I love the look of a 30mm on cameras like the Sony A6500. If you don't have one yet, the Sigma 30mm F/1.4 is back in stock. This is a popular lens choice as it has a nice portrait type look (45mm equiv on a6300/a6500), and a very fast aperture for that shallow DOF look. I'm sure it matters to many, it's also a bit wider and faster than Sony's 35mm F/1.8.
Zeiss has recently introduced two new prime lenses. The Zeiss Touit lenses are available in 12mm F/2.8 and 32mm with F/1.8 complete with Auto Focus support on cameras such as the Fuji's X Mount and Sony E Mount (NEX) cameras. Pricing starts at $900-$1250 US (found here).
Zeiss Touit 12mm F/2.8 and 32mm F/1.8 Sony E Fuji X Mount Prime Lenses
If you're looking for more affordable Prime Lenses for Sony E Mount cameras with Auto Focus, don't forget about the Sigma options. Sigma offers 19mm, 30mm, and 60mm prime lenses with max apertures of F/2.8 for the NEX camera system. No kidding when I say more affordable, in fact you can still get a bundle deal for both a 19mm and 30mm F/2.8 lens for just $199 (here)
Sigma 19mm 30mm 60mm F/2.8 Prime Lenses for Sony NEX.
Right now there is a Sigma Lens deal which includes the 19mm F/2.8 and 30mm F/2.8 prime lenses bundled into one discount price. You can choose either a set for Sony E Mount cameras, or the set for Micro Four Thirds cameras. I have the 30mm on my Sony NEX7 and really enjoy this lens. I may have to get a set for the new GH3 at these prices.
[Update] These sold out quick and the listing shows a Back-ordered status, but I have just verified with B&H you can still place an order if you want to take advantage of these prices and it will ship when it is back in stock. Click through the links below for the deal.
I wanted to test out this cheap variable ND filter from Fotga (found here on eBay), and so I purchased a small 46mm filter to fit my Sigma E-Mount lens on the Sony NEX7. Major major fail today because I left that camera at home.
So today I just held it in front of the Canon 40mm F/2.8 pancake shooting with the T4i. I wanted to see if there was a purplish color cast (normally found on cheap variable ND filters), but was very relieved to see it didn't! My camera was set to manual at 1/50th shutter speed, F/2.8, and ISO 100. You'll see a section of the video where I pull the filter away. To keep this ideal shutter speed and still shoot at a wide aperture, you can see how overexposed the camera would be without an ND filter.
The next test everyone is wondering about would be loss of sharpness, especially when shooting at longer focal lengths. Unfortunately I only ordered a 46mm which doesn't fit any of my longer lenses. It looks pretty good so far, so i'll place another order for a 77mm filter size. I'm happy with this $13.00 dollar purchase, even though it took several weeks to arrive, it's a perfect little ND filter for my little Sigma 30mm F/2.8.
Just got this in today so we'll see how it performs. Seems to be a fairly popular lens due to it's backorder status on most websites. Part of the appeal when shooting with the Sony NEX-7 is it's compact size. I wanted an autofocus prime lens and decided to go with the Sigma 30mm F/2.8. Smaller and shorter profile than using an older lens with an adapter in between, and much more lightweight to make the Sony NEX-7 more pocketable for my casual use.
Sigma also offers this tiny lens for a Micro Four Thirds mount and might be easier to pull focus on than some of those Panasonic lenses that seem to rotate forever. It's a decent prime autofocus F/2.8 lens for about $199, check it out at B&H.
Sigma 30mm F/2.8 Prime for Sony E-Mount
Just talking about how well reviewed the Rokinon 85mm F/1.4 lens was, and now here's a bit about the Rokinon 35mm F/1.4. First off, this is the same as the Samyang but since it's a different name, you'll save about $100 dollars off the retail price.
For Nikon, the Rokinon 35mm F/1.4 lens actually has a 'focus confirmation chip' built in. Why did they not include this for the other brands? The Rokinon 85mm F/1.4 comes in at an excellent price range, and I would say very affordable. This new 35mm F/1.4 sounds good, but it's going to have some very very stiff competition. In this area you could still get the wildly popular Sigma 30mm F/1.4 for cheaper, and that comes with full Auto Focus.
The Sigma 30mm F/1.4 has already been proven out in the field and is a very sharp lens for cheaper than than the Rokinon 35mm. The Sigma 30mm is just a tad wider, but that's a good thing especially for cropped cameras. If prices don't change, in my opinion the Sigma is the lens to get. A quick note to Micro Four Thirds shooters - the Sigma 30mm F/1.4 has been discontinued for Four Thirds cameras. If you're considering this for a GH2 (would need an FT to MFT adapter), there might be a few left in retail spots like Amazon Here, or check a few eBay Auctions Here.