW: LACA corrected, +100 Shadows, +20 Whites, +15 Clarity, USM {8,50,0}

[low-res image for bot]
Garlic flowehead
f1.2 @ 1/80 sec handheld IBIS=on, ISO 100; 2021-05-07 19:41:41
Sony A1 + Sony FE 50mm f/1.2 GM
RAW: LACA corrected, +20 Whites, +46 Dehaze, +15 Clarity

[low-res image for bot]
Garlic flowehead
f1.2 @ 1/320 sec handheld IBIS=on, ISO 100; 2021-05-07 19:40:38
Sony A1 + Sony FE 50mm f/1.2 GM
RAW: LACA corrected, +20 Whites, +10 Dehaze, +15 Clarity

[low-res image for bot]

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