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Sony 24 -70mm f/2.8 Carl Zeiss Vario Sonnar T Zoom Lens for Sony Alpha Digital SLR Cameras

by Sony
54 customer reviews
| 20 answered questions

Available from these sellers.
  • Zoom range of 24-70mm for all-around versatility
  • Brilliant large-aperture f2.8 design
  • Carl Zeiss® T* coating to minimize lens flare
  • Fast, silent auto-focus -- SSM (Super Sonic wave Motor)
  • Aspherical lens elements to reduce spherical distortion
20 used from $1,059.00 1 refurbished from $1,999.00
Warranty Information: This product comes with a 1 Year warranty

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Technical Details

Product Description

Product Description

High-performance Carl Zeiss large-aperture zoom. The SAL-2470Z Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar f2.8 24-70mm Zoom Lens is a brilliant all-around performer -- with SSM (Super Sonic wave Motor) design for fast, silent auto-focus, pro-quality Carl Zeiss T coated optics to reduce lens flare, and 17-element design with two aspherical and two ED glass lens elements to minimize distortion and virtually eliminate chromatic aberration. It benefits from the Super SteadyShot image stabilization built into every Sony α system DSLR -- and its wide-angle to medium telephoto range in compact, lightweight design is ideal for a wide range of shooting applications (35mm equivalent: 36-105mm).

From the Manufacturer

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Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm F2.8 ZA SSM Zoom Lens

Brilliant performance in compact design. This superb Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* Zoom Lens provides large-aperture f2.8 brilliance, all-purpose 24-70mm zoom range and fast, silent auto-focus with SSM (Super Sonic wave Motor) design - plus aspherical and ED glass elements to reduce distortion for superior clarity and color (35mm equivalent: 36-105mm).

Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm F2.8 ZA SSM Zoom Lens


Circular Aperture
ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass
Aspherical lens elements

Circular Aperture

When changing your aperture to defocus the background, the light sources appear blurred. This ‘bokeh’ effect of the blurred background can be enhanced with circular aperture blades used in this lens. Conventional aperture blades have flat sides creating unappealing polygonal shaped defocussed points of light. α lenses overcome this problem through a unique design that keeps the aperture almost perfectly circular from its wide-open setting to when it is closed by 2 stops. Smoother, more natural defocusing can be obtained as a result.

ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass

As focal lengths get longer, lenses built with conventional optical glass have difficulties with chromatic aberration, and as a result images suffer from lower contrast, lower color quality, and lower resolution. ED glass dramatically reduces chromatic aberration at telephoto ranges, and provides superior contrast across the entire image, even at large aperture settings. Super ED glass provides enhanced compensation for chromatic aberration.

Aspherical lens elements

Aspherical lens design dramatically reduces spherical aberration while also reducing lens size and weight. Spherical aberration is a slight misalignment of the light rays projected on the image plane. This is caused by differences in refraction at different points on conventional spherical lenses which degrade image quality in large-aperture lenses. Specially shaped “aspherical” elements near the diaphragm restore alignment of light rays at the image plane, maintaining high sharpness and contrast even at maximum aperture and can also be used at other points in the optical path to reduce distortion. Well-designed aspherical elements can reduce the total number of elements required in the lens, thus reducing overall size and weight. Advanced Aspherical (AA) elements are an evolved variant, featuring an extremely high thickness ratio between the center and periphery. AA elements are exceedingly difficult to produce, relying on the most advanced molding technology to consistently and precisely achieve the required shape and surface accuracy, resulting in significantly improved image accuracy and quality.

Carl Zeiss T* (T-star) coating
Focus hold button
Distance encoder

Carl Zeiss T* (T-star) coating

Coated optics were pioneered by Carl Zeiss - and this superb lens features the Carl Zeiss T* (T-Star) coating that virtually eliminates lens flare, internal reflection and light scattering that can otherwise occur at glass-to-air surfaces. The T* coating contributes to outstanding image quality, with high contrast and uniformly excellent resolution right out to the image edges. Not simply applied to any lens - the T* symbol only appears on multi-element lenses in which the required performance has been achieved throughout the entire optical path, therefore guaranteeing the highest quality.

Focus hold button

Once you’ve adjusted focus to where you want it, pressing this button on the lens barrel will keep the lens locked to that focusing distance. The preview function can also be assigned to this button through the camera’s custom settings.

Distance encoder

The distance encoder plays an integral part in ADI flash metering, which delivers high precision flash metering that is unaffected by the reflectance of subjects or backgrounds. The distance encoder is a lens component that directly detects the position of the focusing mechanism, and sends a signal to the CPU in order to measure distance to the subject. During flash photography, this data is very useful in calculating how much flash output is appropriate to the scene.

Additional Features

Internal focusing

Only the middle groups of the optical system move to achieve focus, so the overall length of the lens does not change. Other important benefits include fast autofocusing and a short minimum focusing distance. Also, the filter thread at the front of the lens does not rotate, which is convenient if you’re using a polarizing filter.

SSM (Super Sonic wave Motor)

SSM is a piezoelectric motor that contributes to smooth and silent AF operation. The motor produces high torque at slow rotation, and provides immediate start and stop responses. It is also extremely quiet, which helps keep autofocusing silent. Lenses that feature SSM also include a position-sensitive detector to directly detect the amount of lens rotation, a factor that improves AF precision overall.

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2008 Sony Electronics, Inc.

All rights reserved. Sony, the Sony logo, Alpha, “&#945” and Super SteadyShot are trademarks of Sony. All other trademarks are trademarks of their respective owners.

