November 24, 2011
Posted in news

New Sony A77/65 firmware update 1.04 is available in China! (Update: now removed!)

UPDATE: Sony China removed the A77/65 firmware upgrade 1.04 page! But the download links still work. Be aware that this upgrade firmware has yet not been officially released. Download and install at your own risk! And we don’t know if you can replace that firmware with the firmware that Sony will possibly release next week. So do NOT install if you don’t know what you are doing!!!

Windows:
A77: http://ids.update.sony.net/DSLR/rourmNHbYZ/Update_SLTA77V104.exe
A65: http://ids.update.sony.net/DSLR/rourmNHbYZ/Update_SLTA65V104.exe

Mac:
A77: http://ids.update.sony.net/DSLR/rourmNHbYZ/Update_SLTA77V104.dmg
A65: http://ids.update.sony.net/DSLR/rourmNHbYZ/Update_SLTA65V104.dmg

I guess the rumor we posted yesterday is true. Sony planed the release for today but than postponed it to next week. Sony China made a mistake an posted it today and than removed it after a couple of hours. Read our readers comments to check out what has been improved!

November 23, 2011
Posted in reviews

Using the Zeiss Sonnar 50mm f/1.5 on a NEX.

I am having so much fun with my Sony NEX-5n that I am constantly looking for lenses I could purchase for it. Thought it would be nice to share my impressions about one of the lenses I am looking for. The Zeiss ZM Sonnar 50mm f/1.5 lens. You can see an image of the NEX-5n with that lens on Flickr. The reason why I am intrigued by that lens is that:
1) it has a super build quality
2) it has a perfect focal length for portraits (75mm on a NEX).
3) and it is relatively compact and fast.

The lens is not cheap, around $1200 on eBay (Click here). Plus you have to buy the M to NEX mount adapter (here on eBay).

Lens reviews
To start I read the presentation on the Zeiss website. I didn’t find any official review of the lens on a NEX camera. I only found some reviews of the lens used with the lovely Zeiss Ikon ZM. Ken Rockwell writes that it is “an easy lens to love: it’s just so small and fast! It’s not a lens for pixel counters. It’s very sharp at middle and smaller apertures where it matters, but trades sharper images for smoother images at the largest apertures. This 50/1.5 is superb for general photography and people pictures.“. And Luminous Landscape tested the lens on the Leica M9: “There is something else that the Sonnar and some other Zeiss lenses have, and that is a very pleasant 3D feeling to the pictures. It´s not as clinical as pictures with some of the ASPH-Leica lenses sometimes can get. It just feels very pleasant, for lack of a better word.
I would say the lens performs very well on Fullframe cameras. But how does it look on a NEX camera with APS-C sensor?

Image and video samples on NEX:
I found that aperture test made by Janus that shows the bokeh look of the lens on the Sony NEX-5n:

I also found some nice NEX+Zeiss image samples here at Dpreview forum, pbase, flickr (whaker), flickr (Amselchen), flickr (Clarobuck), Clubsnap.

It looks like the lens is a real winner but I will wait to see the first tests of the Sony 50mm f/1.8 before to consider to buy the Zeiss Sonnar lens. The Sony has autofocus and is cheaper. But on the other hand I love to work with manual focus and I like to buy lenses with super build quality (makes me feel it was worth to buy it). If only the price would not be that high!


Zeiss ZM Sonnar f/1.5 links at Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
M to NEX mount adapter on eBay

 

November 23, 2011
Posted in rumors

(SR5) New A-mount Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 SSM coming with the A9x!

After a long pause I can finally share a new SR5 (top rumor) with you! According to trusted sources Sony will release a new A-mount Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 SSM lens in 2012. I am not sure yet about the exact month but it could be announced along the new A9x in Spring. I have also no idea yet about the price. Easy to guess it will be more expensive than the Sony 50mm f/1.4 lens ($399). It should be more in the price league of the manual Zeiss Planar 50mm f/1.4 lens ($700).

A couple of months ago the Japanese blog Egami found a new Sony patent that describes the characteristics for two new standard lenses. A new 50mm f/1.2 and a new 50mm f/1.4 fullframe lens. You see the lens specs on top of this post.

One more info: Sony postponed all Sony fullframe lens releases from 2011 to 2012. They will all come with the new FF cameras. So expect a nice bunch of new lenses! Stay tuned on SonyAlphaRumors! And don’t forget to join us on facebook (Click here).

Poll:

WIll you buy the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 SSM for $700?

View Results

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Links:
Sony 50mm f/1.4 lens at Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
Zeiss Planar 50mm lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay

Current Zeiss fullframe lenses for Sony:
SAL-1635Z 16-35mm f/2.8 ZA SSM Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* AF SLR Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
Distagon T* 24mm f/2 SSM Wide Angle Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-2470Z 24-70mm f/2.8 Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-85F14Z Telephoto 85mm f/1.4 Carl Zeiss Planar T* Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-135F18Z 135mm f/1.8 Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* Autofocus SLR Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-135F28 135mm f/2.8 Manual Focus SLR Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay

Reminder (SR = Sonyrumor):
SR1=probably fake rumor
SR2=rumor from unknown sources
SR3=50% chance it is correct
SR4=rumor from known sources
SR5=almost certainly correct!

November 23, 2011
Posted in news

(SR4) UPDATE: Sony A77/65 firmware updated 1.04 finally coming next week???

UPDATE: The administrator from Digicam-info contacted me to say that he got a news form a trusted sources to say that Sony originally planed to release the firmware tomorrow (Nov 24) but they postponed the release to next week! It’s form one of his trusted sources and I upgraded the rumor value from SR3 to SR4.

As I told you last week this will be a major upgrade because we expect improvements in JPEG image quality too! Here is the list of new features/improvements:

1) expanded the number of automatic compensation of compliant lenses
2) Improvement of Responses
3) Improvement of IQ
4) Improvement of Usability

And here are the links to check the price and availability of the two cameras:
Sony A77: Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
Sony A65: Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay

November 22, 2011
Posted in news

POLL results analysis: Here are the fullframe lenses you want!


Two weeks ago I posted that fullframe poll (Click here) to ask you what kind of lens you need for the full frame Alpha mount system. We had 3.900 voters from all over the worls. The poll gives us a general idea of what our readers want from Sony. I ask you to share your evaluation about the results. These are mine:

1) The most requested lens is actually a surprise because I would have never expected to see so many votes for it. The 12-24mm f/2.8 got a 28% share (1,094 Votes).
2) The most requested focal length is the 50mm standard prime. The 50mm f/1.4 Zeiss (24%, 927 Votes), the 50mm f/1.0 Zeiss (19%, 734 Votes) and the 50mm f/1.2 (13%, 503 Votes). Close behind we find the 35mm wide angle prime lens. The 35mm f/1.4 Zeiss collected 25% of your votes (978 Votes). And the more compact 35mm f/2.0 had 461 votes (12%). Very close behind the 35mm lenses we find the 85mm lenses.
3) There is no surprise when it comes to standard zoom lenses. The 24-105mm f/4.0 (25%, 974 Votes) is the third most requested lens. The 70-200mm f/2.8 Zeiss (23%, 882 Votes) is the fifth most requested lens.
4) Another surprise has been the high request for Tilt shift lenses. The 24mm TS earned a 16% share (641 Votes).
Overall It’s obvious that readers ask for classic good quality prime and zoom lenses. It’s a call for Sony to complete the “backbone” of the lens system. And I am sure Sony is already working on it.

Here are the detailed results of the poll and feel free to add your analysis of the results! Thanks!

Select a maximum of seven lenses Sony should absolutely release!

