The Sony mirror-less portfolio had long been super telephoto lenses that were ideal for sports and wildlife photography but that has been taken care of with the announcement of the Sony FE 400mmf/2.8 G-Master lens. Expected to ship internationally from September this year, the lens weighs at a relatively lightweight 2.7kg and successfully fills in the missing link in the existing Sony FE lineup.
The FE 400mm F2.8 GM OSS lens features two newly developed high-speed XD (extreme dynamic) Linear Motors that drive the lens’s focus group, and according to Sony, achieves up to a 5x improvement in moving-subject tracking performance over the 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 GM OSS. The lens is a result of reduced optical elements, which required clever optical design to keep its size and overall weight down. It utilizes three fluorite elements to keep chromatic aberration to a minimum and has a nano AR coating applied to the front element to suppress ghosting and lens flare. Housed within a magnesium alloy shell to provide more durability, it also features an 11-blade aperture for creamy bokeh. The result is “a level of portability and handheld maneuverability that has never before been achieved in a lens of its class,” – Sony says. Unlike other super telephoto lenses, its lightweight body allows it to be used both hand-held or on a monopod or a tripod. Thanks to a carbon fiber hood, the lens is also dust and moisture resistant, and its front element is coated with fluorine to resist dirt and fingerprints.
There are also a number of hard controls on the lens, including customizable focus-hold buttons in four different locations on the lens barrel, which can be programmed for control of features such as Eye AF functionality. Also there is a Full-TIME DMF switch for immediate manual focus at any time, a focus ring with Linear Response MF for finely-controlled manual focus, three different optical stabilization modes and a new Mode 3 that helps frame moving subjects and a function ring with “Preset” and “Function” settings which is definitely a first in a Sony lens. Accepting 40.5mm filters of various types in the rear, the drop-in filter slot comes with a “normal filter” that’s actually a part of the lens’ optical design, making it always necessary to have a filter inserted in the slot for the lens to function.
Well, as you might have already suspected – a lens of this caliber and features doesn’t come cheap. The lens will set you back $12,000. There is no word on Indian price and availability till date.