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Sony FE 24-50mm F2.8 G: A Fast Compact Travel Lens

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Sony has added a new lens for full-frame shooters to include in their kit bag but the question is.. who is for and what is its best use case? Those answers later but first, let’s check out this new Sony glass.

The FE 24-50mm f/2.8 is a compact, lightweight standard zoom lens with a wide maximum aperture of f/2.8 through the entire zoom range. This isn’t a G-Master lens but it’s very good from all sample images I’ve seen. But is it good value at A$1,999 RRP when the Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM II Lens is currently going for a great price – A$2,399?

Personally I’d be trying find the extra $400 for the GM II but I think the compact nature of this lens may better suit travelling shooters using one of the various A7C bodies. The lens has a filter diameter φ67 mm, maximum diameter 74.8 mm, length 92.3 mm, weight approximately
440g.

KEY SPECS

  1. Customisable focus, hold button, aperture ring, aperture click ON/OFF switch, and focus mode switch.
  2. Filter diameter of φ67 mm, maximum diameter 74.8 mm, length 92.3 mm, weight approximately 440 g.
  3. Four aspherical lenses and two pieces of ED (Extra low Dispersion) glass
  4. 11-blade circular aperture providing beautiful, soft and smooth bokeh 
  5. Minimum shooting distance of 0.19 m (AF) at wide-end and a maximum magnification of 0.30 x (AF)
  6. Supports in-body Active Mode image stabilisation for steady shooting
  7. Compatible with camera focus breathing compensation
FE 24-50mm F2.8 G weighs only 440 grams

The FE 24-50mm F2.8 G uses an 11-blade circular aperture which produces decent but not great bokeh.

Of course you get all the outstanding Sony autofocus benefits. The FE 24-50mm F2.8 G uses two linear motors for fast, accurate and quiet focusing. It also supports high speed continuous shooting with AF/AE tracking of up to 120 frames per second for the full-frame mirrorless camera Alpha 9 III.

VIDEO


AF tracking is available for high frame rate 4K 120p or FHD 240p movie recording. The lens also supports in-body Active Mode image stabilisation. It’s also compatible with the focus breathing compensation when paired with a compatible body. This is needed by the way, so I would strongly recommend you have a camera body that has breathing compensation in the menu.

FE 24-50mm F2.8 G

The FE 24-50mm F2.8 G has a customisable focus hold button, aperture ring, aperture click ON/OFF switch and focus mode switch. It’s dust and moisture proof with a fluorine coating which prevents dirt from sticking to the front surface of the lens.

USES

The FE 24-50mm F2.8 G is a fantastic lightweight lens perfect for travel photography. It’s also suited to street and portrait photography – especially in low light. It’s f/2.8 all the way and that is ideal for weddings that go into the night. I’d also give it a go with some landscape photography. And I’d reckon it’s a great gimbal lens for video.

Availability & Price
The new FE 24-50mm F2.8 G will be available in Australia from April 2024 for SRP: A$1,999.

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Cameras

The Ultimate All Rounder? NIKKOR Z 28-400mm f/4-8 VR

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The focal length range of the brand new NIKKOR Z 28-400mm f/4-8 VR is insane. You can shoot wide landscapes to tight distant wildlife and everything in between. As it starts at f/4 then hits f/8 by 200mm, your best results will come from shooting outdoors during the day.

But if you’re looking for an all rounder lens to rule them all, this might be the one.

“The NIKKOR Z 28-400mm f/4-8 VR lens is designed to provide the freedom to capture stunning landscapes, thrilling action, and intricate close-up shots with ease,” said John Young, General Manager of International Marketing, International Business Division of the Imaging Group, Nikon.

“Being incredibly portable with a built-in vibration reduction effect of up to 5.0 stops, this lens offers exceptional versatility making it the perfect lens for anyone on the go.”

The sample shots I’ve seen so far are promising and the video looks really nice in 8K. The good news is Nikon has taken video production into account, minimising focus-breathing and offering linear manual focus for precise control during video shooting. 

As a videographer gathering content for news, flexibility is vital. I currently use a Tamron 28-200mm F/2.8-5.6 Di III RXD Sony E Mount. So if I were shooting Nikon Mirrorless, I would definitely give this super-telephoto zoom a go.

The minimum focusing distance is just 20 cm at the wide end and impressively, just1.2m at the long end. So background blur for subject separation should work out nicely.

