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Author Topic: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?  (Read 3914 times)

shadowblade

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #20 on: June 20, 2017, 10:48:24 PM »

No it isn't.

The new E FL ED is faster than Nikon's G VR II (Canon's equivalent), with better VR, and better imagery. Why would you think Canon's elder lens would be "as fast" as Nikon's newest?

Further, Canon's AF performance on a Sony, with an adapter, might not have the same translation as Nikkor AF (E) on a Sony.



Exactly. Fast AF + poor performance = you get lousy results "quickly" :-\

Wouldn't it be better to get awesome results at a decent pace?



On the contrary, many top-tier lenses have average (even zero) AF.

I guess my real point is try it out for yourself and see ... rather than base your belief system on "reviews" and assumptions.

Weren't all of the Sony 70-200 GM reviews "glowing" ... and yet your own experience was mediocre?

Point being, you were prejudiced in favor of the Sony ... but it disappointed ... so consider the possi-(probi)bility that you might be prejudiced against the Nikkor ... and yet you might be thrilled.

With a 30-day trial/return with most reputable dealers, what have you got to lose?

7 days here, not 30, with return for store credit only.

Besides, I don't even own a camera at the moment - had to borrow the A7r2 and A9 to test lenses.

The top-tier lenses with no AF aren't action lenses. The 70-200 is, and I'd intend to shoot action with it occasionally.

It seems a waste to spend 3k on a lens with the intention of throwing it out after a few years when Sony comes out with a better version of its current lens. I don't really want to buy a lens that won't work as well on my camera as it does on its native mount (so TS-E and Otus lenses are fair game, since the work just as well on any camera). I'm also hesitant to buy into the Nikon system, given that its future is uncertain (certainly the future of the SLR F-mount, possibly the future of the company) and given that the D820, at 42-46MP, seems almost certain to significantly under-resolve the A7r2 and 5Ds replacements

In any case, are there any adapters which AF well with Nikon lenses?
« Last Edit: June 20, 2017, 11:06:43 PM by shadowblade »
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JKoerner007

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #21 on: June 20, 2017, 11:04:47 PM »

7 days here, not 30, with return for store credit only.

That's a bummer. Still, since you're going to buy "something," credit is not really that bad.



Besides, I don't even own a camera at the moment - had to borrow the A7r2 and A9 to test lenses.

Even more of a bummer.



The top-tier lenses with no AF aren't action lenses. The 70-200 is, and I'd intend to shoot action with it occasionally.

"No" AF is a stretch. The E FL ED has blistering AF with Nikkor, likely decent AF with an adapter.



It seems a waste to spend 3k on a lens with the intention of throwing it out after a few years when Sony comes out with a better version of its current lens.

I doubt Sony is going to produce a better lens than the FL ED Nikkor. Maybe better than its own, but you've already given your opinion on that.

$3000 isn't a "waste," if it produces the best image quality you can get. Given it's the modern Nikkor design, you could enjoy it for a long time, now until the foreseeable future, and sell it for a decent amount should something more appealing get developed ... at a much later date.



In any case, are there any adapters which AF well with Nikon lenses?

Not sure on that one, to be honest, as I don't need to use adapters on my D810. (Just sold my D500 in anticipation for the D850.)
« Last Edit: June 20, 2017, 11:08:59 PM by JKoerner007 »
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davidgp

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #22 on: June 21, 2017, 12:59:40 AM »



In any case, are there any adapters which AF well with Nikon lenses?

I think Fotodiox has an AF adapter for Nikon lenses, but I didn't read too much good things about it.

Since many people switching to Sony were from Canon cameras (from Nikon made less sense, they were already using were using Sony sensors... Before canon released their new sensor technology in the 80D... And reduce a bit the advantage of Sony in DR and noise at low ISO). The best AF adapters are the ones from Metabones and Sigma for Canon lenses, and even those, since they are reverse engineering the Canon EF protocol (it's not documented to anybody but Canon), they don't work well in all lenses and never close to native implementation.

shadowblade

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #23 on: June 21, 2017, 01:09:37 AM »

I doubt Sony is going to produce a better lens than the FL ED Nikkor. Maybe better than its own, but you've already given your opinion on that.

$3000 isn't a "waste," if it produces the best image quality you can get. Given it's the modern Nikkor design, you could enjoy it for a long time, now until the foreseeable future, and sell it for a decent amount should something more appealing get developed ... at a much later date.

So, maybe 30% of the purchase price to essentially rent it for 5 years or so? Although I'd still need a second 70-200 for those action shots on the occasions that I take them - expensive to buy, even more annoying to carry.

I'm really hoping the 100-400 is razor-sharp corner-to-corner, allowing it to do double duty as the landscape telephoto in addition to being a wildlife lens for non-dedicated-wildlife trips. Then I may be able to skip this generation of 70-200 entirely, until Sigma or Sony release something better (or at least with better QC - the sharp 70-200 GM images I've seen are *really* sharp, corner-to-corner).

Every lens gets superseded eventually. The Canon 70-200 was best in class for 6 years, until the Nikon came along. Each generation tends to outdo the last - Canon and Nikon have been leapfrogging each other for decades. When Canon updates their current 70-200, it will likely outdo even the current Nikon (with a 60-80MP 5Ds2, it had better be sharp). And, if Sony acquires Nikon, all bets are off.
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #24 on: June 21, 2017, 01:56:42 AM »

The best AF adapters are the ones from Metabones and Sigma for Canon lenses, and even those, since they are reverse engineering the Canon EF protocol (it's not documented to anybody but Canon), they don't work well in all lenses and never close to native implementation.

It is in fact surprising that Sigma has not released an adapter for Nikon AF lenses since they are already reverse engineering the Nikon AF.

Cheers,
Bernard
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davidgp

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #25 on: June 21, 2017, 03:21:09 AM »

It is in fact surprising that Sigma has not released an adapter for Nikon AF lenses since they are already reverse engineering the Nikon AF.

Cheers,
Bernard

I think it is just a market decision, probably less people switching from Nikon to Sony than Canon to Sony...

I think this could be for two reasons,  Nikon is already using Sony sensors, so less motives to switch from Nikon to Sony. Secondly, there are more Canon users than other brand... so a higher probability than someone is interested to use a Canon lens than a Nikon...


BernardLanguillier

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #26 on: June 21, 2017, 04:45:40 AM »

I think it is just a market decision, probably less people switching from Nikon to Sony than Canon to Sony...

I think this could be for two reasons,  Nikon is already using Sony sensors, so less motives to switch from Nikon to Sony. Secondly, there are more Canon users than other brand... so a higher probability than someone is interested to use a Canon lens than a Nikon...

Yes, fair enough.

Cheers,
Bernard
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hogloff

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #27 on: June 21, 2017, 09:12:39 AM »

Forget about experimenting with Nikon AF lenses on Sony bodies...they just don't perform. If you are looking at AF tracking with Sony cameras, stick to Sony mount lenses. I understand Sigma is in the process of releasing their lenses with native Sony mounts. I'd wait rather than drop $3,000 for an mediocre solution.
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JKoerner007

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #28 on: June 21, 2017, 11:35:50 AM »

So, maybe 30% of the purchase price to essentially rent it for 5 years or so? Although I'd still need a second 70-200 for those action shots on the occasions that I take them - expensive to buy, even more annoying to carry.

Again, you assume. I was merely suggesting you actually try and see.



I'm really hoping the 100-400 is razor-sharp corner-to-corner, allowing it to do double duty as the landscape telephoto in addition to being a wildlife lens for non-dedicated-wildlife trips. Then I may be able to skip this generation of 70-200 entirely, until Sigma or Sony release something better (or at least with better QC - the sharp 70-200 GM images I've seen are *really* sharp, corner-to-corner).

One of your main complaints is that the 70-200 Sony was mush at f/2.8, so how is a slow f/4 100-400 going to solve your desire to be razor-sharp at f/2.8 :o


Every lens gets superseded eventually. The Canon 70-200 was best in class for 6 years, until the Nikon came along. Each generation tends to outdo the last - Canon and Nikon have been leapfrogging each other for decades.

Not so. Canon's L II and Nikon's VR II 70-200 lenses were basically even, until Nikon upped the ante with the 70-200E FL ED, improving it in every respect, whilst minimizing its size and weight.



When Canon updates their current 70-200, it will likely outdo even the current Nikon (with a 60-80MP 5Ds2, it had better be sharp). And, if Sony acquires Nikon, all bets are off.

There are a lot of if-clauses, "likelys," and "may"-prognostications in your thinking.

Back to reality: no one is going to buy Nikkor, and they've been completely dominant (batting 100%) in creating class-leading super-teles with their E FL ED glass. Thus, why not see for sure how the best current 70-200 f/2.8 works for you?

It's just a suggestion. Won't hurt to give it a shot.

JKoerner007

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #29 on: June 21, 2017, 11:37:21 AM »

Forget about experimenting with Nikon AF lenses on Sony bodies...they just don't perform.

How can you make this blanket, unilateral statement for E lenses as well as G?

The subject of this thread was a lament that, in fact, the Sony "didn't perform."



If you are looking at AF tracking with Sony cameras, stick to Sony mount lenses.

