As the Gear of The Year selections start coming in, DPReview's Carey Rose spotlights the Sony 85mm f/1.8. The lens was introduced at the 2017 WPPI show along side the unique Sony 100mm f/2.8 STF G Master. The 85mm quickly emerged from the shadow of its G Master stablemate becoming a favorite of portrait and wedding photographers and being highly sought as bargain considering its impressive performance.
What makes the lens a surprise as Carey Rose's choice of Gear of the Year is that Carey doesn't so much praise the lens as a dedicated people and portraits tool, but as a lens that can do anything. "Maybe it's not everyone's choice for a 'landscape' lens, but I like using the 85mm focal length for just about anything."
Rose sums his thoughts on the multi-talented 85mm this way, "I've said this before, but I'm a big fan of gear that 'gets out of your way.' For me, the FE 85mm f/1.8 does just that. It's straightforward and has a solid feel. I've never felt it's too heavy, or focuses too slowly, and I can just concentrate on what I'm seeing through the viewfinder. If I were considering a new kit to start out with, a couple of Sony α7-series cameras with the FE 28mm f/2 and FE 85mm f/1.8 would be on my short list to check out."