Sony AF 70-400mm F4-5.6 G SSM A-mount lens review by JGraham

reviewer#6847 date: Jan-30-2010
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:70-200G
SAL 100mm Macro
price paid:1500
positive:Light for a 400mm lens
Very Sharp
Minolta Colors
Focus is very quiet
negative:Poor Hood securing design
Body Color
comment:This is a very good lens. After reading many reviews on this lens, the Tamron 200-500, and the Sigma 150-500 I decided on this one. The primary function to be wildlife photography. I think the lens build is every bit A "G" class lens. It's construction with Metal and Plastic minimizes weight while maintaining a very quality feel. It allows hand holding at the 400mm end with results that are incredible. This Lens is very sharp. Sharper than my copy of the 70-200G at similar magnification. This lens will not replace the 70-200G at similar range. It is not in the same class for speed of operation and low light ability. (But its not suppose to be) The target is a light long length lens that is somewhat portable with excellent IQ. This lens certainly accomplished that task. The Image colors are in line with my other Minolta/Sony units which is still better the the Ziess colors (IMO). While the Body color is not bad, I don't understand it. It does not match the Sony color Scheme. I would much rather see Black Mat Finish on this type Lens. The SSM is a little slower than the 70-200G but it seems to focus more accurately, and is slightly quieter. I don't care for the Tripod mount as it is not hinged like some 3rd party lenses. Overall I am sure that I made the right choice with this unit and will have it in my inventory for a long time.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 128
  • sharpness: 4.87
  • color: 4.91
  • build: 4.55
  • distortion: 4.85
  • flare control: 4.84
  • overall: 4.81 - Home of the alpha system photographer
In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania