PHOTOGRAPHY GEAR GUIDE: LENSES
Sony E-Mount Lenses – Full Frame
Sony FE 16-35mm f/4 ZA OSS
The FE 16-35mm f/4 is my new favorite wide-angle FE zoom lens. Designed by the same engineers who brought you the Sony a7/a7R, this lens is great in combination with the FE 55mm f/1.8 and FE 70-200mm f/4.
Sony FE 28 F2.0
Affordable fullframe E-Mount wide-angle prime lens with fast aperture make this a practical and versatile lens. Its optical design features Extra-low Dispersion glass elements which reduce chromatic aberrations and provide improved contrast. Aspherical and advanced aspherical elements minimize spherical aberrations.
Sony FE 35 F1.4 ZA
This fast f/1.4 wide-angle lens provides low light capability and shallow depth of field control. Advanced optical design includes aspherical and advanced aspherical (AA) lens elements and Zeiss T* coating deliver outstanding image resolution and suppresses reflections for excellent contrast and clarity. Aperture ring can be de-clicked with the flip of a switch on the lens barrel.
Sony FE 35mm f/2.8 ZA
Smallest of all the Sony FE glass, this is an absolutely great lens for street photography on a7 Series cameras. Don’t let it’s compact size fool you, this lens is deceptively sharp. See Images shot with FE 35/2.8 ZA
Sony FE 55mm/1.8 ZA
This is one of the sharpest lenses I’ve ever owned – virtually on par with the performance of the legendary $4,000 Zeiss 55mm/1.4 Otus lens. Great shallow depth of field look wide open for portraits.
Sony FE 24-70mm F2.8 G Master Lens
If you can only afford one lens – this would be my choice. 24-70mm is a great range for portrait photography because it allows you to shoot everything from wide environmental portraits to a tight intimate portrait and this flagship Sony lens is by far the best 24-70 on the market. (Available April 2016)
Sony E 24-70mm f/4 ZA OSS
This Zeiss zoom is the perfect focal range for portraits and travel. Smaller and lighter than it’s F2.8 G Master brother, it’s nicely balanced for Sony a7 mirrorless bodies
Sony FE 85mm F1.4 G Master Lens
A great lens for tight portraits with shallow depth of field. Extremely sharp wide open at F1.4 with beautiful bokeh. If you shoot portraits, this lens and the FE 24-70 F2.8 G Master above could easily cover 99% of you your needs. (Available April 2016)
Sony FE 90 F2.8 Macro G OSS
Optimized for macro and close-up portrait photography, this medium telephoto lens utilizes an aspherical element along with extra-low dispersion and super extra-low dispersion glass and Nano AR Coating that suppresses reflections for exceptional image quality. Internal focus system in which only the middle optical groups move when focusing provides fast autofocus action and a short minimum focus distance of 11″.
Sony FE 70-200mm F2.8 G Master Lens
Photojournalists, sports and wedding photographers rejoice! If you’ve been patiently waiting for a 70-200 F2.8 for E-mount, this lens is worth the wait. Like the other lenses in this series it’s incredibly sharp with nice balance for E-mount cameras. (Available May 2016)
Pre-Order Coming Soon at B&H
Sony FE 70-200mm f/4 G OSS
Versatile tele-zoom that takes over right where the FE 24-70mm leaves off.Â Nicely balanced in size and weight for Sony a7 Series and a6000 Series cameras – it won’t weigh you down.
Sony FE 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G OSS Lens
The most requested lens has finally been announced for Sony E-mount! This is a great lens for travel, landscapes and wildlife. Also an ideal choice for APS-C cameras like a6300 and a6000 where it offers the reach of a 450mm on fullframe. (Available May 2016)
Pre-Order 3/31 from B&H
Sony FE 24-240 F3.5-6.3 OSS
Full-frame E-Mount telephoto zoom lens with the versatility to stretch from true wide-angle to super telephoto perspectives. Its advanced optical design includes 5 aspherical elements and 1 ED glass element for reduced chromatic and spherical aberrations. Optical SteadyShot image stabilization ensures sharper images at long telephoto lengths even in low light.
Sony E-Mount Lenses – APS
Sony E 10-18mm f/4 OSS
Widest of Sony’s E-mount lens. Though the Sony 10-18mm/4 OSS was designed for APS-C, this compact lightweight ultra-wide zoom actually does a surprisingly good job covering fullframe a7 Series cameras from 13-16mm.
See Tests Here.
Zeiss Touit 12mm f/2.8
This pair of APS Zeiss Touit lenses are Zeiss’ first AF lenses ever. The 12mm f/2.8 is a great choice for ultra wide lens for Sony APS-C cameras or when shooting a7 Series cameras in APS-C or Super 35 crop mode.
See Images: Zeiss Touit Field Test.
Sony E 24mm f/1.8
This Sony Zeiss lens fits nicely in the gap between the Zeiss Touit 12 and 32mm lenses. Great lens for street photography on the A5000 or A6000.
Sony A-Mount Lenses
Sony 24-70mm f/2.8 ZA II
If I could only shoot with just one A-mount lens – this would be it! Zeiss glass makes this the sharpest zoom I’ve ever used and unlike Zeiss lenses for other DSLRs – Sony Zeiss lenses are Auto Focus.
Read why: 24-70mm is the perfect focal range for portraits
Sony 24mm f/2 ZA
Great wide angle lens for low-light shooting or simply to blow out the background. Zeiss glass makes this lens razor sharp and beautiful wide open – so don’t be afraid to open up to F2.
Sony 50mm f/1.4 ZA
This lens joins the Zeiss 55/1.4 Otus and FE 55/1.8 in a trifecta of great normal lenses and nicely fills out Sony’s Zeiss prime line-up.
Sony 85mm f/1.4 ZA
I’ve always loved to shoot portraits with fast 85mm lenses wide open for minimal depth-of-field and the Zeiss glass makes this the sharpest 85 I’ve ever seen. I use this lens when I want a tight portrait to be just a bit “flatter” in perspective than a shot at 70mm.
Sony 135mm f/1.8 ZA
Quite simply an incredible lens. Though I tend to shoot portraits a bit closer, this is a great lens for tight portraits if you want to flatten out the perspective a bit. Every time I shoot with it, I’m reminded that I need to use it more often. Read more about the 135/1.8 ZA here.
Sony 100mm f/2.8 Macro
Based on the classic Minolta design, this remains one of Sony’s sharpest lenses. A favorite lens for tight portraits and beauty photography.
Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 ZA
The Zeiss glass makes this one of the best lenses in this focal range. I rarely go wider than 24mm, but here’s the lens I turn to when I do. The numbers go to 16…
Sony 70-200mm f/2.8 APO G II
Classic telephoto zoom focal length – picks up right where the CZ 24-70/2.8 leaves off. Like all G and CZ lenses this lens is all hand-assembled.
Sony 70-400mm f/4-5.6 G II
Great travel lens. Virtually identical in size to the 70-200mm f/2.8 APO. Perfect when the reach of 400mm is more important than speed. AF performance is greatly improved in version II.
Sony 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G
A bit less reach than the 70-400mm, but much smaller and lighter – making this a great travel telephoto zoom when size and weight is a concern.
Other Favorite Glass
Voigtlander 21mm f/1.8 Ultron
This is probably the best performing extreme wide-angle rangefinder lens for A7/A7R/A7S. It’s sharp, fast and less corner darkening issues than other extreme wide-angle lens designs.
Voigtlander 50mm f/1.1 Nokton
My vintage rangefinder glass has gotten new life thanks for all the adapters available for Sony E-mount. Though not as sharp as the FE 55mm f/1.8, this a great “speed lens” when you’re looking for more of a vintage feel than you get from modern glass.
Leica 60mm f/2.8 Macro-Elmarit-R lens
Need a great macro for Sony A7, A7R or A7S? Here’s an incredible one and since it’s in legacy Leia R mount, you can find for a great price!
Get it at eBay
Leica Summilux-M 75mm f/1.4 lens
Possibly one of the sharpest portrait lenses ever made in my favorite focal length for portraits. It’s also one of the best Leica lenses ever made – which is not faint praise.
Get it at eBay