Most photographers and gear heads “in the know” have an idea why this lens is such a big deal. If you could have one of the sharpest mid-range zooms available on the market today that could replace most of your primes within its focal length, would you pay $2,200 for it? It’s heavy (weighing in at almost 2 pounds), huge (approx. 3.45 x 5.35″ (87.6 x 136 mm)), and costs more than most people’s mortgage…but why?
I had an opportunity to pick up an open-box copy from a local Best Buy for a very good price (almost 40% off) and I took some pictures with it to see what the fuss was all about.
Was the lens as good as it was marketed to be?
Yes. Very much so.
Zoom lenses are known to for their versatility due to their ability to cover most “normal” focal lengths without changing out the lens. However, they usually fall short when it comes to overall sharpness compared to its rival prime lenses. It’s been institutionalized into our brains that prime lenses will always be sharper than most (if not all) zoom lenses.
Well not anymore.
The 24-70 G Master is so goddamn sharp that you it can replace almost all of your primes in your collection within the same focal length.
But how much sharper?
It’s sharper than the Zeiss Sonnar T* E 24 F/1.8 at 24mm F/2.8.
It’s sharper than the Zeiss Sonnar T* FE 35 F/2.8 at 35mm F/2.8.
It’s even with the the legendary Zeiss Sonnar T* FE 55 F/1.8 at F2.8 and above.
It absolutely destroys the Sony Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* 24-70 F/4 OSS – and rightfully so because that lens is a dog compared to the rest of the Sony Zeiss line up (it’s the worst lens I own but I like it for its size and convenient focal lengths. It’s heavily overpriced at $1,200 brand new but luckily I bought it used for $700).
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So what are the Pros and Cons with this lens?
- It is sharp. Sharper than a lot of top shelf native Sony Zeiss primes.
- It’s as sharp as the famed Sony Zeiss Sonnar T* FE 55 F/1.8.
- Fantastic color and contrast.
- Weather Sealed
- Incredible build quality
- Optimally, it’s designed for a high megapixel camera like the A7RII.
Weighing in the Pros and Cons, is the 24-70 F/2.8 G Master worth it?
Absolutely…especially if you want one lens to rule them all.