For the most part the 12mm is a really nice lens.

Update: I was wrong you can not update the Zeiss glass firmware from the Sony body you have to send it back.

I already own the Sony 10-18mm /4.0 wide angle lens designed for aps-c. It has been a good lens but not a great lens, sometimes in difficult lighting situations I can get very disappointed with this lens.

Then I heard about the Zeiss 12mm f2.8 which had an update to the auto focus (version 2).

Zeiss 12mm f2.8 vs Sony 10-18mm f4

  • Both are nice and small which is great for gimbal work
  • Zeiss is F2.8 which is huge for some of the things I like to shoot.
  • Zeiss is sharper lens, a lot sharper. You can see the difference at 4K video as well.
  • Zeiss has less distortion. Zeiss needs less lens correction within Lightroom with raw images. Sony has much more vignetting with correction off, even dark in the center.
  • Zeiss has slightly less chromatic aberration.
  • Christmas lights bokeh looks the same.
  • Af works well for stills (I didn’t test it for stills that much) but for video it is constantly hunting even if nothing is moving. Did not work well.
  • Zeiss is noisy on AF! Zeiss you can hear the aperture change
  • Zeiss flares a lot more

So in conclusion expect for the poor video AF and flaring, the Zeiss is really a superior lens compared to the Sony 10-18mm. But I need that af for gimbal work so I will be keeping the Sony.

Zeiss has an interesting relationship with Sony. Normally you can’t apply in camera lens correction with 3rd party glass but you can with Zeiss, also update the firmware on the lens. But if Sony is allowing Zeiss to do all this, why is the AF so noisy?

2 comments

  • Hi dave,
    what do you think of panasonic G7 for video shooting?
    Panasonic 14-140mm or 12-35mm,which one is better for video shooting?

    hope to hear from your advice,

    eric

  • Hi dave,
    what do you think of panasonic G7 for video shooting?
    Panasonic 14-140mm or 12-35mm,which one is better for video shooting?

    hope to hear from your advice,

    eric