Lens review

Sony E 16 mm f/2.8

Sony E 16 mm f/2.8
16 February 2011
Arkadiusz Olech

1. Introduction

Originally posted 2010-09-22 on Optyczne.pl

The youngest mirrorless system on the market – the Sony NEX- has only two lenses currently available for purchase, in its line-up. One of them is the Sony E 18-55 mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS kit lens. Many people are also interested in the second option – the Sony E 16 mm f/2.8 “pancake”. Its small dimensions, attractive focal length and fastness are tempting – it seems such a good idea to put it on a NEX camera and create a lightweight set of good quality.

Of course you shouldn’t lump all „pancake” lenses together. The tested Sony E16 mm f/2.8 on an APS-C sensor camera like the NEX-5 is a fully-fledged wideangle device (1.5 multiple) while a splendid Panasonic LUMIX G 20 mm f/1.7 ASPH lens, attached to any of Micro Four Thirds cameras (2 multiple) is, in fact, a standard lens. It would be difficult to compare directly lenses which might differ in fields of view by over 26 degrees. Still the broad notion of a “pancake” enjoys the sympathy of photographers due to its small dimensions, often good fastness and good quality.

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Let’s take a closer look at the final, production version of this lens, available in shops, remembering how much controversy aroused its launch and test photos, taken using the front end model.

The lens was provided for the testing purposes by the Cyfrowe.pl shop.

You are also invited to get acquainted with our test procedure, described in the article "How do we test lenses?" If you feel it’s still not enough, please go to our FAQ section where you can find some further explanation.

Sony E 16 mm f/2.8 - Introduction