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06-12-2019, 08:12 AM   #1
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Sony 600mm F/4 $13,000


Sony is getting a little closer filling out the lens line-up. Sony to launch 12 more lenses in 2019 | TechRadar Sony's goal is 12 new lenses for 2019, but the year is half over and we aren't even at 6 yet. Several of the new lenses are supposed to be part of the new high-end APS-C push that Sony claims they will make, but we will see. If they can put 6 new lenses on store shelves this year I will be surprised.

06-12-2019, 08:18 AM   #2
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What's driving this [expensive] lens push? The Tokyo Olympics next year is my guess.

They already have a decent line up, esp with Sigma, Tamron and others now doing lots of E-mount.
06-12-2019, 08:23 AM - 2 Likes   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
What's driving this [expensive] lens push? The Tokyo Olympics next year is my guess.

They already have a decent line up, esp with Sigma, Tamron and others now doing lots of E-mount.
They should have done a stainless steel finish. People won't be able to tell them from Canons. Apliances used to look like those white finishes. Now every appliance I have is stainless steel. Camera companies are so 20 years ago.
06-12-2019, 08:24 AM - 1 Like   #4
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I'm more impressed that Sony is releasing the FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS at a reasonable $2000 USD.

06-12-2019, 08:25 AM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
They should have done a stainless steel finish.
Given the price point, they could have painted in gold metal (there is some artsy paint that looks like gold).
06-12-2019, 08:28 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
I'm more impressed that Sony is releasing the FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS at a reasonable $2000 USD.
Aren't the Sigma and Tamron 150-600s half that?

I guess if Sony is only double the price, that's a good deal.

At least the 600 ƒ4 is right in the ballpark.
06-12-2019, 08:31 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Aren't the Sigma and Tamron 150-600s half that?
The Tamron 150-600 f5-6.3 (first version) is priced something like 800 Euros, but it's not a Sony. Sony tend to price cameras aggressively or via cash-back. But when I look at the lenses I might be interested, nine times out of ten I get repelled by the price, prices such as 2000 Euros for a standard lens it's hard to accept.
06-12-2019, 08:35 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
What's driving this [expensive] lens push? The Tokyo Olympics next year is my guess.

They already have a decent line up, esp with Sigma, Tamron and others now doing lots of E-mount.
That seems to be the most common assumption. Sony says the lens is designed to work with cameras faster than the A9 and an A9 replacement is expected to be announced in a couple of months. The A9 checks and adjusts focus 60 times every second. If this lens is designed to work with systems faster than that, I'm not sure what we will see. I'm guessing a 33 MP camera that can handle 30fps. Ultimately a an 8K video camera that you can grab quality still images from. It probably won't be a true video camera in that it will buffer 200-300 images before slowing down. Not really a camera to film 30 minute clips. But that is just a guess.

06-12-2019, 08:38 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Aren't the Sigma and Tamron 150-600s half that?

I guess if Sony is only double the price, that's a good deal.

At least the 600 4 is right in the ballpark.
Sigma has two 150-600's, Contemporary and Sports. The higher-end Sports* model, which is mostly likely the closest match for this Sony, is currently $1800 at B&H. So yeah, given that Sony lenses are often especially high-priced compared to similarly-spec'd glass and this is the introductory price, I think it's surprisingly reasonable.

* from what I've read online, the Sports model boasts significantly better build quality than their Contemporary version and the Tamron 150-600. Slightly different optical formula, too, with more exotic lens elements.
06-12-2019, 08:38 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
That seems to be the most common assumption. Sony says the lens is designed to work with cameras faster than the A9 and an A9 replacement is expected to be announced in a couple of months. The A9 checks and adjusts focus 60 times every second. If this lens is designed to work with systems faster than that, I'm not sure what we will see. I'm guessing a 33 MP camera that can handle 30fps. Ultimately a an 8K video camera that you can grab quality still images from. It probably won't be a true video camera in that it will buffer 200-300 images before slowing down. Not really a camera to film 30 minute clips. But that is just a guess.
Looking at this on the surface it looks like dumb idea in a shrinking market, but then you look at how fast the list of millionaires living in Canada is growing and maybe they are on to something. That market is expanding. But still irrelevant to most of us.

