Sony Carl Zeiss 16-35mm F2.8 ZA SSM Vario-Sonnar T* A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 56    << 1 2
reviewer#7623 date: Jun-27-2010
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:color
sharpness
build
negative:edge, corner sharpness at 16mm

comment:DXO optics pro can really improve the raw processed at 16mmm with this lens

this is one of the reason for me for using this software versus Lightroom
reviewer#7573 date: Jun-15-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
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:Minolta AF 28-135
price paid:1375EURO(new)
positive:- first class well controlled 'neutrality', unobtrusiveness
- versatility in most light conditions, both inside & outside
- with cropping you get all the zoom pics you want: sharp & telling
negative:Good for the muscles
comment:First impressions compared to my old trusted Minolta AF 28-135: Colour, Sharpness, Weight offer a very familiar feeling. The AF 28-135 introduces 'enhancements', whereas the Zeiss has a constant edge on being/staying more natural. Flare is a big issue on the AF 28-135, a small issue on the Zeiss. Keeping your hand on the sunny side helps with immediate effect on the Zeiss in situations that just became unsolvable for the AF 28-135. The AF 28-135 is a typical outdoor walkabout objective for the big & faraway, the Zeiss takes you inside, lets you come close (30 cm) to whatever attracts the eye. I was looking for an objective that meets the eye; you see something and the Zeiss will capture it without trouble.
reviewer#7550 date: Jun-10-2010
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
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 own this lens
compared to:Nikkor 14-24
Nikkor 17-35
price paid:1490 USD NEW
positive:+Color
+Contrast
+Center performance
negative:-Extreme corners could be better
comment:Will update this, as iv used the lens more.
reviewer#7289 date: Apr-15-2010
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
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:Minolta AF 17-35mm f/2.8-4 D 2695-110
price paid:1400 USD (used)
positive:Visibly better resolution than the Minolta AF 17-35mm f/2.8-4 D. Fast (as always with wide angle lenses) and silent focus. Internal focusing.
negative:
missing
comment:This lens has visibly better resolution than the Minolta AF 17-35mm f/2.8-4 D I owned. The fast (as always with wide angle lenses) and silent focusing is also a plus.
reviewer#7284 date: Apr-14-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
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:Sigma 10-20 on A700
price paid:1310 EUR (new, HK)
positive:* Sharp (like prime, starting right from 2.8 in the center)
negative:* Heavy
* Vignetting
comment:It is really at least one class higher than 10-20. Unfortunately, this applies to the size and weight as well. I'd prefer less resistance while using zoom and focusing rings. It is much stiffer compared to SAL70200G. But nothing you couldn't live with.
reviewer#7132 date: Mar-22-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
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:M28/2
M35/2
M28-135/4-4.5
price paid:$1750 USD (new)
positive:Focus range,ZA colors,Cheaper than combined prices of available primes,Internal focusing,Focus speed and accuracy.
negative:Flare on the 16mm end but to be expected. Would have loved 16-50 but that would have hurt the CZ24-70 market. :(
comment:I have recently aquired both the 28 and 35 original primes and found the CZ 16-35 to be quite comparible at their respective distances. I enjopy the focus speed much more on the zoom but the weight of the primes is minimal. The 35/2 can be used for portraits much easier than the 16-35, but I find it impossible to replace the 16-20mm ability when standing directly unmderneath something like the Mission Earth ride at Epcot! There are just certain times and situations I believe the CZ16-35 would be invaluable. The price is very justifiable when you compare the cost of a 16mm Fish, and the 20,28,and 35 F2 primes combined. I believe the capabilities to be very simlar, (minus some portrait plus for the 35/2). Overall I am very happy with the lense from vacation and look forward to using it for landscape during my next trip to Colorado. I will update my review once I have completely compared it to my newly aquired 28/2 and 35/2.

Price includes tax, shipping, and 5 year extended warranty
reviewer#7082 date: Mar-13-2010
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
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 24-70
price paid:Ł1199
positive:Sharpness
Colour
contrast
negative:Expensive
Heavy
comment:I love this lens. Internal zoom avoids some of the gripes I have with the CZ 24-70. It's capable of incredible images, sharpness and colour are good and it's my favourite for landscape.

Handling edges the CZ 24-70 which handles well. Costs a fortune but you get what you pay for, just don't tell your girlfriend how much... The best wide zoom for the alpha mount. Thank you Sony and Zeiss.

Some people have issues with the use of plastic, personally it really doesn't bother me.
reviewer#6987 date: Mar-2-2010
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 15-30
price paid:1899 USD (new)
positive:Very sharp at TA
Fast and silent AF
Great colors
Very low distortion
negative:
missing
comment:This is an extremely well built lens. The size and weight are not extreme for a FF compatible f/2.8 lens. Its balance is perfect with my A-900. When I use the AF it is quick, accurate and silent. For landscapes, I normally set the focus manually and so appreciate the fluid and positive action of the controls. There is no slop in the zoom or focus functions. I previously owned the Sigma 15-30, which was a fine lens however; the CZ beats it hands down. I haven’t checked the bokeh since I purchased the lens primarily for the close focus capability coupled with the extreme DOF it provides. This lens has performed flawlessly in the hot 98% humidity of Florida’s marsh to the sub-zero snow filled canyons of Utah.

I’m completely satisfied with this lens I do recommend it to fellow photographers.
reviewer#6876 date: Feb-6-2010
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 20mm f2.8 RS, Minolta 28mm f2.8, Minolta 17-35mm f2.8/4, CZ 24-70mm f2.8
price paid:1300 euro (new)
positive:Very sharp at TA
Fast and silent AF
Great colors
Very low distortion, even at 16mm TA
negative:None
comment:I think this is a must have wide-zoom.
reviewer#6719 date: Jan-9-2010
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 15-30
Minolta 24/2.8
Sigma 10-20/3.5 HSM
Sony 35/1.4
Tamron 17-50/2.8
price paid:Ł1000 + tax hong kong
positive:Sharpness
Colour and contrast
Silent, accurate AF
More amazing technically than CZ24-70
negative:Big and heavy.
comment:Remarkable lens. Better image quality (on crop A700) than any other wide I've used. In particular, colours are excellent with none of the cast which Sigma and even Tamron suffer from. Contrast is good frm f/2.8 onwards, sharpness beats the 24/2.8 prime!
Much better in terms of distortion than the Tamron and the Sigma 15-30. Much less flare than the 15-30.
Sharpness is impossible to beat, especially around the 17, 18mm mark. Wide angle, wide open is great on full-frame.
Sigma 10-20 seems like a toy compared to this beauty.

It's a big brute of a lens, the same size as a CZ24-70 but it doesn't extend like the longer zoom does. If you can live with the size and weight then it can't be beat.
Works beautifully with flash, very accurate exposures and silent, accurate autofocus. I don't use the hood in case it blocks the AF illuminator.
For low light portraits I switch to the Sony 35/1.4 which gives nicer skin tones and bokeh at that focal length. For everything wider this is impossible to beat, unless portability is important.
reviewer#6626 date: Dec-23-2009
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:CZ 24-70, Min 50 1.7
price paid:1800.00 USD (NEW)
positive:Very Sharp for a WA, Great colors, Focus Quick and Silent, Great Perspective, Little Distortion, F2.8, Solid, Great Build.
negative:Little Heavy. Some minor distortion at 16mm, would give it a 4.5 if i could.
comment:Great Lens, the first time looking through this on my new A850 i was amazed. Colors are great and lens is fast in all aspects (aperture, focus, ect). Paired with the CZ 24-70 you cannot go wrong.

I have a B+W UV Filter on my lens and have not noticed any vignetting that others have mentioned. I will be going out this weekend into real world scenarios and will update and post test photos in the forums.
reviewer#6312 date: Nov-2-2009
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 28-75 mm / 2,8
price paid:1600 Euro
positive:- sharp
- color
negative:- price
comment:Super sharp, beautiful color, heavy construction
reviewer#6036 date: Sep-12-2009
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 12-24, Minolta 20mm.
price paid:
missing
positive:Image quality.
negative:Weight, size, price.
comment:This is easily one of the best zoom lenses in the Sony line-up. The micro-contrast and sharpness are breathtaking. The colors are great, but noticeably cooler than the ones from classic Minolta glass (but this is nothing which can't be corrected in post).

It is an extraordinary lens, much more so than the 24-70 for example.

Some people criticized the corner sharpness. The extreme corner sharpness -or rather lack of it- of the 16-35 is not a problem in real life use on the A900, only the EXTREME corners are somewhat unsharp when the lens is wide opened. The old Minolta 20mm prime is indeed a bit better in this respect, but there are very, very few subjects on which it matters.

The lens is big and heavy.

You can use filters on this lens, but it makes little sense. As on any lens this wide, you need very thin filters and they will degrade the side of the frame a bit (think at which angle the light rays go through the glass on the side...).

AF is fast, silent and accurate, but who cares on a wide-angle? ;)
reviewer#5995 date: Sep-6-2009
sharpness: 4
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
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:Sigma 15/2.8, 24/1.8 EX DG, Zeiss T*25/2.8 Distagon ZK, Zeiss 24/2 Distagon ZA, Pentax FA 31/1.8.
price paid:1950CAD(new)
positive:- Solid build
- IQ (color, contrast, sharpness)
- SSM Auto-focus
- Internal zoom
- Manual focusing resulting from SSM is decent for an AF design.
- 1:4.2 life scale @ MFD (35mm)
- Nice lens hood.
negative:- Price, though you get what you pay for.
comment: Well built - good balance of weight saving and metal material. For a lens covering 16-35 at 2.8, with as solid a construction as it offers, the weight is totally reasonable and easily hand-holdable for a day of shooting. I've done it, and while noticing slight fore-arm fatigue after several hours, the shots I took home were well worth it.
IQ - Color is rich, contrast and sharpness right from 2.8 are great. Highly resistant to flare, no readily visible chromatic aberration. Distortion is minor at long and wide ends and flat at 24. Vignette is mild but present from 2.8, moreso at the 16mm side.

Auto-focus - Silent and fast. Accurate in good light, though mine needs an occasional manual nudge indoors with low light.
Manual focus - SSM mechanism does away with the screw-driven AF gear coupled with the ring, leaving it much smoother and with no play when changing direction. A somewhat damped feel - nice to use! Not greased perfection like many manual lenses, but the best manual action than any auto-focusing lens I've used to date.
Internal zoom - much less worry of dust finding its way in while outdoors. Have spent hours at a rugged outdoor event in the brush with this lens and noted not a spec of dust as a consequence.
Close-focus - Under a foot with 1:4.2 life scale at 35mm, adds to the repertoire of the lens. Basically, a pop can will fill the frame almost entirely if desired.
Lens hood - Locking threads keep the hood firmly in place. Metal and rubber, long-term solution, nice touch to the package.
A note about bokeh - while this lens is not really in the catagory where bokeh is a question mark, shooting people at 35mm is not out of the question. As such, I've noted the bokeh is quite ordinary, though not bad. It is smooth and passable, but being 35/2.8 at it's best, it isn't going to knock your socks off. Close-focusing on smaller subjects can bring it out a little more.

On conclusion I tip my hat to Sony and Zeiss for producing a well-rounded, professional tool. Pleasure to use.
reviewer#5844 date: Aug-12-2009
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 17-35mm f2.8/4 D
Minolta 20mm f2.8 RS
CZ 24-70 f2.8 Vario Sonnar T*
price paid:1300 euro (new)
positive:Great sharpness and contrast
Great build quality
Great colors
Very fast and silent AF
negative:None!
comment:Great ultra wide angle lens for my A900!
It's very sharp, you can use this lens at TA!
Better than Minolta 20mm f2.8 RS at 20mm.
I love this lens!!
reviewer#5465 date: May-27-2009
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 used to own this lens
compared to:Sony 70-200G
Sony 24-70Z
Sony 28/2.8
KM 17-35D
price paid:1823.99 USD
positive:Beautiful Colors
Very little/If any CA
Build Quality
Good resolving power
negative:Some light fall-off wide open
comment:I don't have a lot of experience with a zoom this wide (e.g. on the A900). To be sure, it will take many years to learn how to use it. My only observation is there is little to no CA using the 24-70Z or 16-35Z. As such, I now notice more CA with the 70-200G. The 70-200G just doesn't seem as special.

