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Start Gear & Galleries 2D Cameras & Lenses E 1.8/50 OSS is ... HOT! (Rolling Review)

E 1.8/50 OSS is ... HOT! (Rolling Review)

15. Feb. 2012 - After a first shipment of the new E 1.8/50 OSS (SEL 50F18) reached German retailers, it's time for a first look. This rolling review will be continously updated with more images, experiences and comparisons.

Now, as more and more fast prime lenses wit autofocus become avialable, the NEX system get's what it deserves since a long, hard time. Although SONY had good mirrorless bodies with excellent sensors already quite a long time, I could not get warm with that system so far. Meanwhile we have the excellent (but pricy) Zeiss Sonnar 24/1.8, the 30/3.5 macro and now the stabilized 50/1.8. As I especially like portrait photography, the latest member of the E-mount lens family was really an important milestone for me. This fast prime lens allows available light photography due to it's F1.8 aperture and optical stabilization as well as semiprofessional (or may be even professional) studio portrait photography in combination with the NEX-7 and it's 24 MP sensor and its option to trigger remote flashes.

HOT E 1.8/50 OSS
The E 1.8/50 OSS is ... HOT!

The first thing, people buying this sort of lens will be interested, is it's sharpness at open aperture in combination with its out-of-focus rendering (the bokeh). After I got this lens short before shop closing time, there was not much time left for an extensive shooting and none of these lovely models were at hand, that I have been working with during the last months. So I was attracted by this lovely little case for painters as it was displayed in front of a shop full of bookshelfs. This allowed me to test both aspects at the same time - so let us take a look at the original "out-of-cam" JPEGs:


(click image for other sizes)


(click image for other sizes)

As you can see in the 100% magnifications, the focused areas (e.g. the paintbrushes) are still pin sharp at open aperture. The bokeh in the out of focus areas is rendered quite well.

Compared to the 50mm reference lens, the Leica Summilux 50/1.4 ASPH, you still see an advantage for the (10 times more expensive) Summilux, which has about half a stop wider aperture and is able to render a perfectly creamy bokeh. But the E 1.8/50 OSS can make some points with autofocus and optical stabilization which helps a lot in more agile situations.

A short teaser-snippet from a dancehall video taken with that lens (currently edited):

(Here you find a FullHD (1080p) version with downloadable source file: http://vimeo.com/37441805

There is more to come soon, e.g.

  • some portrait work
  • a more detailed comparison to theSummilux
  • some video work

So i will be happy to see you back here soon!

All images copyright by 3D-Kraft.com.