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CZ 16-80 vs 17-50/2.8 vs 18-135 etc...

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QuietOC View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote QuietOC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: CZ 16-80 vs 17-50/2.8 vs 18-135 etc...
    Posted: 27 August 2016 at 18:34
Testing the Carl Zeiss with some other normal focal length zooms with my new indoor lens testing setup.



I printed the new chart on a 36" wide 600 dpi black toner printer. I could probably printed it slighter larger since I choose a standard 36"x48" sheet size, but the printer uses a roll so I could have requested a longer custom length. The larger chart results in less of a close focus situation. It is still far from infinity for wide angle shots.

Sony SLT-A65
24" 1920x1080 Monitor

Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC
Sony CZ 16-80mm F3.5-4.5 DT Vario-Sonnar T*
Tamron SP 17-50mm F2.8 XR Di II LD Aspherical
Sony DT 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 SAM II
Sony DT 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 SAM
Minolta AF 24-50mm F4
Minolta AF 24-85mm F3.5-4.5 RS
Sigma AF 28-105mm F2.8-4 Aspherical
Minolta AF 28-100mm F3.5-5.6 D
Minolta AF 28-105mm F3.5-4.5
Minolta AF 28-135mm F4-4.5
Minolta AF 35-70mm F4
Minolta AF 35-80mm F4-5.6 II

I just sold the Sony DT 16-105 F3.5-5.6 which would have been nice to compare with the CZ.

16 mm f/5.6 Center


16 mm f/5.6 Top Left


16 mm f/5.6 Bottom Right


18 mm f/5.6 Center


18 mm f/5.6 Top Left


18 mm f/5.6 Bottom Right


24 mm f/4 Center


24 mm f/4 Top Left


24 mm f/4 Bottom Right


The Tamron 17-50 F2.8 does very well at this focal length and distance--even better than the Minolta AF 24 mm F2.8! The CZ and 18-135 are not so great.

28 mm f/4 Center


28 mm f/4 Top Left


28 mm f/4 Bottom Right


The Minolta/Sony 28 mm F2.8 is not an impressive prime. The Sigma 28-105 F2.8-4 is impressive. I would like to try a later version of it.

35 mm f/4 Center


35 mm f/4 Top Left


35 mm f/4 Bottom Right


50 mm f/5.6 Center


50 mm f/5.6 Top Left


50 mm f/5.6 Bottom Right


80 mm f/5.6 Center


80 mm f/5.6 Top Left


80 mm f/5.6 Bottom Right


105 mm f/5.6 Center


105 mm f/5.6 Top Left


105 mm f/5.6 Bottom Right


Edited by QuietOC - 28 August 2016 at 02:37
Sony A7II A6000 A77II LA-EA3 LA-EA4 MC-11 MD-NEX KR-NEX DA-NEX
Minolta Maxxum 600si
Pentax Q7 5-15 15-45/2.8
 



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QuietOC View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote QuietOC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 August 2016 at 19:59
Here is an attempt at a real world test situation. I brought four lens with me to a park. The idea was to take a series of photos with one of the lenses then switch lenses and try to recreate each photo in the series with the new lens using image review to reference settings and framing. These are all handheld, Steady Shot active in varying conditions. I only had time to use three of the lenses before it began raining.

Semi-random 100% crops







Edited by QuietOC - 27 August 2016 at 23:38
Sony A7II A6000 A77II LA-EA3 LA-EA4 MC-11 MD-NEX KR-NEX DA-NEX
Minolta Maxxum 600si
Pentax Q7 5-15 15-45/2.8
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bartman View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bartman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 August 2016 at 10:51
And, what is your conclusion after this elaborate study?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote QuietOC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 August 2016 at 13:07
I don't know that I am ready for conclusions yet. I have reviews here of all of these lenses which I keep updating. I can definitely say the larger chart works better for normal zooms than the small one I've been using.

The Tamron 17-50 F2.8 is growing on me. It is definitely not test chart friendly. It is hard to manually focus accurately--there just isn't much contrast to detect wide-open and the focus throw is very short. But it seems to work very well with the phase-detect AF. I wonder if the Sony 16-50 is basically the same design but with one element changed to give better wide-open sharpness in exchange for more distortion. I got a similar impression from the 70-300 USD.

