Sony 24-70 F4 Vs 28-70 Kit

By | 28/10/2022

While reviewing the Sony A7 II, I had a chance to test and play with every Sony Iron lens made as of April of 2015. The listing includes the following lenses: Sony Fe 35mm f/ii.viii, Zeiss Loxia 35mm f/two, Zeiss Loxia 50mm f/ii, Sony FE 55mm f/1.viii, Sony Fe xvi-35mm f/four OSS, Sony FE 24-70mm f/4 OSS, Sony Atomic number 26 28-70mm f/3.five-5.6 OSS and Sony Atomic number 26 seventy-200mm f/4 OSS. Since I too simultaneously had the Sony A7R and A7S bodies (reviews to follow soon), I decided to measure out MTF performance of each lens using Imatest and encounter how they perform individually. While I am planning to review all of these lenses in detail within the next few months, I thought putting together some data for our readers might be helpful, perhaps for those of our readers who either already own the A7 organization, or those who are planning to invest in it. The beneath numbers are based on two different samples of each lens (I always do my all-time to test at least two due to sample variation) and the numbers I present are for the lens that showed the best results. Unfortunately, due to the shutter daze issue of the Sony A7R camera, I was not able to reliably test the Sony Fe 70-200mm f/4 OSS lens, peculiarly at anything longer than 100mm. I will take to retest that lens when Sony adds electronic front drapery shutter feature to the A7R, or releases a newer 36 MP+ trunk with built-in EFCS (yes, the shutter stupor on the A7R is pretty significant). I have not yet tested the newly announced Sony Fe lenses, and so I will test those separately as soon as I get my easily on them.

The below lenses are listed in the society of preference, from best to worst.

1) Sony Atomic number 26 55mm f/1.8

Sony FE 55mm f/1.8

The Sony Atomic number 26 55mm f/1.eight is a stellar performer, with superb, even sharpness beyond the frame. While its middle resolving power is not every bit slap-up as on the Sony FE 35mm f/ii.8, information technology gets pretty darn close in comparison and has much amend mid-frame and corner performance:

When it comes to sample variation, the Sony Iron 55mm f/1.viii seems to be pretty consistent. Both lenses did quite well in Imatest and did not show whatsoever serious decentering and other optical problems.

2) Sony FE 35mm f/2.8

Sony FE 35mm f/2.8

This pocket-size and lightweight lens is an absolute precious stone, a proof that lenses designed for mirrorless cameras with a brusk flange altitude can outperform similar focal length lenses created for DSLR cameras. The Sony Atomic number 26 35mm f/ii.eight outperforms every 35mm lens I have tested to engagement, except for the Sigma 35mm f/1.iv Art, which information technology matches at f/4. Take a look at the below graph:

Sample variation is well under control. I tested a total of three samples of this lens (one in 2014 and two in 2015) and all iii were very close optically. Keep in mind that the resolution is really expert in the center, but mid-frame and corner performance do endure in comparison to another 35mm lenses. Vignetting is likewise rather potent on this lens.

3) Zeiss Loxia 35mm f/2 Biogon T*

Zeiss Loxia 35mm f/2

The Zeiss Loxia 35mm f/2 feels zippo similar the Sony 35mm f/2.8. It is noticeably heavier, has an all-metal barrel (vs plastic) and hood and feels completely different to handle. Dissimilar the Sony 35mm f/ii.8, it has an aperture ring, so yous control aperture directly through the lens (at that place is no manner to do it through the camera). The focus ring is smooth and very responsive. The moment y’all start moving the focus ring, the photographic camera goes into the zoom mode automatically, allowing yous to get precise focus. Overall, information technology feels and acts like a much higher-course lens than the Sony-made version. Let’s take a look at its MTF characteristics:

I have only tested one sample of this lens and information technology turned out to be great. No decentering or other optical issues.

iv) Zeiss Loxia 50mm f/2 Planar T*

Zeiss Loxia 50mm f/2

The Zeiss Loxia 50mm f/two is another cute lens, which is crafted very similarly equally the Loxia 35mm f/2. In fact, if you buy the 35mm f/two for your Sony A7 serial cameras, it makes sense to become this lens as well, since you will most probable autumn in dearest with both. And hither are the MTF numbers produced by Imatest:

Merely like the 35mm f/ii, I have merely tested ane sample. No decentering or other serious defects were detected. Zeiss quality speaks for itself.

5) Sony Fe sixteen-35mm f/iv OSS

Sony FE 16-35mm f/4 ZA OSS

The more than recently released Sony Fe xvi-35mm f/four OSS is a superb lens likewise, with very impressive resolution characteristics between 16mm and 28mm. Its performance drops quite a flake on the long cease at 35mm, but it is still smashing. There is a bit of field curvature at the wide end. The lens is heavy and big, but information technology balances well on the A7 series cameras, particularly on the A7 Two. Let’southward accept a wait at the MTF figures:

The lens performs incredibly well at its widest focal length of 16mm. The corners are a fleck weak wide open, just expect pretty good when stopped downward to f/five.6.

As you zoom in towards 24mm, the corners look a scrap better now.

And at 35mm, the lens shows a visible drop in sharpness, especially in the corners.

Sample variation is somewhat of a mix. The first sample had a decentering outcome and showed poor performance on the left side of the frame. I had to motility the setup to the left to fight against the decentering problem and even then the numbers did not quite friction match what the second sample showed. Complex lens designs arrive hard to produce very consistent functioning from lens to lens, just I would strongly encourage anyone that wants to buy this lens to test it and make sure that it does not have any serious optical bug.

half-dozen) Sony Fe 28-70mm f/ OSS

Sony FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS

The Sony FE 28-70mm f/ OSS is a kit lens that comes with the Sony A7 / A7 II cameras. Although it is a plastic and lightweight lens, it is actually quite a practiced performer, especially on lower-resolution Sony A7 cameras like A7 / A7 Two. Here is how the MTF performance looks like at 28mm:

Not bad, but it cannot go close to what the sixteen-35mm tin do at 28mm. Let’due south have a look at 35mm:

And here we tin see that the lens is actually quite good in the center. Nonetheless, due to field curvature, the lens suffers from rather poor mid-frame and corner performance.

Performance slightly improves at 50mm, showing skilful results overall. And here is 70mm:

Similar to the sixteen-35mm f/iv OSS, the 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS performs the worst at its longest focal length. We tin can see that there is a pretty pregnant drib in sharpness throughout the frame. Performance is at its highest at the widest aperture of f/five.6, and then stopping down merely improves the extreme corners.

I also tested 3 samples of this lens, one in 2014 and two in 2015. All three were decent lenses, but showed variance in performance. The first sample was quite skilful, the second was boilerplate and the tertiary had decentering issues past 50mm. It is expected to see more variation in cheaper lenses, so this is non a surprise. Still, when you run into the resolution figures below for the 24-70mm f/iv OSS lens, you will empathize that the 28-70mm presents a much better overall value.

vii) Sony FE 24-70mm f/iv OSS

Sony FE 24-70mm f/4 ZA OSS

The mid-range Sony Atomic number 26 24-70mm f/iv OSS zoom lens was released initially together with A7 and A7R cameras as a general-purpose lens. Let’due south take a look at the resolution performance characteristics of the lens:

Ouch, the 24-70mm f/iv OSS is weaker than the 28-70mm OSS at the shortest focal length – simply its mid-frame functioning is better.

And zooming in to 35mm does not improve the state of affairs. Unfortunately, the lens operation is all the same quite poor.

The same thing happens at 50mm, with the 28-70mm showing better overall performance.

At 70mm, the 24-70mm gets a bit better, but information technology is still pretty bad. Similar to other zooms, 70mm is the worst focal length for this lens.

While I just tested two lens samples, this 1 came out to be the worst of the agglomeration. Not sure if Sony was but rushing these lenses into production, or perhaps the optical blueprint of the lens is but poor, but male child…the starting time sample of the 24-70mm was terrible. Both poor MTF performance and decentering issues were nowadays, making testing this lens a nightmare. The second sample had weird optical problems in one item corner of the frame, simply it was not a bad one to test with. MTF performance on both was discouraging and the corporeality of distortion exhibited by the 24-70mm is outrageous. Yous don’t see it on the camera, but once you put files into Lightroom, you will see it immediately. Potent butt baloney at 24mm transforming to pincushion at 35mm, turning to stiff pincushion at 70mm and staying similar that all the way until 70mm. The 28-70mm also shows signs of distortion, but given its price, information technology is not unexpected. For $1,200, the 24-70mm should have been much better.

Perhaps both lenses were lemons, but looking at how poorly the 24-70mm lenses are built (the forepart office of the lens is wobbly when extended, feels plasticky, etc), information technology surely does not deserve the Zeiss name on information technology. It feels similar a inexpensive superzoom lens, non similar a professional 24-70mm. Serious thwarting. I am planning to test another re-create of this lens to see if it might be better optically…