Sony DT 35mm F1.8 SAM A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 100    << 1 2 3 4 >>
reviewer#9307 date: Aug-6-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
overall: 4.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 28mm f2.8
Minolta 50mm f1.7
Sony 18-55 SAM
price paid:£149.99 ( eBay-NEW )
positive:Price
SHARP
FAST
Included Lens Hood
Small, light,
negative:Percieved " poor build quality "
comment:LOVE this lens.
Very sharp, nice and bright, and actually comes with a decent hood that looks the part and delivers its purpose.

cheap primes in the a-mount world tend to be the minolta 50mm f1.7 or the 28mm f2.8 - both of which have there pluses and there weaknesses.

With regards to the 50mm its a fine, well built lens with great IQ, both regarding colours and sharpness. Trouble is on a APS-C camera 50mm isnt what it is on a 35mm - I.E a " normal " lens, and makes for a very tight shooting experience on a crop body, one that i never found myself enjoying.

The 28mm shares the attributes of the 50 with the exception of the brightness being less of a draw, but again, i personally found the focal length to be somewhat strange, not being wide, but not feeling " normal " either.

Now i grab this lens and im satisfied, 35mm on ASP-C is about 51mm equiv, so you get that classic " nifty fifty " usability, yet the f1.8 aperture gives you the shallow DoF allowed by the 50mm.

People hak on about the build quality, and heres my two pence worth on the subject. YES, compared to the two lenses mentioned above this lens is very light, there is no metal to speak of, and the plastics are less dense and lighter. But, dose it feel like its about to fall apart after 5 minuets? NO, far from it. General feel is that of a light yet suitably robust optical piece. don't let the worries of Build quality put you off getting this lens.

Also, the two primes i have mentioned come with built in lens hoods that are as much use as one of ken dods tickle sticks on Omaha beach in 1945. Sony provide a substantial hood with this lens that looks the business and controls flare well. RESULT!!

all in all, a great lens, one that comes highly recommended by me :-)
reviewer#9298 date: Aug-4-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:150.00 GBP
positive:Sharp all the way through
Lightweight
negative:Plastic
cheap feel
comment:Sharp at 1.8, Very lightweight, fab portrait lens.
Well worth alot more.
reviewer#9296 date: Aug-3-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 2
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 50 1.7
Tamron 90 2.8 macro
Beercan
KM 28-70 2.8
SAL 18-200
price paid:140£
positive:Sharp all the way up and down(very around 5.6). Beautiful OOF and bokeh. Good AF-speed. Fantastic colour and contrast. And price of course.
negative:Look, feel, and handle plasticky - but it is reliable.
comment:The plasticky feel of the lens is by far outweighed by the amazing feel of the images. I can recognise images made with it in thumbnail view - they just have a certain magic feel (certainly at 1.8).
The best gem of a lens in my collection, hands down. This lens is a plastic fantastic homerun by Sony.
The colours and contrast alone make me wonder if my old Minoltas should go on Ebay.
reviewer#9283 date: Jul-30-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 50mm f/1.7
price paid:200 USD
positive:Optical quality
Large Aperture
Price
Light Weight
Small Size
negative:Cheap Build Quality
comment:This is my favorite lens, hands down. This lens is on my camera by default almost all the time. There's not much you can't do with this lens.

Low light shooting:
At f/1.8, low light shooting is a breeze.

Walk-around lens:
Provides very sharp daytime shots above f/2.8. Bokeh seems pleasing. Great focal length (on a crop body) for a good indoor/outdoor lens.

The build quality on this lens is a bit cheap feeling, it feels very plastic. However, this is a camera lens, not a precision rifle barrel or engine block and should not be exposed to similar stresses. With that noted, I feel the use of plastic is forgivable. This seems to have held up to a few months of careful use just fine.

Focusing:
This lens can be manually focused past infinity (minor quibble), but AF is accurate and fast enough. The manual focus ring isn't really dampened well (This is no Minolta lens) but seems to work well regardless.

Optical Quality:
In short, fantastic. Images are razor sharp and colors are amazing. My best pictures have been taken with this lens. The MFD on this lens is something like 4.5", so close-ups (not quite Macros) are possible.

