The Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 GM has its flaws but within its category, it is an exceptional lens. The center performance is breathtaking and the outer image field is pretty good as well even at f/1.8 – quite an achievement. Technically, it is never really “tack sharp” in the corners (in high megapixel images) but no extreme ultra-wide angle lens is. There is a bit of field curvature so it’s best to pull the focus a little in infinity depth-of-field scenes. Image distortion is low even in raw images. Unsurprisingly, the vignetting is quite extreme at f/1.8 so it’s best to leave the image auto-correction activated. This also takes care of the moderate CAs. Positive aspects also include the smooth bokeh – unusual for such a lens – and the way sun stars are rendered at smaller aperture settings. The flare resistance is also better than usual but, of course, present when pushing it.
The Sony lens offers a very high build quality in a compact, lightweight package. The lens body is made of some compound material but it feels solid and combined with the anti-dust- and moisture sealing, the lens should be good enough for professional abuse. The AF is super fast and silent. If you prefer setting the aperture on the lens you can do so with this lens. Video makers will also appreciate the clickless option for it.
If you are an ultra-wide fanatic, the Sony FE 14mm f/1.8 GM is your ticket. Due to its fast max aperture, it is also more versatile than more conventional prime lenses in this range. And it’s reasonably priced for what it is. Highly recommended!