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  • Sony Alpha 100-900 • Re: Sony A-99 11 March 28, 2017
    Comes down to reality for me camera sales are now at late 90's levels ie pre massive boom period for digital the party is over in a big way. Hence the reason for lower profits but Nikon's latest figures show increased profits from a near 10% decline in sales. Canon are not losing money ie […]
    bfitzgerald
  • Sony Alpha 100-900 • Re: Sony A-99 11 March 28, 2017
    Konica Minolta handed Sony a DSLR system that looked like it had a great future and with sensible improvements could be developed into a really competitive system that could have challenged Canikon, but Sony in their ineptitude and sheer ignorance of that market under developed and cut corners.The first 2 models the A100 and A200 […]
    classiccameras
  • Sony Alpha 100-900 • Re: Sony A-99 11 March 28, 2017
    Sony's camera division is pure peanuts compared to their other income sources it's almost entirely irrelevant to the company as a whole..thus a niche line in itself. If you are a big camera company you're going to take a loss because the market has collapsed significantly. I buy products be it a phone or kitchen […]
    bfitzgerald
  • Sony Alpha 100-900 • Re: Sony A-99 11 March 28, 2017
    The reality of the camera market is this; companies that make them lose money.That is... except for Sony.The fact that they only offer 3... maybe 4 DSLR style cameras is not by chance. It's because WE are dinosaurs and the asteroid is streaking towards the Caribbean. No company can survive based solely on the contributions […]
    CHOLLY
  • Sony Alpha 100-900 • Re: Sony A-99 11 March 27, 2017
    The camera market we're on about isn't aimed at phone cameras it's enthusiast based be it as a hobby or semi/full paid work all get lumped into the category where they will buy products of this type and the associated extras that come with them aka lenses flashes etc. Average Joe is probably happy with […]
    bfitzgerald

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Sony Releases Full-Frame FE 50mm F1.4 ZA Prime Lens

A quintessential wide-aperture 50mm “normal” lens, the new ZEISS® Planar F1.4 offers high resolution, high-contrast and overall exceptional performance

Sony today introduced a new full-frame lens for their E-mount camera system, the Planar T* FE 50mm F1.4 ZA (model SEL50F14Z). (Press release 2pm UK time)

“This 50mm prime lens features a large F1.4 maximum aperture that offers impressive contrast and outstanding resolution that are hallmarks of the ZEISS® brand. It produces these consistently strong qualities throughout the entirety of the frame – from centre to corner – and at all aperture settings, even while shooting wide open at F1.4. The cutting edge optical structure includes high-precision AA (Advanced Aspherical) and ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass elements that reduce spherical and chromatic aberration, as well as a ZEISS® T* Coating that minimises flare and ghosting, creating the classic ZEISS® clarity. Additionally, its Planar design ensures minimal distortion.

The large f/1.4 maximum aperture of the FE 50mm F1.4ZA lens provides a level of brightness and speed that are advantageous for dimly lit indoor shots, night scenes, and portraits, while its 11-blade circular aperture allows for stunning ‘bokeh’, or background defocus, in images. The lens also features an aperture ring with de-click option, an AF/MF switch, and a dust and moisture resistant design[i], further increasing its functionality.”

(PR blurb slightly edited but leaving in all the garbage, Registered Trade Mark symbols and stuff including the gratuitous capitalisation of Zeiss)

Editor’s comments: AA elements have no orange-peel microstructure, and thus reduce the granular appearance of bokeh circles created by point sources out of focus – they resemble traditionally ground and polished elements, even though they are moulded aspherical. Those who say ‘I love this lens in the A-mount version’ or Canon or Nikon or Contax are misguided, as although this is a Planar, it’s not the same 50mm f/1.4 Planar in any way as a traditional design.

The new lens is also equipped with a ring drive SSM (Super Sonic wave Motor) system, which allows it to efficiently lock focus with speed, precision and in near silence, making it particularly useful for shooting movies.

Pricing and Availability

The new FE 50mm F1.4 ZA lens will ship this July and will be available across Europe for approximately €1,800 (this price given by Sony). US price from B&H for pre-order is $1498 which is considerably less, possibly because Europe has VAT tax generally between 20% and 25%.

Although the design is dust and moisture resistant, absolute protection from dust and moisture is not guaranteed.

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