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Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review
  
 
AlphaPhotography
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p.22 #1 · p.22 #1 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


Received my copy of the 85mm today. As has been discussed, packing is not the best with Sony lenses. The lens was slightly loose in the box, just wrapped with bubble wrap. As for the outer packing from Focus Camera there were two airbags with significant room for the lens to slide back and forth ~2". Could easily "thunk" the lens box in the outer packing when shaking.
Initial test results are fairly promising. The first thing I noticed is that focusing appears to be slower than the 55mm f1.8 that I'm used to while shooting in AF-C wide.

It doesn't "feel" slower but I had many more OOF shots that I attributed to the lens not keeping up along with slightly shallower DOF. Camera firmware is the newest version (3.30). I tried a test of my nephew running towards me from a distance (20ft?) at f1.8 in wide AF-C 5fps burst and every shot was out of focus. This was with the A7RII. The 55mm on my old A7II easily handled this situation, only getting OOF when he got very close to the camera. I'll have to do more testing.

Some various "brick wall" (fence and wooden door) tests show fairly significant vignetting at f1.8 and softness in the corners/edges (LR profile helped with this). I haven't done thorough testing for decentering but included a fence shot that I tried to be as level as possible and a fair distance away (10ft+) as to limit DOF issues. It's not scientific by any means.

Rendering is pleasing. Most of the shots I took were full mid-day sun with some of the busiest backgrounds possible (close distance foliage). It handled them reasonably well, not as well as I've seen the GM do but good enough with some thought about background placement.

Colors were so-so but I think it was more a matter of the harsh lighting and A7RII WB/colors which I continue to struggle with. I messed with some of these files a bit including hue/saturation/luminance so take them with a grain of salt. Sharpening was at the default 25 for some and 50 for others.

Thoughts on this copy so far? Also any tips on the best way to test for decentering with an 85mm in terms of distance, etc.?




  ILCE-7RM2    FE 85mm F1.8 lens    85mm    f/1.8    1/640s    100 ISO    0.0 EV  






  ILCE-7RM2    FE 85mm F1.8 lens    85mm    f/1.8    1/8000s    100 ISO    0.0 EV  






  ILCE-7RM2    FE 85mm F1.8 lens    85mm    f/1.8    1/800s    100 ISO    0.0 EV  






  ILCE-7RM2    FE 85mm F1.8 lens    85mm    f/1.8    1/2000s    100 ISO    0.0 EV  






  ILCE-7RM2    FE 85mm F1.8 lens    85mm    f/1.8    1/2500s    100 ISO    0.0 EV  




May 03, 2017 at 06:02 AM
jhinkey
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p.22 #2 · p.22 #2 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


I think the AF of the 85/1.8 is on the slow side as well (compared to my m43 fast lenses) and not as reliable in general as what I'm used to.

Still, when the focus is nailed for candids the sharpness wide open in the central region is pretty darned good.

Every time I though it was giving me less that eyelash-sharp results it turns out to be a focus error.




May 04, 2017 at 12:37 AM
AlphaPhotography
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p.22 #3 · p.22 #3 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


I agree. I was a bit disheartened when first testing the lens because the majority were soft but I think it was almost exclusively due to focus issues. How is your copy in terms of sharpness compared to what I posted? (keeping in my I applied the default Lightroom sharpening (25) and 50 in some shots.)

jhinkey wrote:
I think the AF of the 85/1.8 is on the slow side as well (compared to my m43 fast lenses) and not as reliable in general as what I'm used to.

Still, when the focus is nailed for candids the sharpness wide open in the central region is pretty darned good.

Every time I though it was giving me less that eyelash-sharp results it turns out to be a focus error.





May 04, 2017 at 12:52 AM
jhinkey
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p.22 #4 · p.22 #4 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


AlphaPhotography wrote:
I agree. I was a bit disheartened when first testing the lens because the majority were soft but I think it was almost exclusively due to focus issues. How is your copy in terms of sharpness compared to what I posted? (keeping in my I applied the default Lightroom sharpening (25) and 50 in some shots.)



I'd say it's pretty close - I'm very happy with the sharpness at distances for candid shots - it's just not the most reliable focusing system - perhaps I'm spoiled by my m43 gear that for non-action stuff is amazingly accurate and very consistent.



May 07, 2017 at 12:14 AM
jeremy_clay
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p.22 #5 · p.22 #5 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


I, personally, have found this lense to be ultra fast focusing and exceptionally sharp. I picked mine up on a recent trip to korea - here are a few snaps (almost all are in AF-C mode, all shots on the A7II).

This lense renders gorgeously, to the point that I didn't take it off the camera once I bought it.

Purple fringing is average to poor wide open, these images are not corrected for it in post to show that.

Images are not sharpened after resize during export.

It should be noted that I am not a hobbyist but a working shooter, so there are no official tests that I did to measure and others mileage on this may vary.

First test shot in store, wide open (lense pictured is a Minolta 55 I believe):

edit images are huge will resize









































































May 09, 2017 at 11:57 AM
jeremy_clay
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p.22 #6 · p.22 #6 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


One I actually got to edit properly








May 09, 2017 at 12:15 PM
Ronny Olsson
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p.22 #7 · p.22 #7 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review



Sony A7RII + Sony FE 85mm F1.8 by Ronny Olsson, on Flickr


Sony A7RII + Sony FE 85mm F1.8 by Ronny Olsson, on Flickr




May 09, 2017 at 05:54 PM
 

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KGKG
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p.22 #8 · p.22 #8 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


Hi Folks,

If I may, I'd like your thoughts on an FE 85mm 1.8 I picked up yesterday. This is actually the second copy I've tried. The first one didn't make it out of the store because it was so de-centered I could pick it up by enlarging the image on the rear screen (left side extremely soft). I had them bring my current copy from their warehouse.

I haven't had a chance to take it out for a fuller test yet. I took a couple of shots of an ISO 12233 chart at 1.8 and 8 and converted Raw files to jpg using Capture One 10.1. Only adjusted white balance.

To my eyes bottom corners and upper right are softer than the upper left.

Comments?

Thanks in advance,

Keith

Shot at: f1.8 / Full size image link

Shot at: f8.0 / Full size image link



May 20, 2017 at 07:48 PM
seanj
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p.22 #9 · p.22 #9 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


The f/1.8 shot looks great. The f/8 doesn't look as good as the f/1.8, but it doesn't look bad, either.


May 20, 2017 at 08:34 PM
KGKG
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p.22 #10 · p.22 #10 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


Thanks for the reply seanj.
Going to head out today to get some real world (not test chart) shots



May 21, 2017 at 12:48 PM
GMPhotography
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p.22 #11 · p.22 #11 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


DXO rated this lens really well. Not that I personally pay any real attention to that but some do


May 21, 2017 at 12:51 PM
molson
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p.22 #12 · p.22 #12 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


RoseandCharles wrote:
Are you getting them shipped to you? Could be an issue with transit.

Personal anecdote, take with grain of salt. But I noticed that the Zeiss Batis lens we received was extremely well-packaged with TONS of packaging foam, large bubble wrap, and the lens was nested tightly in a shaped foam in the box. Our Batis 85 lens has been impeccable. We even got a (presumably) custom MTF chart of our copy of the lens.

http://www.sonyalpharumors.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/batisDE.jpg

Meanwhile every Sony lens we've received has been loosely packed with only a very thin layer of bubble wrap, and the lens has tons of space
...Show more

Roughly half of the Sony lenses I've received have also arrived with one or both caps off the lens, loose inside the lens pouch. Thankfully, none of them have managed to scratch the front element, but I imagine it does happen.



May 21, 2017 at 01:22 PM
mogul
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p.22 #13 · p.22 #13 · Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens Review


molson wrote:
Roughly half of the Sony lenses I've received have also arrived with one or both caps off the lens, loose inside the lens pouch. Thankfully, none of them have managed to scratch the front element, but I imagine it does happen.





May 21, 2017 at 01:28 PM
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