Sony introduces lightweight Sony FE 400mm f/2.8 GM OSS Lens @ 12000$/€

xps

EOS 6D MK II
Oct 19, 2011
894
32
Middle Europe
Found on Sony rumor sites.

Offering at: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1369634-REG/sony_fe_400mm_f_2_8_gm.html

Sony rumor site writes:
"– The world’s lightest 400mm f/2.8 at just 2,895 grams (102.2 ounces)
– Newly developed XD (extreme dynamic) Linear Motor achieves extremely fast, precise, quiet AF
– 1.4x and 2.0x tele-converter support, with high imaging and AF performance
– not front heavy weight like the Canon or Nikon lenses"

Article on DPREVIEW:
https://www.dpreview.com/news/6118705294/sony-s-400mm-f2-8-gm-will-arrive-in-september-for-12-000


Hmmm....
Nearly 1kg less weight than the 400 II 2.8...
(I hope Canon will offer something similar when the Mk III appears on the market)
 

ethanz

1DX II
Apr 12, 2016
1,066
306
ethanzentz.com
Sony 400 f2.8

Here is a short video about their new lens: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WaZzNI5tz0I

Yes its Jared, but he's not too obnoxious in this video.

Looks like a decent lens. And its lighter.
 

ahsanford

Particular Member
Aug 16, 2012
7,973
502
Presume it's FBW?

(Do any wildlifers / sports folks use MF enough to care? Have no idea.)

- A
 

ethanz

1DX II
Apr 12, 2016
1,066
306
ethanzentz.com
ahsanford said:
Presume it's FBW?

(Do any wildlifers / sports folks use MF enough to care? Have no idea.)

- A
Watch the video I linked. Not sure if it answers your question, but he talks about how it focuses.
 

AlanF

Canon 5DSR II
Aug 16, 2012
5,814
3,322
Nice lens, but twice the price and 800g heavier than the 400/4 DO II.
 

Mikehit

EOS 5D MK IV
Jul 28, 2015
3,227
416
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVIogwOPBfU

It looks impressive.
His one criticism is the camera locking up - would a pro be willing to risk that?
 

neuroanatomist

I post too Much on Here!!
Jul 21, 2010
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AlanF said:
Nice lens, but twice the price and 800g heavier than the 400/4 DO II.
Sure, but it’s f/2.8. Compare the 300/4 to the 300/2.8, or the 200/2 to the 200/2.8 – the increased cost and weight for the extra stop of aperture are much greater than comparing the 400/4 to the 400/2.8 (mainly because the 400/4 is a supertele in it’s own right, whereas the 300/4 and 200/2.8 aren’t).
 

xps

EOS 6D MK II
Oct 19, 2011
894
32
Middle Europe
Well, on the first look, this lens has some well planned advantages. Less weight and better balancing. Two advantages, I´d like to see in the next 400mm 2.8 Canon glass too.
Most time, I´m using the 600+1.4x, but more often, I see that I need an 400 2.8 solution for fast and near passing animals in dawn.
The first 400mm I photographed with, was more than 6 kg. The newer MK II is lower than 4kg, so Canon maybe is willed to reduce its weight again for about 25% :D
 

PavelR

EOS 80D
xps said:
Well, on the first look, this lens has some well planned advantages. Less weight and better balancing. Two advantages, I´d like to see in the next 400mm 2.8 Canon glass too.
Most time, I´m using the 600+1.4x, but more often, I see that I need an 400 2.8 solution for fast and near passing animals in dawn.
The first 400mm I photographed with, was more than 6 kg. The newer MK II is lower than 4kg, so Canon maybe is willed to reduce its weight again for about 25% :D
There are another two advantages ;-):
* Eye AF over almost whole frame
* 20 fps with AF
 

docsmith

EOS 6D MK II
Sep 17, 2010
869
249
No system is perfect, but it is nice to see Sony populating their lens lineup. Depending on what you want to do, they are a viable option, IMO.

Still happy with my Canon gear.
 

ahsanford

Particular Member
Aug 16, 2012
7,973
502
PavelR said:
There are another two advantages ;-):
* Eye AF over almost whole frame
* 20 fps with AF
...yet 5 fps with a mechanical shutter. The A9 was just a mad technology project, IMHO -- 'look at this insane performance level we can attain!'

The A7 third generation in general is more of Sony's real next step forward. Those cameras are not 1-series killers or anything and their ergonomics continue to hurt my eyes/hands/wrists, but they have more completely realizable specs without fine print, exceptions and limitations than the A7 second-gen and A9 did.

Consider: A7 III = 10 fps + full 14-bit RAW + AF on the whole time + mechanical shutter with a lot less lens-related fine print. I'll take that over 20 fps on a Tuesday if it's a full moon and your lens is X and you don't mind nutty e-shutter artifacts every time.

Sony's getting there, don't get me wrong, but there are a dozen reasons the A9 isn't on every sideline today. Lack of long pro lenses is just one of those reasons.

- A
 

AlanF

Canon 5DSR II
Aug 16, 2012
5,814
3,322
neuroanatomist said:
AlanF said:
Nice lens, but twice the price and 800g heavier than the 400/4 DO II.
Sure, but it’s f/2.8. Compare the 300/4 to the 300/2.8, or the 200/2 to the 200/2.8 – the increased cost and weight for the extra stop of aperture are much greater than comparing the 400/4 to the 400/2.8 (mainly because the 400/4 is a supertele in it’s own right, whereas the 300/4 and 200/2.8 aren’t).
The 300/4 is an antique lens with poor IS and takes a TC poorly. If it had modern configuration it would be worth having. The 400/4 is a superb lens which has excellent IS and takes TCs very well. You have to weigh up the loss of a stop against size, weight and cost and performance.
 

PavelR

EOS 80D
ahsanford said:
PavelR said:
There are another two advantages ;-):
* Eye AF over almost whole frame
* 20 fps with AF
...yet 5 fps with a mechanical shutter. The A9 was just a mad technology project, IMHO -- 'look at this insane performance level we can attain!'

The A7 third generation in general is more of Sony's real next step forward. Those cameras are not 1-series killers or anything and their ergonomics continue to hurt my eyes/hands/wrists, but they have more completely realizable specs without fine print, exceptions and limitations than the A7 second-gen and A9 did.

Consider: A7 III = 10 fps + full 14-bit RAW + AF on the whole time + mechanical shutter with a lot less lens-related fine print. I'll take that over 20 fps on a Tuesday if it's a full moon and your lens is X and you don't mind nutty e-shutter artifacts every time.

Sony's getting there, don't get me wrong, but there are a dozen reasons the A9 isn't on every sideline today. Lack of long pro lenses is just one of those reasons.

- A
I know full time photographers that use A9...
I use mechanical shutter 1% of the time thus 5fps is not limitation for me. But there are features that any Canon/Nikon DSLR does not have: really silent shutter usable in almost all artificial light, almost whole frame Eye AF, zebra in VF, focus peeking in VF, 4K full width readout.
There are some drawbacks (weather sealing, buttons size = unusable with big gloves), but I've downgraded body handling already by changing Nikon d2x + d200 to Canon 1d4 + 1ds3, so the situation is repeated. But the advantages are huge - I'm using M mode 99% of the time even on the light changing situations on the stage and do not need to check exposure on a display. I can use now 200/2 wide open every time focused on the eye, which was not possible on Canon bodies...
 

ahsanford

Particular Member
Aug 16, 2012
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PavelR said:
I know full time photographers that use A9...
I use mechanical shutter 1% of the time thus 5fps is not limitation for me. But there are features that any Canon/Nikon DSLR does not have: really silent shutter usable in almost all artificial light, almost whole frame Eye AF, zebra in VF, focus peeking in VF, 4K full width readout.
There are some drawbacks (weather sealing, buttons size = unusable with big gloves), but I've downgraded body handling already by changing Nikon d2x + d200 to Canon 1d4 + 1ds3, so the situation is repeated. But the advantages are huge - I'm using M mode 99% of the time even on the light changing situations on the stage and do not need to check exposure on a display. I can use now 200/2 wide open every time focused on the eye, which was not possible on Canon bodies...
Forgive me -- my post was not an SLR > mirrorless statement. Mirrorless (esp. Sony's implementation of mirorrless, the tech, features, etc.) can do some awesome things, yes, there's no denying that.

I'm just saying that we're fooling ourselves if we think that if Sony can aggressively compete in sports/wildlife circles with just a couple more superwhites. They are truly years away from bridging the gap in this, one of the most demanding and unreasonable realms of photography.

- A
 

Mr Majestyk

EOS 80D
Feb 20, 2016
183
73
Canon is working on mkIII superteles and we expect them before 2020 Olympics. I'll bet their jaws hit the floor when they saw the weight of the Sony 400 f/2.8. That's an insane weight reduction and I wonder if this will cause Canon troubles. I had maybe expected mk III's to be 10% lighter, as they mentioned at one stage they will reduce weight with new alloy, but can they achieve essentially DO type weight reduction of 25%. I can now expect the Sony 600 f/4 to also be around 3kg and the 500 f/4 to be 2.5kg. If this comes to light then that will complete my transition away from Canon unless they have something amazing waiting on the mk III's and in the mirrorless segment. Even though the Sony A9 has flaws of ergonomics the performance is insane and I'm tempted to get one, but I know the A9 II will be a vast improvement. Also lack of a supertele 500/600 or even a supertele 200-500/600 zoom is what's really holding me back. For now an A7R3 is a nice introduction to FF mirrorless and I'll bide my time and see what unfolds over the next 12 months. I'm selling my 1DX since the Nikon D500 has better AF so I'll just have the 5D4 left from a once 4 strong Canon fleet.
 

docsmith

EOS 6D MK II
Sep 17, 2010
869
249
ahsanford said:
I'm just saying that we're fooling ourselves if we think that if Sony can aggressively compete in sports/wildlife circles with just a couple more superwhites. They are truly years away from bridging the gap in this, one of the most demanding and unreasonable realms of photography.

