Sony DT 16-50mm F2.8 SSM A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 93    << 1 2 3 4 >>
reviewer#10959 date: Mar-3-2013
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
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:- Sony DT 35mm f1.8 SAM
- Sony DT 50mm f1.8 SAM
- Bower 85mm f1.4 manual focus, aspherical IF
- Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* 135mm f1.8 ZA
- Sony DT 18-55mm f 3.6-5.6 SAM
- Sony DT 18-250mm f3.5-6.3
- Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm f2.8 ZA SSM
- Sony 28-75mm f2.8 SAM
- Sony 70-200mm f2.8 G SSM
- Minolta AF 70-210mm f4 Beercan
price paid:$650 AUD (New)
positive:-Sharp
-Well build
-Weather sealed
-Not too big and heavy
-Zoom clock
-SSM
negative:- Distortion and vignetting at wide angle wide open
- Flare control can be better
- CA control at wide open aperture can be better
- Corner sharpness ok
comment:This is a very good lens, I've tested on 3 Sony SLT models- A57, A77 and A99 and this lens produces very crisp and vivd images on all 3 cameras.

IMHO For starters looking for a all-rounder walk around zoom lens that can also be used in low light conditions to pair with their APSC Alpha bodies, this lens is highly recommend. Though it doesn't offer great zoom range as the 18-250mm lens, it is much faster to focus, sharper, and better build and offers constant f2.8 aperture. However, some may find this lens isn't exactly lightweight and the focal range isn't enough for general purpose/ walk around photography. Though this lens is not exactly cheap but it is cheaper than the Canon Nikon equivalent and plus you can also find some seriously good deals for this lens online.

The sharpness of my copy is excellent, much better than the kit lens, and it is similar to my 28-75mm f2.8 lens. When comparing to Sony 50mm f1.8 lens at f2.8 it is hard to tell which one is better. When stopped down to f4, this lens is tack sharp no question. When coupled with A77 or A57, IMHO this lens can even be a match to other brand's full frame cameras with their 27-40mm f2.8 lens in turns of sharpness say Canon 5D MK II + Canon 24-70mm L combo, but the Sony combo has the advantage of image stabilisation build into their camera bodies while the Canon/Nikon doesn't( lens dependent) .

When mounted on A57, this lens can seem a little front heavy, though personally I find no problem, and this lens is a perfect match on A77, very well balanced and handles brilliantly with A77. On the A99, you can not use the AF-D with this lens, and you only get 10MP files, but you can still produces good images from it.

Colour is generally good with this lens,but not excellent, not as saturated contrasty as Zeiss 24-70mm and rich as Minolta Beercan.

The fast, silent and accurate focus from the SSM motor is really handy for snap shots, however, it doesn't guarantee no misfocus especially in continuos burst modes and low light conditions. In general this lens focuses well, and rarely hunts even in low light. Other features like weather sealing and zoom lock button is welcome and really adds value to this lens.

Bokeh wise, this lens is generally good , it can render good out of focus scenes and blur the background relatively smoothly when used at f2.8 and f4, however, the bokeh balls can appear a little busy sometimes in day light at wide open aperture. The 70-200 G produces better bokeh than this lens wide open.

The biggest con of this lens is the relatively strong distortion at 16mm, when shooting RAW wide open this is very obvious. When shooting in JEPG however, the distortion control is better, but still excises. Stopping down and shooting at 24mm this almost goes away. Vignetting wide open at 16mm is also visible too, again stopping down helps. Lastly, the corner performance, flare and CA control of this lens is not the best, though acceptable but not excellent. Stopping down to f4 helps with CA, though not eliminates the issue. Corner performance greatly improves as stoping down to f5.6-f8 or smaller aperture; and to avoid flare, try to avoid direct sunshine to lens.

