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Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 and Sony 50mm F/1.4

 
 
Comparison at 50mm.  People have written to me and asked about how the new Sony Carl Zeiss zooms compare to the older prime lenses, such as the Minolta AF 24mm F/2.8 lens for example.  Well, the only way to find out is to do a direct comparison.  This time I cover center, mid, and corner sharpness, distortion, color fringing and ghosting, and I used the Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 at 50mm, and the Sony 50mm F/1.4.
 
The Sony CZ zoom looks pretty good overall, but it can't quite pull the ultimate detail as the Sony prime does.  Distortion is less with the CZ zoom, as expected since the zoom is in the middle of the range.  Ghosting is much better controlled with the Sony 50mm F/1.4 at all apertures.  Color fringing is about equal, but the CZ has slightly less when you look very closely.  The Sony A900 was used in this comparison.

Check out the center crops below.
 
Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @50mm                                 Sony 50mm F/1.4

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz5028ctrq.jpg
May2010/s5028ctrq.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz5040ctrq.jpg
May2010/s5040ctrq.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz5056ctrq.jpg
May2010/s5056ctrq.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz5080ctrq.jpg
May2010/s5080ctrq.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz5011ctrq.jpg
May2010/s5011ctrq.jpg

 

Both lenses are very sharp in the centers at F/4-8, but the Sony is slightly sharper between F/4-8.  The exposure values are the same for both lenses, but the Sony is letting in a little more light, maybe a half stop or so, and that makes it look like it has less contrast and sharpness.  Incidentally, the Sony really falls off in sharpness at F/11! 

 
Now for some mid-level crops.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @50mm                                  Sony 50mm F/1.4

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz5028midq.jpg
May2010/s5028midq.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz5040midq.jpg
May2010/s5040midq.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz5056q.jpg
May2010/s5056midq.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz5080midq.jpg
May2010/s5080midq.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz5011midq.jpg
May2010/s5011midq.jpg

 

The Sony 50mm looks substantially sharper in the mid section area (approximately APS-C corners) at all apertures up to F/8.

 
Now for some corner crops.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @50mm                                  Sony 50mm F/1.4

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz5028cnq.jpg
May2010/s5028cnq.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz5040cnq.jpg
May2010/s5040cnq.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz5056cnq.jpg
May2010/s5056cnq.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz5080cnq.jpg
May2010/s5080cnq.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz5011cnq.jpg
May2010/s5011cnq.jpg

 

The Sony 50mm extreme corners are much sharper as compared to the CZ zoom, but wouldn't be a deal killer if you're looking to use the CZ 24-70mm for landscapes in my opinion.  

 

Distortion control

 

May2010/czdisz.jpg
Sony CZ 24-70mm @50mm
May2010/s50siszz.jpg
Sony 50mm F/1.4

 

Although the CZ has minor pincushion at 50mm, it's still flatter than the Sony prime lens. 

 

Ghosting samples below.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm @50mm F/5.6

Sony 50mm @F/5.6

May2010/cz50f56.jpg
May2010/s50f56.jpg

Sony CZ 24-70mm @50mm F/11

Sony 50mm @F/11

May2010/cz50f11.jpg
May2010/s50f11.jpg

 

The Sony prime has much less ghosting than the CZ zoom at all apertures.  This is the only real problematic area with the otherwise wonderful CZ 24-70mm.  The exposure values are the same on both lenses.

 

Color fringing.

 

May2010/86cz50cf.jpg
CZ 24-70mm @50mm, F/8
May2010/13s50cf.jpg
Sony 50mm F/1.4, F/8

 

Color fringing is low on both lenses, but the Sony prime shows just a little more than the CZ.  Check out the areas along the sides of the big tree trunk. 

 

 

That's all for this comparison, hope you enjoyed it.

 

 

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Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 and Minolta AF 35mm F/2 RS Version

 
 
Comparison at 35mm.  I cover center, mid, and corner sharpness, distortion and ghosting, and use the Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 at 35mm, and the Minolta AF 35mm F/2.
 
The Sony CZ zoom looks about as good as the Minolta 35mm prime.  When stopped down, there are no noticeable differences between the two lenses.  Distortion is less with the CZ zoom, as expected since the zoom is in the middle of the range.  Ghosting is better controlled with the Minolta AF 35mm F/2.8 when stopped down, but the differences are not huge.  The Sony A900 was used in this comparison.

Check out the center crops below.
 
Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @35mm                                 Minolta AF 35mm F/2

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz28cent.jpg
May2010/m28cent.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz40cent.jpg
May2010/m40cent.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz56cent.jpg
May2010/m56cent.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz80cent.jpg
May2010/m80cent.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz11cent.jpg
May2010/m11cent.jpg

 

Both lenses are very sharp in the centers at F/4-8.  The exposure values are the same for both lenses, but the Minolta is letting in a little more light, and that makes it look like it has less contrast and sharpness.  It does appear that the CZ may be a hair sharper at F/2.8.