  • 12-24mm f/2.8 (28%, 1,097 Votes)
  • 35mm f/1.4 Zeiss (25%, 980 Votes)
  • 24-105mm f/4.0 (25%, 976 Votes)
  • 50mm f/1.4 Zeiss (24%, 929 Votes)
  • 70-200mm f/2.8 Zeiss (23%, 884 Votes)
  • 50mm f/1.0 Zeiss (19%, 736 Votes)
  • 24mm TS (Tilt Shift) (16%, 643 Votes)
  • 85mm f/1.2 (16%, 610 Votes)
  • 70-200mm f/4.0 (14%, 560 Votes)
  • 16-80mm f/4.0 (13%, 518 Votes)
  • 24mm f/1.4 (13%, 503 Votes)
  • 50mm f/1.2 (13%, 503 Votes)
  • 85mm f/1.8 (12%, 476 Votes)
  • 35mm f/2.0 (12%, 461 Votes)
  • 200mm f/2.0 Zeiss (12%, 455 Votes)
  • 200mm f/4.0 macro (10%, 391 Votes)
  • 50-150mm f/2.8 (10%, 372 Votes)
  • 200-400mm f/4.0 (9%, 343 Votes)
  • 17-35mm f/4.0 (9%, 340 Votes)
  • 135mm f/1.4 (8%, 322 Votes)
  • 18mm f/2.0 Zeiss (8%, 322 Votes)
  • 500mm f/5.6 (8%, 314 Votes)
  • 28mm f/1.4 Zeiss (8%, 299 Votes)
  • 100mm f/2.0 (8%, 296 Votes)
  • 120-400mm f/4.0 (7%, 287 Votes)
  • 8mm f/3.5 fisheye (7%, 277 Votes)
  • 800mm f/5.6 (7%, 263 Votes)
  • 12mm f/2.8 (7%, 258 Votes)
  • 200mm f/2.8 (6%, 244 Votes)
  • 70-300mm f/3.5 (6%, 241 Votes)
  • 14mm f/2.8 (6%, 218 Votes)
  • 100mm f/4.0 macro (5%, 200 Votes)
  • 24mm f/2.0 (5%, 199 Votes)
  • 400mm f/5.6 (5%, 195 Votes)
  • 135mm f/2.8 (5%, 191 Votes)
  • 100-300mm f/4.0 (5%, 184 Votes)
  • 600mm f/8.0 Reflex (5%, 180 Votes)
  • 28mm f/2.0 (5%, 178 Votes)
  • 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 (5%, 177 Votes)
  • 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 (4%, 174 Votes)
  • 75mm f/2.8 macro (4%, 157 Votes)
  • 70-400mm f/3.5-5.6 (4%, 155 Votes)
  • 45mm TSE (3%, 136 Votes)
  • 16mm f/2.8 (3%, 133 Votes)
  • 50mm f/2.0 macro (3%, 131 Votes)
  • 50mm f/1.8 (3%, 120 Votes)
  • 300mm f/3.5 (3%, 115 Votes)
  • 20mm f/2.8 (3%, 111 Votes)
  • 90mm TSE (3%, 106 Votes)
  • 350mm f/4.0 (2%, 92 Votes)
  • 250mm f/5.6 Reflex (Mirror) (2%, 89 Votes)
  • 65mm f/1.8 (2%, 84 Votes)
  • 28-85mm f/3.5-4.5 (2%, 81 Votes)
  • 150-300mm f/4.0 (2%, 77 Votes)
  • 180mm f/2.8 (2%, 60 Votes)
  • 16mm f/4.0 fisheye (1%, 50 Votes)

Total Voters: 3,898

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These are the links to the current Sony Full Frame lenses (without the older Minolta lenses). You can check the price to get an idea of how much the suggested poll lenses could cost!
SAL-16F28 Fisheye 16mm f/2.8 Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-1635Z 16-35mm f/2.8 ZA SSM Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* AF SLR Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-20F28 20mm f/2.8 AF Lens for Alpha & Minolta Maxxum Series Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
Distagon T* 24mm f/2 SSM Wide Angle Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-2470Z 24-70mm f/2.8 Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-2875 28-75mm f/2.8 SAM Constant Aperture Zoom Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-35F14G Wide Angle 35mm f/1.4G Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-50F14 Normal 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-50M28 Normal AF D 50mm f/2.8 Macro Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-85F14Z Telephoto 85mm f/1.4 Carl Zeiss Planar T* Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
85mm f/2.8 SAM Mid-range Telephoto Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-100M28 100mm f/2.8 AF Macro Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-135F18Z 135mm f/1.8 Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* Autofocus SLR Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-135F28 135mm f/2.8 Manual Focus SLR Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-70200G Zoom AF 70-200mm f/2.8 APO G(D) SSM Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-70300G 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G SSM Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-70400G 70-400mm f/4-5.6 G SSM Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-75300 AF D 75-300mm f/4.5-5.6 Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay
SAL-300F28G 300mm f/2.8 APO G SSM Autofocus Lens Amazon, B&H, Adorama, J&R, eBay

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