The new Sony FE 70-200 f/4 G OSS full frame lens available for pre-order!

1029862The new Sony FE (full frame) 70-200 f/4 lens is now available for pre-order. This is a full frame E mount lens which will make it a perfect choice for those seeking a telephoto zoom for their new A7 and A7r cameras. Of course you will have to carry the camera by the lens but hey, it is big, it is white and it fits on a tiny full frame camera. 🙂

This one comes in at under $1500 and is a pro zoom all the way. You can read more about it or pre-order it here at B&H Photo. 

44 Comments

  1. I am very pleased with my FE 70-200mm together with my A7, and for the price difference of the A7II body, I going to get me the A6000 body! Period!

  2. I got my FE70-200/4 G today. It is very well-balanced on my A7R. Very good handling. Perfect on the A7R body. It is not heavy at all. I thought it was big when I read the previews pictures. When I see the actual lens, I mount it on A7R, I immediately know I will pull out my wallet and pay for it. I live in HK, luckily, I am the first few customers got the first batch of this lens. Not many people own this lens yet.

  3. A7r should arrive Thursday. Will obtain the 70-200g FE as soon as it is available. I’m sure I’ll eventually put the lens on the A7r but my prime intent of this lens will be on the pre-ordered A6000 when it arrives and on the Nex-7 until then…might even give it a go on the Nex-6 too 🙂
    the A7r only true mission in my world is to give my Canon glass a 36mp opportunity or two.

    • Good choice Robert.
      I used my old Canon 400mm and Metabones adapter on my A7R in Tanzania about a month ago and it was fine. Since you always hold a camera and large lens with one hand on the lens and one on the camera, balance does not make sense. Hold the combination with your left hand at about the middle of the lens, with your fingers on the focus ring and the other hand on the camera and you are set. Works great.
      My only complaint for my combination was trying to manual focus quickly and no image stabilization, inside a Land Cruiser (with the large pop tops that they use). Makes it tough. A large, very heavy, sand bag to lay it on helped, and I did get some good shots, but would have been better with AF and OSS.
      Looking forward to some reasonably priced ultra zooms (400mm+) with OSS and AF for the FE mount. (one can dream!)

  4. I’m biased. I think it will look and handle great on an A7 or A7r. Then again I thought a Nikkor 180/2.8 works great with an NEX-5. But I’m not too much of a poser, I don’t care so much about how a camera+lens combo looks as I do about the results.

    I haven’t seen anyone mention it yet but this lens will be awesome with the new A6000.

  5. Back in the 1980s or 1990s a 80-200mm f4 zoom lens was the 2nd lend an amateur purchased after the 50mm prime. They almost replaced the previously popular 135mm f2.8, with modest extra weight, but much more versatility.

    However, now with AF and OSS the 70-200/4 picked up a lot of extra weight and bulk, compared to i.e. the Minolta MD 70-210/4 (635g, E55 filter size). A 85/2 or 135/2.8 would have been the better choice. Otherwize you waste the mirrorless size advantage, but still get the mirrorless slowlyness (wake up, AF) and lens price.

  6. I agree with the poster Marco, at this size and weight, why not just use a Canon 6D and EF 70-200 IS? The Canon lens is outstanding, costs less and weighs less. While the 6D is bigger and heavier than the A7, the 6D/70-200 IS combination is very close in weight and bulk to the A7/70-200 G combination, with optical viewfinder and true phase detect AF.

    Compact mirrorless are great with primes, including many outstanding legacy lenses, but for long telephoto an SLR or SLT still appears to be the right tool for the job.

  7. I think A7 doesn’t provide a perfect balance with lenses like this, surely the vertical grip improves a lot the handling, but you lost almost every size advantage and still you don’t reach the balance of a Dslr.
    A7, like the smallest m4/3 or a Leica, is a prime camera.

  8. I’ve been considering this lens for my A7. I have an old Nikon SLR (N90s) and an ancient (by digital standards) Nikon DSLR (D100) and a Nikon 80-200 f2.8 lens. I think this lens is about 60% of the weight of the Nikon, and the camera body is also significantly lighter. On the other hand, my Nikon + 80-200 combo is what drove me away from DSLRs in the first place. Too heavy!!!

    This dilemma has me constantly thinking back to the OMD EM1. When you think of a nice 35-100 2.8 for the EM1, it is just way lighter and smaller than the A7 with an 80-200 f4. On the other hand, when you think of the A7 with the 55mm 1.8 and compare it to an Olympus equivalent, the stats lean in favor of the A7. And then, where does this leave my treasured rangefinder???

    Clearly, the solution is simple: merely get three cameras, the Sony a7 for color street photography, the Leica Monochrom for black and white street photography, and the OMD EM1 for zoom and macro. Come on, it’s “only” three camera systems…and they’ll probably be current for at least a few years. Argh!

    • It’s hard to stop at three… I really like my A7r but I actually find the EM-1 better by far in operation for street shooting. You can lower it to waist level and just touch the screen to focus and shoot. This is fantastic. The A7 series is quite capable if you raise it to eye level and focus on a single point, otherwise, I have found it’s ‘range’ and other focus settings inconsistent if your shooting quickly, especially in low light. I usually stick a M-mount lens on my A7r and just focus at 7-10′ when on the street. Also, I find the Fuji’s a good choice and the X100S seems like it was specifically built for the street. Both simply have an edge, even superior, over the Olympus in some situations but in optimum light, you might be hard pressed to tell the difference from the three in IQ unless you pixel peep. Of course, light is rarely optimum. When it comes down to it, the EM-1 is simply fantastic in operation and it has a very good lens system. It IQ is most important look at the Fuji and then the A7r. Landscape? A7r hands down.

      • I own the A7R and the EM1 and would agree the EM1 is a great street shoot. The Sony is too slow,but can’t be beat for landscape my personal passion! The are both great cameras the M43 bashers don’t know what they are missing.

        • Exactly… except I wouldn’t say the Sony is too slow. It’s terribly slow compared to the EM-1 but as someone who suffered with the focus speed and accuracy of the original, pre-firmware update – x100 (and still enjoyed it), it’s rather acceptable if not good. Hopefully a firmware update will help as it did the Fuji’s… and I know it increases the size and weight, but with the Alpha adapter, it is rather quick with quick focusing alpha lenses. It seems to be about the same as most of the Alpha DSLRs and still smaller, lighter.

          Of course, it’s all relative. For the money, I wish it had the Olympus speed. For the money, I wish it had the fast flash sync of the Fuji x100S. But one thing people seem to be missing, that for the money, it’s the best high-rez sensor out there in 35mm except maybe for it’s equal in the Nik D800E, regardless of size. If you really want to point a high rez, full frame sensor at a landscape, this is it. (and the Nikon D800E of course).

        • Owning the OM-D E-M1, X-Pro 1, and a Nikon D3s/D7000 pair in my digital arsenal, here’s what I’ve discovered:

          – When I absolutely know that I must get the shot under unpredictable conditions, I grab the D3s. Still the second-best low light performance on the planet, and the best overall IQ of these cameras when considering tonal reproduction and depth.

          – It’s very closely followed by the X-Pro 1, however, WHEN the X-Pro 1 nails everything—but this only happens when you have slow or static subjects and a lot of control over the shooting environment. It seems like the X-Pro 1 ought to be a great candid street-shooter, but it’s not (even after all the firmware updates). It’s actually much better as a compact landscape machine. I won’t get into the pita surrounding RAW conversion and workflow.

          – The Olympus E-M1 has the best responsiveness and ergonomics by far, even trumping the D3s, IMO, because the weight is easier to handle and less onerous to carry around. It also offers features for candid work and street shooting that are exemplary, specifically the flip out screen and touch-screen to focus and/or fire. Couple that with the IBIS and it cannot be beat. By anyone. It’s also fully-spec’d and weather proof … so as an all-rounder, the OM is very tough to compete with (and Olympus just announced two new PRO level zooms, too, which means they have their own ‘Holy Trinity’ of pro glass now). So what about IQ from the E-M1? I would argue approximately as good as my D7000, which is still no slouch itself (neither are as good as the D3s or X-Pro 1 in low light, so if I were traveling, I’d probably keep the X-Pro 1 in my compact kit if I wanted to shoot pre-dawn or twilight landscape-type shots).

  9. Yeah….please just a simple comparison:
    Canon 70-200 L IS USM f4 = 760gramm length =172mm
    Sony 70-200 f4 Lens = 840 gramm lenght = 175mm

    Oh an so much to fast and leightweight primes….
    Canon 50 1,4 USM= 290gramm length = 50mm
    Sony FE 55,18= 281 gramms length = 70mm

    and here some thoughts about thickness…
    Sony A7= 474gramm length = 48 mm
    Canon 6d= 770gramm lenght= 71mm
    Canon 5d= 950gramm lenght= 76mm

  10. Fast telephoto zoom are going to be bulky. At least the small a7(r) itself will not be a brick sized gadget in the bag, that leaves space for a prime.

  11. This is when small FF cameras make less sense than m4/3. The size and weight of the lenses in relation to the body.

  12. A lens that size defeats the purpose of a small camera like the A7 series. It would handle much better with a full size DSLR.

    • It allows A7r users shoot at 200mm f/4 when needed, otherwise they can walk around with a small prime. It’s really hard to do the reverse with a DSLR.

      Of course, a Olympus 75mm on a GX1 is an option if size really maters over image quality.

        • Of course it’s a great lens. You give up quality with the sensor behind it. That GX1 m43 sensor is quite good but again, it’s a given it wont equal a larger size sensor of the same generation. It size didn’t mater, I would easily carry a Canon 135 f/2 on a FF body over it.

      • ? What do you mean D? That you can’t walk around with a prime on a DSLR? I do it all the time, but maybe I’m special. Well, of course I am. Special.

        Anyway, size for size, bit for bit, this is not a small lens so it might upset the balance coupled to a smallish body lke the A7, but as a combo it would still be smaller than a similar 70-200 f4 coupled to a full frame DSLR body. When you’re talking that sort of lens however, balance might be more important than a slight advantage in size and weight.

        • I mean that I can carry my A7r with a 35 prime a lot easier than I can carry my FF Canon even with the nice Canon 40mm pancake. Shooting the occasional shot at 200mm + by mounting a heavy lens on a small body is less of an inconvenience than carrying a large body with a small lens around 90% of the time otherwise. Putting a large lens on a small camera occasionally doesn’t actually defeat the purpose of the small body. I may see it different as I have several systems and can always grab a DSLR if needed but that is become rare these days.

      • “It allows A7r users shoot at 200mm f/4 when needed, otherwise they can walk around with a small prime. It’s really hard to do the reverse with a DSLR.”

        So you get a really poor handling outfit when needed. Here’s the thing, DSLRs actually handle great. With big or small lenses. They are just big. The A7 will handle really poorly with big lenses, so in essence the only trick in its book is it is small with the 2 Sony primes.

        If anything, this just re-enforces the status quo. You want small FF with a full range of fully compatible SMALL lenses – Leica.
        You want FF with a full range of lenses, fast and accurate AF – DSLRs
        You want a small camera with excellent IQ, a full range of small lenses and AF – Olympus 4/3, Fujii X series.

        • I have several systems. I even shoot a Zeiss Ikon and a MF Fuji quite a bit. The A7r has some issues but it’s a fully viable small FF camera that you could mount on a 200mm + lens if needed. In another 12 months they will cover most popular focal lengths. They just released the native 70-200mm f4 zoom as well. The Leica? Fantastic but there’s a reason that it’s almost exclusively shot at 50mm or below. I also have a PEN, OM-D (5 and EM-1) and two Fuji X’s so I’m quite experienced with these. The modern Olympus cameras are superior in operation but don’t equal the Fuji in IQ. The A7r tops the Fuji in IQ but is probably below both in operation. The formula includes Superior IQ + Size + Operation. You basically can only pick two at the moment. Of course, I’m assuming equal glass and equal photographer ability. You could always put that great Oly 150mm f/2 on a PEN and probably out preform a lessor lens on a FF body. It’s great to have a lot of choices but the traditional lines have been blurred with modern camera technology.

          • “The modern Olympus cameras are superior in operation but don’t equal the Fuji in IQ.”

            That’s a gross oversimplification, in my experience. Too many factors to consider here:

            – At what ISOs?

            – Under what lighting conditions?

            – Are you comparing RAW files or OOC jpegs?

            – If you want increased DOF for a [static] shot, you’ll have to stop down the lens on your larger-sensor body, which means jacking up your ISO. Meanwhile, Olympus’ IBIS will allow you to shoot stuff at ISO 400 that you’d have to shoot at at least ISO 3200 with the Fuji, all the while giving you the greater depth of field when shot wide-open. Thus, you’ll gain back some IQ from the smaller sensor by shooting at least 3 stops lower EV.

            – And on and on…

            People seem to forget that the APS sensors are not that much bigger than M4/3. The relative difference between APS and full frame is much greater.

          • I didn’t clarify, that all things being equal, beyond mentioning the great Olympus glass… but again, I have and shoot both. I don’t think there is a disagreement that the EM-1 is operationally better than the Fujis, has a superior viewfinder, etc… although the Fuji Q menu should be on all cameras… but put any 50mm (25mm x2) on the EM-1 and put the 35mm (1.5x) on the Fuji and shoot in the same conditions… With perfect conditions, the Oly can equal the Fuji but otherwise the Fuji will just out preform the EM-1 in IQ otherwise. Lower noise without NR effects, better color in low light, etc. Some of it may be the larger sensor but the XTrans design just works and probably accounts the rest. Even with noise, it just looks better. There’s something more organic about the noise pattern as opposed to the regular digital noise of the Olympus. I actually think this is a given for anyone who owns and shoots both.

    • “…you will have to carry the camera by the lens…”

      Yes, you will, and it’s not even an f/2.8, it’s f/4. Imagine if it were f/2.8 (which is the standard for a pro zoom in this range).

      And therein lies the problem with this whole A7 series experiment.

      IMO this camera is only useful with small primes and short, slow zooms. For everything else, it’s back to a DSLR … or go with Fuji X or M4/3 for true compactness.

    • The funny thing about all these comments is there there were “SLR”s before the “D” was added and those were closer to the size and shape of an A7 then say a D800. DSLRs were originally so big because they needed the space for the electronics (and the mirror). Neither is true any more but for decade we’ve associate bigger with better and more ergonomic. Is there ANY telephoto zoom with a decent aperture aren’t you going to be holding the lens?!

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