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Macro Performance

Considering that the Vario-Sonnar 24-70/2.8 ZA is not really a dedicated macro lens, my expectations of its macro capabilities were muted from day one. At the MFD of  34cm, the lens offers max magnification of 0.25x. You can probably try shooting still life in a studio or outisde, but the lens is not suitable for true macro photography, particularly for anything that does not stay still, i.e. insects - getting that close to them is basically out of question. Still, for a zoom lens with a moderately fast aperture, the lens performed quite well and kept a reasonably high resolution in the center throughout the zoom range. You will find 100% center image crops below - all taken at 34cm distance and wide open aperture.

24mm (Sony a850)


35mm (Sony a850)


50mm (Sony a850)


70mm (Sony a850)




Coma in the Vario-Sonnar is controlled fairly well. Extreme border crops of a pin-light, that you can see below were taken at the focusing of 3m and 1sec exposure. If you zoom in on these crops at 200%, you will see very minor purple fringing around the highlights, but for the vast majority of users of this lens, coma is not going to be a problem.



Coma @ f/2.8 - 24mm vs 70mm (Sony a850)