Yes, but the native Sony lenses suck by comparison, so why "stick with that" at all?



I understand Sigma is in the process of releasing their lenses with native Sony mounts. I'd wait rather than drop $3,000 for an mediocre solution.

The Sigma 70-200 is the mediocre solution. There is nothing "mediocre" about the 70-200E FL ED. Anyway, to each his own.

I am glad I don't have to "wait" for anything to get both class-leading, wide-aperture acutance and AF with Nikon.

jwstl

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #30 on: June 21, 2017, 11:38:52 AM »

Forget about experimenting with Nikon AF lenses on Sony bodies...they just don't perform. If you are looking at AF tracking with Sony cameras, stick to Sony mount lenses. I understand Sigma is in the process of releasing their lenses with native Sony mounts. I'd wait rather than drop $3,000 for an mediocre solution.

Exactly. the Nikon 70-200 is best in class but the AF Nikon to Sony adapters just can't keep up with high speed action. I have one and use it with my wide to short tele primes for mostly static subjects but that's it. I would rather have a Nikon body and the Nikon 70-200 than the A7RII and the Sony 70-200 if action is the primary use. Nikon isn't going anywhere.
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shadowblade

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #31 on: June 21, 2017, 12:04:48 PM »

Again, you assume. I was merely suggesting you actually try and see.

Easy enough to say when it's not your money going towards the trial.

If the AF doesn't hold up with an adapter (and, so far, it doesn't hold up for tracking action with any lens, from any maker, on any adapter), I'm stuck with a $3000 lemon.

Quote
One of your main complaints is that the 70-200 Sony was mush at f/2.8, so how is a slow f/4 100-400 going to solve your desire to be razor-sharp at f/2.8 :o

If it's sharp wide-open, it still ticks off several requirements that would otherwise require an extra lens in the kit.

If it were only sharp in the middle, it would covers the odd wildlife or distant action shot on trips not otherwise dedicated to wildlife.

If it's also sharp enough in the corners for lsndscape work, it can pull double duty as the telephoto landscape lens. That way, I could do without the 70-200 until a good one comes out, rather thab choosing between one that is soft and one which won't AF as well as a native lens.

Quote
Not so. Canon's L II and Nikon's VR II 70-200 lenses were basically even, until Nikon upped the ante with the 70-200E FL ED, improving it in every respect, whilst minimizing its size and weight.

Central sharpness, yes. Not so much in the corners, and not so much when it came to CA. The VR II was close, but the Canon was still ahead.

 
Quote

There are a lot of if-clauses, "likelys," and "may"-prognostications in your thinking.

Back to reality: no one is going to buy Nikkor, and they've been completely dominant (batting 100%) in creating class-leading super-teles with their E FL ED glass. Thus, why not see for sure how the best current 70-200 f/2.8 works for you?

It's just a suggestion. Won't hurt to give it a shot.

It's a $3000 gamble with bad odds. No other lens on any adapter comes close to matching the AF performance of even the worst native lens. Why should this be any different?

Nikon's telephotos are currently the best because they're also the newest. Notice how the general trend is that, where the Nikon lens is newer than the Canon equivalent, the Nikon is better, while, when the Canon lens is newer than Nikon's closest equivalent (e.g. 11-24, 16-35 f/2.8, 200-400) the Canon is better? Nikon and Canon lenses keep leapfrogging each other, and whichever one is better at the time depends largely on which one is newer, rather than who makes it.
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hogloff

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #32 on: June 21, 2017, 12:26:40 PM »

How can you make this blanket, unilateral statement for E lenses as well as G?

The subject of this thread was a lament that, in fact, the Sony "didn't perform."



Yes, but the native Sony lenses suck by comparison, so why "stick with that" at all?



The Sigma 70-200 is the mediocre solution. There is nothing "mediocre" about the 70-200E FL ED. Anyway, to each his own.

I am glad I don't have to "wait" for anything to get both class-leading, wide-aperture acutance and AF with Nikon.

We all get it that you are a Nikon cheerleader, but I'm giving practical advice from experience with native Sony glass and adapted glass...the AF is just not adequate, at least not tracking and no eye AF which is really a game changer.

How much experience do you have with adapting lenses to Sony cameras...thought so. And how much experience do you have shooting the 70-200 GM...thought so. Nuff said here.
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alan_b

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #33 on: June 21, 2017, 01:29:43 PM »

Forget about experimenting with Nikon AF lenses on Sony bodies...they just don't perform. If you are looking at AF tracking with Sony cameras, stick to Sony mount lenses. I understand Sigma is in the process of releasing their lenses with native Sony mounts. I'd wait rather than drop $3,000 for an mediocre solution.

Which Nikon -> Sony AF adapter(s) have you used?  Specifically what performance fails: won't AF at all, slow to focus, won't track, etc?
Thanks.

JKoerner007

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #34 on: June 21, 2017, 01:31:04 PM »

We all get it that you are a Nikon cheerleader, but I'm giving practical advice from experience with native Sony glass and adapted glass...the AF is just not adequate, at least not tracking and no eye AF

Why the ad hominem?

Have you ever tried a Nikkor E (electromagnetic-aperture) lens or only G (mechanical-lever) Nikkor lenses?

My point is there is likely a difference.



which is really a game changer.

Is that not your own cheering? ;)

hogloff

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #35 on: June 21, 2017, 01:42:30 PM »

Which Nikon -> Sony AF adapter(s) have you used?  Specifically what performance fails: won't AF at all, slow to focus, won't track, etc?
Thanks.

Haven't used any Nikon adapters but have used both the Metabones and Sigma adapters for Canon lenses. They work fine for static objects, but fall short for tracking and especially in low light compared to native glass. I would not use adapted lenses if my goal was AF tracking.

From all the discussion on the net, adapted Nikon lenses are even worse at AF.
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hogloff

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #36 on: June 21, 2017, 01:46:35 PM »

Why the ad hominem?

Have you ever tried a Nikkor E (electromagnetic-aperture) lens or only G (mechanical-lever) Nikkor lenses?

My point is there is likely a difference.



Is that not your own cheering? ;)

No, never used Nikon lenses on Sony cameras...but I've tested quite a few Canon lenses on Sony cameras using various adapters and was not satisfied with the AF...specifically AF tracking. Talking with people who tried using Nikon lenses on Sony cameras in AF tracking modes, they basically abandoned their efforts.

Bottom line, my recommendations are to stick to native mount Sony lenses if you want consistent AF tracking. That is in line with everyone I discussed this with.
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shadowblade

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #37 on: June 21, 2017, 02:05:20 PM »

Why the ad hominem?

Have you ever tried a Nikkor E (electromagnetic-aperture) lens or only G (mechanical-lever) Nikkor lenses?

My point is there is likely a difference.



Is that not your own cheering? ;)

Canon lenses have had electromagnetic apertures since 1988. It's only a new thing for Nikon.

We all know how well Canon lenses AF with adapters. Functional for locking onto things that don't move much, not great for tracking action against busy backgrounds. We also know that many Nikon lenses won't work with adapters at all, since there's no way to control the aperture without a mechanical link.

Adding an electromagnetic aperture doesn't make a lens AF any better. It merely makes the use of an adapter possible. Nikon E lenses use the same sort of motors as G lenses,  or Canon EF lenses,  or Sony A-mount lenses - optimised for single, rapid moves via PDAF, without the capacity to make rapid, small, precise moves necessary to take advantage of other focus modes used concurrently by mirrorless cameras. That the new Nikon 70-200 focuses so well is due to the D5/D500 AF system, not due to anything inherent in the lens. There's no special AF technology in the lens that a mirrorless camera can take advantage of, but which Canon/Sigma/Sony all lack. The Nikon 70-200 won't do any better with an adapter than any other lens AF-wise. Not that there are many good Nikon AF adapters to even test it with.
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JKoerner007

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #38 on: June 21, 2017, 02:31:40 PM »

Talking with people who tried using Nikon lenses on Sony cameras in AF tracking modes, they basically abandoned their efforts.

This only begs the question: were they using G lenses or E lenses?

There is an avalanche of the former, hardly any of the latter.

It matters, because the former has a mechanical lever (making adapters struggle more) while the latter does not.

JKoerner007

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Re: What's wrong with the Sony 70-200 f/2.8 GM?
« Reply #39 on: June 21, 2017, 02:39:14 PM »

Adding an electromagnetic aperture doesn't make a lens AF any better.

Perhaps, but the older G lenses with mechanical levers were harder to mesh with other systems via third-party adapters.

The G lenses do not give precise aperture control, whereas other manufacturers (Canon) did not have the same lever control mechanism in their camera bodies.

This has all been changed with Nikkor's E lenses.

You used to use the Canon 70-200, which satisfied you, so the Nikkor 70-200E FL ED would have upgraded you from your past position.

You just finished a long series of laments, after trying the "native Sony," which let you down and couldn't even compare to your old Canon.

Yours therefore appears to be a self-inflicted dilemma, as the best of both worlds, right now, rests with Nikkor E FL ED telephoto lenses ... on Nikon cameras for sure ... and even Sony cameras ... and it will likely stay this way for several years.

You keep arguing theory and future prognostications for a purchase decision to be made today or next month.

Hope that works out for you,
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