Sony Zeiss 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS lens review with samples

You see before you another Sony Zeiss lens that has very nice parameters, a huge price tag, and a mixed reputation. Let’s put it through its paces. It’s for Sony’s E-Mount mirrorless cameras, and it covers and APS-C image circle.

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All pictures taken by me on Sony a7r ii and Sony a5100 cameras.

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‘Opportunity Walks’, Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0


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20 thoughts on “Sony Zeiss 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS lens review with samples

  1. It might not perform well on FF camera's, but, I would be using it with an APSC Sony. The 18-105 is junk and distortion is terrible with the lens.

  2. Considering the only other standard zoom for the APS-C system that starts at 16mm and has OIS is the 16-50PZ, and you can often get the Zeiss for 1/3 of the MSRP used, maybe this lens is worth getting?

  3. I have an opportunity to pick this lens up with a 2 year warranty for £380. Was very tempted, but this review showcases some worrying points. I wonder though if at that price (c. half price) would it have been viewed more positively?

  4. Every sample photo I've seen from this lens is beautiful, including the ones in this video. How do I resist?

  5. Hello Christopher, Ur reviews are outstandingly detailed. Appreciate all the work u have done to produce them.
    Could I request a review, I'd love to see your take on the Sony 18-200 f3.5-6.3 lens. It's a pretty old lens but competes rite up with the 16-70, 18-105 and the 18-135.
    Hope u'll do it..!

  6. in my case zoom ring was smooth, but text signatures began to erase, such a shame

    it wasn't my lens though and I feel a bit bad for that person who bought it

  7. "On paper, it seems like a lovely package" Some excellent foreshadowing there. Very disappointing for the price and for it being a Zeiss and a 'G' lens as well. Are there better options out there (3rd party included) that start from 16mm?

  8. Honestly, despite the (mostly) poor reviews of this lens i must say, that i really like the images. Great contrast and rendering for a zoom lens. And i say this as a Fuji user. 🙂 If you look a ehotozine for example, the mtf easily keep up wit the the xf 18-55 for example, which is regarded to be a decent lens.

  9. Great review thank you! Why Sony doesn't offer a decent 16-50mm f2.8 like they have for A mount…? Their is nothing serious in this range for lifestyle, documentary or event work. I don't get it, not everybody want a full frame, I'm really please with the size of my A6300 system.

  10. The colours pop out more and even the sharpness gets better when you intensively stare the "ZEISS" logo 😀

  11. Damn. What a shame. Thank you so much for this review. I was thinking of buying this as a walk around travel lens for my a6500 but this review has convinced me otherwise. Can anyone recommend an alternative for this? Cheers.

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