- A


I guess it depends on what you mean by "aggressively compete." While Sony definitely works hard to get the internet review crowd, and I do not want to discount that, but I watched a couple of those videos, and there were some darn good images taken with the Sony system. I think it could be argued that they are starting to compete on certain levels now. If you think of it, a great kit woudl be the 16-35, 24-70, 70-200, 100-400 and the 400 f/2.8. You could do a lot of sports/wildlife with that kit.

On all levels, no. But they are definitely getting to be a more complete system.
 

neuroanatomist

I post too Much on Here!!
Jul 21, 2010
24,619
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AlanF said:
neuroanatomist said:
AlanF said:
Nice lens, but twice the price and 800g heavier than the 400/4 DO II.
Sure, but it’s f/2.8. Compare the 300/4 to the 300/2.8, or the 200/2 to the 200/2.8 – the increased cost and weight for the extra stop of aperture are much greater than comparing the 400/4 to the 400/2.8 (mainly because the 400/4 is a supertele in it’s own right, whereas the 300/4 and 200/2.8 aren’t).
The 300/4 is an antique lens with poor IS and takes a TC poorly. If it had modern configuration it would be worth having. The 400/4 is a superb lens which has excellent IS and takes TCs very well. You have to weigh up the loss of a stop against size, weight and cost and performance.
Fair enough. Compare the 100-400/4.5-5.6 II to the 400/4 DO II. Both modern, excellent lenses. The extra stop comes at a 33% weight premium and a 300% cost premium.
 

ahsanford

Particular Member
Aug 16, 2012
7,973
502
docsmith said:
I guess it depends on what you mean by "aggressively compete."
I define that as willingness for sports/wildlife professionals to stake their livelihood on this gear not letting them down. They simply aren't there yet.

That said, sure, they could make inroads with enthusiasts right now with a 100-400 and a TC.

- A
 

AlanF

Canon 5DSR II
Aug 16, 2012
5,814
3,322
neuroanatomist said:
AlanF said:
neuroanatomist said:
AlanF said:
Nice lens, but twice the price and 800g heavier than the 400/4 DO II.
Sure, but it’s f/2.8. Compare the 300/4 to the 300/2.8, or the 200/2 to the 200/2.8 – the increased cost and weight for the extra stop of aperture are much greater than comparing the 400/4 to the 400/2.8 (mainly because the 400/4 is a supertele in it’s own right, whereas the 300/4 and 200/2.8 aren’t).
The 300/4 is an antique lens with poor IS and takes a TC poorly. If it had modern configuration it would be worth having. The 400/4 is a superb lens which has excellent IS and takes TCs very well. You have to weigh up the loss of a stop against size, weight and cost and performance.
Fair enough. Compare the 100-400/4.5-5.6 II to the 400/4 DO II. Both modern, excellent lenses. The extra stop comes at a 33% weight premium and a 300% cost premium.
I use both regularly. If you stop at 400mm, then the expensive f/4 prime is hardly worth having as the IQ of both is very similar, f/4 is just one stop better and a zoom is so useful. The difference comes in with TCs. With a 1.4xTC the prime is streets ahead and it is also an excellent f/8 800mm with AF. In contrast, the f/4 and f/2.8 400mm have comparable IQs and both have AF with TCs. The f/2.8 does have a 1-stop advantage but it is really a monopod or tripod lens whereas the f/4 is light enough for easy hiking and hand held for long periods without a pod. I personally for my purposes far prefer the f/4 over the f/2.8 prime and even the 100-400mm II over the f/2.8. But others may take the opposite view.
 

Durf

Picture Taker - Image Maker
ahsanford said:
docsmith said:
I guess it depends on what you mean by "aggressively compete."
I define that as willingness for sports/wildlife professionals to stake their livelihood on this gear not letting them down. They simply aren't there yet.

That said, sure, they could make inroads with enthusiasts right now with a 100-400 and a TC.

- A
That's who they are mainly targeting right now, enthusiasts....and slowly working towards proving themselves to the pro market.

The Sony system is in "beta test mode" in my opinion, but they are making a remarkable footprint in the photography world in a rather quick way. I personally believe they have a ways to go before being able to prove themselves as reliable and dependable as the other major pro systems.

I'm sure there are many pro's right now watching Sony closely......