This lens has earned a permanent spot in my bag (and likely semi-permanently on my camera). Excellent Optical qualities far outweigh a few minor build quibbles. Overall, this is an almost perfect lens that everyone should try.
reviewer#9232 date: Jul-13-2011
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 1
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 3.4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Tamron 17-50 2.8, Sigma 10-20 f4-5.6, Tokina 28-80 2.8, Beercan, Tamron 35-105 2.8, Minolta 200 2.8 HS, Sony 70-300G, Sony 50 1.4.
price paid:200€ new
positive:Sharp, usabe even from 1.8, great 2.8. Light. Very good optical quality.
negative:Build very very weak. Some flares at 1.8. Slow AF, and too much big, thanks to its slooow motor...
comment:I like very much its optical quality. Very bad build, SAM system is a joke, the lens is bigger and I can´t find any profit (for our alphas), AF is slow... I prefer the "old" system, without motor, smaller and even faster with a good camera.
reviewer#9120 date: Jun-10-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 50 f1.7
price paid:196 EUR (new)
positive:Sharp even wide open
Light
negative:Plastic - how long will it last ?
Bokeh is so-so
comment:Perfect walk around and low light lens. Light, sharp, fast.
SAM is in fact not that noisy as I had feared. Also I think it actually saves some wear on the plastic mount. I felt the Sony 55-200 (non-SAM) wobbling with the screw drive when the AF was changing direction.
reviewer#9107 date: Jun-7-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:149 GBP
positive:lovely and sharp
Good range for APSC
Fast
negative:Easy Choice build quality
comment:A modern classic - great quality optics in a plasticky body but seriously at this price I find it hard to complain.
reviewer#9077 date: Jun-3-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.3
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:my other fast lenses
Minolta 50mm f1.4
Minolta 50mm f1.7
Sigma 24mm F2.8
Sigma 90mm F2.8
Tamron 17-50 F2.8
etc
price paid:$220
positive:Sharp even wide open
Cheap
small and light
excellent hood
negative:hardly anything- let say
build quality
comment:I have read on dyxum lots of nice things about this lens and I just had to get one. I must say considering the cheap price, I was stunned. Sharpness wide open is very good but once switched to "contrast detection AF" it becomes excellent. It gives my other fast lenses run for its money.

SAM is fast and not noisy at all.
reviewer#9013 date: May-12-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:149 usd
positive:Sharp, Fast, and Light
negative:nothing for the price
comment:A great sharp light lens. SAM is, you know, SAM, but it does a great Job. Love the lower light capabilites and color.
reviewer#9006 date: May-11-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Canon 50mm 2.5 CM
price paid:199 USD
positive:Lightweight
Fast
Relatively Sharp
negative:None for the price.
comment:This is my favorite lens on my A580. It makes for a nice, lightweight and compact kit to walk with. It is a bit soft wide open, but sharpens up quickly by f/2.2-2.5. I'm not a pro, just a photo enthusiast, and I find the build quality to be fine considering you are getting a 35mm 1.8 lens for $200. Also, the MFD is terrific with this lens - allowing for very good close up shots.
reviewer#8914 date: Apr-12-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 1,8/28 II, Minolta 1,7/50
price paid:200USD (new)
positive:Sharpness, colour, bokeh, lightweight, sun shade
negative:plastic mount
comment:This lens gives great, warm and colourful pictures, sharpness and contrast are really top.
reviewer#8874 date: Apr-5-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 3.9
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Nikon 35mm f1.8
Pentax 35mm f2
price paid:190
positive:Sharpness
Affordable
Lightweight
Faster AF than old lenses
negative:Questionable durability
AF noise
comment:If you're fumbling on Minolta/Sony APS-C with normal ranged zooms, stop it. And get this lens. That's all there is to it. Stop whining about how Canikon have a larger lens selection, or how pentax limiteds are worthy of their expense. This is the lens you should have as the 'kit' lens.

On casual comparison, this is about as sharp as the Nikon 35mm f1.8 DX. And in my brief comparison seem to be slightly sharper at the corners compared to Pentax 35mm f2. YMMV.

For a lens that's labeled as SAM, one would expect it to also have a softer AF noise. That's my only negative point other than build durability.
reviewer#8819 date: Mar-22-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:M50/1.7; SAL1680
price paid:250 USD new
positive:- sharpness
- price
- price to quality perfect
- quick AF
negative:- none
- maybe would be nice FF and not APS-C in future
comment:I am fascinated with that small piece of plastic and glass. Giving standard 50 mm for APS-C, with 1.8 performs great, sharpening 'totally' at 5.6. It becames useless to pay 600 - 700 USD for Minolta 35/2, unless you have FF.
Short edition: just made some tests against 1680Z at 35mm, F4 and 5.6. Only 5.6 centers are comparable, all other 35/1.8 shines. It does not come from tests - maybe my 1680Z is a poor copy or 35 mm is a great copy. What specific: jpeg files from 35/1.8 are bigger, for example 7,3 MB vs. 5.6 MB from 1680Z. And much more details visible.
reviewer#8802 date: Mar-17-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.1
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 50mmF2.8 Macro
price paid:135 GBP (new)
positive:Sharp for price
Light
negative:Hood blocks manual focus ring operation when "stowed" in reverse.
comment:Sharp for the price. Good focal length for indoor shooting. More-so than the 50mm alternative I could have bought.
reviewer#8762 date: Mar-8-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
overall: 4.3
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 24 2.8
Minolta 50 1.4
Minolta MC Rokkor 50 3.5 macro (with adaptor)
price paid:169 USD
positive:Sharp and light little lens.
Fast focusing
Comes with a real hood to control flare
negative:Build quality needs to stand the test of time.
comment:I continue to be amazed at this little lens. For me, it's the real sleeper in the Sony line-up. It's small, light, fast and sharp. Add cheap to the mix and it's a winner.

I have kept it in my bag or in my pocket every time I have gone out. It's great on the A700, but on the A100, it really shines!
reviewer#8729 date: Mar-2-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.1
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 17-50
Tamron 90mm
price paid:199.99 USD New
positive:Low Cost
Sharp
Light
negative:CA under adverse conditions
comment:I really like this lens but my copy shows heavy CA under adverse conditions. Example would be silver colored instruments under bright stage lights shows heavy CA.
reviewer#8661 date: Feb-15-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 1
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
overall: 4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:sony 50mm sam
minolta 50mm f1.4
Minolta 35mm f1.4
price paid:£100
positive:Cheap
Great focal lenth on APS-C
Sharp
AF motor smoother than the 50mm Sam
negative:Cheap build quality
APS-C only
some distortion
comment:For the money this is a no brainer lens to own for APS-C users. Yes the build is awful but optically it's right up there punching well above it's weight. It's got the same image quality as the sony 50mm SAM (albeit with worse distortion) but at a far more useful, general purpose range on APS-C. From a quick play with a minolta 35mm 1.4 I can safely say the Sony is far sharper wide open.

Just buy it it's a must have
reviewer#8609 date: Feb-2-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.1
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony DT Carl Zeiss 16-80mm f/3.5-4.5
Sony 85mm f/2.8 SAM
price paid:€239 (new)
positive:sharp
minimum focus distance
light
small
negative:low contrast at f/1.8
vignetting at f/1.8
comment:A small, lightweight lens that's almost indistinguishable from the Sony 85mm f/2.8 SAM (they even use the same hood). Wideopen it's already pretty sharp in the center, but the low contrast and vignetting are clearly visible. The autofocus speed and noise is acceptable, and thanks to the maximum aperture it doesn't hunt often in low light.
reviewer#8532 date: Jan-17-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:- sony 30mm macro
- sony 50/1.4
price paid:175USD(new)
positive:- sharpness, colors, contrast, CA control
- light
- ok af speed, and not too noisy

negative:- vignetting wide open
- build, but time will tell
comment:Sold the 30mm macro to get this lens, focussing is much smoother and quieter, and much more accurate. The macro did not focus well on a700 for non macro distances 1-10 m. This lens is spot on. It is very usable wide open (beware of vignetting though, gone by f2.8), and just gets better stopped down, by f5.6, the whole frame is very sharp , even the extreme corners ( which wasn't so with 30mm macro).
You get a 1:4 reproduction ratio with this lens, which can come in handy. My feeling is that this is clearly a more versatile lens than the 30mm macro (unless you need 1:1, but then the 50mm and 100mm are better suited for this, although pricey).
This is a good low light lens for group pictures, or full- half body portraits, but will not supersede the 50/1.4 (or 50/1.8) for pure portrait use. Due to great sharpness stopped down, it is a good landscape lens.
I am very happy with this lens, and it will stay with me until I go full frame.
reviewer#8528 date: Jan-16-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony50f1:4
price paid:159GBP with free UV filter
positive:.Cheap & Light
.Sharp
.
negative:.Nothing ( see build quality )
comment:After some debate as to whether to get this or the 85f2:8 i chose the 35mm. Very happy with my choice.

