Published Mar 16, 2021
Sony has announced its FE 50mm F1.2 GM (G Master) lens. The lens gives photographers an extra 1/2-stop of light in a body the same size and weight as the Planar T* 50mm F1.4 ZA that has been on the market for several years.
The optical construction comprises 14 elements in 10 groups, and includes three ‘extreme aspherical’ (XA) elements that minimize aberrations while allowing for high resolving power across the frame wide open. The ‘Nano AR II’ coating helps to reduce flare and ghosting. Two floating focus groups allow for close focusing distances, and are driven by four ‘extreme dynamic’ linear motors that make the 50mm F1.2 GM the fastest-to-focus lens of its type, based on our initial impressions. The lens has a minimum focus distance of 0.4m (15.8″) and a maximum magnification of 0.17x.
The XA elements have enhanced surface precision (0.01 µm) to suppress onion ring bokeh, and according to Sony, spherical aberration has been carefully controlled at the design and manufacturing stage to ensure ‘smooth, natural bokeh’ both in the foreground and background. An 11-blade aperture ensures circular out-of-focus highlights even as you stop down.
As you’d expect from a G Master lens, the 50mm F1.2 has a solid build and weather-sealing, including a fluorine coating on the front element to repel dust, water and fingerprints. There’s a manual aperture ring that can be ‘clicked’ or ‘de-clicked’, as well as two focus hold buttons whose functions can be customized. The manual focus ring is smooth and well damped, and the linear focus response will be appreciated by video shooters.
The Sony FE 50mm F1.2 GM will be available in mid-to-late May for $1999.
Sony FE 50mm F1.2 GM specifications
|Lens type||Prime lens|
|Max Format size||35mm FF|
|Focal length||50 mm|
|Lens mount||Sony FE|
|Number of diaphragm blades||11|
|Special elements / coatings||3 ‘extreme aspherical’ elements, Nano AR II coating|
|Minimum focus||0.40 m (15.75″)|
|Motor type||Linear Motor|
|Full time manual||Yes|
|Weight||778 g (1.72 lb)|
|Diameter||87 mm (3.43″)|
|Length||108 mm (4.25″)|
|Filter thread||72 mm|
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