Overall, great lens for APSC Alphas and a must if you want a standard zoom for walk around photography and low light shooting.
reviewer#10954 date: Feb-28-2013
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 3
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:Zeiss 16-80 and tamron 17-50
price paid:Traded
positive:Build, Image quality, and flare resistance
negative:zoom range, and IQ not nessesarily better than the tamron 17-50.
comment:
missing
reviewer#10921 date: Feb-15-2013
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
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:Tamron 17-50
Sony 18-55
price paid:350 GBP (used)
positive:+Well built
+Fantastic autofocus performance
+Weather sealed
+Constant aperture F/2.8
negative:-Heavy.
-Stiff zoom ring.
-Expensive.
comment:I had Tamron 17-50 F/2.8, I was very surprised about IQ for that lens and really liked it. Anyway, I thought, I paid too much for it- 329GB for new, almost 100 GBP more than cheapest deal on the Internet. So I gave it back to the store and tried to find cheaper deal. Finally, I found used Sony 16-50, in mint condition, splitted from A77, for almost same price which I paid for new Tamron.

After this Tamron, Sony version didn't surprise me with IQ, I don`t have both lenses together anymore, but I`m pretty sure that there is no noticeable difference between them. Zoom ring is also same class- stiff as hell, can`t compare with classic Minolta AF zoom rings, for video, it`s also hard to zoom smoothly.

The greatest thing about Sony lens is autofocus performance, it`s fast and quite. But in a very quite place, you can still hear it on the video, not motor, but clack-clack, when it stops focusing, so, the external mic is anyway a must.

Also it`s very heavy, Tamron was quite nice and balanced, this one is like a brick attached to your camera, maybe it`s only with my entry level body, but I read there, that even on A77 it feels same. After few hours shooting my hand feels extremely tired. And with external flashgun, I don`t need gym anymore :)

In terms of IQ, and maybe it`s most important for any lens... It performs well, but I can`t say it`s outstanding. I`m not saying that it is bad, but for the price, it should be reviewed more critically. At F/2.8, it looks like a bit softer than Minolta AF 28mm F/2.8 prime lens, and definitely softer than Tamron 17-50 was. At slower F it becomes very well. Colors- typical Sony colors, my Sony 50mm F/1.8 produces exactly same results.

Price- new is pretty expensive, I`m not sure if it is worst the price. For still images only- Tamron 17-50 is clear winner in terms of price&performance. For video shooting- probably this is better, with slightly faster and less noisy AF. Weather sealed is also a nice feature. And of course, it looks much better :)

Updated 27/05/2013

Had chance to test this lens on a new A58 and its 20MP sensor. Comparing to old A35, pictures looks a bit sharper on this camera, I'm more happy with results on A58 than on my old A35. Plastic lens mount on the camera doesn't look like a problem, and overall feeling is a bit better than with A58- it feels slightly more balanced, but any way, it's still too heavy for entry level bodies.
reviewer#10919 date: Feb-15-2013
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
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:- Sony DT 1.8/35 SAM
- Minolta AF 1.4/50
price paid:599 EUR (new)
positive:- Great build quality
- Fantastic silent and fast AF
- Great image quality at around 24mm to 35 mm
- Very decent image quality for the rest of the zoom range
negative:- It isn't super sharp (still very respectable for its class)
- Distortion at wide end
- Bokeh is a bit harsh
comment:Even with its faults, it's a great lens. Focusing ring is just right, zoom ring is a bit stiff but at least there's no zoom creep. It's heavy and even on A77, without the battery grip, very front heavy. Still, I like it as a walkaround combo.

I find that, shooting RAW, the images from this lens on the A77 are pretty flat, low contrast ones that are great to post process in Lightroom.
reviewer#10891 date: Feb-1-2013
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 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:N/A
price paid:Kit Lens w/a77
positive:Fast.
Quite.
Sharp.
Versatile.
Quality build.
negative:N/A
comment:It took me a while to warm up to this lens. It wasn't the lens, it was my perception of the lens. After using a while i have really grown to love it. It's versatile as a landscape and portrait lens. It's very sharp, fast AF and very quite. It also balances the camera with VG very nicely. I only wish that I could take it with me when I eventually move on to a FF camera.
reviewer#10883 date: Jan-30-2013
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
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:Sony DT 16-105
price paid:500 USD (new)
positive:Sharp
Silent AF
Excellent build quality
negative:Zoom ring a bit firm
Distortion at 16 mm (can be adjusted in post-process though)
comment:I absolutely love this lens. It's silent, fast-focusing with top image quality even at f2.8.
(It's a litte bit unbalanced with my A65, but this is not the lens' problem.)
reviewer#10876 date: Jan-27-2013
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
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:Minolta 3.5-4.5/24-85 AF
Minolta 1.7/50 AF
price paid:500 euros
positive:Sharpness
definition
construction
colors
very speed AF
negative:nothing...
comment:The best lens I have ever had. Very sharp, high level definition, excellent color rendition. Mounted on a Sony A-77 body, it is fabulous.
reviewer#10867 date: Jan-23-2013
sharpness: 3.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 3
flare control: 4
overall: 3.7
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:Minolta 50 1.7 AF
Minolta 28-85 3.5/4.5 (on Film)
Minolta 35-70 f4
Sony 18-70 (on A100)
Sigma 24 2.8
price paid:£349.00GBP
positive:Colour rendition
Fast quiet focus
Feels well built
Weather seals
Looks the part
negative:Hood does not facilitate use of filters such as polarising filter.
No jaw dropping sharpness.
comment:This lens is the most expensive lens I've owned in 37 years of using SLRs, and only the second new lens (as opposed to used). Of the images i've grabbed so far none of them have made my jaw drop open when compared to what I got with my (lost/stolen) A100/SAL1870. The weather seals have withstood a couple of hours session in the snow, and a spraying from an inconsiderate motorist. I have noticed some vignetting at 16mm , but I think that may have be caused by the polarising filter I was using as an ersatz "skylight" lens protector in the snow the other day. There is also some quite alarming chromatic aberration even at f11 at the wide end. The wide maximum aperture is useful for portraits but the handling of out of focus areas is nothing to write home about.

Conclusion? Disappointing, given the price. Although I have to remind myself that a lens of this focal range and fast maximum aperture would have cost considerably more not so very long ago. It's made in China.

Update Nov 2015: After using this lens for a couple of years it has slowly grown on me. It is a good match for the A77 sensor and has subtle qualities. still looks and feels good.
reviewer#10859 date: Jan-18-2013
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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 own this lens
compared to:Sony 18-70
Tamron 70-300
price paid:800 (new)
positive:Very useful range on APS-C camera
Very sharp until about 35mm, but still good
Great Build
Very fast and accurate focus
negative:Distortion wide open can be harsh
Flare control is about average
comment:Great Lens overall, love almost everything about it. It has a great range, very very useful for a crop camera. The SSM focusing is great and super fast. Weather seal is good, have been out in the rain with it, as well as in sand, and other than maybe a few grains of sand causing a problem all was good. Sharpness wise it is very good, able to virtually maximize my A100 sensor. Love the color as well very nice indeed.Only problems are with distortion wide open, but that is correctable in jpegs in newer cameras, and through photoshop. Flare is also about average, can't say it great, but not bad.
Overall and bottom line is that I love this lens, it isn't perfect, but it is a must have for sony crop camera users wanting a reliable, fast, and well built standard zoom.
reviewer#10750 date: Dec-3-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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 own this lens
compared to:Minolta 17-35, Minolta 28-135, Minolta 24-50, Minolta 35-70
price paid:£319 GBP
positive:Solid Build, Weather Sealing, Sharp wide open, silent focusing, colour rendition
negative:Distortion at edges @16mm, heavier than expected, manual focus not as smooth as others
comment:First time owning an SSM lens, very impressed with the build quality, weather sealing, sharpness and colour rendition. Overall this lens is superb with only a few minor niggles.
reviewer#10729 date: Nov-26-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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:Sigma 18-250 Macro HSM
Minolta GT (A2)
Tamron 28-300
CZ Planar 50 f/1.8
price paid:£350 (A77 kit)
positive:Superb contrast/resolution
Very good build quality
Fast silent AF
Gives consistently excellent image quality without having to 'work at it'
negative:A bit heavy?
comment:One of the best half frame (APS-C) zoom lenses ever built.
Flare control is good rather than very good (still well above average, but 4.5 isn't available!).
The sort of lens you can fit and forget - it just works: it works very well all the time without you having to think about it; it allows you to concentrate on the composition and not worry about the gear.
reviewer#10709 date: Nov-17-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 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 CZ16-80
Sony 18-50
price paid:Bundled with A77
positive:Everything
negative:None
comment:Having had a Sony CZ16-80 with its build quality problems I really loved this lens straight away. Don't get me wrong the CZ is fantastic and gives very sharp results and is lighter and looks better on smaller bodies but it has many problems that make this lens a really superior lens compared with it.

At the start I noticed that details aren't that great at pixel level although the picture had an overall good quality. I did a little micro-adjustment using the Moire method and this lens started to show its true colours! pictures taken with it had great details even at pixel level.

The quiet and quick SSM does a great job, and the lock (which works at the 16mm end only) is a good addition but lens is so well built that it doesn't really need it anyway.
reviewer#10573 date: Oct-9-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 3
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:Bundled
positive:AF - very fast and silent
Dust/Weather Sealing
Great solid build
f/2.8 throughout the range
Parfocal lens
negative:Distortion
Sharpness at certain settings
Quality of lens hood plastic
Zooming action isn't perfectly smooth
comment:It's one of the best lenses on a market, especially when we compare value to the quality.
Nikon 17-55mm f/2.8G runs for £900-1000 and at the same time doesn't even offer 24mm equivalent focal length! Meanwhile Sony runs for little more then a half of the price and hardly has anything to be ashamed of comparing to it's by far more expensive counterpart.

As for the sharpness - at f/2.8 it's perfectly usable on all focal lengths, but it's razor-sharp between f/4 and f/7 (below f/8 with A77 you can clearly see diffraction kicking in). What I like is that the lens is very consistent and predictable - it hardly has any "strong" or "weak" focal lengths - performs evenly across entire range what's really quite an achievement.

As for colors - well, I'm hardly an expert in that, but it seems to be "ok". Not to good, but not bad either. It got quite neutral colors, but because of this - it doesn't "pop" in any way that can be used as an advantage like in the Zeiss lenses.

Distortions... well, everyone put it quite nicely already: Quite bad on wide angle f/2.8, but stopping down to f/5.6 seems to be fixing the issue nicely. But at least it doesn't have any very complicated distortion pattern. Never the less - out of all lenses I got: This one has most pronounced distortions.

Quite complicated flare made of small spots and one large green can be visible on a shots, with green one very eye-catching, still visible even on a bright background. It's not the worst one, but can be annoying.

As for aberrations - TcA is quite ok, quite easy to correct, lucky: LcA is nearly non-existent, so thank Sony for that, as this one is nearly impossible to correct with post-processing.

Bokeh - well, it's not bad, nor beautiful either. Comparing to Carl Zeiss 16-80mm this one is tad disappointing. It can be smooth, but hardly anything I'd describe "buttery smooth". Overall though: I got few lenses that have worse bokeh, including these making weird twisted patterns, and this one is nothing alike. Solid performer, but nothing extraordinary.

Build quality - well, this lens is nearly a tank. I shot with it in a rain, sand, hot sun, it even fallen down to concrete once, and never got even a slightest problem with it. Definitely a must-have for everyone shooting in bad weather.
What I don't like though is the zooming action - no way I could zoom in video through entire range smoothly. That's very frustrating considering a fact that this is suppose to be a lens build with video in mind.
Second issue is the lens hood - it's made of plastic that sticks out from an overall lens build quality. My is already whole in scratches - to a degree where you can't read "Sony" on it any more, cause it got scratched out of it. o_O
reviewer#10572 date: Oct-7-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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:Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8
Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8
Tokina 28-70mm f/2.8
Sigma 50mm f/1.4
Minolta 50mm f/1.7
price paid:600 CAD(Used)
positive:-Dust/Weather Sealing
-Incredibly Sharp at all focal lengths and aperture
-Fast and Silent AF motor
-Full-time manual focus override
-Build Quality
negative:-Nada
comment:I regretted not buying my a77 with the Sony kit lens within 2 months of the purchase, and jumped on the opportunity to buy the lens separately at a great price.

There's nothing to complain about with this lens especially on the a77. With the grip the whole system is weather sealed and balanced to perfection.

The silent SSM AF motor is a nice to have for stills, but is a must for video if you're not recording externally. I was relying on manual focusing during video but with the SSM I have no fears of using the AF during video.

Of all my lenses this is probably the sharpest zoom, and second in sharpness only to the Sigma 50mm 1.4; but even that is debatable.

I've heard a lot of people mention there's a newer class of zoom lenses for each system, that can rival primes but found it hard to believe until I got this lens.

Worth every penny.
reviewer#10518 date: Sep-18-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 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:CZ 2.8/24-70
price paid:619 EUR
positive:Fine lens beautiful matches. Compact size and not too heavy.
negative:Zoom range could be greater.
comment:
missing
reviewer#10499 date: Sep-10-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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:F1.4 50mm Minolta
price paid:£450 new
positive:Build quality
Manual Focus control
Colours
negative:Distortion at wide aperture
comment:What a fantastic lens. OK it has some obvious distortion wide open but this aside it's near faultless. Maybe a little large diameter be careful when changing lens if you have small hands. Although a recent purchase I see this spending most of tie time on my A77
reviewer#10473 date: Aug-26-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 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:Sigma 17-50 EX DC f2.8 HSM
Tamron 17-50 f2.8 XR
price paid:614 Euro (new)
positive:fast and silent SSM
very sharp, bokeh
color and contrast
weather seal
negative:extreme corners could be a little sharper
comment:The focusing is very precise and fast. Optical and build quality is very good.
Sharper as my Sigma and Tamron.
Distorshion, vignetting and CA well corrected on my a65.
The best one for video
Overall I'm very impressed with this lens
reviewer#10441 date: Aug-8-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
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:Sony 18-50 kit lens
Minolta 28-135
Minolta 28-105 Xi
price paid:Bundled
positive:Great solid build
Quite focusing
f2.8 throughout the range
Professional appearance
negative:Significant distortion, but this is negated by the lens compensation feature of the A77.
comment:Great lens, can't recommend it enough! Professional look, feel and operation.
Used for many months now without any problems in the slightest. In fact, since receiving this lens, it has barely been of my camera, despite owning some quality Minolta glass. Only ever comes off when using primes, or super zooms.
Colour is quite good, not up to Minolta vibrancy, but better by far than all Sony DT lenses i have tried. Also works well in b+w when using in camera (A77) b+w settings.

Only potential downside is the pin cushion distortion, but this is fixed perfectly using the lens compensation feature of the A77, can actually be used to a reasonable degree as a 'fish eye effect' if required.

All in all, currently my favourite lens!
reviewer#10428 date: Aug-4-2012
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
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:Sigma 18-125mm F3.5-5.6 DC
Sony 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 DT SAM
Sigma 17-35mm F2.8-4 EX
price paid:£410
positive:great build quality
DMF
Silent AF
nice contrast
negative:heavy
AF not so accurate (on my A580)
comment:I was impressed by the amount of the positive reviews over here so I decide to get one.
I am a bit disappointed about the AF accuracy on my A580 thats never failed me before. its a bit of mix results either nice and sharp or just everything out of focus.
maybe this lens is only designed for the A77 advanced AF sensor not the one shared between a580, a57, a65 and a55 !
the lens is sharp at the center stepped down to F4 but dont expect anything like that at the corners. its hard to get sharp corners !
I did some comparison shots against the Sigma 18-125mm and the sigma wins in term of sharpness across the entire frame, while the Sony has better overall contrast.
the other bright side is the F2.8, however it is not possible to get very sharp results with that aperture.
I am disappointed with the results, as I got better sharpness with £100 lens than the £400 ( cost for used copies )
you can search for the review of photographyblog dot come and see by yourself about the sharpness of this lens
maybe its my copy, maybe I have higher expectation than I should after all these impressive comments !


reviewer#10412 date: Jul-29-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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 AF 28-70/2.8
Minolta Af 50/1.7
price paid:630 EUR
positive:- Fast fast fast AF
- Very sharp
- Solid build
- Nice bokeh
- Very silent
negative:- AF not so accurate on my A200
- Little distortion (well corrected on A77)
comment:This lens is wonderful, i tested it for just one day and i'm very happy to have one. In my opinion is the best choice for an A77 (like mine) because it's silent, fast and very sharp even wide open. I think it will be on my camera most of the time. If you're look for standard focals this is the answer!

EDIT: After two months of use, i can say it's a prime killer, it is mounted on my A77 from its purchase.
I tried it even on my A200 but it lacks AF accuracy, since i can't microadjust focus in that camera, pictures aren't so vibrant as with the A77. Not a problem: continue using all good primes on A200 and keep 16-50 on A77 (reducing to zero every dust problem!)
reviewer#10405 date: Jul-23-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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:Sigma 17-70 f2.8-4.5 , Sony SAL 50 F1.8, Tamron 70-200, f2.8
price paid:670 Euro (New)
positive:Sharp, fast, very fast, silent,72mm filters (for me), good for video
negative:i have to test more to find something...is not perfect for sure and i hate " Made in China"
comment:perfect fit with a77...perfect for video
reviewer#10386 date: Jul-16-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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 own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:699 USD (new)
positive:Built like a tank, and weathersealed
Fast (f/2.8) at all focal lengths
Fast and accurate focus
Parfocal design
Bokeh (sometimes)
negative:Bokeh (sometimes)
comment:This is a great lens for photography, and perhaps an even better lens for video. As noted in the "positive" list it is parfocal-- it remains in focus as it zooms, and likewise the focal length does not change when focusing. It is also f/2.8 throughout the focal range, which makes it a great indoor lens.

The bokeh is difficult to describe. Sometimes (rarely) it is excellent, and other times (rarely) it is harsh. I can't tell in advance which bokeh flavor I will get, but most of time it is at least "pretty good."

I have become spoiled by my primes, so I don't reach for this as much as I used to. When I do, this lens keeps up quite well-- and certainly better than almost any kit zoom on any brand. I still use it for indoor sports-- it is fast enough and the AF is superb. I also use it for HDR architecture and landscapes, sometimes stitched. The minor downsides are irrelevant, and I can count on sharp focused shots at the view I need.

It was a very good idea to bundle this lens with the a77, the two work very well together. Features such as ADI distance confirmation work as expected, and the camera knows how to correct the very slight barrel distortion and almost negligible vignetting (at least with JPGs). The pair will almost certainly beat kits with slower zooms.
reviewer#10318 date: Jun-22-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 4
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 18-250, Tamron 28-105
price paid:550 USD
positive:Fast focus
extremely silent motor
range on the wide end to 16mm
negative:Would have been nice if it went all the way to 70mm or 80mm.
comment:Fast focus - may seem faster than it actually is because the motor is so silent
Great walk around lens for cities and architectural shots because of its 16mm wide angle.
Color not quite as good as some classic Minolta lenses
Works great with my a77
reviewer#10306 date: Jun-15-2012
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:Tamron 17-50/f2,8
price paid:629€
positive:Very fast AF speed.
Silent Af
Accurate
nice feel to it
negative:Resolution not a lot better than the Tamron.
corners could ben sharper
comment:compared to the tamron, I don't see an improvement in resolution. The colours are okay but I prefer a bit more saturated.
Its AF is very fast and also very quiet.
What I love best about the lens, is that you don't notice it when taking pics. It sort of works naturally and there is no bigger compliment than that.
The biggest imrpovement is in video. It is quiet and gives nice results.
Whether it is the lens or my camera, I have severe backfocus issues which can be solved in the A77
reviewer#10303 date: Jun-14-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 3
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:$750.00 (new)
positive:Very sharp (Especially at F4)
Nice build quality
SSM (Fast)
Colors
negative:Distortion at wide end
comment:I have been using this lens with the A77 and am very happy with it.

