FE 4/12-24 G -- My Mini-Review

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richj20 Veteran Member • Posts: 4,992
FE 4/12-24 G -- My Mini-Review
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I decided to rent Sony's entrance into the UWA market and give it a try. I was skeptical that a UWA zoom could produce as good results as my Batis 2/25 and 2.8/18, and if it were not at least closely comparable to them, then it would be a no-go.

I will say that I was surprisingly shocked after just one outing at the excellent results possible with this lens. By the second day, I had decided to keep the lens.

1. FE 4/12-24 G -- Sony's entrance into the UWA market.

2. The "monster" cap. It doesn't just push onto the hood - it clamps onto it. The huge release levers make it very easy to remove/replace the cap.

3. FE 4/12-24 mounted on A7Rii. The hood is permanently attached. Probably as a protection for the bulbous lens. Same with my Panasonic 7-14mm. AF/MF switch and Focus Hold Button on the left side. The focusing ring is nicely damped. Note that it is slightly larger in circumference than the zoom ring, making it easy to move back and forth between the two rings with my left hand under the lens barrel. No filter threads.

Photographs below.

  • Tripod used except where noted.
  • Mostly MF or AF + MF.
  • I configured the Focus Hold Button to Focus Magnifier, making it easy/quick to adjust magnification.

Photographing out in our natural world.

I used a local park and lake as a test bed for a couple of days.

4. Hillside in the park. My torture test for resolution is scenes with grasses. This time of year, the details of dormant foliage make wonderful test subjects. Resolution is excellent at all focal lengths with this lens.

5. Spillway at a local park/lake. I climbed down the bank onto the shore line. The wide angle let me frame a different perspective up close than when using a longer lens looking down from the bank. 18mm gave me enough room to crop a bit to square up the framing - about 4:3.

6. Wildlife anyone? Muscovy ducks at a local lake.  Best results when about 5 feet from the subject. (Not recommended for lion safaris.) AF. Hand Held.

7. Snowy Egret. The tree is in a formerly dry canal, now filled with water and green algae.

8. Abandoned pet iguana at the local park. Some kids fishing told me they saw a family the previous day bring it to the park, play with it for a while, then leave. AF. Hand held.

9. One of my first tests with a new lens is flowers to see how the lens handles colors. Very realistic, I think. AF. Hand held.

10. Hibiscus. Wonderful resolution of the petal venation. The MWD of about 4.5" makes this lens useful for medium to large size flowers. I used AF and was impressed that it locked focus on the protruding stamens.

Architecure: Exterior

11. Iglesia ni Cristo. This is an international Christian Church denomoination which originated in the Philippines. Churches are an on-going project of mine, and I noticed a couple of weeks ago that the red steps had been repainted. 12mm made it easy to get the desired framing of the building.

12. Christian Science Church. The wide angle stretches/exaggerates the width of the roads a bit!

13. Unitarian Church. AF. Hand held.

14. Historic Mission Inn Hotel, Riverside, California. This building is a city block long. I've captured about 60% of its length from this position.

15. Side entrance. 12mm stretch effect! It makes the sidewalk look longer than it is. AF. Hand held.

Architecture: Interior

16. The floor in this church slants to the front, like a movie theater. I turned off the camera level, and used the square grid on my LCD to align the verticals at each end. I photographed from several angles, and this one gave a nice indication of the slant. No interior lighting, just sunlight through the beautiful stained glass. I spot metered directly on the brightest glass.

17. Display table

18. One of the dining rooms in the Mission Inn. It's for evening dinners, so I went in the morning and got permission to go inside and photograph. Tripods not permitted inside the hotel. (Most tourists use smart phone cameras anyway: I've seen a regular camera there only a couple of times in recent years.)This is the normal interior lighting: spotlights above the tables, and spot lights directed to the painting.The painting is the famous "Charge up San Juan Hill: Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough Riders" painted by Vasilii Vereshchagin, the Russian painter who specialized in large canvases of military scenes. This one measures about 8 feet x 6 feet.  AF + MF. Hand held.

19. Table Setting. AF. Hand held.

Conclusion

I am very happy to have such stellar optics in a UWA zoom lens.  There is nothing more to say.

End of brief mini-review.

I am looking forward to a trip next month to the Southern Sierra Nevada and Sequoia National forest with this lens in tow.

- Richard

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 richj20's gear list:richj20's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 Panasonic Leica 100-400mm F4.0-6.3 ASPH Sony Alpha a7R II
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