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EXCERPT page containing first few paragraphs. 2022-08-17 22:16:38

Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Sonnar T*

Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Sonnar Introduction

The 281 gram 55mm f/1.8 is a Sonnar design, and it most certainly is not an APO-Distagon, so Sony shooters need not entertain any fantasies there. But it ought to be a very good lens nonetheless.

It is not hard to imagine carrying a 35mm f/2 + 55mm f/1.8 and calling it a solid kit, the obvious gaps being a ~24mm and a 100mm. Of course the zooms can fill in too, and more lenses will come.


The 55/1.8 is a high performance lens as the various field shots show. Wide open sharpness in central areas is astonishing, and easily exceeds the best Leica M glass. Stopped down to f/4 the performance is delicious, but go to f/5.6 - f/8 for depth of field, for best results at the far periphery, and for symmetry across the frame: like many lenses (even the best), sharpness can be somewhat asymmetric, varying by sample, though this tends to show up on distance shots mainly.

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Special emphasis is placed on Sony full-frame, including Sony lenses and the high performance Zeiss Batis and Zeiss Loxia lenses plus Rokinon/Samyang and others. Fujifilm X, Olympus and Panasonic M4/3, Sigma dp Merrill and dp/sd Quattro are also covered in depth. Years in the making, it offers a wealth of material for choosing and using a mirrorless camera.

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  • Optical quality analysis of field curvature, focus shift, sharpness, flare, distortion, and performance in the field.

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Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Sonnar T*

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