The new Sony Planar T* FE 50mm f/1.4 ZA ZEISS was only just announced and the early reviews are just coming in. The lens is being compared favorably to optcs from Leica and others and it's received a rating of "Masterpiece" by Resource magazine. Below are excerpts of some of the impressions of the lens with links to the full reviews.
“This is a 50mm f.1.4 that I can finally say compares well with a $4k Leica 50 Summilux or $7k Leica 50 APO or even the $4k Zeiss Otus which many regard as the best fast 50 ever. In some ways, I prefer this Zeiss (color and 3D) but the Leica will always be a legend due to the performance and TINY small size it brings to the table. There is nothing quite like a Leica M and 50 Lux when it comes to size and feel and simplicity but there is also nothing quite like this new Zeiss 50 on an A7RII as it allows us to shoot in ANY situation, day or night and always rewards with an in focus image, fantastic color, and all of the good things we associate with a great Zeiss lens design.
“My friends, this is one of the best 50mm lenses I have ever shot with.” Steve Huff, SteveHuffPhoto
“The 50mm is built extremely well, and not just from a “had to break” standpoint, but from an aesthetically pleasing one as well. The 50mm ZA is a beautiful lens, with well-designed features and a “feel” that exudes quality. When you hold it, it feels like a lens that takes great photos. It’s weighted well, and keeps the camera balance centered on the lens mount. It’s not light, but it’s not heavy either. It has just enough weight to it to feel good.
“It’s an astoundingly consistent optic that manages to produce high-quality results no matter where in the aperture range it might find itself.
“I don’t recall any point where I fought with the lens or was unable to get the shot I wanted. When I shot with the 50mm, I wasn’t thinking about the gear… and that’s a good thing.”- Jaron Schneider, Resource
“The motor inside is an SSM Super Sonic wave Motor that is, in fact, very quiet and relatively snappy considering the bulk of the glass inside the lens. The aperture is an 11-blade circular setup designed to produce appealing bokeh, which has clearly been a priority for Sony's glass designers, especially considering the recent launch of the G-Master series pro lenses.” Stan Horaczek, PopPhoto
“One of my favorite things about this lens is how it handles colors. If you like to shoot portraits and really care about skin tones, then this lens may be a must have.” Chris Gampat, ThePhoblographer
“[T]he 50mm f/1.4 has outstanding light-gathering abilities, which we discovered after taking shots of nighttime street scenes on the San Diego waterfront. The very wide aperture offers beautiful blurred backgrounds. Available-light photographers should give this lens strong consideration.” –David Elrich, DigitalTrends
“Paired with the flagship Sony a7R II camera, image quality is excellent from what I see. Again, I only used the lens for a day at this point but it does produce clear, sharp images and there’s no reason to shy away from inspecting photos at full resolution. I also have to say that the out of focus areas that the 50mm f/1.4 produces are really clean. Combine the 11-bladed aperture with a shallow depth of field and you are really cooking.“ –Ryan Mense, Fstoppers