Sony DT 16-50mm F2.8 SSM A-mount lens review by ifreedman

reviewer#12058 date: Dec-12-2014
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony 18-135, Tamron 17-50, several prime lenses, etc.
price paid:440
positive:Great images, especially for a zoom.
Fast f/2.8 aperture.
Good zoom range, especially on the wide end.
Awesome SSM focusing - quiet and smooth and includes DMF, which I love. It's also really good for video b/c of quiet motor.
negative:It's size and weight. It's not huge, but it's bigger than most walk-around zooms. It also has some distortion on the wide end.
comment:I don't review lenses as often as I should, but I feel a compulsion to review this one because it's such a great lend! This is the best walk-around lens I've found, and quite honestly one of the things keeping me with an APS-C camera instead of going to FF. It's not perfect, but it's really good for so many things. Renders images really quite nicely -- not as good as some primes and not quite as nice as some of the Zeiss zooms, but really excellent overall, especially given its max aperture and the fact that it's a zoom. I've stopped using the Sony 35 1.8 altogether because of this lens. In terms of IQ, it's a little bit better than other options like Tamron 17-50, but not hugely better. However all the little things -- the extra range, the awesome focusing, weather proofing, etc. -- make this really worthwhile. I use this a lot for indoor shots, family shots, portraits, landscapes. It's good for almost anything. The f/2.8 aperture is awesome and makes this lens so versatile. I like rotating lenses, so I'm sometimes disappointed that I'm so drawn to use this lens so often.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 101
  • sharpness: 4.74
  • color: 4.68
  • build: 4.83
  • distortion: 4.13
  • flare control: 4.44
  • overall: 4.56 - Home of the alpha system photographer
In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania