7Artisans launches its first autofocus lens – a nifty fifty f/1.8 for Sony

Mar 18, 2024

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

7Artisans launches its first autofocus lens – a nifty fifty f/1.8 for Sony

Mar 18, 2024

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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7Artisans 50mm f/1.8 STM for Sony E Mount

7Artisans has graduated to autofocus. The low-budget lens company, traditionally known for its ultra-cheap manual focus lenses, is entering the 21st century. It’s a 50mm f/1.8 lens – what else? – for Sony E mount.

The 7Atisans 50mm f/1.8 STM for Sony E mount (buy here) is a full-frame lens. And while it’s certainly interesting that 7Artisans has finally released an autofocus lens, it currently costs more than Sony’s own 50mm f/1.8 (buy here).

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7Artisans 50mm f/1.8 AF – Cheap, but not that cheap

7Artisans has a reputation for being extremely inexpensive. Sure, they may not be the clinically pristine chunks of glass we all want, but they’re more than worth what they cost.

While the company’s new 50mm f/1.8 AF isn’t expensive either, it’s not exactly cheap. In fact, right now, it costs more than the Sony F 50mm f/1.8 – it’s currently on sale for $198. When that $50 discount goes away, though, the Sony will once again become more expensive.

7Artisans 50mm f/1.8 STM for Sony E Mount

50mm f/1.8 lenses aren’t as cheap as they used to be. Even from companies known for making inexpensive lenses. A price of $200-250 still isn’t really expensive for a lens, but DSLRs have spoiled me. The F and EF mount 50mm f/1.8 lenses from Nikon and Canon were around half the price of this one.

Given that it costs pretty much the same as Sony’s, I look forward to seeing some side-by-side comparisons. Are they both really at the same level?

What’s next for the 7Artisans AF lineup?

So, what’s 7Artisans going to do next? Will they add more focal lengths next? Or will they expand this lens to cover other lens mounts before adding more? The company could go either way and they haven’t really dropped any hints as to what might come.

There were some rumours towards the end of last year that we’d see the 50mm f/1.8 lens coming for Nikon Z mount, too. The rumours said that it would be released at the same time as the Sony lens. Obviously, this hasn’t happened. So, whether or not there’ll be a Nikon Z version is currently unknown.

It will be interesting to see how 7Artisans chooses to grow its autofocus lens lineup, though. For new low-budget photographers just starting out, this could be a brand to keep an eye on – as long as there aren’t any sales happening at the time.

7Artisans 50mm f/1.8 AF Specs

Focal length50mm
FormatFull-Frame
Max aperturef/1.8
Min aperturef/16
Angle of view46.8°
MountSony E
Min focus distanceUnspecified
Focus typeAutofocus
Lens typeRectilinear
Optics11 elements in 9 groups
Aperture blades11
Filter diameter62mm
DimensionsUnspecified
Weight421.4g

Price and Availability

The 7Artisans 50mm f/1.8 AF for Sony E mount is available to pre-order now for $228 and begins shipping in early April.

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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