Sony has announced the FE 70-200mm f/2.8 GM OSS II, a redesigned replacement for one of the core pro-grade lenses and as the 65th lens in its E-mount lens lineup. The Mark II is built around two pairs of XD Extreme Dynamic linear motors driving its two focus groups, rather than the mixture of linear motor and ring-type motor used in the older version. Sony promises focus is up to four times faster as a result.
“Sony is always listening to our customers. Thanks to feedback from users around the world, including leading professionals, Sony continues to develop and evolve the G Master lineup,” said Yang Cheng, Vice President, Imaging Solutions, Sony Electronics Inc. “The FE 70-200mm f/2.8 GM OSS II is lightweight and offers outstanding handling in any shooting situation. The newest addition to our G Master series will make a perfect telephoto zoom addition to any creator’s kit who is looking to maximize their gear potential for both stills and video.”
The new design uses 17 elements in 14 groups, including one extreme aspherical element, one conventional aspheric and one ED (extra-low dispersion) aspherical lens. There are also two Super ED and two ED elements. All this adds up to a lens that promises to be sharper than its predecessor, particularly towards the edge of the image and especially at the 200mm end of the zoom. Sony also claims low levels of chromatic aberrations. ‘Nano AR Coating II’ helps reduce flare and ghosting.
The lens gains an aperture ring that can be operated in clicked or continuously variable mode, and that can be locked in the ‘A’ position if you prefer to control aperture from the camera body. Video shooters are also likely to appreciate the reduced focus breathing, reduced focus shift when zooming (which also promises to improve AF performance), and a reduction in axial shift of framing as you zoom.
Sony says that the lens will not only impress with its outstanding quality but will also be the lightest f/2.8 70-200mm zoom in the world which it says will allow for unprecedented shooting freedom and flexibility. The lens is approximately 29% lighter than the previous model and weighs just under 37 ounces (1,045 grams). In addition to its lightweight, the FE 70-200mm F2.8 GM OSS II was designed for professionals to offer an ideal balance without front-heaviness, which Sony says ensures the lens’ center of gravity falls directly above the tripod mount. It also features internal zooming to keep the center of gravity constant.
The GM II can be used with the existing 1.4 and 2.0x teleconverters. It represents the first update to one of Sony’s ‘GM’ series of high-end lenses, coming just over five years since the original became available.
Here are some sample pictures from a select group of Sony Artisans Of Imagery and Sony Alpha Imaging Collective members: