Sony FE 28mm F2 E-mount lens review by QuietOC

reviewer#44249 date: Mar-21-2019
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 3
flare control: 4
overall: 3.9
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:Sigma 24 F1.8 EX DG
Sony 24 F2 SSM Distagon
Tamron 24 F2.8 OSD
Rokinon AF 24 F2.8
Minolta AF 24 F2.8
Sigma AF 24 F2.8 II
Discover/Neewer 25 F1.8
Canon EF 28 F1.8 USM
Sigma 28 F1.8 HS & EX DG
Minolta MD & AF 28 F2
Minolta MC 28 F2.5
Canon EF 28 F2.8 IS USM
Minolta/Sony AF 28 F2.8
Neewer 28 F2.8
Konica Hexar 28 F3.5
Sigma 30 F1.4 DC DN C & EX DC
Sigma 30 F2.8 DN Art
Sony DT 30 F2.8 Macro SAM
Neewer 32 F1.6
Zeiss 32 F1.8 Touit
price paid:355 USD (used)
positive:Center sharpness
Internal linear focus
Dust and moisture-resistant
Lens Compensation
negative:Barrel distortion
Chromatic Aberration
Misalignment/variation
Metal exterior
Plastic filter threads
Focus breathing
15 FPS burst tracking
comment:This is the second least expensive Sony FE lens after the FE 1.8/50. It is nearly twice the price of that lens. The retail price has been $450 since introduction with frequent $25 discounts and a couple of $50 discounts. It has a similar allow veneer and control ring as the older primes. "Made in Thailand"

I bid too much on an auction for a like-new copy with the original packaging. A $200 "refurbished" copy had worse alignment. A third used copy with original packaging was slightly better aligned. Every copy had some amount of misalignment. Image quality is better than the FE 28-60, 28-70, 24-70 ZA, and 24-105 G zooms.

Outside of alignment, the main optical flaws are distortion and chromatic aberrations. It has more barrel distortion than the other 28mm primes. Distortion compensation is applied to the live-view and cannot be disabled on the A7 cameras. The distortion compensation can be disabled on the A6000. It has more lateral CA than the Canon EF 28mm F2.8 IS USM.

It is as bright wide-open as the older Sigma and Canon 28 F1.8 primes despite those lenses being larger and heavier. The Sony also has less purple fringing.

It is decent as an APS-C lens, but there are sharper, smaller APS-C primes. It also lacks optical stabilization which would be useful for this normal angle-of-view on APS-C. Canon's 28 F2.8 has image stabilization.

It does look fancier than the plastic bodied FE 50 F1.8. It is not as pleasant to touch. It shares the ALC-SH112 plastic petal hood with the 18-55 OSS kit lens. The filter threads and front of the lens are plastic.

The dedicated Ultra Wide Converter attaches via the hood bayonet. The optical flaws of the base lens remain issues using the converter. The Tamron 20mm F2.8 has much better image quality and is also lighter the converter by itself.

Overall a nice basic wide prime if you find a well-aligned example.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 13
  • sharpness: 4.69
  • color: 4.69
  • build: 4.08
  • distortion: 3.31
  • flare control: 4.23
  • overall: 4.20
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