Sony 135mm F2.8 T4.5 STF A-mount lens review by SineQuaNon

reviewer#44043 date: Apr-9-2018
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 MP24MP24 MP36MP36 MP42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:-SAL2470Z
price paid:780 USD (Used-Mint)
positive:- Bokeh
- Bokehlicious Bokeh
- Solid Build
- Outstanding Sharpness (PP sharpening not always needed)
- Insignificant Distortion
- Excellent Contrast
- .25X Magnification (great for pseudo macro work)
- Well-Damped Manual Focusing
negative:- Ummm, I suppose it's a negative that I waited this long to purchase one?
comment:This lens has truly blown my mind. It's one thing to see images on the web and appreciate what it can do, but it is an entirely different experience to see the OOF areas melting away into bokehlicious goodness through the EVF...

Oddly enough, though, the characteristic of the lens that I'm more surprised/happy about than the bokeh rendering is the simply INSANE sharpeness that in focus objects contain. I'd read in reviews that it was very sharp, but nothing prepared me for the jaw-dropping detail I observed even when blowing all 42.2 MP up to 100% on a high-res display. This is the first lens that I've had several images where I didn't feel the need to use any PP sharpening whatsoever.

And I honestly didn't mind the manual focus only. I grew up with manual focus lenses, and ever since upgrading to the A99ii, I've found that if I don't manually focus, the AF is off just enough to bother me when viewed at 100. Plus, when using the focus peaking and focus magnification, it really isn't difficult at all to nail an in-focus image, even hand-held.

To those of you who have (like me) been craving this lens, but unsure of the purchase: trust me, you won't be disappointed. You might might be able to do fast-action photography, but essentially everything else is fair game with a little practice and forethought.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 43
  • sharpness: 4.90
  • color: 4.95
  • build: 4.84
  • distortion: 4.86
  • flare control: 4.77
  • overall: 4.86 - Home of the alpha system photographer
In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania