31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on 22 March 2012
This is almost the only native lens I ever wanted for my Nex, a fast 50mm prime. As expected it does its job beautifully. There are two reasons this is a must have lens:
1. Its wide aperture allows low light shooting - typically indoor portrait shots
2. subject isolation - again the wide aperture allows you to defocus the background to create very pleasing results
I like to use this lens in A mode with the DMF option. When shooting wide open the plane of focus is very shallow so DMF focus mode means the camera does most of the leg work then a simple twist of the focus ring with focus peaking allows easy fine tuning.
No regrets, only wish I could have had it sooner!
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 22 June 2012
After a rather long wait, finally got my hands on this lens.
PRO's: It's sharp enough, fast and a pleasure to use. The build quality is solid, with lots of metal, and that includes the mount. The IQ of the images confirmed that this is a good purchase. OSS works really well, as does the lens in low light.
CON's: It's a tiny wee bit larger than the 18-55mm kit lens, and without a zoom, but then you knew that already as it is a prime lens. Just be prepared to walk back a few feet from your subject!
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 10 February 2013
I am not a very adventurous photographer - what I want is a camera and a lens that will take professional looking images of my grandchildren. I bought this lens because the reviews said that it takes good images in poor lighting conditions - - - and it does. It focusses on the subject quickly and precisely and the background blurs beautifully. I am really pleased with it. I also like it because it is compact and fairly lightweight. I tend to use this lens all the time, not the Nex 7 kit lens which I used very happily until this one arrived. I would be interested to know how much better the Zeiss E24mm/F/1.8 is - I might buy this one as well.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
I've only recently started getting into advanced photography, so I'm quite a novice when it comes to understanding all these different lenses, so the lens chart on the product page came in handy to see which lens is best used in a certain situation.
After being highly impressed with the quality of Sony's 30mm macro lens, I wanted to upgrade my camera even further with this 50mm F1.8 lens which is apparently very good for not only portrait photos, but use in lower lighting conditions too.
Anyway, this lens is well packed in a fairly small box which also comes with an instruction manual, guarantee document & a lens hood.
With this lens, you do need to stand further away from the subject you're taking a photo of compared to a normal standard lens, which if you're not used too, you will do so very quickly, it's just a matter of getting used to it.
Image quality I found to be fantastic, I took a photo of my friends dog indoors with no flash and the results were brilliant, you get a very sharp image of the subject you're focusing on whilst the background is nicely blurred (If you're using the lower aperture of course).
Definitely a lens I would recommend!
#NOTE: There are two colours available: Silver or Black.
25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
I've had my eye on this for a while, after realising that neither the 18-200 zoom at F3.5 nor the 18-55 lens usually bundled with the Nex cameras was fast enough to capture images of moving subjects in less than optimal lighting conditions. I found a few accounts on the internet of fixed low f-stop portrait lenses being used for shooting amateur sports and decided to try one at the local stockist.
With a Nex-7 in very dim shop lighting, the lens managed to focus on different parts of cameras on display at F1.8, and managed to shift focus and depth of field on the same object by moving the camera around. The dim light did reveal the weakness of the contrast detection focusing and the auto focus was a little slow for a £1,000 piece of kit, but that wasn't the lens' fault.
Bringing it home, the box contained a bubble wrapped lens, hood, front and back covers and the 5 sets of instructions in different languages. Size-wise it's about the same as the 18-55 lens and with the hood fitted, almost the same length as the 18-200 zoom on its own. It's also a lot, lot lighter.
Experimenting over several bottles of beer and wine, I tried using the aperture priority setting on the camera (Nex-5), using the dial to control aperture, down button for exposure compensation and the soft key for ISO. You can fine tune the focus using the aluminium focus ring on the lens. This allows quite a lot of flexibility, if not quite the ease of operation of the Nex-7's custom dials, and I got lots of sharp pictures of condensation on glass with blurred wine bottles in the background; the shutter speed must have been fast otherwise the alcohol consumed would have made everything blurred.
At the children's local swim training session (with permission from coaches and a CRB check) I had to increase the ISO to around 400-800, but with the lens wide open, almost everything I took was sharp, droplets of water in the shots being a very rough guide to my eyes. Assuming you can get close enough, this lens will be fine for soccer mom situations where you can be by pool/pitch/court side; but obviously not for grandstand public events, where only the press photographers get to be by the action.
