Sony 16-50 2.8 vs Sigma 17-70 "C"

Started Mar 5, 2014 | Discussions thread
K E Hoffman
K E Hoffman Senior Member • Posts: 5,102
Re: Sony 16-50 2.8 vs Sigma 17-70 "C"

ERN812 wrote:

I'm looking to upgrade from the kit lens on the a57 and am considering Sony's 16-50mm and Sigma's 17-70 "C" lens. Any thoughts on the two? I looked at a couple reviews online and it seems like they are both similarly sharp when comparing them at the same focal length and aperture, but the Sigma looks a little sharper wide open (which, of course, is slower than the Sony at the longer end). Both have the SSM/HSM focusing mechanism. Given all this, it seems like my decision really boils down to whether I want the faster apertures on the long end of the lens in the Sony or the greater reach of the Sigma. (I know the Sony is also weather sealed, which might be nice to have at some point but my a57 is not and I don't plan on upgrading cameras any time soon.)

I've also looked at the Sigma 17-50 2.8 a little bit. It too has the HSM motor and seems slightly sharper than the Sony 16-50 at 2.8, but the Sony seems to have it beat once stopped down.

Any advice anyone has would be much appreciated.

I have the new Sigma 17-70 "C"  Its a great lens, especially for the cost.

I have also been researching the Sony 16-50 2.8 to see if it is an upgrade worth the money



  • Flat sharpness center to edge at all by wide angle
  • Sharpest at F5.6
  • 70mm extra reach and long-end
  • Lower CA than Sony
  • Pretty Silent Focus (in quite locations automatic gain on they A77 mic pics up some clicking as it starts, stops or changes direction)
  • Price under $500
  • Looks really nice with monochrome design and is compact


  • F4 at 70 mm where it is a good portrait lens length BUT may not have narrow enough DOF for some types of portraits
  • Sharpest at F5.6
  • Drops out of F2.8 soon and is one stop slower by 70mm
  • Lens switch has to be changed for MF, no DMF no full time manual override adjustments like Screwmount with DMF or SSM
  • No weather sealing
  • Sony Lens JPG compensation does not support lens



  • Very sharp at F4 at all FL and pretty flat response (sharper than Sigma)
  • extra reach and wide end
  • F 2.8 available at all FL one stop more light at 50mm
  • Less distortion at long end 50mm than sigma
  • Super Silent Focusing
  • Manual Focus Ring usable at all times for fine tuning
  • Weather Sealed like A77 body
  • Sony internal lens jpg compensation function supports lens


  • Can be soft and edge soft at F2.8 at all FL (but Sig doesn't even have option)
  • Sony bodies don't simulate DMF feature of turning on focus peaking like screw mount, should be simulated in AFS (Push since neither lens support 100% of DMF function)
  • More CA than Sony
  • Larger than Sigma

I used SLR GEAR tests to evaluate the lenses.. and my personal use of Sigma to confirm it is a nice lens.

For me optically they are close and I am not sure Sony is worth more.  SSM and weather sealing have me thinking about it.  If Sony simulated full DMF by turning on focus peaking after an AFS event.. so it behaved like a screw mount lens on DMF ... I would buy it for sure.  Right now.. I am sticking with the Sigma because I own it and it would cost me about $250 to upgrade.

-- hide signature --

K.E.H. >> Shooting between raindrops in WA<<
Don't Panic!.. these are just opinions... go take some pictures..

 K E Hoffman's gear list:K E Hoffman's gear list
Canon EOS 450D Nikon 1 J1 Sony a6500 Sony E 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 OSS Sony E 50mm F1.8 OSS +3 more
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum PPrevious NNext WNext unread UUpvote SSubscribe RReply QQuote BBookmark MMy threads
Color scheme? Blue / Yellow