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2 80179 7/31/2014
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Keywords: Sony Mid Prime FE-Mount 35mm ZA Tested


Registered: April 2006
Posts: 6
Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* SEL55F18Z review by louisjaffe
Review Date: 7/31/2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $999.00| Rating: 8 

Pros: Optically excellent
Cons: Not the best focuser on Sony a6000

This is a superb lens optically. I compared it with the Sony (non Zeiss) E-mount 50mm f1.8 OSS on a Sony Alpha a6000 in various shooting situations. The Sony lens is 1/3 the price of the Zeiss, or less.

Surprisingly the Sony (with rev 02 firmware) focused quicker in low light than the Zeiss, and could lock focus in some situations where the Zeiss only hunted. The updated firmware for the Sony lens takes advantage of fast hybrid autofocus on the a6000 (NEX-7 doesn't have this feature). The Sony 50mm also grabbed more frames that were sharp at low shutter speeds, thanks to optical image stabilization.

The Zeiss lens is superior in contrast, color rendition, sharpness, and flare resistance. It makes some of the prettiest color you'll ever see. Yet the difference from the Sony lens isn't what the 3x price difference led me to expect-- on the a6000 anyway.

Admittedly, I had to try three samples of the Sony lens to find one that didn't have sharpness issues away from the center of the frame. That probably wouldn't happen with Zeiss. Too, comparing these lenses is apples-and-oranges, because the Zeiss 55mm covers full frame, the Sony 50 mm only APS-C.

You could say I took the Zeiss slumming by comparing it to a much cheaper Sony lens on a camera it's not optimized for. Still, I was surprised by how well my cherry-picked sample of the Sony 55mm f1.8 OSS performed.

Registered: April 2012
Posts: 2
Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* SEL55F18Z review by rponiarski
Review Date: 1/18/2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $1,098.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: Awesome photos, fast autofocus, built to last
Cons: pricey

Had to have the A7 and wanted a fast prime to go along with my kit zoom. It was either the 35mm f2.8 or this one, and I liked the extra speed. It is exceedingly well built, with fast autofocus and the photos it takes are amazing. Sharp, contrasty and some of the best I have ever taken. Great street lens, as well as useful indoors. Now I understand why these Sony Zeiss lenses are so prized. Have to see what the 24-70mm zoom looks like, as that may be the perfect walk about lens for me...


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