I won't be the first person to comment negatively on Sony's latest lens, the Carl Zeiss T* 1.4/50mm for the α DSLT series. A lens that costs $1,500 US. I won't be the first to question why I should buy a heavily plasticized 50mm lens for that much, especially from Sony. I will try to be a bit more reserved, more "fair and balanced" in my criticisms.
Carl Zeiss didn't build the lens itself. It's a "Carl Zeiss Optics and Planar Design," meaning that it was built by Sony or a Sony partner ODM. Looking at the Big Two (Canon and Nikon) for comparison, I find the most expensive Nikon 50mm is the NIKKOR 50mm f/1.2 AIS manual focus lens for a measly $650, while Canon wants to sell you an EF 50mm f/1.2L USM autofocus lens for $1,500 US. Of course the Canon supporters will tell you their $1,500 50mm is worth every penny. Every. Penny. So maybe Sony is jealous of Canon.
This isn't the first Sony/Carl Zeiss expensive lens. The last time I clutched my wallet in fear was when Sony introduced the 1.8/25mm E-mount lens for the rather thrifty sum of $1,100 US. No, I didn't get one of those. I'm more than satisfied with my pedestrian 2.8/19mm and 2.8/30mm Sigma lenses.
And folks who live in µ4:3rds houses shouldn't throw stones. There's been more than a few $1,000+ lenses released, from Panasonic and Voigtländer, both zooms and primes. While I certainly won't be ponying up to purchase such a lens, someone somewhere will, and they'll produce absolutely brilliant images with that lens, images that couldn't be produced with any other lens. Or at least that's what all the web-based stories and reviews will declare.
I guess if I were going to drop $1,500 on a lens, it would be nice not to see the plastic mold marks on the lens. I can get mold marks with cheap Olympus and Panasonic µ4:3rds lenses. At least with Canon you get an extra 1/2 stop speed, and it looks like it might actually be worth $1,500.