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SonyVario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens
 
4.6

(based on 109 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (77)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (25)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

92%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Lightweight (50)
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (37)
  • Durable (32)
  • Consistent output (27)
  • Easily interchangeable (25)

Cons

  • Poor in low light (5)
  • Heavy (4)

Best Uses

  • Landscape/scenery (35)
  • Everyday (27)
  • Travel (26)
  • Landscape photography (21)
  • Portraits (21)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (34), Enthusiast (17), Semi-professional (9), Professional (6), Semi-pro photographer (5)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (74)

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 109 customers

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4.0

Great lens for my A6300

By Bob F.

from New Jersey

Verified Buyer

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

I'm still experimenting this lens, but so far I find the images to be sharp - - with a lot of "pop" to them. It mates nicely with the A6300. Nice balance and feel in my hands. My other lens is a Sony 18-200 SEL. Over the 18-70 range the photos using the Vario-Tessar 16-70 are superior to the 18-200 as expected. Overall very pleased with the 16-70. Actual rating is a 4.5. Couldn't give it a 5 because no lens is perfect. Room for improvement: Reduction in price (kind of pricey for a lens in the range). F 2.8 or F3.5.

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I got a good one

By CT_Photos

from CT

Verified Buyer

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

The Sony/Zeiss 16-70 mm F4 APS-C E-mount lens sits in the sweet spot of walk around lenses. I have captured many good photos using Sony's 35 mm and 50 mm prime lenses with my Sony A6300. But there is a limit to zooming with your feet. In addition, a zoom lens enhances the video capture experience.

The reviews on the Web for the 16-70 mm Zeiss are good except for those who get very bad lenses. These unfortunate souls return these duds over and over only to receive a lens that is no better. Even Alibaba fared better. One would think that a $1,000 German made lens would have a very low out-of-box failure rate. Getting a dud was my greatest fear in buying this lens. I put this lens through very vigorous field trials to identify flaws. I am not a pixel peeper. But in hundreds of combinations of F stop and focal length, I could not find an obvious flaw. By flaw, I mean the de-centering defect many reviewers have seen.

I performed side by-side tests against my primes and I believe my Zeiss zoom lens is a good one – a keeper. Color saturation is just as good as with my primes. Maybe a tad bit less sharp.

My first experience with my Sony camera was with the kit lens: the 16-50 mm zoom. In those early days, I took a lot of fuzzy pictures with murky colors. There was a lot of disappointment with the lousy kit lens and I finally moved onto primes. The Zeiss zoom lens will astound those moving from the kit lens. The pictures and videos are so much better. Yes, it will cost you money.

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3.0

cautious about this lens.

By camera-in-hand

from New York

Verified Buyer

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

I really wanted to love this lens. It seemed the perfect choice to avoid always traveling with multiple lens. It looked quite good on the initial tests, but after I took it outside (into the real world) I began getting confusing results. At some focal lengths and apertures it looked just fine. (Perhaps not brilliant but more than adequate.) At other setting the results were unacceptable. When I reviewed the full record I decided to send it back. Perhaps it was this particular lens and another copy would be better, but I'm calling it quits at the moment.

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5.0

Solid lens for everyday use

By Dave James

from Denver, CO

Verified Buyer

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

I bought this lens for my a6000 as an alternative to the kit 16-50mm lens. The kit lens is fine, but it takes the small form-factor of the a6000 just a little too far for me. The Zeiss 16-70mm adds just enough bulk, and it now fits perfectly in my formerly full-sized DSLR filled hands.

Image quality is great, and the focal range is good for 90% of what I shoot (70-200mm f/4 takes care of the rest). Build quality is what you would expect from a Zeiss branded lens. Some sort of way to disable AF on the lens would be handy, but that would take away from the clean look & feel. It's a little pricey, but I think you get what you pay for.

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(4 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
3.0

Disappointing

By bigbeartom

from Camarillo, CA

Verified Buyer

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

I bought this lens to replace the kit lens, the Sony 16-50mm. The good news is that in the center of the lens it is excellent but the bad news is as you go to the sides the sharpness drops off pretty rapidly. Comparing the two lenses the Zeiss is very expensive and in my opinion not worth the price. The Sony kit lens isn't quite as sharp as the Zeiss lens but is smooth all the way to the edge and it is a fraction of the cost of the Zeiss lens.
I sent the Zeiss lens back and got back my Sony 16-50mm lens and bought two Sigma lenses, the 19mm prime and the 30mm prime. Both these lenses are sharper that the Zeiss lens and also are a steal at the price. I use the Sony 16-50mm most of the time but when I want a really sharp lens I use one of the Sigmas. The 19mm more that the 30mm as the kit lens is quite sharp at 30-50mm.

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5.0

Very Nice Lens

By Tee

from Northern California

Verified Buyer

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

A very compact lens that is great for everyday walk around shooting. It is sharp,and focus very fast. A well built good quality. Nice size and not to heavy.

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(8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Can't find any flaws.

By Paul

from Undisclosed

Site Member

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

Before buying this lens (for the Sony A6300 for a trip to Santa Fe, NM), I read many different reviews on a few different sites.  There are a number of reviews that talk about softness at the edges.

I am not a pro and I am not scrutinizing my photos at 100% and the only place my photos are likely to appear are on the walls of my house.  From that perspective, this lens is fantastic.

The lens is well constructed and the size is perfect -- I think it makes a great companion to the Sony A6300.  Focus is snappy and I am not seeing any of that softness at the edges.  Perhaps I got a good copy?  Perhaps I'm just not digging into the pixels enough?

My suggestion... Go for it.  Give it a shot (no pun intended) and see how it works for you.  I really hesitated (due to the reviews), but am quite glad that I decided to purchase this lens.  It'll be the only lens on the A6300.

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(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Beautiful Lense

By Cliff

from Dallas, TX

Verified Buyer

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

Very sharp and fast focusing
I was looking for an all around lense for Sony A6300, this fits the bill
Lightweight and a quality lense

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(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Love the 70mm f/4 lens by Zeiss!

By mattdotgarcia

from Costa Mesa, CA

Verified Buyer

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

I use the lens for mostly portrait and landscape shots. The zoom is really great and adds to the experience of the lens without a doubt! Something I've noticed is that my ability to take shots of people with the sun or sunset shining behind them has grown exponentially- I can get a much more crisp shot and can zoom without compromising on quality. Great get!

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(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Good lens for wide to mod telefoto use.

By Doc Tom

from Olympia, WA

Verified Buyer

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

Use it with the a6300 as a travel/hiking system where I need light weight, small size, versatility, and good quality. Love using the lens. Seems sharp with good color contrast.

Two negatives so far: 1) Optical Image Stabilization is not as robust as other lenses I've used (e.g.: Tamaron 18-270); and 2) Focusing and zoom rings are right nest to each other and impossible to distinguish from each other by feel, and my fat fingers keep grabbing both.

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(2 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

great lens

By will

from MA

Verified Reviewer

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

you won't be disappointed

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(8 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great Compliment to the a6300

By Scot

from Orange, CA

Verified Buyer

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

I purchased this along with the a6300 and it does a great job at complimenting the body. I haven't tried out any other lenses, but from quite a bit of online research this is THE lens to pair with the a6300.

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(11 of 11 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great replacement lens to the kit 16-50

By Ron

from Seattle, WA

Verified Buyer

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

This lens was a replacement for the kit 16-50mm on my a6000, and so far the results are fantastic. There are countless reviews on this lens and yes, it's expensive, but if you can justify the price, its an excellent upgrade from the 16-50. I'm finding the image quality far superior in color, contrast and sharpness to the 16-50. It is heaver, but still compact and fits very well on the a6000. If you're looking for a great walk around lens and upgrade, I think this is the way to go.

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great lens in compact form factor

By Chris H.

from Stamford, CT

Verified Buyer

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

I am very pleased with this lens. The image quality is quite good, it has a highly responsive autofocus and it is quite compact...in keeping with my a6300.

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(6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Versatile lens for my a6300

By Chris H.

from Stamford, CT

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

So far my experience with this lens had been great. Quality images in a compact, versatile form factor consistent with the a6300's body. A bit pricey, but it's worth it as the lens I will be using 85% of the time.

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(14 of 14 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Very good lens with a6000

By Dom C

from Sedona, AZ

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

This lens was not available for several months. I ordered it the day it was back in stock. Due to some complains of misalignment, I tested it the day I received it. I shot a grid pattern with the lens wide open at 16, 25, 40 and 70mm. At 16mm the lines at the very left and right edges were slightly soft. Nothing that bothered me. There was also a little geometric distortion and some chromatic distortion at the edges. Nothing that cannot be addressed. No problems at 25, 40 and 70 mm.
I have also done a few test shots of landscapes. Very good details and contrast.
It is a very good lens and great match for the a6000. Compact and light weight.

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(13 of 13 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Sony nex7 lens

By Golfingrn

from NYC

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

I purchased this lens to replace the original kit lens. This lens gave me a little more flexibility in the pictures I have been taking, as I walk the city and take cityscapes. The quality of the glass in this Ziss lens is all I expected . I'm very happy with the purchase.

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(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

I will recomend this lenses to a friend.

By ralpolon

from Mexico City

Verified Buyer

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

Excellent definition at all apertures. It should be little faster, is F4, but for the price is OK.
With excellent ISO of the Sony E 6300 at high numbers, this problem is not very relevant.

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(5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Zeis All the Way

By mar685

from Tucson, AZ

Verified Buyer

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

Sharp, sharp, sharp. What more can you say!

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(24 of 24 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great lens

By GN

from Ottawa, Canada

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Reviewer

Pros

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

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Landscape/Scenery
    • Video
    • Weddings/Events

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

    I write a review for the E 16-70 F4 after more than one year living with it. My first impression with this lens was not very positive because this lens is not as sharp as the E 35mm F1.8 and E 50mm F1.8 when I tested against test chart. However, this E 16-70 really surprised me a lot in Mexico and many other events. In real life, the E16-70 is very sharp and has high contrast and very good color. This lens sometimes take better picture than the E 35mm due to "Zeiss" pop. Yes, the E16-70 does have "Zeiss pop" although it is less than the more expensive Zeiss lens. I now fall in love with this lens and I use it more than the E 35mm in good light.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

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