Sony Carl Zeiss 24-70mm F2.8 ZA SSM Vario-Sonnar T* A-mount lens review by Mark Twain

reviewer#33744 date: Dec-30-2016
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:FE 16-35/4
price paid:~1000
positive:Image quality
Overall build quality
negative:Weight & Size
Although overall build quality is good, AF/MF switch came off
Zoom creep
comment:In use on Sony A900 and Sony A7.

Build quality is very good, the only downside is the AF/MF switch that fell off recently. But lens hood and body of the lens is very good, though some parts are made of plastic. Important for me is that the filter thread is made of metal (my FE 70-200/4 for example has a plastic filter thread, something I cannot understand). There is a very small wiggle when fully extended to 70mm but to an extent I would consider normal.

The lens is really heavy, especially in combination with my A900 but I think that is the price to pay when buying a 24-70/2.8.

Autofocus is a bit noisier than expected and also louder than my 24/2 and much louder than my 16-35/4 which is essentially unhearable (but also has to move not as much glass). AF speed leaves nothing to be desired and I have almost 100% hits with my A900. Hunting is not an issue at all.

I would consider image quality as superb. As it is a zoom lens it cannot be stellar on every focal length but overall it is really good and I do not hesitate it to use it wide open on all focal lengths. Sharpness is very good and CAs are perfectly controlled. Only when pointing at the sun I can produce flares that I do not experience with my FE 1635/4 and that disturb the picture.

If you want that focal length and can afford that lens get it!

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 140
  • sharpness: 4.84
  • color: 4.91
  • build: 4.84
  • distortion: 4.75
  • flare control: 4.61
  • overall: 4.79 - Home of the alpha system photographer
In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania