The Sony FE 28-70mm has been the standard zoom kit lens for sony for over 5 years. and in that time it’s lightweight and assuming form & features have seen it resigned by it’s premium peers as merely a kit lens. But after spending a little time with it recently on our review of the Sony A7ii, I felt like it needed the light, firmly shining back on it.
On the used market, you can pick up the 28-70 for around £150 in decent condition. and for that you’re getting a competent, variable apertured lens. But what are my 5 reasons why this, is more than just a kit lens?
1. Solid & Versatile Picture Quality
The image quality you get from the Sony FE 28-70mm is good. For sure it’s not pin sharp in the corners & yeah there is some issues with distortion. But it definitely delivers a more than adequate quality of image.
Alongside this, is the general versatility of it. Being a variable apertured 28-70mm it covers a lot of the focal ranges you’ll want, especially for vlogging and does so with aplomb.
2. The Bokeh
For a kit lens that is only f/3.5 when wide open, it actually delivers a really attractive bokeh. This is down to the fact this lens has 7 rounded blades and of course the depth of field you’ll get from the full frame that this lens will sit in front of.
If the specs behind the bokeh don’t impress, surely the aesthetic quality of it will, because for a slow, budget kit lens, it’s genuinely impressive.
3. The Build Quality
The build quality of the Sony FE 28-70mm is really ahead of it’s price point, in fact it’s right up there with some premium lenses I’ve used. It’s weather sealed, having an internal zoom mechanism, which really adds to great value this represents.
In all honesty I wouldn’t be surprised if it was the type of lens that would follow you throughout multiple camera upgrades. The Zoom & Focus rings feel great and the lens just has something of a premium feel in hand.
4. The Rock solid image stabilisation
Or Optical Steady Shot as Sony call it. Whatever you want to call it, it’s great on this lens. And for video, especially in the that handheld vlogging style it is imperative for getting a decent quality end result.
Of course Image stabilisation isn’t something particularly special in slower apertured kit lenses, but the OSS in the 28-70 is particularly impressive & reliable.
5. Value for Money
Of course most kits lenses represent good value, which is why they’re usually as part of a kit! But that being said I just generally feel that for that price point you’re getting something that far outperforms it’s similarly priced competitors.
If you’re new to video, it’s the perfect lens to learn with and if you’re a seasoned pro, it’s a cheap, simple & unobtrusive bit of kit that renders decent results without too much heavy lifting.
So for sure, the Sony FE 28-70 has some real shortcomings when compared to more premium lenses, from soft edges & light drop off in the corners to the slower than ideal aperture. But in reality it needs to be considered in it’s own right and with that, it represents a versatile & budget lens for Sony full framers.
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