I get great sharp images from corner to corner. I like the build quality. I think for a sub $1000.00 lens it is put together well.

The only complaint with it is the barrel distortion when used at the wide end. I have found that Lightroom quickly corrects this issue however.

I think this is a great walk around lens and befor I got my Zeiss 135 F1.8 it lived on my camera.
reviewer#10299 date: Jun-13-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 3
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 used to own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:700e(new)
positive:Build, focus ring DMF, very fast SSM
negative:a little bit expensive for its category, huge barrel distorsion at 16mm, should be longer than 50mm
comment:very good lens for walk around, buildings, lanscapes, and even portrets.
reviewer#10295 date: Jun-13-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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:16-80
16-105
price paid:699 USD
positive:Very Sharp at wide open, Fast , weather shield and nice build
negative:Price is high
comment:Very good Lens for my daily purpose
reviewer#10201 date: May-14-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 5
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:Kit with A77
positive:Everything
negative:nothing
comment:Love it. Range is fine, colours could be slightly more saturated but balances perfectly with A77 and the zoom lock is handy.
Fast to focus and big focus ring for MF.
Good MFD.
This is my 'always on' lens
reviewer#10172 date: May-3-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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:- Minolta 70-210mm F4 (beercan)
price paid:700 (CAD new kit)
positive:- Fast and versatile
- Excellent build quality
- Focus/Zoom rings are easy to reach/control with no creep or slop
- Excellent for video
negative:- Sharpness isn't very good wide-open
- Heavy!
- Distortion at wide range is significant but well corrected in-body (jpg) or via post (raw)
comment:Excellent lens overall that spends the most time on my camera thanks to it's versatility and speed. I especially like the extra little wide-angle I get (compared to 18-55mm) and find the focus to be fairly accurate under a variety of conditions. I would strongly recommend this lens to anyone looking to get a significant upgrade from the standard kit lens.

One of the primary reasons I went with this lens was for its SSM and video use. After using it for a fair bit of video I'd have to say it's a great choice. The zoom range and focus speed make it a great lens for a variety of shooting conditions so if video is something you're looking at this is likely a great option also.
reviewer#10114 date: Apr-12-2012
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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 own this lens
compared to:Sony 50 1.8
Sony 18-55
Tamron 28-75 2.8
Minolta 100-200 4.5
price paid:840 USD
positive:Sharp
Build
Weight
negative:Vignetting at 16mm even in sunny daylight.
comment:I was torn between the 16-50 2.8, the 16-80 CZ and the Tamron 17-50 2.8. The decision took me over 3 moths, but I made my decision and bought the 16-50 2.8. I'm not saying it's better or worse than the others. I'm just happy with the lens.
So, the lens is sharp enough for my taste and, it makes mt A580 look smallish. But I like the weight and the build. I won't use any filters, except, maybe, the Carl Zeiss CPL. I think all other filters just won't keep up withe IQ of the lens.
I really wnat to thaks for all your previous inputs, as I finally made my decision based on you opinions.
reviews found: 93    << 1 2 3 4 >>

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 93
  • sharpness: 4.74
  • color: 4.71
  • build: 4.85
  • distortion: 4.12
  • flare control: 4.42
  • overall: 4.57

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