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SonySonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens
 
4.9

(based on 195 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (174)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (19)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

99%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Nice bokeh (103)
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (94)
  • Strong construction (89)
  • Consistent output (82)
  • Lightweight (80)

Cons

  • Heavy (5)
  • Pricey / poor value (5)

Best Uses

  • Low light (94)
  • Landscape/scenery (62)
  • Night photography (61)
  • Weddings (61)
  • Video (18)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (51), Semi-pro photographer (44), Pro photographer (27), Casual photographer (7)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (125)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Sharp, Fast and BIG and EXPENSIVE Lens

Of all the lenses I have looked at for my Sony A7 so far, the Sony 55mm and 35mm prime lenses have provided the sharpest images. Despite what you might read about the overall...Read complete review

Of all the lenses I have looked at for my Sony A7 so far, the Sony 55mm and 35mm prime lenses have provided the sharpest images. Despite what you might read about the overall quality of these lenses, make no doubt about it, coupled with the auto focus on the Sony A7 cameras, these lenses make extremely sharp images with nice contrast and acceptably attractive bokeh.When Sony introduced the A7 and A7r I knew I had to have one. But which one and, what lenses? With only three OEM lenses available at launch, my need for a longer lens led me into a search of all options. I've tested a lot of lenses.The first lens I bought for the camera was the Sony 35mm prime. I returned it and bought some Voigtlander M lenses and an M adapter, which I love on the Sony, but I couldn't help but notice that the detail in the images produced with the Sony 35mm lens were incredibly sharp. I had made a hand held shot of my dog and individual hairs were readily visible and sharp.I bought the Metabones adapter and tried my Canon lenses, but the focus was slow and the form vs. function factor on those HUGE lenses didn't work for me. The Canon lenses are BIG and the Sony A7 is small. I felt like I was lugging around an elephant in my Ferrari. So I returned the adapter, an easy process thanks to B&H return policy.Now I have my Voitlander lenses and manual focus. They produce very fine images, but I was missing the totally automatic side of this fine camera, so I bought the 55mm Sony lens and have found it to be very sharp and a joy to use when I want fully automated shooting.The Sony 55mm is very fast and SHARP with nice bokeh and I give it HIGH MARKS for that. When coupled with the high ISO capability of the A7 it does very well in available light situations even after the sun has gone down.Manual focus of the lens is very nice with the image magnification of the EVF. It is acceptably fast for the street and landscape work that I do.What I don't like about the lens is the lack of separate aperture control ring. It is a very sleek lens and makes use of control dials on the camera body to set aperture and shutter speed. It is a little different paradigm, not bad, but different than the Voitlander primes, which I love to use.This is a fairly large lens, especially compared to the 35mm prime that Sony offers. It doesn't overpower the camera in terms of form like my Canon lenses did, but compared to the diminutive 35mm and my Voitlander lenses, it is on the large side.One other nice thing about this lens is that coupled with the Sony A7, you have a setup that will stand up to the elements. I haven't poured water on mine yet to test, but I've seen it done on videos on YouTube. That's some nice comfort when you have to brave the elements to get the shot you want.The only down side is the cost of the lens. IT IS EXPENSIVE. Lets face it, for a standard focal length lens with not so much glass, $[$] is a lot to fork over. It makes me wonder if I will be willing to fork over what Sony might want for future lenses for this camera.Overall this is a very nice lens, but I can only give it 4 stars because it is BIG and EXPENSIVE.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Excellent optically, but mechanically flawed

I have been using this lens for over 2 years and it has been my favorite and best,'go to'mirrorless lens on FF (Sony A7R and A7R-II)and APS-C (A6000). With the...Read complete review

I have been using this lens for over 2 years and it has been my favorite and best,'go to'mirrorless lens on FF (Sony A7R and A7R-II)and APS-C (A6000). With the latter, it's a very good ~85mm equivalent tele. Very sharp at all apertures with just some vignetting wide-open.

So why only 2 stars and me about to sell it? While its optically excellent, it is mechanically flawed. A well-known photo equipment rental company has had to repair many of these lenses due to a STUPID engineering design. A crucial part of the focusing motor, used for both AF and manual focusing, is only secured by a glob of glue!! When this coil releases from the glue, the lens cannot focus. From online discussions, it seems that Sony out-sourced repair centers will deem this defect 'unrepairable' (the rental company disassembles their lenses and reapply another glob of glue). The result for the rest of us is a very expensive paperweight. I am selling mine before it breaks and buying the cheaper (1/4 X) Sony FE 50mm f/1.8 lens usng an older DC motor.

Reviewed by 195 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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5.0

Best lens I've ever owned

By Jack

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Site Member

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Super sharp with great contrast. Amazing in combination with the A7R2's eye autofocus.

 
5.0

Fantastic lens!

By Adam Krasas

from Cyprus

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Light-weight, sharp and with autofocus. I'm extremely satisfied! As a wedding cinematographer this lens is very affordable and top quality!

 
5.0

Fantastic lens!

By Adam Krasas

from Cyprus

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Light-weight, sharp and with autofocus. I'm extremely satisfied! As a wedding cinematographer this lens is very affordable and top quality!