It's also good for snaps of family pets and moving children who can't sit still long enough for a picture; but be prepared to use the non-auto settings for best results, to get the portrait/subject isolated from background. The fixed lens also means you have to move to adjust the shot content rather than fiddling with the zoom.
Focus peaking (available from firmware 0.4 and onwards) is also worth using, as that highlights what the camera has actually focused on. You'll need a 49mm lens filter to protect it, and perhaps a lens cover which can have a cord attached as the Sony covers don't seem to have a hole to allow it to be attached to the camera strap mount.
Unsurprisingly this lens isn't easily available for the prices you see on the internet, supplies not quite matching demand at the moment, especially with Sony's £30 cashback (til mid July 12).
Definitely recommended for those wanting to experiment with depth of field and shutter speeds who have felt they need something other than the lens that came with the camera. For more technical information, look at the review on photozone.de which I read before making the purchase.
Addenda: Recent firmware update announced to make it compatible with the phase detection autofocus on the 5R and Nex 6.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 17 November 2012
Really lovely lens. I am a completely amateur photographer, I never venture into manual mode and I'm not frequently changing my settings.
This lens is perfect for taking pictures of my daughter. It lets in lots of light and creates a fantastically shallow depth of field so she's in focus while the background is blurred.
And my Sony NEX5N can achieve a really fast shutter speed, so I can still use this lens in really bright light outdoor without over-exposing the image. The lens lets in lots of light so you get a great picture, the fast shutter speed stops it from being over-exposed and also freezes the action (so no more blurry toddler when she waves her arms around).
The only even tiny disadvantage is that 50mm means it's automatically 'quite zoomed in'. So if you're in a small room, you might have to press yourself right into the corner of the room to get everything you want in the shot to fit.
All in all, extremely good value for money - take as good pictures as much more expensive lens / camera combos.
on 5 March 2014
I don't usually give 5 stars in these reviews, but this lens has almost made my old Nex 3 feel like a new camera.
For taking pictures of people it is head-and-shoulders above all the other NEX lenses I've tried (this one is my fourth lens). Essentially, the f1.8 aperture lets in so much light that (together with the image stabilisation) the camera can use _far_ quicker shutter speeds to get any given shot, which means much less blur and, in practice, lovely sharp pictures. The f1.8 aperture also beautifully de-focuses the background of shots, making for simpler compositions which emphasise the main subjects in the frame. Also, unlike many fast primes, this one is pin sharp right down to F1.8.
Of course the 75mm-equivalent focal length makes this something of a single-purpose lens, but don't let that put you off - it's a purpose which most people will be needing a lot, and there's nothing wrong with doing one thing well. Here's a real-life example:
Last year I went to a wedding. A lovely occasion, but the ceremony was indoors and it was a dull grey day. I used the stock zoom lens that came with the Nex (the 18-55mm one) and for the whole day none of my pictures came out; they were all blurry because people moved too fast and I couldn't respond in time to catch fleeting moments, and that was because the zoom lens can only do about f5 at its 55mm zoom end, and in any case it isn't very sharp at that focal length.
Then, last weekend, we celebrated the Christening of my little son. A lovely occasion, but the ceremony was indoors and it was a dull grey day. I used this lens, and every single one of my photos came out perfectly - beautifully. No need for flash, no need for high ISO. I was even happy setting the camera to default automatic settings and letting my friends take pictures for me, because I trusted the lens to get a good picture. I have never been able to do that before!
One thing I have found is that I need to take one step further backward than I'm used to, because the lens can't focus close-up. You need to be a few feet away from your subject.
In every other respect this is the best money I've invested in photography since buying the camera. I was nervous about buying because this is more expensive than the entry-level lenses in the Nex range. It turns out that there's is a very good reason for the difference - it simply has a much better 'sucess rate' in getting the right photo first time than any other lens I've used; it complements the money I originally invested in the Nex camera and adds a different dimension it didn't have before.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 20 November 2012
Hello. I like this lens a lot. It's focus is quite fast even in low light and the bokeh is very good. I use it with Sony Nex-7. Worth of money.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 4 July 2013
I recommend this product because this lens has a really good quality, and its price at the moment is so resonable. Moreover, Amazon deliverd it so quickly (2 days after ordering-like a first class option).
I love it so much.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Bought for the Sony NEX VG20E. Excellent lens, wide open the bokeh is very pleasing. Hand held shots possible thanks to optical stabilisation and that wide aperture. Focus is crisp and sharp. Can see me using this lens a lot.