 
Now for some mid-level crops.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @35mm                                  Minolta AF 35mm F/2

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz28midc.jpg
May2010/m28midc.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz40midc.jpg
May2010/m40midc.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz56midb.jpg
May2010/m56midc.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz80midc.jpg
May2010/m80midc.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz11midc.jpg
May2010/m11midc.jpg

 

The CZ zoom looks better in the mid section area (approximately APS-C corners) at wider apertures, and that's a surprise.

 
Now for some corner crops.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @35mm                                  Minolta AF 35mm F/2

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz28corn.jpg
May2010/m28corn.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz40corn.jpg
May2010/m40corn.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz56corn.jpg
May2010/m56corn.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz80corn.jpg
May2010/m80corn.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz11corn.jpg
May2010/m11corn.jpg

 

The Minolta AF 35mm extreme corners are a little sharper as compared to the CZ zoom, but not all that noticeable unless viewed side-by-side.  

 

Distortion control

 

May2010/cz35dis.jpg
Sony CZ 24-70mm @35mm
May2010/M35dish.jpg
Minolta AF 35mm F/2

 

The CZ is flatter at 35mm than the Minolta prime lens, but that's no surprise. 

 

Ghosting samples below.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm @35mm F/5.6

Minolta AF 35mm F/5.6

May2010/czgst56.jpg
May2010/mgst56.jpg

Sony CZ 24-70mm @35mm F/11

Minolta AF 35mm F/11

May2010/czgst11.jpg
May2010/mgst11.jpg

 

The Minolta prime has a little less ghosting than the CZ zoom, although the differences show up more when viewed at a larger size.  The shots aren't lined up exactly---concerning the foreground, but the center point is the same. The Minolta AF 35mm F/2 used here is the restyled version, which has the updated lens coatings.

 

That's all for this comparison, hope you enjoyed it.

 

 

 

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Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 and Sony 28mm F/2.8

 
 
This time I cover center, mid, and corner sharpness, distortion and ghosting, and use the Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 at 28mm, and the Sony 28mm F/2.8. which is the same basic lens as the Minolta AF 28mm F/2.8.
 
In a nut-shell, the Sony CZ zoom looks sharper in the centers at wide apertures.  The mid areas, (or approximately the APS-C corner areas) are easily sharper at all apertures with the Sony CZ zoom.  The extreme corners are sharper with the Sony 28mm from F/2.8-5.6.  Distortion is less with the CZ zoom.  Ghosting is much better controlled with the Sony 28mm at all apertures.  The Sony A900 was used in this comparison.

Check out the center crops below.
 
Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @28mm                                 Sony 28mm F/2.8

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz28f28ctr.jpg
May2010/s28f28ctr.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz28f40ctr.jpg
May2010/s28f40ctr.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz28f56ctr.jpg
May2010/s28f56ctr.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz28f80ctr.jpg
May2010/s28f80ctr.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz28f11ctr.jpg
May2010/s28f11ctr.jpg

 

The CZ zoom is pretty sharp in the centers at all apertures, whereas the Sony 28mm needs a stop down or so to sharpen up.  Both lenses are very sharp at F/5.6-11.  There's a road in the background with cars, so don't worry about the odd shapes and colors that appear in some crops.

 
Now for some mid-level crops.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @28mm                                  Sony 28mm F/2.8 

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz28f28mid.jpg
May2010/s28f28mid.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz28f40mid.jpg
May2010/s28f40mid.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz28f56mid.jpg
May2010/s28f56mid.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz28f80mid.jpg
May2010/s28f80mid.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz28f11mid.jpg
May2010/s28f11mid.jpg

 

The CZ zoom looks much better in the mid section, about the same area as APS-C corners, and easily beats the Sony 28mm, although the Minolta AF 28mm F/2 would probably be about the same sharpness as the CZ zoom.

 
Now for some corner crops.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @28mm                                  Sony 28mm F/2.8 

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz28f28cn.jpg
May2010/s28f28cn.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz28f40cn.jpg
May2010/s28f40cn.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz28f56cn.jpg
May2010/s28f56cn.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz28f80cn.jpg
May2010/s28f80cn.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz28f11cn.jpg
May2010/s28f11cn.jpg

 

The Sony 28mm extreme corners are fairly sharp as compared to the CZ zoom, but only with wider apertures.  The CZ zoom looks poor at F/2.8-5.6, but sharpens up nicely by F/8.  The corner crops were taken about 350 pixels from the lower left corner.  Exposure differences are from light fall-off.

 

Distortion control

 

May2010/cz2470diss.jpg
Sony CZ 24-70mm @28mm
May2010/m24diszz.jpg
Sony 28mm

 

Although the crops aren't lined up exactly, the CZ zoom is flatter when zoomed out to 28mm. 