The lens has a built-in optical vibration reduction (VR) mechanism, effective for up to 5.0 stops. This will help in low-light conditions and when fully extended in super-telephoto zoom. This can be further enhanced to 5.5 stops with the Synchro VR feature, combining in-camera and lens VR for even steadier shots.

The lens uses a stepping motor (STM) for autofocus and it’s also dust and drip-resistant.

Considering its focal range, the NIKKOR Z 28-400mm f/4-8 VR is pretty compact when locked at 28mm. It doubles in size when extended to 400mm. The lens includes Zoom Lock Switch, Focal Length Scale and Control Ring.

PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
The new NIKKOR Z 28-400mm f/4-8 VR is available for pre-order now for around A$2,179. Shipping is expected by April 18 2024.

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Who is SIGMA’s New Lightweight Prime for? 500mm F5.6 DG DN OS | Sports

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SIGMA’s new 500mm F/5.6 DG DN OS | Sports lens appears to be the ideal compromise between reach, speed and size. The ultra-telephoto prime lens is made for mirrorless cameras with L-Mount and Sony E-mount.

The E-mount version is 236.6mm long, weighs just 1,365 grams and it’s priced at US $2,999.99.

When you look at the side-by-side comparison with the 500mm F4 DG OS HSM | Sports for DSLRs, you quickly appreciate the work SIGMA’s done to keep the mirrorless F/5.6 version small and light.

SIMGA was able to do this by incorporating multiple large-diameter, exclusive low-dispersion glass elements that are challenging to process, SIGMA succeeded in significantly downsizing the lens construction without the use of diffractive optical elements.

The great thing from the sample images and video I’ve seen is the lens delivers on its promise.

The lens body is made mostly of high-precision engineering plastic parts with weather resistance, including dust and splash resistant structure.

A linear motor HLA (High-response Linear Actuator) is used for the actuator. The HLA enables fast and accurate autofocus for sports and birds.

As a Sony video shooter I’m especially keen to see how it performs on the A7S III.

But with so many zoom options why even consider this lens? I guess that would have to do with performance. Early reports suggest its fast autofocus is hard to beat on Sony cameras and that speaks to me. But you won’t get those insane shots per second a G-Master delivers. You’ll be limited to 15 frames-per-second.

I think this lens is for photographers who need quality, sharpness and ultra portability when shooting sport and wildlife at a distance. Because you are locked in to 500mm.

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Canon RF 24-105mm F2.8 L IS USM Z – the Ultimate Lens

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If you’re a Canon hybrid shooter you have a new champion lens. Canon has just announced the RF 24-105mm F2.8 L IS USM Z, with constant f/2.8 max aperture, full-frame coverage. Its ability to zoom though to true portrait-length 105mm makes this lens a smooth operator.

RF 24-105mm F2.8 L IS USM Z FEATURES

  • World’s first 24-105mm focal length combined with consistent f/2.8 maximum aperture
  • Supports optional Canon Power Zoom Adapters
  • 11 aperture blades
  • Smooth, click-less iris ring for precise lens aperture control
  • Close-focusing to under 1.5 feet (0.45m) at all focal lengths
  • Maximum magnification 0.29x at the 105mm zoom setting
  • Optical Image Stabilisation up to 5.5 stops of shake correction and Coordinated Control (IS up to 8.0 stops with cameras equipped with IBIS)4
  • Nano USM maintains focus while zooming
  • Outstanding handling with included tripod mount featuring lock release button
  • Dust- and water-resistant structure and lens fluorine coating

This lens is good for you whether you shoot stills only, video only or both. The fast f/2.8 aperture will give wedding shooters incredible low light performance without having to bump up ISO.

There’s also a power zoom adapter for video. The PZ-E2 attaches to the side for motorised smooth zooming.

A manual aperture control ring will give the operator extremely fine iris adjustments, minus the click-stops during video capture.

When it comes to Image Stabilisation you’ll get 5.5 stops of correction, 8 stops with coordinated IS.

The RF 24-105mm F/2.8 is a 23-element design with a minimum focus distance of 45cm. Zooming and focusing is internal, so the lens does not extend. Perfect for balancing on camera rigs. Autofocus is driven by two Nano USM Focus Motors. Canon says it has ‘good’ correction for focus breathing.

Given this is a sizeable lens there’s a new tripod mount design for quick removal and a lens support bracket for rigs.

The RF 24-105mm F2.8 L IS USM Z will set you back A$5,399.

Pre-order here.

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