Sony brings an FE 35mm f1.8 into the fold

To date, you've only been able to get a pricey Zeiss or Sigma as your staple 35mm for full-frame Sony cameras, though Sony's isn't terribly cheap either.

Lori Grunin Senior Editor / Advice
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
Expertise Photography, PCs and laptops, gaming and gaming accessories
Lori Grunin
Enlarge Image

The FE 35mm f1.8.


Sony's finally delivering a fast 35mm lens unto the full-frame faithful. It's a compact, midpriced f1.8 option optimized for both still and video shooting and designed to be a high-end choice for APS-C cameras as well as full-frame models. To date, Sony's only in-house fast 35mm lenses have been for APS-C cameras. 

The $750 lens enters preorders today and is expected to ship by the end of August. We don't know price or availability for other regions, but that directly converts to £600 or AU$1,075.

That's not inexpensive -- it costs about the same as Zeiss' 35mm f2.8 or Sigma's 35mm f1.4, now that the price of the latter has dropped. But it does have metal construction, is dust-and-moisture resistant and focuses internally. The latter helps minimize noise and slight framing shifts when it focuses (focus breathing), key when shooting video. Physical controls include a reprogrammable focus-hold button and AF/MF switch.

Its manual focus uses Linear Response MF, which feels much better and is more precise than the focus-by-wire found in many lower-end Sony lenses. Plus, it's less than 3 inches long (73mm) and weighs just under 10 ounces (280 grams).

It lacks image stabilization, which is really only a drawback on the oldest A7 models (or A6400 APS-C cameras and below), since the rest have sensor-shift stabilization.

Infinite worlds: TeamLab Planets and Borderless will blow your mind

See all photos