Best,
reviewer#5391 date: May-15-2009
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 5
overall: 4.7
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:CZ 24-70 2.8
Minolta 20 2.8
Sony 50 1.4
Minolta 28-135 4/4.5
Minolta 17-35 2.8G
price paid:1400 EUR (new)
positive:Build quality
Sharpness
Color & IQ
Ultra wide angle
negative:Little softness in extreme corners from 2.8 to 4
comment:Really amaizing wide angle lens. Sharp, sharp sharp.. as zeiss always. (made me re-think my line up and sell the CZ 24-70)

Colors and contrast are simply great, also bokeh is very smooth.

AF is really fast and accurate. Balances really great with a900.

In extreme corners little light fall-off and softness can occur @ full apertures.

Amazing details with a900.
Highly recommended!
reviewer#5374 date: May-12-2009
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
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:CZ 24-70
M 100 2.8 Macro
M 20 mm 2.8
Sony 70-200 G 2.8
price paid:
missing
positive:sharp from F4 onwards, 2.8 is good, build excellent
well balanced, nice format, it is not seen as a wideangle by the "public:, giving possibilities for street photography
negative:none, price is high but you get what you pay for
comment:this lens is in the same class as the FF lenses compared too although the 16-35 is better then the 20mm.
to get the best out of the lens you need to learn how to use it, as with all lenses. Then it is amazingly divers in usage.
Just walk around a day with only this lens to see what it is capable too.
sometimes not the expected results, then it is the photographer doing something wrong and not the lens.

Certainly worth the investment.

And you get a nice 24-50 on the a700
reviewer#5371 date: May-11-2009
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:85Zeiss
135Zeiss

price paid:
missing
positive:Amazing build quality.
Great AF, really fast.
Good colors and contrast.
Really good sharpness.
negative:Little light fall-off in extreme corners at full aperture.
Little softness in extreme corners at full aperture.
comment:Really good wide angle lens. Sharp, sharp sharp.. as zeiss always.
Colors and contrast are simply great, also bokeh seems to be quite nice.
AF is really fast and seems accurate. Balances really great with a900.
In extreme corners little light fall-off and softness can occur @ full apertures... but this is quite common for FF and such a wide and fast zooms.

Nikkor 14-24 is better in this, but they need to use totally differently designed front lens.. "like a footbal" ;)
This is a really good wide angle lens, sharp with fast AF and good colors/contrasts.. amazing details with a900. If you need only perfect IQ, be sure that extreme corners wont come a surprise @ full apertures, if you are ok with that, this lens is simply best money can buy!
Highly recommended!
reviewer#4915 date: Feb-26-2009
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:Excellent build
Excellent sharpness
Excellent color
Excellent image quality
negative:Heavy
comment:full marks for this lens.
only a bit heavy
reviewer#4913 date: Feb-25-2009
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:ZA24-70
ZA85
ZA135
EF16-35L Mk I
CV 12mm 5.6
price paid:Ł1040
positive:Silky smooth zoom
Build quality
Image performance
Ultra Wide on FF
negative:None
comment:Super, super, super piece of glass. No flare seen yet, no CA or purple fringing in back lit situations. Sharp to every corner, minimal distortion. I'm really impressed with this latest Zeiss offering.

Price not to bad relative to EF 16-35 but not weather sealed.

