Sony has had a few major announcements recently, including the photo monster A7R IV, but it’s the release of the new Sony FE 35mm f1.8 lens that caught our attention.
This 35mm prime lens is a full-frame, lightweight, low-light lens is a great compact addition to a small full frame body, like the A7III, to take around on everyday walk abouts and during travel trips. It supposedly has great corner-to-corner quality and sharpness, and the autofocus tracking is suitable for video as well.
It also has a focus hold button, which allows you to manually take control of the focus without switching out of autofocus mode. The button is customizable and can also be set to activate Eye AF, AF On/Off, Aperture Preview, Shot Preview, Bright Monitoring, and other functions.
Sony also emphasizes a dust and moisture resistant design that is meant for heavy use in crappy conditions.
The one missing ingredient is lens image stabilization, but we suppose if Sony is going to invest in quality IBIS, they can afford to release IS-free lenses. In the end, if the image is stabilized, maybe it doesn’t matter if it’s the sensor or the lens that performs the stabilization.
Sony 35mm f1.8 Specs
Here’s the lens specs, if you’re into that sort of thing.
|Lens Mount||Sony E|
|Angle of View||63°|
|Minimum Focus Distance||8.7″ / 22.1 cm|
|Optical Design||11 Elements in 9 Groups|
|Diaphragm Blades||9, Rounded|
|Filter Size||55 mm (Front)|
|Dimensions (ø x L)||2.58 x 2.87″ / 65.6 x 73.0 mm|
|Weight||9.9 oz / 281 g|
Our take on the Sony Full Frame 35mm f1.8 Lens
We’re primarily Canon shooters and one of our favorite lenses of all time is the Canon 35mm f/2 IS. On a full frame camera like the Canon EOS R, the field of view is perfect, in our opinion. You’re zoomed in enough to get a nice portrait, with beautiful depth of field, but it’s also wide enough to use as a solo lens on day trips.
The Canon 35mm is also super lightweight and affordable, and the image stabilization is hard to beat in a lens this size. We even shot a little doc using only the 35mm and 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens – check out our article on Canon Prime Lenses. Of course, that was shot on a Canon C300 mkII, which means we’re getting a 1.6x crop, but it’s still wide enough for hand held use, shooting on a gimbal, and so on.
The Sony FE 35mm f/1.8 could be the same type of lens for Sony shooters, apart from the missing image stabilization. It has a similar minimal focus distance of around 9 inches, it weighs about 10-11 ounces, and they’re about the same size. The Sony lens has a nice, big focus wheel, which is a plus.
And of course, it’s pretty affordable. Yes, you can get Sony’s crop-sensor 35mm lens for cheaper, but now that full frame is enjoying a come back, it’s a wiser investment to buy full frame lenses that can also fit on crop sensor cameras down the road.