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10 131999 11/14/2012
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Keywords: Sony Wide Prime E-Mount APS-C Tested

Perry Rhodan

Registered: January 2010
Posts: 22
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by Perry Rhodan
Review Date: 11/14/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $200.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: Compact, light, at F8 very sharp, price with WA is 200
Cons: not very sharp corners wide open

Really not bad at all. The 5N does very nice with this one, even with the WA attached. The NEX 6 does even better. Not the best for brick/walls or any other flat surfaces. But this cheap pancake records scenery much better than expected. Using the WA or FE adapters adds great use to the kit.

Registered: November 2012
Posts: 3
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by FrankPhillips
Review Date: 11/12/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $180.00| Rating: 7 

Pros: size and weight
Cons: meh....

I've had 2 copies of the 16mm and while it's amazingly small and light, it's pretty mediocre. If you add the wide-angle or fisheye converter, it's a great substitute for more expensive ultra-wide lenses. But it's only a "decent" lens...nothing special.

Registered: November 2012
Posts: 11
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by brugj03
Review Date: 11/4/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $240.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: Very very light weight, good image quality for the price, fast accurat focus and makes your nex camera truly pocketable.
Cons: Corner sharpness

I bought this lens for wide angle indoor an architectural shots and also as a platform for fisheye and ultra wide convertors from sony.

The image quality is just fine. Considering the price its better than that.

The colors are crisp and clean, with good contrast.
Center sharpness is great even at wide open, corner sharpness is not for pixel peepers but acceptible.

This lens really stands out in extreme light weight and construction quality, which is great. On any nex camera it provides the lowest profile possible on any high quality photography system. It becomes a pocket camera.

After several months of use i noticed the very fast focus speed and the accuracy of the focus. It never seems to fail.

I think any nex shooter should buy this.

Registered: October 2012
Posts: 52
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by dugong5pm
Review Date: 10/12/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 

Pros: tiny! loads of FUN!
Cons: none

This is not the lens if you're shooting MTF charts. I don't shoot test charts. This is the most used lens (along with the Sigma 30/2.8DN) with my NEX system.

This lens gives me much FUN with it. It almost can be used for everything. events, people, street, landscape, etc. It focuses fast, though the focus hunts sometimes. Colors are good & sharpness are highly acceptable (though it's no tack sharp), but it's ok for daily use, even when used wide open.

Sony should make more of this kind of lenses. It makes my NEX (jacket) pocketable.

Registered: January 2012
Posts: 2
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by NVO
Review Date: 1/21/2012 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 3 

Pros: Good center Q
Cons: Decentering

Image quality is good in the center (no apparent CA, decent but not great resolution). Good for daylight shooting at F/5.6 to F/11. Contrast and colours are on par with consumer zooms - but no contest for Canon L primes or the Distagons. Highlights are fine, dark areas are not.

NEX3 tends to overexpose with this lens - but this is most likely the camera's fault. AF is consistently good, but then it's hard to miss at 24/5.6.

Unfortunately, Sony seems to have serious QC problems. My kit lens was badly decentered - left quarter of the frame all mushed up. You can see the same bad-left-side defect in slrgear's test shots. Curiously, my "bad left" does not show colour fringing - perhaps it's there but all blurred.

I checked three replacement options, and all had some degree of the same problem. Left or right. Unfortunately, NEX3 does not offer 1:1 aspect ratio (within these limits, the lens is quite decent).

Registered: December 2010
Posts: 22
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by Beachrider
Review Date: 10/5/2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $215.00| Rating: 8 

Pros: Very light and quite inexpensive. Pancake lens is tres convenient with NEX5n. Faster focus than alpha-lenses on LA-EA1. IQ is commendable for price and convenience.
Cons: No distance information on lens (there isn't much room for it, though)

I was wondering why the slrgear review showed sooo much more distortion and CA then I saw. I then found out that NEX5n has lens-specific, in-camera correction for CA/distortion/vignetting.

Those corrections must be the reason that I got much better results than slrgear got.

It is a nice 'pancake' lens that benefits from the very fancy functions of NEX5n. I don't think that it is fair to review it against lenses that are 5x this lenses cost.

Registered: December 2010
Posts: 1
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by blhablahblah
Review Date: 12/13/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $200.00| Rating: 8 

Pros: it's tiny
Cons: none

Works great. No regrets about this lens. I have the 18-55 zoom also, but never use it. The whole point to this camera is that it's small. Hope they make a little 50 mm soon.

Registered: December 2010
Posts: 1
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by novak
Review Date: 12/8/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $150.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: small great sharpness throughout most of the frame
Cons: very extreme edges are soft up to 5.6

It is easy to bash this lens as it seems popular item to be negative about, but my experience is quite the opposite - this is wonderful little jewel and beautifully sharp, specially considering its size and the fact that it is APS-C sized lens. It is better than most 24mm 2.8 FF lenses and just joy to use. Highly recommended.

See many original size sample on my dpreview gallery ( ) or on my flickr page:

or just check this random shot developed in LR3 by using lens profile - gets rid CA and becomes quite sharper - wondering if this review was done with RAW file or JPEG:

Registered: October 2010
Posts: 1
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by primetime
Review Date: 10/1/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 7 

Pros: build, size, f2.8, center sharpness, silent AF, fisheye attachment (sold separately)
Cons: distortion, corner resolution, CA

Bought as a kit with my NEX-3

From my experience:

@f2.8, center sharpness is great, which all that is needed for blurring out backgrounds and/or available light shots. In real-world practice, I've never felt like corner sharpness is a priority in these situations.

@f8-11, corners are sharpened up and the lens produces good, wide landscape shots.

While I do find the resolution issues somewhat "forgivable", I find the distortion (pincushion) a big shortcoming of this lens. My wish is that a future NEX firmware update can electronically correct the distortion, but until then, it is unpleasant to deal with.

There might be a corrective Adobe Lens profile out there, but the distortion hasn't bothered me enough to find it and post-process my images.

The bottom line: given its speed and focal length, it's a very unique kit offering. Users stepping up from P&S will find a lot to like with the wide perspective and low light capability. Personally, I've used a DSLR for years found this lens/camera combo very refreshing. But anyone who was expecting miracles from a relatively cheap kit lens was fooling themselves.

There are limitations with this lens, but it's not difficult to work around them and produce great images.

Registered: November 2008
Posts: 12
Sony E 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 review by genotypewriter
Review Date: 9/26/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 9 

Pros: AF speed, size, weight, build, looks, handling
Cons: See details below

This is a great little lens. It's not as bad as some reviews say it is. See this test I did below:

If you're looking at getting a Nex camera as a great pocket camera, this lens is perfect. If you're looking to replace/match your DSLR for high quality work, maybe this lens isn't for you.

It's perfect in all other aspects. AF is really fast. Almost weightless and the size is very well balanced on the Nex. The build is great, feels solid as it looks. Manual focusing ring (electronically coupled, not mechanical) is as smooth as the best manual focus lenses out there.

This is the only lens I have for my Nex 5 at the moment (I only get primes) and it's a pleasure to use everyday. Sometimes I wish it was made slightly faster, even if a bit longer, like the similar sized Panasonic 20 1.7 which almost covers the APS-C frame. Also the lens doesn't focus as close as some of the 24mm primes on FF DSLRs, but is still quite good for close-ups with blurred backgrounds.

Looking at the other E mount lenses available now (18-55 and 18-200), this is highly recommended.


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