Does this premium prime delivers high-end performance?

Bonus harian di Keluaran SGP 2020 – 2021.

by
Jeremy Gray

posted Monday, August 16, 2021 at 3:45 PM EDT

Earlier this year, Sony further expanded its impressive G Master series with a new fast prime lens, the FE 35mm f/1.4 GM. It’s Sony’s fourth 35mm lens for E-mount, joining FE 35mm f/2.8 ZA, FE 35mm f/1.8 and FE 35mm f/1.4 ZA lenses. While there’s already a 35mm f/1.4 lens available for E-mount, Sony’s new G Master optic is quite a bit different than its previous Zeiss venture. The new G Master lens is more expensive, for starters, by $400. However, the new GM lens is also quite a bit lighter (524g versus 630g), and Sony’s new prime is more compact, too (96mm versus 112mm in length). The smaller size is an advantage in and of itself, but it’s also representative of a modernized optical design.

Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM on Sony A7R IV

The 35mm f/1.4 GM uses 14 elements across 10 groups, which is more glass than the Zeiss lens, but the glass is more specialized and highly curved, including a pair of XA lens elements. The more aggressive curvature promises better image quality with smaller glass. Being a GM lens, the glass is also precisely manufactured, with impeccable surface quality that results in smooth, soft and clean bokeh. In our hands-on with the Sony 35mm f/1.4 GM, it lived up to its billing as a premium prime lens and delivered fantastic image quality.

Shot on Sony A7R IV at f/1.4, 1/400s, ISO 125. This image has been edited.

Image quality is not perfect, but it’s pretty darn close. Even at f/1.4, the GM is a sharp lens across the frame. There’s some noticeable vignette, although it is very easily corrected, and the built-in lens profile does a lot of work to reduce its magnitude. What isn’t handled by the profile is some longitudinal chromatic aberration (LoCA), visible as green and magenta/purple fringing in front of and behind the focal plane in certain high-contrast situations. Fringing is quite rare, and when it does appear, it’s not particularly noticeable. In a worst-case scenario, however, you can see it.

Shot on Sony A7R IV at f/1.4, 1/400s, ISO 2500

Beyond impressive image quality, the lens has a lot to offer. The build quality is excellent, and the lens feels very good to use. Autofocus performance is not always fast, but it’s far from slow. It’s accurate, too, and the lens can focus as close as 25cm (9.8″), which adds to its already-high versatility. A 35mm prime lens can do a lot very well, and it works well for many types of photography.

Shot on Sony A7R IV at f/7.1, 1/8s, ISO 100. This image has been edited.

For all the details on the Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM and how it performs in the field, head over to our in-depth Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM Hands-on Review.

• Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM Hands-on Review • Gallery •