Gallery: First few days w/ Mitakon Zhongyi 50mm f/0.95 (Dark Knight)

I was minding my own business saving up for a nice, respectable, AF telephoto zoom w/ stabilization then everything went hazy and this shows up on my door step 2 days later.

No review here (perhaps yet), but I did want to share a brief thought or two or more. I expected subject isolation and a heaping helping of background blur, but I had not put much thought to the other interesting aspects of this type of lens. Namely:

  • Causes unintelligible utterances and cackling like a lunatic with photo nerds.
  • I know there is a blank stare inducing, boring, valid technical explanation for the way this lens can find light in a nearly dark room, but right now I am stuck on dark magic as the explanation. The nickname is not helping. Truly odd to see a brighter scene through the EVF than one can see with the naked eye.
  • Being able to gather that much light pretty much stops time with higher shutter speeds under normal conditions.
  • Focus peaking is nice, but due to the very thin DOF from f0.95 to f2.0 focus zoom is required to focus with confidence which also shows off how well these manual focus tools are implemented on the A7. Something I had already learned since the only other lenses I had when I added this lens were legacy Minolta MD lenses (50mm and 135mm) from the X-700 I have.
  • Then it causes more unintelligible utterances and cackling like a lunatic with other photo nerds.

Here are some shots from less than a week in.

Duke Gardens Stroll w/ Sony A7 and Minolta MD 135mm f2.8

Every once in a while, especially when I get a new piece of gear I take a stroll through Duke Gardens. It clears the mind and also acts as a level set to explore the capabilities of the new and the old gear on hand. After some gear fumbling in extreme heat I now bring one camera and one lens in order to better enjoy the surroundings and force myself to use what is at hand rather than relying on a certain piece of gear. Gallery below using Sony A7 w/ a legacy Minolta MD 135mm f2.8 lens.

New light collector: Sony A7. Love a good deal.


It was all a blur. Since their release I have been impressed with the Sony A7 line in all of it’s mirrorless, full frame, with killer EVF glory. While the price was very reasonable it was still a bit too rich for my “can’t see body prices over $1,000″ blood. That all changed with the release of the very nice A7II. Did the new feature set, including the image stabilization licensed from Olympus that I used to enjoy on a previously owned E-P5, move me to see above $1,000. Nope. Still too cheap frugal for that to happen as long as I am a hobbyist. No, the news that got my attention was not in headlines, but it was seeing that Sony reduced the price of the original A7 to $998. Huzzah! As usual this led to fits of gear trading and selling that are still in play as I write this, but has already allowed me to get my mitts on the A7. No lenses yet, but I have legacy 35mm film lenses and that is a huge perk of the A7. Sure I had used them before with adapters, but having a full frame sensor backing them would be even better I thought. And make it better it did. Just received the camera Friday and below are some impromptu shots taken over Father’s Day weekend. I look forward to getting out and about with this camera. Will report back with more images and some native lenses, The plan so far is to get the 24-240mm next. Sure their are optical compromises, but after going prime crazy recently I am looking forward to having a good all ’rounder on body as opposed to a bag full of perfect for certain situations on my shoulder. Preference. Plus it has gotten respectable reviews. After that most likely a flash, but then who knows? Take it easy. -ELW