 
5.0

Fantastic lens!

By adamk

from Undisclosed

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Light-weight, sharp and with autofocus. I'm extremely satisfied! As a wedding cinematographer this lens is very affordable and top quality!

 
5.0

Top notch piece of glass

By Melvin

from Undisclosed

Site Member

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

This lens does not disappoint. Shallow depth of field is amazing and details are more than adequate. Great overall lens.

(0 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

 
1.0

Just not a real lens

By Kaileen

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Site Member

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

If you are goignto roll auto focus all the time, maybe this is nice for you.
Me, i'm a video guy, and when i take photos, i roll in full manual. SO this lens is impossible to use. The electronic focus ring doesn't make sense to me as it doesn't have gears. It is touch sensitive, essentially; the faster you move it the farther it goes.

anyway, i hate this thing ...respectfully :)

 
5.0

An amazing Sharp Lens...

By Canuto

from Canutillo, Texas

Verified Buyer

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

I heard so many good things about this lens and everything they say was true. Great lens for portraits. The images are sharper than real life. I also use it for video head closeups and it works amazing. The only thing I didn't like is that I had to return it once because it arrived broken making a weird sound when I tried to focus and it wasn't focusing right on auto. My main suspect is that for some reason everything that I have bought from Sony, comes inside a bubble wrap bag and that slim "protective" bag. It bounces on the box every time you move it and combine that with UPS service and a box not marked fragile and you are up for a treat. But I got a new lens thanks to the great people from B&H and now I'm shooting like crazy. Simply the best lens for the price.

 
5.0

If I had to choose only one lens!

By Dirty

from Undisclosed

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Sharp lens, beautiful bokeh, light weight and well built! This 55 will never come off my A7ii

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

One of the sharpest lenses form Sony (if not the most)

By Hector

from New York

Verified Buyer

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Light, sharp, outstanding image quality and beautiful bokeh. Totally recommended!

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

great for video too

By Artmiester

from stuart florida

Verified Buyer

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

I love this lens for video, i just wish they made a 35mm similar to this in this price range

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Incredible performance in a small package

By Robert

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Site Member

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

I purchased this lens from B&H in February 2016 and have never looked back.   It's frequently used in my portrait and event projects and consistently renders amazing results that clients love.  DXOMARK shares my assessment, giving it the excellent score of 48, three more points than the more recently released FE 50mm f/1.4.   Subject isolation and resolution are superb with the FE 55 at f/1.8 wide open with that signature Zeiss color contrast.  The auto focus is very responsive in all lighting conditions.  All this in a package that compliments the compact a7 format and is less than half the size and weight of the FE 50 1.4 alternative.   I highly recommend this amazing optic!

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Essential Lens for full or aps-c bodies

By Milan

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

I've been using this on my a6500 as a portrait lens and I can't recommend it enough. Solid construction, tack sharp, great bokeh and imo, a great bargain.

 
5.0

Incredible optics

By Dennys

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Incredibly sharp and beautiful Bokeh with Fast AF. the F1.8 makes it ideal for low-level lighting situations

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Sharp and And well built

By N.A

from Tel Aviv, ISRAEL

Verified Buyer

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

I do not pretend to understand lenses on a technical level.
I look for quality, reliability, sharpness and weight.
All this data exists in this lens, it is super sharp, well built, fast and easy focus.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Ridiculously good lens!

By Alwin

from Undisclosed

Site Member

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Everything about the performance of this lens is disgustingly good. Sure you do pay for it considering most 50ish FL are 1/4 of the price. But if you want a stunning performer in this focal range, you will not be disappointed. The rendering of images is beautiful especially with portraits. There is this unquantifiable quality to the photos it delivers.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Everything they say it is

By STEVEN

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Site Member

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

I shoot a Sony A6500 coming from a Sony A6300. I've owned many lenses in the past and this Sony 55 1.8 is by far the best of the best.
I also have the Sigma 18-35 which is an awesome lens along with the Sony 18-105.  I've owned the Sigma 19, 30 and 60 Art lenses and they are great lenses but do not compare with this lens as far as sharpness and color goes. The Sigma's are excellent but the Sony / Zeiss 55 1.8 beats them all. The photos off this lens seem to have a 3d effect as the photos are just so much sharper...which I did not think was possible especially with the Sigma Art lenses.

Believe the reviews this lens gets. It is a great lens although it is a pricey lens. You will not regret buying this lens. Just do it.

 
5.0

Great Little Lens

By Judith

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Fast, sharp, clear across the board. Light and easy to carry.

 
5.0

The best reasonably sized normal lens ever?

By Mark

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Of the nearly 20 normal lenses from many makers I've owned, I have to say this is the best all rounder, ever. Great at all apertures, accurate autofocus, small and light. Faster 50s may suck in more light but unless you really want that nostalgic glow, smeared corners and heavy vignette, none can touch this lens wide open. I am astonished.

 
5.0

I recommend this product

By Cory

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Great product

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

great lens

By yipeng_liu

from Undisclosed

Comments about Sony Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Lens:

Great lens. Just stupidly fast and Sharp. Kinda took the fun away.

Displaying reviews 1-20

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