In love with Sony for everything in relation with all their Alpha Cameras, I’m always looking on the web and everywhere else to find new lenses to help me use all the power of my sony a7sII in low light.
I had the opportunity to travel in Japan from July to August and it was for me the best occasion to create some photography projects I had in mind.
In Switzerland we have each year a specialized photography flew market in Vevey. This year I found a few Canon FD lenses and specially a Canon FD S.S.C 50mm 1.4 for a very good price (for information they stopped the production of the FD lenses in 1992). In this article I will try to do my best to present how I felt using this lens and the results I was able to get with this lens adapted on my a7SII with a K&FConcept adaptation ring.
The first tests I was able to do where in Tokyo during 5 days before to leave for Kamakura (A little town southwest of Tokyo):
What I feel after these few days of testing is a huge lack of sharpness at full opening, it becomes better around f/2.8. Anyway the 1.4 on the Sony body is just incredible, it allows me to shoot with an ISO almost unnoisy in full night thanks to the night lights of this City. I have therefore quickly adopted the utilization of the lens between f/1.4 and f/1.8 and by balancing the miss of sharpness in post-production, "shame" noises of bells will say the purists, YES. But I get a result I like:
On the dark side of this lens I fly through the different negative’s points:
1: We all know that on an FD lens we won’t find an auto-focus and that the aperture settings will be on the lens itself. Personally, I don’t mind by doing all my settings manually, but we quickly notice that we need regularly to update the aperture, ISO and the shutter speed depending on the places and the light in order to be ready quick enough to shoot correct photography. We also need to take in consideration a longer delay to shoot our photo (not so cool for street photography).
2: The lens is not so big in itself, but with the adaptation ring it’s quickly heavy to carry around compared to it’s little brother the Canon FD 1.8 S.C 50mm which is clearly less cumbersome.
3: As said there is a lack of sharpness and vignetting between f/1.4 and f/2.8 which can be corrected in post-production but can disturb depending on the situations.
So in short, for the prize (around 60 CHF) it’s a really fun lens to use that I recommend for every photographer with a low budget or which just like manual settings which allow him to handle 100% of his photography. A combo that I will surely reuse for other low lights projects.
Propositions of lens to test on a Sony a7sII? Do not hesitate to send us an email.