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SonyVario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens
 
4.7

(based on 85 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (61)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (21)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

94%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Lightweight (48)
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (35)
  • Durable (31)
  • Consistent output (25)
  • Easily interchangeable (24)

Cons

  • Poor in low light (5)
  • Heavy (3)

Best Uses

  • Landscape/scenery (33)
  • Everyday (27)
  • Travel (26)
  • Landscape photography (21)
  • Portraits (21)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (32), Enthusiast (17), Semi-professional (9), Professional (6), Semi-pro photographer (5)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (71)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

The missing link

This is just the lens I've been waiting for for my Nex7. It takes that camera to the next level in terms of usefulness for landscape photography. I would buy it just for the...Read complete review

This is just the lens I've been waiting for for my Nex7. It takes that camera to the next level in terms of usefulness for landscape photography. I would buy it just for the extended range over the kit lens, but when you throw in that it's better quality overall that clinches it.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Not worth the money

I had high hopes for this lens, but ultimately it was a huge let down. It's unfortunate. The lens is the perfect size, constant aperture, great zoom range, great build quality,...Read complete review

I had high hopes for this lens, but ultimately it was a huge let down. It's unfortunate. The lens is the perfect size, constant aperture, great zoom range, great build quality, etc.... however it's optical performance was less than stellar. Both the left and right edges of the frame were incredibly blurry. I love Sony cameras but the quality control on their lenses makes me rethink my decision to switch from Canon to Sony. I have bought 3 Sony lenses now and they ALL have been decentered, being incredibly blurry on one side of the frame, or both.

Reviewed by 85 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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5.0

Great all-around lens for my a6000

By ocdmachine

from Central TX

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
  • Lightweight

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Indoors/Low Light
    • Landscape/Scenery
    • Night Photography

    Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

    With a crop body camera the 24-105 zoom is about perfect for an all-around lens and nice for travel. I have the 24-105L for my Canon 6D and rarely go outside those zoom ranges. Took this lens and a6000 on trip to the Holy Land and rarely wished I had a different lens. If I needed more zoom I could just crop the photo and have satisfactory results. Very happy with low light performance of this combination. As much as I still love my Canon 6D, I find myself using the a6000 majority of time due to light weight and IQ that I feel is pretty darn close to 6D full-frame performance.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

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    5.0

    OUTSTANDING CLARITY AND COLOR

    By RICHARD

    from GLENDALE, CA

    About Me Photo Enthusiast

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Consistent Output
    • Easily Interchangeable
    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
    • Lightweight
    • Strong Construction

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Indoors/Low Light
      • Landscape/Scenery
      • Macro Photography
      • Weddings/Events

      Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

      ZEISS LENSES ARE AMONG THE BEST. THIS LENS IS FANTASTIC.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      5.0

      Great glass

      By BC

      from Texas

      About Me Photo Enthusiast

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easily Interchangeable
      • Fast / accurate auto-focus

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Landscape/Scenery

        Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

        I'm just getting started with this lens, but all is well thus far. I've used Zeiss lenses since 1953 when my dad bought a Contessa 35 with Zeiss Ikon glass so I've been partial for a long time.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        (9 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        A great lens if you get a good copy

        By Mediator

        from Miami, FL

        About Me Photo Enthusiast

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Consistent Output
        • Easily Interchangeable
        • Fast / accurate auto-focus
        • Lightweight
        • Nice Bokeh
        • Strong Construction

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

            I have a SONY NEX-7. I bought the identical Hasselblad labeled version of this lens -- which nowhere mentions "Hasselblad" on either the lens itself or the plain white package it came in -- , and which was until recently available through B&H at a substantial price discount. It was clear from reading other B&H user reviews of both the SONY and Hasselblad versions, that this was a great lens, but that numerous defective copies had been shipped and sold. Because the two versions are identical (I am filing this review with the SONY version so more people will see it and perhaps benefit from my experience.)

            Accordingly, I went to the Bob Atkins website, learned how to construct, use, and interpret a lens test target, and tested the lens I received. Although it was very sharp in the center with observable but acceptable fall off at the edges, in one corner the sharpness consistently fell off more than the others to a degree that was unacceptable at some focal lengths and apertures.

            I then returned and exchanged that lens for another copy, which tested uniformly sharp in the center with modest, but consistent and acceptable fall off at the edges. I am thrilled with this lens. It has a very useful range of focal length, great sharpness, color and contrast. The OSS is an added plus. This lens is markedly superior to the not at all bad 18-55mm kit lens I purchased with the camera. It serves as a useful one lens does it all, although it is not intended to and does not replace the superb SONY 10-18mm ultrawide zoom.

            Bottom line: this is a great lens, but at this price point be sure you get a good copy!

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            • No

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            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Top quality walk around lens.

            By Big Guy

            from kansas

            About Me Semi-pro Photographer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Consistent Output
            • Durable
            • Fast / accurate auto-focus
            • Lightweight
            • Nice Bokeh
            • Rugged
            • Strong Construction

            Cons

            • Poor in Low Light

            Best Uses

            • Landscape/Scenery
            • Sports/Action
            • Video

            Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

            This is a very sharp lens with high quality well made body. The zoom moves easily and does not slip out of position. The f4 aperture is constant and is great for all around use unless in a dark interior where you would need to use a high ISO or flash.It is sharp at all apertures and and has almost no noticeable distortion.
            A great travel lens on a Sony a6000 which is the reason I bought it.
            It's expensive but it's a Zeiss OSS and you get what you pay for when quality is your priority. it's very fast focusing which is a plus compared to other lenses.

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            • No

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            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Perfect Travel Lens

            By Dor

            from Richland, WA

            About Me Photo Enthusiast

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Consistent Output
            • Durable
            • Easily Interchangeable
            • Fast / accurate auto-focus
            • Lightweight
            • Strong Construction

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Weddings/Events

              Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

              I have been using the lens for about six months primarily when on travel. The images are sharp throughout the range with some softening toward the edges as might be expected when critically reviewed. The fit and finish are excellent. Zooming is smooth and dampened enough that there is no zoom creep. The OSS system works very well. I've surprised myself by getting images free of camera motion blur at 1/5 second. Auto focus is very fast and accurate. The lens is used with the A6000 and together make for a very versatile, compact and compelling package capable of producing high quality images.

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              • No

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              4.0

              Go To Lens

              By Winnie

              from Pittsburgh, PA

              About Me Semi-pro Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Consistent Output
              • Easily Interchangeable
              • Fast / accurate auto-focus
              • Lightweight

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Landscape/Scenery
                • Sports/Action
                • Weddings/Events

                Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                Just purchased this lens for the recently acquired A6000 and it has become my GoTo lens. Good quality photos with excellent zoom range.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                (1 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Nice sharp, light lens

                By Andy G

                from Fort Collins, CO

                About Me Photo Enthusiast

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Durable
                • Easily Interchangeable
                • Lightweight

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Landscape/Scenery

                  Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                  I bought this lens to go with a Sony a6000, as a light-weight alternative to my Canon 5DS R and Canon 24-105 f/4L combination, when hiking and traveling. So far I've been very happy. The resolution of the camera/lens system is about half, but so is the weight, and size is awesome. The feel of the dials is nice, and unlike every Canon lens I've ever owned, the lens hood goes on and off with the precision of a fine Swiss watch.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  (13 of 19 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  3.0

                  Not worth the money

                  By Andyjaggy

                  from Utah

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Pros

                  • Durable
                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                  • Lightweight
                  • Rugged
                  • Strong Construction

                  Cons

                  • Blurry Focus

                  Best Uses

                  • Landscape/Scenery

                  Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                  I had high hopes for this lens, but ultimately it was a huge let down. It's unfortunate. The lens is the perfect size, constant aperture, great zoom range, great build quality, etc.... however it's optical performance was less than stellar. Both the left and right edges of the frame were incredibly blurry. I love Sony cameras but the quality control on their lenses makes me rethink my decision to switch from Canon to Sony. I have bought 3 Sony lenses now and they ALL have been decentered, being incredibly blurry on one side of the frame, or both.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this reviewHelp Icon

                  (2 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Excellent lens

                  By MoDoc

                  from Tampa, FL

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Consistent Output
                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                  • Nice Bokeh

                  Cons

                  • Heavy

                  Best Uses

                  • Landscape/Scenery
                  • Sports/Action

                  Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                  There are many good reviews of this lens, my subjective impressions won't add much. It's an excellent piece of glass. The improvements over the basic kit lens are pretty obvious when you look closely. Worth the price.

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                  • No

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                  (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  A very handy range

                  By John in T.C.

                  from Traverse City, Michigan

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Landscape/Scenery

                      Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                      I have used the lens when hiking to take landscape photos. The lens performs about as expected - nice shape photos with good contrast. It is sharper than the 18 - 50 normal lens on my NEX-7 camera, but not drastically better. What separates this lens from the normal lens is the expanded range, and slightly faster aperture. Is it worth the high price - for me it is. It is light enough that I don't mind carrying it.

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                      • No

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                      (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      Expensive but worth the money

                      By Islandman

                      from Dallas

                      About Me Photo Enthusiast

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Strong Construction

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Landscape/Scenery

                        Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                        I hesitated in buying this lens mostly because of price. Out of the box it was worth every penny The quality of the picture and the quality of the lens is superb

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

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                        (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        great lens for the price

                        By josh

                        from Northern California

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Consistent Output
                        • Durable
                        • Easily Interchangeable
                        • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                        • Lightweight
                        • Nice Bokeh

                        Cons

                        • Poor in Low Light

                        Best Uses

                          Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                          I use this lens with the sony fs7 for cinema and commercial work
                          the lens works well very sharp with great color and contrast is a bit slow at t4 but we'll worth the money

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                          (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          4.0

                          Nice lens

                          By Paparazzi

                          from Rochester Hills, MI

                          About Me Photo Enthusiast

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Easily Interchangeable
                          • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                          • Lightweight

                          Cons

                          • Poor in Low Light

                          Best Uses

                          • Landscape/Scenery

                          Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                          Bought this lens for a Sony A6000 for walk around shooting, particularly kids activities. Have not had it long but so far it seems reasonably sharp & responsive. The only complaint so far is a roughness in the telescoping action that comes & goes. Hopefully it does not become any worse.

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                          (5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          5.0

                          Perfect travel and portrait lens

                          By Ken C

                          from Orlando, FL

                          About Me Photo Enthusiast

                          Verified Reviewer

                          Pros

                          • Consistent Output
                          • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                          • Nice Bokeh
                          • Strong Construction

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Indoors/Low Light
                            • Landscape/Scenery
                            • Wildlife Photos

                            Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                            This Zeiss 4/16-70 lens mounted on the a6000 is perfect for me. I travel over 100 days per year and just couldn't lug my old Canon 60D and 18-135 lens around any more. Five months ago I sold my Canon gear, bought the a6000 body and this single lens. I've never had better shots.

                            The f4 lets lots of light in, even in low light settings. The autofocus is fast. I used to take multiple shots with my Canon gear, lots of time comparing, selecting and editing photos to get "the shot." No more. With this Zeiss lens I am taking about 1/3 of the shots and doing very little more than cropping for post processing.

                            Colors are true and rich. Almost no distortion. I only wish it had a longer zoom length, maybe 105 or so. But it is the perfect portrait, macro, mid-zoom all-in-one. Fits in my briefcase or backpack with little noticeable weight.

                            • Was this a gift?:
                            • No

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                            (4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                             
                            4.0

                            Excellent Zoom Lens

                            By Francisco F.

                            from Miami, FL

                            About Me Photo Enthusiast

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • Consistent Output
                            • Durable
                            • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                            • Lightweight
                            • Nice Bokeh
                            • Strong Construction

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                              • Landscape/Scenery
                              • Sports/Action
                              • Weddings/Events

                              Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                              This is a great all around zoom lens. Typical of Zeiss, the color and contrast are fantastic. The lens is not big and there is no zoom creep. The lens is well built although the price is a little high. The center sharpness is fantastic but the corners are a little soft specially considering the price. I do not mind the corner softness as I do not put my subjects on the corners and I usually crop my pictures anyway. I am giving it 4 stars because of this. It makes for an excellent travel zoom. On my next vacation I am taking this lens and the SEL24F18 as my prime for low light conditions. The OSS is also fantastic, I think it is better than the OSS on the SEL50. Overall excellent lens and I would highly recommend as an upgrade to the kit lens.

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                              • No

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                              (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              4.0

                              E Mount 16-70

                              By dhaimages

                              from Cincinnati, OH

                              About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Consistent Output
                              • Durable
                              • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                              • Strong Construction

                              Cons

                                Best Uses

                                  Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                                  I've been using the lens about three weeks. Over all it is a very fine lens. Solid build, good results at all focal points. Not as sharp as a prime, of course, but a very good travel lens.

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                                  • No

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                                  (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  4.0

                                  Nice size for my hands

                                  By airman

                                  from Clinton, MS

                                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Easily Interchangeable
                                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                                  • Strong Construction

                                  Cons

                                  • None so far

                                  Best Uses

                                  • General use lens
                                  • Landscape/Scenery

                                  Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                                  I wanted a larger lens than the kit lens. I found it a bit awkward to use. This lens makes the camera easier to hold and keep steady. I also prefer the manual zoom. So far no optical issues with the one I received. I agree that it is a bit over priced, especially being f/4.

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                                  • No

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                                  (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  5.0

                                  Excellent all-around / walkaround lens

                                  By Ed

                                  from Ann Arbor, MI, USA

                                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Nice Color Reproduction
                                  • Sharp

                                  Cons

                                  • Price

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Indoors - Moderate Light
                                  • Landscape/Scenery
                                  • Sports/Action

                                  Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                                  This is now my all-around go-to lens, and it stays on my camera most of the time. Typically great Zeiss quality, sharp and great colors. OSS works very well and helps to offset the f/4 max aperture when shooting indoors.

                                  It's definitely pricey, especially given it's an APS-C lens, but I don't regret buying it.

                                  • Was this a gift?:
                                  • Yes

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                                  (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  4.0

                                  Excellent Lens!

                                  By Todd Hively

                                  from Waco, TX

                                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Consistent Output
                                  • Durable
                                  • Easily Interchangeable
                                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                                  • Lightweight
                                  • Nice Bokeh
                                  • Rugged
                                  • Strong Construction

                                  Cons

                                  • Poor in Low Light

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Landscape/Scenery
                                  • Portraits
                                  • Weddings/Events
                                  • Wildlife Photos

                                  Comments about Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens:

                                  I recently participated in a photography workshop and used this lens. Images were sharp with proper lighting. In outside daytime use the lens was perfect. I was aware of the corner and side softness complaints about this lens, but in my test shots I found the side and corner sharpness was fine. I'm looking forward to using this lens on the new a7000 when that is released.

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                                  • No

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