---------- Post added 06-12-19 at 11:53 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
Sigma has two 150-600's, Contemporary and Sports. The higher-end Sports* model, which is mostly likely the closest match for this Sony, is currently $1800 at B&H. So yeah, given that Sony lenses are often especially high-priced compared to similarly-spec'd glass and this is the introductory price, I think it's surprisingly reasonable.

* from what I've read online, the Sports model boasts significantly better build quality than their Contemporary version and the Tamron 150-600. Slightly different optical formula, too, with more exotic lens elements.
I have trouble getting excited about lots of money for ƒ6.3 glass. I've had so many times shooting wildlife when ƒ5.6 or even ƒ4 wasn't fast enough.

Last edited by normhead; 06-12-2019 at 09:40 AM.
06-12-2019, 09:08 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I have trouble getting excited about lots of money for ƒ6.3 glass. I've had so many times shooting wildlife when ƒ5.6 or even ƒ4 wasn't fast enough.
I've been shooting bears from a hide with the 150-450, and 450mm was too much, but bears rarely get close to forest borders during the day, they appear around sunset, so I wished I had a 300 f2.8 instead of the 150-450 f5.6. Slow zooms are useful when used at the back of a jeep at a park in Africa where there is plenty of light, and you don't need 600mm, 300mm is long enough. 600mm f6.3 isn't ideal, but still often used by folks who can't afford the 600 f4.
06-12-2019, 09:20 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
I've been shooting bears from a hide with the 150-450, and 450mm was too much, but bears rarely get close to forest borders during the day, they appear around sunset, so I wished I had a 300 f2.8 instead of the 150-450 f5.6. Slow zooms are useful when used at the back of a jeep at a park in Africa where there is plenty of light, and you don't need 600mm, 300mm is long enough. 600mm f6.3 isn't ideal, but still often used by folks who can't afford the 600 f4.
The vast majority of my wildlife images were taken with the 60-250. Although, that is a bit short for bears.
06-12-2019, 09:26 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I have trouble getting excited about lots of money for ƒ6.3 glass. I've had so many times shooting wildlife when ƒ5.6 or even ƒ4 wasn't fast enough.
Look at it this way: it's "faster" than the Pentax 150-450 + 1.4x TC. Unfortunately, this 200-600 has to be mounted on an icky Sony body


QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
I've been shooting bears from a hide with the 150-450, and 450mm was too much, but bears rarely get close to forest borders during the day, they appear around sunset, so I wished I had a 300 f2.8 instead of the 150-450 f5.6. Slow zooms are useful when used at the back of a jeep at a park in Africa where there is plenty of light, and you don't need 600mm, 300mm is long enough. 600mm f6.3 isn't ideal, but still often used by folks who can't afford the 600 f4.
Maybe you should carry a 200/2.8 with you for such occasions - they are pretty small.


K-5 II + Takumar 200/3.5
06-12-2019, 09:30 AM - 2 Likes   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Looking at this on the surface it looks like dumb idea in a shrinking market, but then you look at how fast the list of millionaires living in Canada is growing and maybe their on to something. That market is expanding. But still irrelevant to most of us..
If you look at how irrelevant Sony currently is in the professional sports market, it obvious that they have a lot of room to grow in this segment and there appears to be a lot of demand. Its not a lens that I have any use for, but some people do and those people typically have the money. Sales of the 300mm F/2.8 GM were 2x higher than Sony had forecast. Sony seems to have a problem keeping up with demand for glass in general. The 24mm GM was release last year and is still on back order just about everywhere and so is the 135mm GM. Sony isn't having any trouble selling lenses.


A 600mm lens isn't a lens that is going to be replaced by smart phones anytime soon. While the overall market is shrinking, the market that is buying this type of glass is still pretty stable.
06-12-2019, 10:34 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
Maybe you should carry a 200/2.8 with you for such occasions - they are pretty small.
Bears coming for food and water point before dusk, from a ground buried hide with semi-reflexive glass, doesn't require 450mm, even 200mm on apsc can be two long as it happened to some photographers using a D500 with the 200-500 f5.6. Before dusk with trees all around become dark quickly, because the sun being at an angle and trees projecting shadows. And the semi-reflexive glass of the hide takes 3/4rd of a stop of light. Bears in Europe and bears of North America aren't the same, we don't have Grizzly bears here.

Last edited by biz-engineer; 06-12-2019 at 10:41 AM.
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