In contrast the Sony DT 18-135 SAM is sharp wide-open for miles of manual focus throw. It gives the impression of being the sharpest lens of the bunch in the center. I don't know that it actually is any sharper in the center than the 16-80 or 16-105. Testing them on a 2X teleconverter or two might shed some light on that.

The Carl Zeiss 16-80 is a pretty decent lens. I don't see much evidence of it performing significantly better than the 16-105 or 18-135. It is a nice casual everyday kit lens.

Several of the old Minoltas continue to be impressive. The 35-70 F4 looks really good here. Someone bought this lens while I was noticing this.

The cheap Minolta AF 28-100 D and 35-80 II look rather poor. These might not be the best copies I have of either, or they might be the best copies.

Edited by QuietOC - 28 August 2016 at 14:33
Sony A7II A6000 A77II LA-EA3 LA-EA4 MC-11 MD-NEX KR-NEX DA-NEX
Minolta Maxxum 600si
Pentax Q7 5-15 15-45/2.8
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ifreedman View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ifreedman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 August 2016 at 15:04
Very nice and thorough review!!! I shoot mainly the Sony 16-50, and though you didn't test it, I have to imagine it would look pretty good. I've tried a lot of the other lenses, and use the 18-135 pretty regularly, so it's really nice to see your results. Glad to see you included the garden photos at the end. I wish it was easier to evaluate micro-contrast from test charts, because that's something else that I find to be a very important factor in choosing a lens.
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Miranda F View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Miranda F Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 August 2016 at 20:50
Thanks very much for the review, QuietOC. More data to add to the mix!!
Am I right to assume your tests were with in-camera corrections off? The DT lenses would benefit from corrections (though not in contrast, presumably).

I suspect I have a much better copy of the 28-100D than you. I still do test charts (generally the Koren 2003) to test centre resolution (because the centre is the only place I usually *need* to do heavy crops), but I generally check shots immediately at 100% crop in the centre and corners through the EVF to check focussing/etc is okay, and I can often retake the shot if not.

However I usually prefer to use real-world checks because they sometimes show up poor lenses better than a test chart does, especially if you're not that interested in actual resolution.

Anyway, looking at the leaves on the top of a tree about 30-50 feet away, particularly individual leaves and berries or flowers usually top centre of frame, I find that my 28-100D better than many other lenses. Not quite as good as the 18-55mm (which is very good). Many lenses show a lot of veiling and stuff (presumably from CA) at 100% crops, though all my DT lenses are good here even if the actual contrast, sharpness, and geometry of some (eg 18-55) are not the best.

Your results were very interesting, though. My conclusions from your data were that the Tamron was best (even if this best was difficult to achieve!), that the DT35mm was very good, and that teh 18-135 results were quite mixed - some very good results at logner lenths, and some quite poor ones at the wide end. Would you agree with that?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote QuietOC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 August 2016 at 21:49
I may have used a poorer copy of the 28-100D--I have of 4 of them. I probably didn't give it as much care focusing either.

The 18-135 is really excellent for center sharpness. The focus plane must shift curvature with closer focus because in my previous tests the corners at 18 mm were sharp. I was expecting the CZ 16-80 to do better than the 18-135 and there isn't much evidence here of that.
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Minolta Maxxum 600si
Pentax Q7 5-15 15-45/2.8
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Post Options Post Options   Quote coyote1086 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 August 2016 at 00:42
I am surprised the CZ16-80 was not performing too well.
Well, I haven't put mine under a test like yours, but it seems very sharp wide open when I view pics at 100%.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote moawkwrd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 August 2016 at 13:33
Sounds like the 18-135 performs almost as well as the 55-300 with regards to beating much more expensive lenses?

Those two would make a good cheap (new) combo, with the 35 1.8.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote kaval Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 February 2017 at 08:52
These tests suggest that sony 18-135 is a very good lens, given the convenience factor (range and weight) and price (in my country, used ones are available for $150-200). What do you say?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote QuietOC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 February 2017 at 21:04
I like it a lot. It is a little soft in the corners at wide angles and has some lateral CA at the long end, but overall it is very good.
Sony A7II A6000 A77II LA-EA3 LA-EA4 MC-11 MD-NEX KR-NEX DA-NEX
Minolta Maxxum 600si
Pentax Q7 5-15 15-45/2.8
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