Sony Introduces the New Super-Telephoto 600mm F4 G Master™ Prime Lens
EQUIPMENT THAT I CANNOT AFFORD
I really hate it when companies announce products that I will never be able to afford. Last week Apple announced a new Mac Pro which will retail here in Ireland for about Euro 6000 but the associated monitor will cost about Euro 5000 and believe it or not the stand will retail at about Euro 1200.
As I have paid as much as Euro 6000 for a computer many years ago maybe I could justify getting the Mac Base unit if I could be certain that it would serve my needs for five or six years [assuming that it is really upgradable]. For a professional monitor the new Apple Monitor is not especially expensive but I could not justify getting one.
Anyway, I am pleased with my current [maxed out] 27 inch iMac and cannot see any need to replace it for at least another two years.
Oner the last few years I have devoted most of my budget to purchasing lenses for my Sony A7RIII and I have most of the GM lenses, all of the Zeiss Batis lenses, two large Sigma lenses and two excellent Voigtlander lenses. I also have a number other Zeiss/Sony lenses and all of the FE G lenses.
I have, more or less, decided not to purchase any new lenses during 2019 but I would consider the new 200-600 which is due out in August but I am hoping that Sony will announce a new body before then and if they do it is most likely that I will not be getting any new lenses in 2019 or 2020.
Sony now have two lenses that I will never have the funds to purchase and the SEL600F4OGM with a retail price of Euro 14,000 is one of them.
Sony today announced another impressive addition to its flagship full-frame G Master series lens line-up, the new FE 600mm F4 GM OSS super-telephoto prime lens (model SEL600F40GM).
Sony’s longest reaching prime lens, the new 600mm includes many of the company’s most advanced optical and mechanical technologies, producing exceptional image quality with extraordinary focusing speed and precision. The lightest in its class[i], weighing in at only approx. 3040g, the FE 600mm F4 GM OSS features an extremely balanced design to ensure the best possible shooting experience. Along with the acclaimed FE 400mm F2.8 GM OSS lens, the new 600mm gives professional sports, wildlife and news photographers more options for capturing subjects at great distances with extreme accuracy and detail.
“With two new lenses announced today, our growing E-mount lens line-up now includes 33 full-frame models and 51 lenses in total. The 10th model from our flagship G Master series, the new 600mm F4 raises the bar for speed, mobility and control in a super-telephoto prime lens,” said Yann Salmon Legagneur, Director of Product Marketing, Digital Imaging at Sony Europe. “Combining the extensive 600mm reach with features like 20 fps shooting and AF/AE calculations at 60 times per second on the α9 or extremely high resolution, high speed performance on the α7R III allow professional photographers to create images that were simply not possible to capture before.”
Fast, Precise and Quiet Autofocus[ii]
To take best advantage of the highly evolved autofocus systems of Sony’s latest full-frame E-mount cameras, the new FE 600mm F4 GM OSS lens features two XD (extreme dynamic) Linear Motors that drive the lens’ focus group to provide fast, precise AF and reliable subject tracking. These motors are supported by specially developed motion algorithms to minimise lag and instability, as well as to control noise levels, resulting in exceptionally quick, accurate and quiet autofocus performance, allowing the lens to capture dynamic, fast moving athletes or wildlife with ease.
Superb G Master Image Quality and Bokeh
As a member of Sony’s flagship G Master series lenses, this new large aperture super-telephoto prime lens features an incredible level of image quality and detail, with outstanding contrast and resolution maintained all the way to the corners of the image. The unique optical design includes a large XA (extreme aspherical) and an ED (extra-low dispersion) element that effectively suppress all common telephoto lens aberrations, plus three fluorite elements that help to minimise chromatic aberration and suppress any amount of colour bleeding. Sony’s latest bokeh simulation technologies and XA element are also utilised to control spherical aberration and help achieve exquisite bokeh.
The lens also features an 11-blade circular aperture mechanism that contributes to the high quality of bokeh in images, and has been coated with Sony’s original Nano AR coating to suppress any unwanted reflections, glare, or ghosting in images.
The new FE 600mm F4 GM OSS is compatible with Sony’s 1.4x and 2.0x E-mount tele-converters, producing outstanding imaging performance at extended focal lengths[iii] while maintaining fast, precise AF performance.
Lightweight, Balanced Design
Weighing in at only approx. 3040g, the new super-telephoto prime lens is the lightest in its classi, providing a level of portability and manoeuvrability that has never been achieved before in a lens of its style. Based on technology from the acclaimed FE 400mm F2.8 GM OSS lens, the lightweight design of the new 600mm lens is achieved through the usage of three fluorite elements, with a reduced number of elements deployed at the front of the barrel. Magnesium alloy is also used throughout the lens to help minimise weight and bulk.
Also inherited from FE 400mm F2.8 GM OSS, the new 600mm lens features a lens design that is not front-heavy, reducing moment of inertia that resists rotation, ensuring quicker, more precise panning when shooting handheld or on a monopod.
Durability, Reliability and Control
To withstand the harsh conditions of sporting events and wildlife photography, Sony’s new FE 600mm F4 GM OSS is built with a durable magnesium alloy and a strong, lightweight carbon fibre hood. The lens is also dust and moisture resistant[iv], and its front element is coated with fluorine to resist dirt and fingerprints.
There is also an ample number of hard controls on the lens, including customisable focus-hold buttons in four different locations on the lens barrel, which can be programmed for control of features, if desired. There is also a ‘Full-Time DMF’ switch to immediately engage manual focus at any point, and a focus ring that features Linear Response MF for fine, responsive manual focus.
Additionally, the new lens includes built-in optical stabilisation for dynamic action and three different ‘Mode’ settings, including a Mode 3[v] setting with an advanced algorithm that ensures easier framing when following moving subjects. It also features a function ring with selectable ‘Preset’ and ‘Function’ settings, and a drop-in filter slot that accepts ø 40.5mm ND and other filter types, as well as the optional VF-DCPL1 Drop-in Circular Polarising Filter. The VF-DCPL1 filter can be rotated to achieve the desired polarisation while installed in the lens.
Pricing and Availability
The FE 600mm F4 GM OSS will ship in Europe in August 2019, priced at approximately €14,000.
For full product details, please visit: https://www.sony.co.uk/electronics/camera-lenses/sel600f40gm
A product video on the new SEL400F40GM canbe viewed at https://youtu.be/nMy0za-ew1Q
A variety of exclusive stories, videos and exciting new content shot with the newest cameras and other Sony α products can be found at
https://www.sony.co.uk/alphauniverse. Sony’s European photography hub is available in 22 languages and details product news, competitions and an up-to-date list of Sony events in each country.
Compared to interchangeable 600mm F4 lenses for 35mm full-frame format camera bodies, as of June 2019. Sony survey
When the NEX series, ILCE-3000/3500, ILCE-5000/5100, ILCE-7/7R/7S, is attached, the autofocus function is limited. For details, please visit our support site.https://support.d-imaging.sony.co.jp/www/cscs/lens_body/?area=gwt&lang=en&mdl=SEL600F40GM&cat=3
Maximum aperture with the 1.4x and 2.0x teleconverters is F5.6 and F8, respectively
Not guaranteed to be 100% dust and moisture proof
MODE 3 is supported by the latest α9/α7R III/α7 III software version. Refer to the Sony support site for camera body compatibility information