Sony FE 28mm f/2 (SEL28F20) - Review / Test Report
Lens Reviews - Sony Alpha (Full Format)

Review by Klaus Schroiff, published February 2020


It may seem a bit strange but these days full-format 28mm prime lenses are almost exotics. The unpopularity probably relates to the perception that such lenses aren't wide enough for landscapes or architecture and too wide for everything else. Some manufacturers don't even bother to offer one at all or the designs are as old as time itself - instead, all the rage is either about 24mm or 35mm primes. Anyway, at least Sony IS still offering a quite fast FE 28mm f/2. It's also one of the more affordable Sony FE prime lenses at around 450USD/400EUR.

As you can see in the product images, it is a very compact lens despite its comparatively high speed. It's a rather simple being but the build quality is very good. The body is made of metal including the mount and focus ring. The weight is surprisingly low at just 200g and subjectively it may not feel overly "dense". Despite the low price tag, it has a dust- as well as splash-proof construction. The size remains constant throughout the focus range. The focus ring operates smoothly. A petal-shaped lens hood is part of the package.

The Sony lens uses a linear motor for autofocusing. There isn't much glass to shift around so the AF speed is reasonably fast as well as noiseless. Manual focusing works "by wire" thus you drive the AF motor when turning the focus ring in manual mode. This works nicely and allows for precise focusing.

A curious aspect of the Sony FE 28mm f/2 is the ability to front-mount conversion lenses for transforming the combo either into a 16mm fisheye (180 degrees) or a 21mm ultra-wide-angle lens. Interestingly this is a similar concept to the old Sony E 16mm f/2.8 for APS-C cameras back in the days of Sony NEX cameras. Similarly, you shouldn't expect too much in terms of achievable quality though.

Optical construction9 elements in 8 groups inc. 1xAA, 1xaspherical, 2xED elements
Number of aperture blades9 (rounded)
min. focus distance0.29m (max. magnification 1:7.69)
Weight 200g
Filter size49mm
Hoodpetal-shaped (bayonet mount, supplied)
Other featuresdust & moisture resistant, lens converters
MountSony FE

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