SEL20F28 impresses and puzzles at the same time

Started Apr 10, 2013 | Discussions thread
viking79
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Re: I have Canon 17-55 f/2.8, I need to see PZ16-50 "uncorrected" image to
In reply to 007peter, Apr 10, 2013

007peter wrote:

BigG30 wrote:

It rivaled my Canon 17-55mm f/2.8 (considered one of the best crop fast zooms) at f/5.6 to f/8, and was even sharper than the Canon in the middle around 20mm to 30mm. I did find the Canon was perhaps very slightly better in the corners, but I was blown away by how good this cheap, compact and lightweight the powerzoom was. A hugely underrated lens.

I had Canon 17-55 f/2.8 as well.  Its one of the sharpest canon lens I'd ever own, and I owned about 19+ lens in my 8yrs with canon.

I love the fact that canon doesn't cheat and hides lens optical flaw with software correction on barrel distortion and CA. Why is this important?

because I can SEE how superior optic on Canon 17-55 justified its $1200 price tag over my Canon 17-85 IS lens which suffer poorly on barrel distortion.  If I pay over $1200 for any lens, I like to know that I'm paying for pure optical performance, and NOT Software Enhancement.

The future is software enhancement.  Why?  It can do as good of a job corrected as optical for much less price.  Sony took it too far at the 16mm end with the 16-50mm lens.

The Sony 16mm is optically correct lens and not very good.  The 16-50mm is software corrected for distortion and CA and is just as good as the optical 16mm.

My Canon 17-85 (really bad Barrel/CA) can be sharper than Canon 17-55 using PT LENS software correction.  But I don't go around claiming that my 17-85 match my 17-55 because that is just cheating.

How is it cheating?  Doing something in software is no more "cheating" than using hardware (lenses) to do the same.  It is another way to accomplish the same thing.  There are trade-offs.  The software method requires more processing power from your camera, takes more battery life, etc.  The hardware method requires a more expensive, heavier, and larger lens, etc.  Correcting optically still has performance implications in corner performance, distortion, etc.  The Sony 16mm f/2.8 has very minor, but complex distortion where the 16-50mm has only barrel distortion.

The reason things haven't been done in software earlier is the performance hasn't been there and still maintain decent battery life, camera speed, etc.  Sony took it too far with the 16mm though by actually making it somewhat fisheye and too small image circle at 16mm and counting on the distortion correction to enlarge the image circle, where other makers have at least used a large enough image circle.

Eric

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