In this Sony lens review I will be going over the all-in-one E-Mount PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens which is designed for the APS-C sensor sized cameras like the A6000 for example. I have lots of sample video, photos, and real world experience to share with you so strap in for this highly detailed review!
The SELP18105G lens goes for a fair price of ~$598 US in my opinion considering the features, range, and constant f/4 aperture. The lens is also fully self contained, so nothing protrudes out of the front when you zoom in or out. The front of the lens doesn’t rotate and is a 72mm thread, so if you want to use a polarizing filter (Clikc Here) it’s no problem at all.
Weighing in at almost a full pound (1.06 lb, or 482 g) , the E-Mount PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens is not exactly lightweight. In fact it’s pretty heavy for a lens considering how light the actual mirrorless e-mount cameras are these days. The size is also quite large at Approx. 3.07 x 4.33″ (78 x 110 mm).
Sony PZ 18-105mm f4 OSS G lens HD Video Review
Here is my highly detailed Sony PZ 18-105mm f4 OSS G lens video review, and I recommend watching even if you read this entire article. I have a lot of extra info in the video as I talk in Lightroom about the photos in detail.
Sample Videos and Lens Testing
Real World Sample Photos
First a few from the aquarium which shows off the great versatility and low light hand-holding abilities in my opinion:
these ships were shot thru Plexiglas, but still impressive results I thought 😉
Same scene at f/4 and then f/7.1 for comparison.
Full Frame E-Mount A7/r/s??
Yes the PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens works on the full frame alpha e-mount cameras like the my A7r or the newer A7s for that matter. The camera will by default switch to crop factor mode, which is a great feature, but can also be left in full frame mode if you want. Corners will obviously not look good as the lens is designed for the smaller aps-c sized sensor, but it’s good to have the power and options I think.
Here is a quick snapshot I took of the A6000 with the old school Minolta MC 50mm f/1.4 Rokkor-X Lens mounted.
If you’re interested, you can pick up the Minolta MC Rokkor-X PG 50 F/1.4 Lens for ~$50 – $90 US on Ebay (Click Here) The RainbomImaging Lens adapter I’m using only cost ~$17.50 US, and you can get it @ Amazon (Click Here)
Lab Testing Photos
Here are the Lab test photos at a variety of focal lengths and the standard apertures. Be sure to click on the images for the larger ~1100px versions! I used a tri-pod with the self-timer and turned off OSS for these images, just so you know.
18mm @ f/4
No Lens Correction so note the distortion.
With lens correction using Lightroom 5 lens profile.
f/4 with No lens correction
With Lens Correction via Lightroom 5
18-105mm G lens vs 16-70mm Zeiss Lens?
|I know a lot of you are wondering if the 18-105mm OSS G lens is a better deal than the Zeiss 16-70mm lens. Well, it is and isn’t to be perfectly honest. The optics of the Zeiss lens are significantly better and noticeable. F/4 on the Zeiss is sharp and f/4 on the 18-105mm lens is a little soft. The distortion on the Zeiss is somewhat noticeable at 16mm, but way more controlled than the G lens. The Zeiss lens is also significantly more compact, because it extends to zoom unlike the 18-105mm g lens. The contrast is also better on the Zeiss and the additional 2mm at the wide end is great for you landscape shooters. The Zeiss 16-70mm f/4 OSS lens goes for ~$998 US (My Review Click Here), and the 18-105mm G lens goes for ~$598. Clearly the 18-105mm lens is a better value for the dollar features wise, but not in optical quality when compared to the Zeiss 16-70mm lens.|
Overall I would rate the Sony PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens at a 4 out of 5 star when factoring in all the real world and lab photos plus the sample video and user experience. The lens is a bit heavy for those weight conscious folks, and also quite large if your looking for the smallest form factor lenses available. In my opinion the SELP18105G lens is ideal for somebody who wants both killer video and photos without having to change the lens hardly ever. With an 18-105mm range, you can take all kinds of photos ranging from landscapes to portraits. The constant f/4 aperture and 3-speed variable zoom makes filming a breeze and a lot of fun as well. It really makes the movies a lot more pleasing to the eye when you add a nice slow zoom and panning effect for example. When using a camera slider, you can really get some special effects with a little practice and patience.
If you are not interested in video, then this lens is not the best option for you in my opinion. It’s a great lens for photography though, don’t get me wrong, its just the size and weight of the lens I am talking about. You could get the 55-210mm lens and get much more telephoto range in combination with the kit lens for much less money spent. That being said, the sel18105g is better than the kit lenses in the build quality department and the G optics are more consistent. It also has a wide all-in-one range that is appealing to any photographer. So, if the size and weight are not a concern, this is a very good lens for photography!
The Zeiss 16-70mm f/4 OSS lens on the other hand, is a better option for photographs, because it’s wider for landscapes, sharper, and has much better optical distortion control. The downside is it’s a lot more money and has less range which makes it hard to justify for many. It’s more of an investment thought that will stay with many camera bodies over the years . Once you use killer glass it’s hard to go back I must tell you from personal experience in the Canon L glass world. Same deal as Sony and Zeiss pretty much. The kit lenses from Sony are way better than the average kit lens from Canon by a long shot. So that is important to remember when I recommend the kit lenses that Sony’s are better than most for the money. That is the reason I push them so much even though the Zeiss and G lens in this case are better overall lenses.
That is about it for this Sony Lens review, and I really hope you got what you were looking for. Please feel free to ask questions or comment below as always!
Sony PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens for $598 US @ BHPhoto (Click Here)
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