Sony A7II with FE 35 1.4 and A7R with 55 1.8 by Kenneth Wang

Sony A7II with FE 35 1.4 and A7R with 55 1.8

by Kenneth Wang

Hi Steve,

I’m a old school amateur photographer who waited until 2009 to change from film to digital cameras. Prior to making the switch, I searched the internet for information about digital photography, when I found your site, your reviews and user reports provided a good guide for me to make the leap.

I now take pictures with Sony equipment, and in my recent trip to Japan and Alaska, I used a Sony A7II with the new FE 35mm 1.4 lens, along with a Sony A7r with the FE 55mm 1.8 lens.

Both the A7II and A7r systems take great pictures, but the character of the pictures are different as you compare them in the following pictures. The A7II has a natural rendering, while the A7r has a 3D pop.

Both the FE 35mm 1.4 lens and the FE 55mm 1.8 lens are sharp, precise and colorful.

Pictures 1 – 4 were taken with the A7r system, pictures 5 -8 were taken with the A7II system

A7ii 35mm ISO 100 125th sec f 1.4 pic 5

A7ii 35mm ISO 200 640th sec f 4 pic 6

A7ii 35mm ISO 200 640th sec f 4 pic 7

A7r 55mm ISO 100 80th sec f 10 pic 1

A7r 55mm ISO 100 200th sec f 4 pic 4

A7r 55mm ISO 100 250th sec f 7.1.jpg pic 2

A7r 55mm ISO 100 500th sec f 4 pic 3


  1. Mr. Wang states: “the character of the pictures are different as you compare them – natural rendering – 3D pop – etc.” He invites the audience to see something critical and nuanced in his images, but for some, those attributes are obscured by the distractions discussed (family/friends circle – holiday snaps – without any photographic merit – rule of thirds – positive or truth?- etc.)
    They say “you never get a second chance to make a first impression”. With that in mind, the advice given seeks to assist & improve his (and maybe other people’s) photography. It was NOT mean spirited, but purely constructive…

  2. Hey Kenneth,
    Thank you for sharing your personal Photographs! These are often the best kinds of images for me to gauge the performance of a lens. If the straightforward family and holiday images look great, as your do, then the more elaborately light ones should look amazing as well.

    Best wishes from Switzerland,


  3. Don’t you guys come here for real world reviews? Doesn’t get more real world than this. He put himself and his work out there and I doubt most of the negativity crew would be willing to take the time to do so.

    Thanks for sharing Kenneth and sorry the site was filled with negativity the day your post went up.

  4. Kenneth is so humble, you snippy negative sorts are going to walk all over him. This site is always half about the pictures and half about the gear, and Kenneth’s pictures fall within these confines. So lighten up. It’s not as you had to pay to get in.

  5. The last photograph is beautiful.

    As for the rest, how are they any different than the type of pics that Steve posts for his camera/lens tests? Those are all the same wife/daughter/dog/buddy in bar shots. And no-one gets on his case but in fact says how great they are. So why are some harshing Kenneth’s mellow?

    Peace out.

  6. Ok, the images presented were not Nat’l Geo composition, but I like Kenneth’s quest for Truth… he went out and bought two great Sony mirrorless cameras and was willing to share his thoughts on how they function differently…which is a subject matter from which all of us can profit.
    Kenneth says he found his a7R images “pop” and thinks images taken with the a7II have a more natural look.
    As a Sony mirrorless camera owner (a7s) who has already ordered the soon-to-b-released a7rII (on Steve’s enthusiastic recommendation)… I am VERY interested to learn how any of you highly critical (about Kenneth’s work) commentators judge the differences in the Sony family mirrorless cameras.

    • To be honest Jim, I don’t care a lot. “Demonstration” pics made with a camera and/or lens one is supremely proud of and satisfied with are usually not all that interesting.

      Interesting images is what it is all about. Interest in “gear”, which I share to some extent, always comes second.

