About a month ago, Sony introduced the 50mm f/1.2 G Master lens and got many Sony shooters excited. So excited, in fact, that the company now claims it can’t manage all the demand. So you’ve guessed it right – you’re going to have to wait a little longer to have your 50mm f/1.2 delivered.
It’s been rumoured for a while, but now it’s finally here. Sony has now officially announced its new Sony FE 50mm f/1.2 G Master lens. Sony says it’s their 60th lens in the E mount lineup (I think they missed a trick there and should have released it 10 lenses ago, but nevermind) and offers “exquisite bokeh and high-performance autofocus in a compact and lightweight design”.
The Sony FE 50mm f/1.2 GM is made of 14 elements in 10 groups. Three of those are what Sony calls “XA” (extreme aspherical) elements that they say contribute to high resolution across the entire image, even when wide open at f/1.2. It’s not cheap, though, coming in significantly more expensive than Canon’s 50mm f/1.2L.
Leica has announced a reissue of their Noctilux-M 50mm f/1.2 ASPH lens. As the name suggests, it’s designed for the Leica M mount. Its optical design is virtually identical to the original Noctilux-M 50mm f/1.2, released in 1966, which they say provides the same classic, vintage feel. It’s the third reissue of Leica’s M mount Classics range, adding to the Summaron-M 25mm f/5.6 and the Thambar-M 90mm f/2.2.
Two versions of the lens are being released. The first is the standard black, which is available in all of the usual places. The other is silver and a limited edition of 100 units available only at Leica stores.
Vintage lenses have their quirks, but they also have a certain charm. Many of them are well-built and tack sharp, yet very affordable. Photographer Mathieu Stern is a great fan of vintage glass, so he decided to do a little test. He compared a vintage manual 50mm f/1.2 lens he paid $80 with a modern AF 50mm f/1.2 lens that costs almost $1,500. Are they comparable at all? Let’s take a look.
I was just talking yesterday about how interesting it is to see the progression of digital cameras. Well, here we have another. This time a £300 used setup consisting of the original Canon 5D with 50mm f/1.8 lens vs the £5,000 combination of Canon 5D Mark IV & 50mm f/1.2.
Photographer Pablo Strong takes the two systems out on a walk around London shooting street photography. He shoots similar images with the two side-by-side to see how well the 5D holds up against more modern equipment.
Samyang has now officially announced their new XP 50mm f/1.2 lens. It’s the third in the “XPert” series designed specifically for full frame Canon EF users. It adds to the XP 24mm f/2.4 and XP 85mm f/1.2 announced last September. Unlike the 24mm f/2.8 EF lens announced last month, this is a manual focus lens, to match rest of the XP series.
Designed to take advantage of 50MP+ and 8K resolutions, the XP line is built for premium quality. It houses 11 elements in 8 groups, with ultra multi-coatings to minimise distortion, aberration, flare and ghosting. 9 aperture blades help to create pleasing out of focus “bokeh” with that bright, wide, f/1.2 maximum aperture.
Super fast primes are a handy thing to have. But they’re not cheap. Their price puts them out of reach for many photographers. Even if funds aren’t an issue it can still be difficult to justify spending that much on one prime lens. But what other options are there?
Well, if you’re Mathieu Stern, one option is to breath new life into a $20 Bell & Howell 50mm f/1.2 projector lens. In his latest video, Mathieu shows us just how simple it is to start using one of these with your DSLR or mirrorless camera.
Russian manufacturer KMZ has a long history in the photographic world, having produced cameras, lenses and enlargers under the Zenit brand since 1952.
Having been relatively quiet for a number of years, they’re now making a big comeback with the announcement of three very interesting new manual focus lenses; 85mm f/1.2, 50mm f/1.2 and 50mm f/0.95.