45 of 50 people found the following review helpful
a must-have lens for sony shooters
, March 30, 2011
This review is from: Sony Alpha SAL35F18 35mm f/1.8 A-mount Wide Angle Lens (Black) (Electronics)
35mm is close to the ideal "normal" (neither wide-angle nor telephoto) field of view on APS-C DSLR's. It very closely approximates the field-of-view of a 50mm lens on a film SLR, which is a focal length that people have found tremendously useful for decades. It's been easy to find 50mm primes, both new and used, for quite some time -- but 50mm with the 1.5x crop factor of a DSLR is kind of an awkward focal length, useful but not ideal for that one, everyday prime lens.
Before this lens, sony shooters looking for a "normal" prime had some options, none of which were very appealing. The sigma 30mm/f1.4 is an OK lens, but relatively pricey for mediocre performance. You could look for a 20 year old minolta 35mm/f2, but those were fetching a small fortune on the used market. You could use the old minolta 28mm/f2.8, but that was never a very strong lens, and not fast for a prime either. The sony/minolta 35mm/f1.4G was a nice option if you wanted to drop $1300.
And now, along comes a lens many sony shooters have been begging for for years -- a budget "normal" prime, f2 or better for APS bodies. And the lens does not disappoint in any way. Optics are very nice all around. Sharpness is excellent, even good wide open (though keep in mind focus can be hard to control at wide apertures on any lens, and contrast can suffer). Color and contrast are very pleasing. Focusing is fairly fast, and seems very accurate on my a700. The lens is pretty small, and extremely light, which means you can take it with you anywhere.
In short: lots to love about this lens, and no real downside. Should be a no-brainer purchase for anyone with a Sony APS-C DSLR.
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