Sony 20mm F1.8 first experiences (compared to 16-35 GM)

Started 10 months ago | User reviews thread
aSevenArr
aSevenArr Senior Member • Posts: 2,629
Re: Sony 20mm F1.8 first experiences (compared to 16-35 GM)

arneh wrote:

I received my Sony 20mm F1.8 a week ago, and my first week of using it, I have been very impressed! The other wide angle lens I own is the 16-35mm GM, I lens I have been happy with so far. So I have made some comparisons with that lens.

The 20mm seems to actually be a bit wider than 20mm. I have to zoom the 16-35 to 19mm to get a similar FOV.

The sharpness is a little better than the GM. Most notable in the corners at big apertures. It's not a big difference most of the time. But what is much better is contrast, colors and an almost complete lack of chromatic aberations for the 20mm. I was surprised it was this much better than the GM!

Plenty of sharpness for both lenses wide open in the center. But contrast and colors are clearly superior on the 20mm

Both of the lenses wide open in the corner. Here the 20mm is clearly sharper. The GM has a quite curved focus field, and was focused in the corner for this image, so this is as good as it gets. Focusing in the center would have given even less sharp corners for the GM.

Both lenses in the corner, stopped down to 5.6. Sharpness is closer now. But chromatic aberations are still quite severe for the GM.

Another wide open image showing difference in chromatic aberations.

Other things I like about the 20mm is that it focuses much closer. And by setting it in manual focus I can get objects in focus just 5 cm in front of the lens. For the GM I can only get focus about 20 cm from the front of the lens.

Close focus on these tiny flowers in the forest. The GM would not be able to do this

I also like the size and weight of the lens, and the aperture ring. It makes it a joy to carry along and use! And of course the F1.8 aperture is an advantage in some situations.

F1.8 handheld at dusk

The only disadvantage I can find compared to the GM is of course that it has only one focal length. In every other way I can see it is superior.
This is quickly turning into my favorite lens!

Some more images from the first week:

Close up at sunset

Nice punchy colors

Nice smooth bokeh balls

A prime being a tiny bit sharper than a zoom especially in the corners, that's a surprise

Anyway, congrats on your new lens.

Frankly Sony would be doing something very wrong in their lens designs if this were not the case. What's impressive to me is how good the zoom actually is.

 aSevenArr's gear list:aSevenArr's gear list
Sony RX100 IV Sony a7R Sony a9 Sony E 10-18mm F4 OSS Sony FE 35mm F2.8 +13 more
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