Sharpness - well my copy is exceptionally sharp, i cannot fault its IQ
Build Quality - for 159 pounds how can you really complain, yes its plastic inc' the mount but it weighs so little i cannot see any reasons for it to be metal
Focus accuracy/speed - its not a speed demon, but its more than adequate.
Bokeh - not as good as my 50f1:4 but im not complaining.
Conclusion - its a no brainer....good IQ, with no major issues, cheap and perfect for me.I am VERY HAPPY with this lens.
reviewer#8508 date: Jan-11-2011
sharpness: 4
color: 3
build: 2
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 3.4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:50mm f/1.8
30mm f/2.8 Macro
price paid:
missing
positive:Cheap
Good flare control
Fast lens at this price
Great length for crop cam
negative:Looks like it was built for children
Silk-screened letters/numbers
comment:You can't go wrong with this lens. Yes, it looks/feels like cheap plastic. But, you are not going to find any zoom this bright that can lock onto a dim subject indoors. Sure, it would be nice to get better quality from Sony for a little more money, but this is what we got.
In AF the 30mm F/2.8 focuses MUCH faster. If you don't need the speed of this lens, get the 30mm F/2.8
I agree with other posters that this is slightly sharper than the 50mm F/1.8 . This will give you more DOF, the 50 will give you less distortion. The 50mm misses more shots, too.
reviewer#8456 date: Dec-28-2010
sharpness: 3
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony 50 mm f/1.8
price paid:~250 USD new
positive:Price, not a bad build considering it's plastic.
negative:I think that I have a bum version of it... it focuses fine close up, but
comment:I *think* that this could be a good lens, but I seem to have ended up with a somewhat sketchy copy of it. It focuses fine close, and seemingly fine further away. But, at about 10 feet or so, it's just awful. The real focus seems to be about two or three inches behind the point that I had chosen.

I'm going to have to try to return it and, hopefully, will get a better copy. I like what I see in terms of sample pictures. And I've been able to get a few great ones myself, as long as it's not in that particular distance range.

Anyone else with similar issues?
reviewer#8452 date: Dec-26-2010
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:-SAM focuses fast and fairly quiet (unlike the 18-55)
-Sharpness wide open is OK
-light
negative:
missing
comment:Works very well, pictures are great. I don't mind the plastic build. The price can hardly be beaten...
reviewer#8428 date: Dec-20-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:* Sigma 24mm f/1.8
* Sigma 30mm f/1.4
* Sony 50mm f/1.4
price paid:175 USD (new)
positive:* lightweight
* good center sharpness wide open
* SAM focuses at a reasonable speed
* fantastic price/performance ratio
* common 55mm filter size
* appropriately-sized hood
* short MFD
negative:* flimsy build - even the mount itself is plastic
* AF-MF switch on the lens makes switching to manual focus a two-step process
* APS-C only
comment:I used to think that regardless of the brand of your DSLR - be it Sony, Canon, Nikon, or even Pentax or Olympus - the Sigma 30mm f/1.4 was the go-to lens for a fast, normal prime on a crop sensor camera. And until recently, what were the other options for a Sony shooter? The Sony/Minolta 28mm f/2.8 isn't fast enough for low light work, nor is it sharp enough wide open. The Sony/Minolta 35mm f/1.4 is prohibitively expensive for the casual user. The Minolta 28mm f/2 and 35mm f/2 are better options, but are hard to find and carry a price premium as a result. That left the Sigma.

Now, don't get me wrong, the Sigma isn't a bad lens. It's nice to have f/1.4 as an option, even if it's not terribly practical. Center sharpness is good wide open, and it has a nice build. However, it has the same problem that almost every other Sigma lens has - everything has a yellow cast to it, quality control is iffy, and it's not SLT-compatible straight out of the box.

Now, Sony shoters have a new option - the 35mm f/1.8 SAM. Colors are nice and the lens is acceptably sharp at f/1.8. You'll need to stop down to sharpen up the corners, but considering the practical use of such a lens at f/1.8, I doubt that's going to cause anyone any headaches. The SAM motor isn't as sluggish as I was worried it would be - the Sigma is still faster, but that could be due to the fast autofocus motor on the a700. There's a little bit of distortion and flare can be an issue, but it's nothing unexpected or inappropriate. The only real "problem" with this lens is that the build is very, very cheap. It's the opposite end of the spectrum from a Beercan. I don't bang around my lenses, but assuming something did happen, I'd expect this lens to break before anything else in my bag does.

