Sony 10-18mm Lens Review
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At around $850, it’s really the best option for wide-angle shots with the Sony E Lens system
Sony NEX – First Three Lenses I recommend
You’ll notice the 10-18mm is first in my list!
- Sony 10-18 f/4 (Amazon | B&H Photo) – A great new lens that gives you maximum wide-angle flexibility for landscapes and architecture
- Sony 55-210mm (Amazon | B&H Photo) – This lens is a little big but its versatility is perfect for mid-range stuff like landscapes, birthdays, sports, etc. I’ve also used it to zoom in and get shots of the moon (like you can see below)
- Zeiss 32mm prime f/1.8 (Amazon | B&H Photo) – f/1.8 will give you some incredible depth of field. It’s great for taking photos of people, objects, or other little things you find throughout your day.
Lens Review for the Sony 10-18mm
I use this lens almost more than any other for my Sony NEX. It’s not really a 10-18mm, btw, if you’re into this hardcore crop-factor stuff. It’s actually 15-27mm with the 1.5 crop factor. That is still plenty wide for almost any landscape situation. My previous camera was the Nikon D800, and my favorite lens for that was the Nikon 14-24mm, and this Sony lens is comparable in almost every way.
The Nikon one went all the way down to f/2.8, and this Sony one is only f/4. This is not a problem for me, since I normally do landscape shots and I don’t care much about having a very open aperture, since normally I try to get everything in focus.
The Sony NEX 10-18mm on the Sony A7r
Here is a photo I took with the 10-18mm lens on the Sony A7r.
I did a full comparison here of the two main wide-angle lenses that are currently available from Sony for the new Sony A7r (see my ever-growing Sony A7r Review here on the site). One of them is this NEX 10-18mm that worked so well on the cropped-sensor of my NEX system. The other is the full-frame Sony 16-35mm lens from their DSLR system. The latter needs an adapter to work on the Sony A7r.
As you can see in the video below, the NEX lens is my surprising favorite! I didn’t really expect it to be equal in sharpness and quality to its bigger full frame counterpart. One advantage to the bigger 16-35mm are that it can shoot all the way down to f/2.8. This would be valuable in low-light wide-angle handheld shooting (which I don’t do). It would also be valuable in astro-photography (which I rarely do).
But the advantages of the NEX 10-18mm are manifold! You basically get to move it between 12mm-17mm without seeing the ring around the outside. And yes, you get the full-frame goodness of the 36 megapixels of the Sony A7r! That’s much wider than the 16-35mm. The distortion is pretty much exactly the same on both cameras, as you can see in the video review. Even better, the NEX lens is over 2x lighter, 3x cheaper, and a fraction of the size. Amazing! I’m not seeing any difference in the sharpness of the lens.
So this was a pretty big decision for me — to switch to this lens when I fully anticipated using the 16-35mm until the new FE wide-angle lens for the Sony A7 launches later this year. I expect that will be a superior lens to both of these, although probably not as inexpensive as this NEX 10-18mm.
More Photos with the NEX-7 and the 10-18mm lens
There are a ton of the 10-18mm lens shots in this sample gallery I made!