Sony AF DT 55-200mm F4-5.6 A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 35    << 1 2
reviewer#4230 date: Oct-13-2008
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
overall: 4.5
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Sony 70-300mm f4.5-5.6 G Lens
Beercan
Sigma 70-210mm f4-5.6
Minolta 70-210mm f4-5.6
Minolta 100-200mm
price paid:108 USD (New)
positive:- Sharp at wide apertures
- Colors are nice
- Bokeh is creamy
- No CA throughout
- lightweight
negative:- The build feels cheap/pasticky/way too light
comment:This review is for the TRUE SAL55200, not the Tamron one.

I've only had the G lens for a few days and comparing the G lens to this lens (which I've had for 6 months), I thought, would produce a huge difference in image quality. To my surprise, the image quality is almost on par. I took both lenses to the zoo, did a full day of shooting, and looked over 500 shots from each lens.

At 200mm, both these lenses have negligible differences. The 70-300G definitely wins hand down overall with color, sharpness, build. BUT the 55-200 produces superb quality images. I print 4x6s and 8x10s and I truly cannot see the difference between the 70-300G and this lens. If you are a pro, I'm sure you'd skip this lens, but for anyone who needs a SUPER sharp tele, this is just fine.

I've had the beercan and I cant stand the CA at this range and wide open. The 55-200 defintely is my choice over the beercan. For the price, you get more than you pay for and I doubt anyone would regret getting this lens (unless you really hate the plastic feel).

The other 3 lenses i listed as comparison didnt actually get tested directly against it, but they were all sold because they just weren't sharp enough. I'll keep this 55-200mm for a long time, even though I have the 70-300G. The G is a bit heavy for walking around with.
reviewer#3883 date: Jul-25-2008
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:- Sony DT18250
- Sony 75-300
- KoMi 100-300APO(D)
price paid:
missing
positive:Sharpness
Weight
CA Control
focal lenght
negative:nothing
comment:Re branded Tamron 55-200 DiII lens. Sony improved the 52 filter size and changed it to 55mm which is more convenient.

The sharpness is great in all belongings. It matches the IQ of the 18250 and the 100-300.

The focal lenght is much more convenient than the 100-300 or the 75-300. 55mm covers a good range.

In the end you'll have to decide if you want to spend some more bucks for the Sony instead of buying the Tamron. I went for the Tamron as i plan to buy the Sigma 50-150/2.8 in October.


reviewer#3763 date: Jun-28-2008
sharpness: 3
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 3.6
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:Minolta AF DT 18-70
Sony DT 16-50mm f/2.8
price paid:229.99 CDN
positive:Light
Compact
negative:Not the greatest on a 24MP camera
Purple fringing in certain situations
comment:This isn't a bad lens for the price. Especially if bought used. It's not outstanding either. It seemed to work better on lower megapixel cameras but can't keep up with the A77M2 at 24MP. Fortunately PF can be corrected in post processing. The range of 55-200mm offers decent flexibility in most situations. Overall it is not bad and worth a look if your budget is tight. If possible it is worth looking at other options for a bit more money.
reviewer#3524 date: Apr-27-2008
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4
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:CZ 16-80
Sigma 70-300 APO
Sony 50mm 1.4
price paid:169GBP (new)
positive:Sharp images
Colour rendition good
Light weight
Compact size
No lens creep
negative:Plastic body & feel
AF not the quickest
Rubber focus ring
comment:I am generally pleased with this lens. It produces quite sharp images, although not as sharp as the CZ16-80 - but then there's a huge price difference between them, so what else can I expect!

It's light which makes it very portable - much more so than my Sigma 70-300. The down side is it's plastic construction, which makes it feel cheap, and the manual focus ring is just a piece of rubber at the end - weird!

Generally though, and for the price, this is a good piece of kit for anyone wanting an everyday medium telephoto zoom

Edit: I have since bought the 70-300G lens, which is awesome. However as an everday medium telephoto this is more practical as its very lightweight and pretty compact. It's also a VERY good, sharp lens. Some may sniff at it, but the images it produces are great. I have the Sony Alpha 700 and use the G lens on that, so tend to use this lens on my KM5D, which is my walkabout camera. That said, this lens produces excellent results on the 700 - what else would you expect?!!
reviewer#3497 date: Apr-21-2008
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4
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:70-210 F4 (Beercan)
18-70 F3.5-5.6 kit
price paid:A700 kit
positive:Light
Reasonably sharp throughout
Low chromatic aberration
Rubber focus ring
negative:Plastic mount
Image 'wobble' at closest focus.
Front element rotates when focussing.
comment:I've only done some preliminary tests but I thought that since it's a newly released lens then people would value these first impressions.
First off, it is small, light and plastic. Only around 1/4" longer than the 18-70 kit lens it looks almost the same, except for the large plastic hood.
It's F4-5.6 and holds F4 from 55mm up to around 100mm, and F4.5 to 150mm. F5 continues until around 180mm and it's only the last 20mm of zoom which takes it to f5.6.
It is moderately sharp throughout the range, tailing off sllightly towards the long end. Stopping down to F8 improves things as usual. It is about as sharp wide open at 200mm as the beercan. However, when the beercan is stopped down to F5.6 to match the maximum aperture of the Sony, the beercan is superior.
When focussing close the image wobbles in the viewfinder. I've noticed the 18-70 kit does this too.
Closest focus could be a bit better but it's useful enough at .95m to snap dragonflies and butterflies.
Focus hunts in low light at the long end on the A100 with a lock sometimes difficult, but it's much better on A700.
The focussing ring is rubber, rather like the series two Minoltas, and is much nicer to use than the 18-70 kit.
There's a little chromatic aberration at 200mm but it's by no means bad.
So, all in all, a 'G' lens it certainly isn't, but the going price is only around Ł159 UK. For a light two lens travelling set up you could do much worse.
Edit: I've had an afternoon out with this lens. It's able to get close enough to shoot butterflies and flowers, and provided you can tempt them close, small birds are reasonable subjects as well.
I got a bit of purple fringing on a contrast edge on one photo but Photoshop was able to handle nearly all of it. I couldn't see any significant red/green chromatic aberration.
Autofocus seemed to be quite snappy on the A700, even when the light went down.
I tried a 1.4x Teleplus Pro300 converter on it but it's not really worth doing as the inherent resolution of the lens at full zoom isn't good enough, and there's no point at shorter focal lengths. If you're into heavy cropping or pixel peeking at 200mm you'll be a bit disappointed, but it can still turn out pleasing photos. It's versatile, amazingly small and light, and a lot of fun too.
reviews found: 35    << 1 2

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 35
  • sharpness: 4.33
  • color: 4.40
  • build: 3.71
  • distortion: 4.43
  • flare control: 4.40
  • overall: 4.25

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