      • Might be time to start your own site…

        …and leave this one to people who actually enjoy a diverse range of thoughts and inspirations.

  7. Why all the negativity? He wasn’t proclaiming himself to be a great photographer, he was talking about the gear. I wonder if you leave your snippy comments about “boring” pictures on Steve’s reviews when he’s just snapping picture of that tree in his backyard, or his friend sitting at a table in a diner so he can have images to discuss the camera/lens quality.

    • Perhaps that’s the problem. I think it shouldn’t be related to the gear, I don’t criticize the photographs shown here because they’re mainly memories about his family, so they’re invaluable and they deserve respect. Nevertheless I don’t understand the need to highlight the used gear because I don’t see it’s been exploited to justify their use.
      There is not even one photograph in dark that would require the advantage of a full frame high iso rendering, and beyond the first one they seem to be almost focused at infinity. A good cellphone had been capable to register those personal moments too with almost the same quality (large DOF and daylight), a good compact camera would be even better to get fill flash at 1/1000 or 1/2000 of second and a silent shutter (less intimidating to familiar and casual photographs) I think perhaps that’s the question about perhaps. That’s my opinion.

  8. The rules rightly say constructive criticism only

    So Kenneth, do you really think these photographs are of interest to anyone outside your family and friends circle? To me, they’re “just” holiday snaps (that I might take as well), but without any photographic merit to them.

    Please look (look!) very carefully at what, for you, constitutes an interesting image, then work from there.

    Oh, the camera isn’t all that important. What you see is.

    • Ahhhhhhh good-old Michiel953, never afraid to pontificate on behalf of the readers!

      ‘Photographic’ or ‘artistic merit’ is completely subjective, so who are you to decree what is or isn’t of any interest to readers of this site? Isn’t that Steve & Brandon’s job?

      Whilst Kenneth might profess that he’s ‘not artistic’, that doesn’t mean that he hasn’t given any thought or consideration to his selection of pictures or their relevance on this site. To assume that and then leave a comment under the guise of ‘constructive criticism’ is just patronizing.

      We all know that cameras don’t ‘make’ the picture, but Steve’s site has always combined photographic inspiration with gear talk and reviews, so there is often great interest in what camera/lens was used. Even Steve, a highly capable photographer, often posts casual shots to illustrate a general feel for a lens or camera. But you knew that already.

      All Kenneth did was share some thoughts about his gear and some samples from his life… okay it’s not Magnum quality …but surely his contribution was in the spirit of Steve’s site?

      • Ahh Luke Patrol, policing every sign of a critical thought. Please read my comment carefully (as should Kenneth, who appears a tad defensive). I did not use the word “artistic”, I did use some other words. “Pontificate”. That’s a nice one. Only on my own behalf though.

        So to clarify myself once again: I find interesting images (following or breaking rules; doesn’t really matter) infinitely more important than “gear”, allright?

  9. So boring! Can’t understand why some people spend thousands of Dollars for gear. Sorry Kenneth, you’ll better buy some Books about Photography.

    • Maybe Kenneth just enjoys the feeling and process of taking pictures with a nice gear – much like a few Leica-philes that I know.

      Besides, it’s hard not to be seduced by that creamy bokeh and 3D pop of the 35mm 1.4!

      • There is no such thing as this pop you mention, just microcontrast which is available in other lenses

    • easy Trickster. Not all photographers need to be as good as you. Kenneth enjoys this, has some lovely memories of his trip with his wife and obviously is smart enough to earn enough money to buy expensive gear. Keep shooting Kenneth, no need to buy books. Last photo is gorgeous!!

  10. The pictures of my wife reading the newspaper, the tug boat and my wife with the green jacket were taken with the A7ii with the FE 35mm 1.4, the beach scene, the cheery blossom scenes and the golden pagoda scene were taken with the A7r with the FE 55mm 1.8.

    • thanks for this post Kenneth. I appreciate your comparison between these two cameras and lenses. Don’t bother about some negative comments here. Keep shooting!! All the best!

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