Product Details

User Manual [2.25mb PDF]
  • Product Dimensions: 4.4 x 3.3 x 3.3 inches ; 2.1 pounds
  • Shipping Weight: 4.4 pounds
  • Domestic Shipping: Item can be shipped within U.S.
  • International Shipping: This item is not eligible for international shipping. Learn More
  • ASIN: B0013GWBIE
  • Item model number: SAL2470Z
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
  • Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here
  • Date first available at June 17, 2003

Read about our customers' top-rated lenses and cameras on our review pages: Lenses, Digital SLR Cameras, Compact System Cameras

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

85 of 89 people found the following review helpful By Alan on February 29, 2008
Verified Purchase
The Carl Zeiss 24-70mm f/2.8 SSM Lens is an impressively high performing zoom lens. I regard it as one of the best general purpose lenses.

The lens build and mechanical quality are top of the line. It focuses quietly and very fast thanks to the SSM (Super Sonic Wave Motor). Also the focus zoom ring is nicely sized and operate smoothly.

The Carl Zeiss 24-70mm f/2.8 is very shapr for zoom lens. It is sharp in the center at f/2.8 at all focal lengths, and the excellent contrast and saturation are what strike me the most in real life applications.

Now on the negatives. The biggest downside of 24-70mm F2.8 is it's size and weight. This lens is not small or light enough for a walkaround lens(due to solid build heavy body), and I find holding this lens can be tiring for half day shooting.

All in all, it is one the best Sony/Carl Zeiss all purpose lens made. The box contains a Carl Zeiss 24-70mm F2.8 SSM lens, front and rear lens cap, a metal petal lens hood, and a leather lens carrying case.
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71 of 75 people found the following review helpful By Photo/Video Gearhead on April 4, 2008
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This is the best lens that Sony/Zeiss have offered thus far, even more versatile than the Sony SAL-85F14Z 85mm f1.4 Carl Zeiss Planar T Coated Telephoto Lens for Sony Alpha Digital SLR Camera and Sony SAL-135F18Z 135mm f/1.8 Carl Zeiss Sonnar T Telephoto Lens for Sony Alpha Digital SLR Camera, which are incredible lenses. I have compared this Sony/Zeiss 24-70mm f/2.8 lens to the legendary Minolta 28-70mm f/2.8 G lens using the Imatest lens test software. At an aperture of f2.8, the Minolta 28-70 lens at 28mm focal length and the Zeiss 24-70 lens at 24mm focal length are equally sharp in the center, but the Zeiss lens is sharper at the corners. The Zeiss 24-70 lens does exhibit a minor amount of chromatic aberration but to no serious extent. It also exhibits moderate barrel distortion at 24mm, as do its Canon and Nikon 24-70 counterparts. The barrel distortion is more pronounced with a full frame sensor than with a half frame sensor.

Sony and Zeiss have a very useful partnership going, which I hope will result in a greater variety of lenses in the future. Recently, Sony and Zeiss have introduced a Sony SAL1635Z 16-35mm f/2.8 ZA Lens that improves upon the rare and coveted Minolta 17-35mm f3.5 G lens.

Two minor complaints about this lens are the following. First, like the other Sony/Zeiss lenses, it is rather heavy, but I suppose that good glass is heavy. Second, it zooms by elongating externally unlike the Minolta 28-70mm f/2.8 G lens.
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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Phillip D. Breske on April 10, 2011
This lens was a replacement for a Sigma 28-70 2.8 EX DG lens. That lens was a replacement for a Minolta variable aperture crappo lens I bought back in the 80s. The Sigma was fine, but the zoom ring rotated opposite to every other lens I've ever owned and it was never as sharp and the focus never as accurate as I had hoped for.

I've owned this lens now for about four months and I have only one bad thing to say. For most of you, this will be meaningless, but for those shooters who use full-frame format cameras, you should know this lens will vignette at the corners with a filter attached.

If you use a UV/Haze filter for "protection," you may notice some small vignette at the corners at 24mm. I never have a filter attached unless it's a polarizer and since a UV filter is thinner than the rotating ring of a CPL filter, the UV ring may not intrude upon the image. If you stack a CPL onto the UV filter, I would say you will have a great deal of vignette at 24mm and maybe some around 30mm.

Other than that, the lens is amazing. Super sharp all the way to the corners and the focus is very, very fast and accurate. I used this lens for a time on a Konica Minolta 7D (6 megapixels) and it was great, but when I finally upgraded to a Sony a900 I was treated to a feast of sharpness and clarity.

Sure, it's big and it's heavy. And expensive. These are small penalties for what you get in return. If you want better image quality, you'd have to carry three or four prime lenses with a net weight gain in your camera bag.

Oh, one other thing: The zoom ring rubber grip is very pretty, but the knurling is so fine that it's hard to feel exactly where you are grabbing the lens. I prefer the old Minolta grips with the deep grooves that were also angled relative to the lens barrel because they were so easy to feel with your fingertips.
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42 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Brian Smith on January 4, 2009
24-70mm is the perfect range for general portraiture and people photography and this lens is absolutely the sharpest 24-70mm zoom on the planet. It's built like a Rolex and the Zeiss glass simply blows away the competition. It's tack sharp at every focal length even wide open at 2.8, plus it's without the chromatic aberrations that plague Canon zooms.

It's the perfect lens to compliment Sony's new 24.6mp flagship camera the a900 Sony Alpha A900 24.6MP Digital SLR Camera (Black), but a700 users will appreciate this lens as well. It joins Sony's Zeiss 85/1.4 Sony SAL-85F14Z 85mm f1.4 Carl Zeiss Planar T Coated Telephoto Lens for Sony Alpha Digital SLR Camera and Zeiss 135/1.8 Sony SAL-135F18Z 135mm f/1.8 Carl Zeiss Sonnar T Telephoto Lens for Sony Alpha Digital SLR Camera lenses in an growing line-up of amazing flagship lenses.
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