Sony FE 35mm f/1.8 First Impressions

UPDATE: I have now written a review of this lens which can be found HERE.

It was a long wait but my Sony FE 35mm f/1.8 has finally arrived!

I have been really excited to get this lens and I can say it does not disappoint. I wouldn’t call this a comprehensive or technical review, but more of my first impressions of this lens. I’ve previously covered why I love 35mm lenses, so if you want more context check it out here.

Size and Weight

When I pulled this lens out of the box, I was very surprised by how small and light it was. Only when you see and hold this lens in person, you realize how tiny it is.

As a comparison, it is almost the same size as my Canon EF-M 32mm f/1.4 which is an APSC lens and small itself.  To me this is important as I like to carry my camera everywhere with me. Having a light and versatile focal length like this makes that much easier.

Image Quality

In terms of performance, this lens does not disappoint even the slightest. Sharpness both wide open and stopped down is phenomenal and tack sharp. I have seen some comparisons that have found the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art to be a tiny bit sharper wide open.

I don’t have both lenses with me to test side by side, but I personally feel they are at the least equal in sharpness. Maybe after more testing I’ll feel different, but so far I am liking this lens more than the Art and my all time favorite Canon EF 35mm f/2 IS.

Autofocus

This is somewhere this lens really shines. I haven’t done any major tracking besides people walking but in those applications, the AF sticks and holds focus extremely well. The lens is silent when focusing too which is somewhat expected.

The programmable focus hold button comes in handy too. I have mine set to Eye AF but in all honesty, with the real time Eye AF I don’t see it being as useful as it once was for this particular function.

Bokeh

35mm may not be a focal length you usually associate with bokeh, but they can really hold their own. Many 35mm lenses have a short minimum focusing distance which means getting up close is real easy. The image below shows an example of what this lens can do bokeh wise.

It is also worth mentioning how good the AF is with the shot above too. I was shooting in AF-C and Small Flexible Spot which locked on the center of the flower and held the focus really well despite my unsteady movement.

Below is a collection of images that I have taken with this lens. Most are wide open but some are slightly stopped down.


I hope you enjoyed my first impressions and images with this lens. After a month or two once I can use  this lens more extensively, I’ll be sure to do a full review.

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