 

Ghosting samples below.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm @28mm F/2.8

Sony 28mm F/2.8

May2010/2470a28gstf28.jpg
May2010/s28ghtsf28.jpg

Sony CZ 24-70mm @28mm F/5.6

Sony 28mm F/5.6

May2010/2470a28gstf56.jpg
May2010/s28gstf56.jpg

Sony CZ 24-70mm @28mm F/11

Sony 28mm F/11

May2010/2470a28gstf11.jpg
May2010/s28gstf11.jpg

 

The Sony 28mm is much cleaner at all apertures when the sun is in the picture. 

 

Color fringing below.

 

May2010/czcfbb.jpg
Sony CZ 24-70mm @28mm
May2010/s28cfbb.jpg
Sony 28mm

 

The CZ 24-70mm shows less lateral color fringing than the Sony 28mm.  Notice how the the CZ zoom is sharper on the right side of the crop, and the Sony 28mm is sharper on the left, which is the same as the mid and corner crops show.  These crops are from the left side, at F/8. 

 

That's all for this comparison, hope you enjoyed it.

 

 

 

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Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 and Minolta AF 24mm F/2.8

 
 
Comparison at 24mm.    
 
In a nut-shell, the Sony 24-70mm CZ zoom looks marginally sharper in the centers at all focal lengths, although the Minolta AF 24mm F/2.8  F/8 crops are very similar.  The mid areas, (or approximately the APS-C corner areas) are easily sharper at larger apertures with the Sony CZ zoom, and are slightly sharper stopped down.  The extreme corners are sharper with the Minolta from F/5.6-11.  Distortion is basically the same.  Ghosting is much better controlled with the Minolta at smaller apertures.  The Sony A900 was used in this comparison.

Check out the center crops below.
 
Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @24mm                                 Minolta AF 24mm F/2.8

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz28ctrzz.jpg
May2010/m28ctrzz.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz40ctrzz.jpg
May2010/m40ctrzz.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz56ctrzz.jpg
May2010/m56ctrzz.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz80ctrzz.jpg
May2010/m80ctrzz.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz11ctrzz.jpg
May2010/m11ctrzz.jpg

 

Both lenses are pretty sharp, although the CZ zoom more so at F/2.8.  The CZ zoom seems to have a little better color and contrast at all apertures.  The subject was about 40 feet or 12m away, which is about infinity focus.  The exposure values are exactly the same for both lenses, in all sets here and below. 

 
Now for some mid-level crops.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @24mm                                  Minolta AF 24mm F/2.8 

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz28mid.jpg
May2010/m28mid.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz40mid.jpg
May2010/m40mid.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz56mid.jpg
May2010/m56mid.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz80mid.jpg
May2010/m80mid.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz11mid.jpg
May2010/m11mid.jpg

 

The CZ zoom looks much better in the mid section, although the F/8-11 crops are similar.  Go to the bottom color fringing crops to see a more revealing set between the two.

 
Now for some corner crops.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm F/2.8 @24mm                                  Minolta AF 24mm F/2.8 

          F/2.8

          F/2.8

May2010/cz28cn.jpg
May2010/m28cn.jpg

          F/4

          F/4

May2010/cz40cn.jpg
May2010/m40cn.jpg

          F/5.6

          F/5.6

May2010/cz56cn.jpg
May2010/m56cn.jpg

          F/8

          F/8

May2010/cz80cn.jpg
May2010/m80cn.jpg

          F/11

          F/11

May2010/cz11cn.jpg
May2010/m11cn.jpg

 

The Minolta 24mm corners are quite soft between F/2.8-5, but sharpen up nicely at F/8-11.  The CZ zoom looks ok at F/2.8-4, but never really sharpens up like the Minolta.  The corner crops were taken about 350 pixels from the lower left corner.  Exposure differences are from light fall-off.

 

Distortion control

 

May2010/2470diszz.jpg
Sony CZ 24-70mm @24mm
May2010/m24diszz.jpg
Minolta AF 24mm

 

If you look very carefully, you'll see the Minolta is just a hair flatter, but you wouldn't be able to tell in actual use. 

 

Ghosting samples below.

 

Sony CZ 24-70mm @24mm F/2.8

Minolta AF 24mm F/2.8

May2010/2470fl28.jpg
May2010/m24fl28.jpg

Sony CZ 24-70mm @24mm F/5.6

Minolta AF 24mm F/5.6

May2010/2470fl56.jpg
May2010/m24fl56.jpg

Sony CZ 24-70mm @24mm F/11

Minolta AF 24mm F/11

May2010/2470fl11.jpg
May2010/m24fl11.jpg

 

The Minolta 24mm is much cleaner at smaller apertures when the sun is in the picture. 

 

Color fringing below.

 

May2010/cz24cf2.jpg
Sony CZ 24-70mm @24mm
May2010/m24cf.jpg
Minolta AF 24mm

 

The Sony 24-70mm shows much less lateral color fringing than the Minolta.  Notice the sharper mid section of the CZ zoom.  These crops are from the right side, at F/5.6. 

 

That's all for this comparison, hope you enjoyed it.