Save & earn with MPB; trade-in and buy pre-loved

Sony FE 14mm F/1.8 G Master Lens Review

Jonh Riley is putting the Sony FE 14mm F/1.8 G Master Lens through its paces to find out how good it is at capturing photos when teamed with the Sony Alpha A7R III.

| Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 G Master in Interchangeable Lenses
BUY NOW SONY FE 14mm f/1.8 G Master

Sony FE 14mm F/1.8 G Master Lens Review: Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 G Master Front Oblique View | 1/6 sec | f/16.0 | 78.0 mm | ISO 100

The Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 GM lens shows how far lens design has moved since the first 15mm f/3.5 lenses for SLR cameras hit the market in the early 1970s. The lens is slightly wider, incredibly light by comparison, and has a much faster maximum aperture at f/1.8. Let's see how it performs when coupled with the full-frame 42MP Sony Alpha A7R III camera body.


One image can change us.

A picture, a moment can change the way we feel. Change how we see ourselves. Change our understanding and change the rules. Provoke and change history.

MPB Gear

MPB puts photo and video kit into more hands, more sustainably. Every month, visual storytellers sell more than 20,000 cameras and lenses to MPB. Choose used and get affordable access to kit that doesn’t cost the earth.

Sell the kit you’re not using to MPB. Trade in for the kit you need to create. Buy used, spend less and get more.

Buy. Sell. Trade. Create.

MPB Start Shopping

Sony FE 14mm F/1.8 G Master Lens Handling and Features

Sony FE 14mm F/1.8 G Master Lens Review: Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 G Master On Sony A7RIII | 1/5 sec | f/16.0 | 48.0 mm | ISO 100

The lens is bulky-looking and has the characteristic bulbous front element typical of its focal length. There is a solid, permanently attached petal lens hood, and this is very much needed to protect that vulnerable front element. The front element is protected by a Fluorine coating that helps to repel dust, moisture, and grease, in addition to the Nano AR lens coating, although even so that exposed front element may be quite vulnerable to water splashes. There is no possibility of attaching filters, so instead there is a rear filter slot that will accept slip-in cut gelatin filters. The lens is dust and moisture resistant, a welcome feature indeed.

Weighing in at a very reasonable 460g, this does not seem heavy in use and the lens balances extremely well with the A7R III body. It is possible to use one of the crop sensor APS-C format cameras, in which case the 35mm-format equivalent field of view equates to 21mm. In this case, the lens size is somewhat out of proportion and does rather dwarf the camera.

There is a reasonably wide, highly ribbed focusing ring that operates electronically and is utterly smooth in operation. Focusing is down to 0.25m (0.82 feet) for a maximum magnification of 0.1x. All the usual Sony focusing options are supported, such as AF-S, AF-A, AF-C, DMF, and MF. AF is driven by two Extreme Dynamic linear motors and is fast, silent, and accurate. There is no distance scale and also no depth of field scale.


Sony FE 14mm F/1.8 G Master Lens Review: Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 G Master Rear Oblique View | 1/4 sec | f/16.0 | 78.0 mm | ISO 100

The impressive aperture ring is ideal for both stills photographers and videographers. There are click stops at one-third of a stop intervals, and if desired the aperture can be de-clicked, particularly useful for video shooting. There is one permanent click stop for the A setting, which enables the aperture to be controlled by the camera.

There are a few controls around the barrel of the lens. The AF/MF switch is self-explanatory, as is the click on/off switch that controls the aperture ring. There is also a focus lock button that holds the focus position in AF mode whilst it is held down.

Optical construction is 14 elements in 11 groups, including 2 XA (Extreme Aspherical), 1 Aspherical, 2 ED (Extra-Low Dispersion), and 1 Super ED. The diaphragm comprises 9 circular blades, for improved bokeh. The design is similar to the early 15mm f/3.5 lens designs of the early 1970s, but these just had one (extremely expensive) Aspherical element, so it will be interesting to see how the extra special elements introduced by Sony improve on the optical performance.

Handling such a wide lens does need a certain determination to move closer and still closer, otherwise results might look a little disappointing with subjects too small in the frame. It is surprising just how close we have to be, but of course, it is this close viewpoint that gives us the dramatic, dynamic perspective that is expected from an ultra-wide. This also brings its own perils regarding portraiture, as most models will not be impressed by huge noses and receding ears. However, drama is what this lens can deliver, so used with confidence the results can be pretty spectacular.

Sony FE 14mm F/1.8 G Master Lens Review: Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 G Master Front Element View | 1 sec | f/16.0 | 40.0 mm | ISO 100

Buy Now


Sell or trade used photo and video kit with MPB

With MPB you can get a free instant quote for the kit you want to sell, including a trade-in all-in-one transaction - no need for callbacks or waiting for an email quote. Then, if you decide to sell, MPB will pick up your kit with a free insured DPD collection and you’ll get paid cash into your account within days. MPB will also keep you informed about the status of your gear at every step of the way and the whole process is carbon neutral.

Sell your unwanted gear with MPB

Amazon US Logo

We don't have the latest price however the link below will take you to the most relevant items.

Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 G Master SEARCH
MPB Logo

We transform the way that people buy, sell and trade in photo and video kit.

Highest price recorded £1399 the lowest price £1187.12

Support this site by making a Donation, purchasing Plus Membership, or shopping with one of our affiliates: Amazon UK, Amazon US, Amazon CA, ebay UK, MPB. It doesn't cost you anything extra when you use these links, but it does support the site, helping keep ePHOTOzine free to use, thank you.


Other articles you might find interesting...

Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8 GM II Lens Review
Sigma AF 23mm f/1.4 Lens Review - X Mount
Sigma AF 100-400mm f/5-6.3 Lens Review - X Mount
Nikon Z 70-180mm f/2.8 Lens Review
Nikkor Z DX 24mm F/1.7 Lens Review
Fujifilm XF 8mm F/3.5 Review
Best Third Party Nikon F Lenses (DSLR)
Astrodesign & Samyang Join The L-Mount Alliance

There are no comments here! Be the first!


You must be a member to leave a comment.

ePHOTOzine, the web's friendliest photography community.

Join for free

Upload photos, chat with photographers, win prizes and much more.