Sony NEX 50/1.8 and Sony AF 50/1.4 comparison
Just for kicks I thought I’d compare two fast 50mm lenses from Sony, the new NEX model, and the old slot-screw focusing (and full-frame) 50/1.4. Obviously, one would normally think the full frame model has several advantages, but this is 2012, and lens technology has come a long ways!
For testing purposed, I started the Sony full frame lens at F/1.7 because I couldn’t get F/1.8 on the consumer grade Sony A580, although you can dial F/1.8 on a full frame camera. The distance to subject was about 7′ or 2.1m. That distance is about the same as a waist-up portrait shot with a 50mm focal length and APS-C sensor, so it has more meaning than a close focus test chart. The Sony AF 50/1.4 images are not exactly straight, however, all images and crops are right out of the camera, saved as jpegs.
If you don’t feel like going through the 24 crops, I’ll sum up the differences for you: the Sony AF 50mm F/1.4 is a little sharper in the corners from F/1.7-2.8, but the NEX 50/1.8 OSS is as good, and usually much better everywhere else. The NEX has more contrast, less distortion and lacks the severe coma as the full frame 50/1.4, although the distortion and coma aren’t visible here.
For viewing the gallery, just click on the small image, and the crops come up with the Sony AF F/1.4 first, then the NEX 50mm, with the corresponding aperture, and location: centers, mid-sections and corners. I didn’t show any F/8 results because there was no differences other than minor diffraction on the NEX 50mm.
The Sony NEX 50/1.8 OSS review should be posted this weekend.