Absolute keeper in my line up. If you need wide angle zoom, don't delay, it's here.
reviewer#4910 date: Feb-25-2009
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Minolta 17-35mm D, Sigma 10-20mm EX, Sigma 15-30 EX
price paid:1799 USD NEW
positive:Great build with very low distortion and the ultimate in sharpness for this type of lens. Great balance on an a900.
negative:Wish they would foot the $5 bill for a hard case. It just blows me away how Sigma can provide such excellent cases with their lenses and the most Sony will do is provide a soft bag on their top of the line lens.
comment:I have been waiting for this lens for some time and will wind up using it extensively to photograph interiors and exteriors of homes. I have used Sigma's and Minolta's in this range and there is no comparison. It is well balanced on an a900, a bit front heavy on an a700 and I can't imagine how it would feel on an a100. I would have rated it 4.5 on flare and distortion if those choices were available. Regarding flare there will be some but only under conditions where you would expect it and way less than the Sigma 15-30 or 10-20 or the Minolta 17-35 it's just unavoidable when you have a lens as wide as this. Regarding distortion, while I have not measured it with a pattern other than straight line interior surfaces, it has very little distortion. Only the slightest barrel distortion at the widest setting of the zoom. That distortion is much less than the Sigmas. The sharpenss of this lens is immediately apparent. I say this once again not from reviewing shots of test patterns but just from comparative use switching lenses for the same shot. If you can see the difference on the LCD viewscreen under full mag, then it's a keeper in my book. The build it what you would expect for this price. The feel of both the focus ring and the zoom ring is perfect in my mind. I however do not have experience with $1800 lenses so I have nothing to compare to in this range. I have recently used the Sigma 15-30 for this work and have been very please with that. Now this lens may not seem like it is worth four to five times the price for some people, but it is to me. True it is not 4 to 5 times the performance but there is no doubt in my mind this is a top performer.

Now anyone want to buy a Sigma 15-30mm?... I have to pay for this some how.
reviewer#4903 date: Feb-24-2009
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sony - AF DT 16-105mm F3.5-5.6
Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70 F2.8 ZA SSM
price paid:12,500 HKD (new)
positive:- Very sharp
- Very Fast
- Excellent Bokeh
negative:- Price
- Weight
comment:This is a perfect Portrait or Wide Angle Landscape lens. You won't be dissappointed.
reviewer#4807 date: Feb-4-2009
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I have experience with this lens
compared to:Minolta AF17-35/2,8-4D
price paid:
missing
positive:I like the build and overall feeling. Smooth zooming and focus. F2.8 all way through focal lenghts.
negative:More than one time i changed AF/MF by accident.
Price.
comment:One day of testing in bad weather only, so please take care not to read this review as "the pure and only thruth".
Flare control not tested as conditions didnt provide the possibility to test, so i have just put in 5.
This is a very pleasant lens to use, both on A700 and A900.
Great sharpness. When comparing to my old and thrustworthy 17-35 minolta, the 16-35 seems better in all areas except physical size. Focus is snap on, colors seems colder than 17-35, but i think its more real. Sharpness at 16 mm is just so much better, specially in not-centered areas. And distortion seems less than the minolta.
reviewer#4798 date: Feb-3-2009
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:17-35G
price paid:1,700 USD
positive:Sharpness esp at center, neutral color rendition, exceptional build construction, SSM motor, fast zoom, close focus distant
negative:A bit on the heavy side, sharpness at corner wide open could be better, pricy
comment:The best ultra wide zoom lens for any A900 owner.
reviewer#4769 date: Jan-30-2009
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 24/1.8EX DG
35/1.4G
2470ZA/2.8
price paid:232000Yen
positive:Resolution.
Sharpness.
Cubic effect(Atmosphere).
negative:Price.
Size.
Weight.
comment:In Japan, although sold to 1/29, I can seldom use by the rain continuation.
The good of 1735G/3.5 is still inherited, and I'm thought that the bad is improved.
It is worthy of balancing a price.
reviews found: 56    << 1 2

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 56
  • sharpness: 4.68
  • color: 4.95
  • build: 4.86
  • distortion: 4.48
  • flare control: 4.43
  • overall: 4.68

to add your review
you need to login

Dyxum.com - Home of the alpha system photographer
In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania