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Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 GM: Single Frame Performance at f/9 vs Focus Stacking at f/9 (Bristlecone Log Low View)

See my Sony mirrorless wish list.

Focus stacking using Zerene Stacker. See my tutorial/how-to in Making Sharp Images.

Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 GM

The about $2198 Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 GM offers the convenience of a zoom lens with good performance and relatively compact size and weight.

But how does one deal with outdoor scenes in which the depth of field of f/22 would be desirable, but f/22 is unavailable and both f/22 and f/16 would degrade the image unacceptably (by diffraction)? The answer is focus stacking

As this example makes obvious, depth of field even at 17mm at f/9 remains strictly limited. Using f/13 would help but also degrades the image by diffraction and still cannot deliver the required depth of field.

This comparison shows a 4-frame focus stacked image to a single frame taken at f/9, the frame delivering the sharpest rendering of the log.

Sony 16-35/2.8 GM: Imaging Performance @ 17mm, Single Frame vs Stacked: Bristlecone Log Low View

Includes images up to full resolution, with crops.

f9 @ 1/60 sec, ISO 100; 2017-08-08 19:26:58 [focus stack 4 frames]
Sony A7R II + Sony FE 16-35mm F2.8 GM @ 17mm

[low-res image for bot]
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