Sony has just come out with a new 50mm GM lens, and this time we get a baby brother of the existing 50GM f/1.2 lens – the 50mm f/1.4 GM. First of all, regarding its build, we have yet another GM refreshment of the existing Zeiss Planar 50mm f/1.4, making it noticeably smaller and lighter – 33% lighter than Planar and still 150g lighter than the newly announced Sigma 50/1.4. The lens has everything we know from modern GM lenses, making it almost a tiny twin brother to the 50/1.2, with one change: an iris lock. That was not preset on the 50/1.2. Other than that, we have an aperture ring that can be set to declick, an AF to MF switch, 2 custom buttons, and a 67mm filter size that matches both the 24mm and 35mm GMasters, making it an excellent addition to that duo. Weight-wise, it’s even a couple of grams lighter than the 35mm GM but slightly wider in size. The lens is equipped with linear motors, and I’ve shot with it on both the Sony A7RV and Sony A7IV, and it performed flawlessly.
Firstly, in terms of sharpness, just look at those close-ups. It’s unreal how sharp this lens is. If you compare it to the existing Zeiss Planar and 50/1.2 GM, it’s noticeably sharper than Planar, specifically on longer distances – here on a 61-megapixel A7RV sensor, you can see that Planar did not perform as well as the new GM or the GM 1.2. Comparing it to the GM 1.2 – in terms of sharpness, both are excellent, but I do feel we have a slight edge with the new GM.
Many of you might wonder how it compares to the Sigma 50/1.4 that came out two weeks ago. While I had the pleasure of testing the Sigma, the unit I had was a pre-release, with a note that it might not perform as well as it should, and all of my comparison and test shots actually proved that, putting the Sigma lens far behind the new GM. But until I have a final production model, I will not make any comparison videos.
Image-wise, we have a very nice smooth bokeh. You can definitely see that it’s different from the Zeiss Planar, more similar to 1.2, with the difference of being slightly less blurry and smooth in certain scenarios. Also, there are almost no chromatic aberrations, as you can see in these comparison photos. I did manage to get some extraordinary photos with it, getting that nice bokeh background, and I have to say I love it.
Wedding photography samples from Madeira shot on Sony A7RV and 50mm f/1.4 GM
Comparison photos Sony 50mm f/1.4 GM vs Sony 50mm f/1.2 GM and Sony Zeiss Planar 50mm f/1.4 ZA
50mm f/1.4 GM vs 50mm f/1.2 GM
50mm f/1.4 GM vs Carl Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 ZA