All in all, this is a fantastic lens for the price. I actually sold my Sigma 30mm f/1.4 and picked this up instead because, for how and when I need a lens like this, the Sony will perform just as well as the Sigma, if not better. Unless you desperately need something faster than f/1.8 or feel inspired to upgrade to more expensive options, buy this lens - it's a fantastic performer for the price.
reviewer#8426 date: Dec-20-2010
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 3.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:35-105
17-35d
price paid:$179 USD
positive:light
fast
cheap
negative:build quality
QC issue with my copy
comment:I like this lens except my copy front focus.(about 1-2 inches)

Bought it from the BHphoto so hopefully I can return it and get it exchanged.

reviewer#8424 date: Dec-20-2010
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 3
overall: 3.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony 50mm 1.4
price paid:€ 200,- new
positive:Nice, little lens that's cheap but performs better than one expects for this price. Short focussing distance.
negative:Yes, the build is cheap with plastic mount, who cares.
More important is the fringing below F2.8.
comment:Although it has it's limitations, only one focusdistance [35mm] like all primes, plastic build and mount, and abberations at fast speeds, it has far more advantages like it's price, short focussing distance [23 cm], light weight, image quality and so on.

If you want a nice fast lens with good indoor and portrait qualities, this is the one lens you need. Just go out and buy it.

I tried it in the snow, fresly fallen this weekend, and that's always a difficult situation for lenses and cameras.
Together with the 50mm 1.4 that I also had with me it is a nice couple to work with and that forces your inventivity and creativity to a higher level. The 50mm 1.4 slightly performed better in the snow, as far as I could judge. Thumbs up Sony.

Edit 28 dec 2010 : Remarkable : with the Dynax D5D the F-value is 1.7 instead of 1.8.
reviewer#8409 date: Dec-16-2010
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.3
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:min 50 1.7
min 28 2.8
price paid:175 USD
positive:Price
MFD
Bokeh
negative:nothing for the price
comment:Chose this lens for shooting natural light full body portraits and more group shots as opposed to my 50mm. I've never been thrilled with the Min 28 2.8 for whatever reason... guess I always wished it was larger aperture. This lens really comes through for what I wanted. Very nice colors, bokeh, sharpness. Also, the MFD on this lens is ridiculous... almost bumped my subject in the face with the lens hood. My 50 1.7 is going to be seeing very little use and the 28 is going up for sale. Highly recommended, especially while Sony is selling these at the discounted price through the first of the rear. Just a great little lens on a crop frame.

Edit: I am noticing more CA in high contrast areas than I'd like... not unusable, but a little annoying.
reviewer#8408 date: Dec-16-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 55-200 diII
Sigma 17-70 DS OS HSM
Sony 18-70
Sony 18-55
price paid:153 GBP (new)
positive:Sharp
Bokeh
Light
negative:not a lot so far
comment:Excellent little lens, like many others I always felt a 50/1.8 was a bit too long for an APS-C sensor.The colours are good and its lovely and sharp. After two years of owning this lens its still a great performer and have now shot two Oktoberfests with it. I'm still impressed.
reviewer#8405 date: Dec-14-2010
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony DT 50 F1.8
price paid:
missing
positive:Weight
Sharp enought, at center is sharp wide open
Good color and contrast
negative:Wide open corners is less sharp than DT 50 mm F1.8
Too sensitive focusing ring, not very good for manual focusing- small rotation gives too big effect.
comment:It is very good lens for family photo.
reviewer#8395 date: Dec-11-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 50mm f/3.5 macro
Sony 18-70mm f/3.5-f/5.6 kit
price paid:175 USD from bhphoto
positive:low light capabilities, optical quality, colour is very nice, price
negative:plasticy
comment:I bought this lens about a week ago for its low-light capabilities and it's not left my camera since! My options for lenses less than 50mm was limited to the 18-70mm kit lens and the quality of this lens completely blows that old crappy thing out of the water. This is a great lens, especially considering the price. Its optical qualities I've found are excellent for portraiture and general photography. I suspect this will relegate my beloved Minolta 50mm f/3.5 to close-macro duties only, even then it seems that this lens can even do fairly reasonable macro shots, although I have not tried a direct comparison. The 35mm focal is ideal for APS-C sensors in terms of general photographic work. I actually love shooting with the prime lens most of the time, zooms are over-rated if you ask me.

If you have an APS-C sensor (and that's most of us), what can I say other than BUY THIS LENS!!! You will not regret it, ideal portrait lens, ideal for parties, ambient light settings, etc; a good 'walk about' lens unless you are committed to zooms.
reviews found: 100    << 1 2 3 4 >>

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 100
  • sharpness: 4.72
  • color: 4.64
  • build: 3.41
  • distortion: 4.48
  • flare control: 4.39
  • overall: 4.33

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