Sony

Review Sony 70-300 mm F4.5-5.6 G SSM (APS-C)

0
0
0
s2smodern

The Sony 70-300 mm is a member of the "Gold series" by Sony, with lenses for professional photographers. There are several Sony lenses in this zoom ragnge,  like the Sony 70-400 mm and the Sony 75-300 mm. What make's the Sony 70-300 mm unique?

product1-Sony-70-300

test Sony 70-300 mm, Sony 70-300 mm G test, Sony 70-300 mm F4.5-5.6 G SSM
Sony 70-300 mm F4.5-5.6 @ 70 mm
test Sony 70-300 mm, Sony 70-300 mm G test, Sony 70-300 mm F4.5-5.6 G SSM
Sony 70-300 mm F4.5-5.6 @ 300 mm
Applied to a camera with an APS-C sensor (in this test, that was the Sony A77), the Sony 70-300 mm has a viewing angle corresponding to 105 - 450 mm of a lens on a camera with a full-frame sensor.

Construction and autofocus

 
The Sony 70-300 mm is well made. Without the lens hood, the lens has a distinguished appearance. The included large plastic lens hood can be put back to front on the lens for transport, but is so long that you can then no longer use the zoom ring and focus ring.

If you use the lens hood, the lens becomes very long as you can see in the picture at the top of this test.

Specifications
Sony 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6G SAL-70300G
Image Stabilization:-
lenses/ groups:16/11
length x diameter:83 / 83
filter size:62
Weight:800
Lens hood:+

Focusing is smooth with the Sony A77 and the Sony 70-300 mm. To maintain high speed AF, the zoom range can be limited on the lens. It is an option that you usually encounter on professional telephoto lenses. This option has real value because the focus ring travels a long way from 1.5 meter to infinity, which is nice for those who wish to focus manually.

There is no searching in low light. Instead, focusing in low light or low contrast goes slower. But the lens will go straight to the point.

product4-Sony-70-300

In-camera correction

 

More and more camera manufacturers are turning to the correction of distortion and aberrations in the camera instead of in the design of the lens. This has the advantage that a lens can perform better, without any quality getting lost in terms of resolution.

In this test, all possible corrections are applied to the Sony 70-300 mm jpg images: correction of vignetting to the corners, correction of chromatic aberration and the correction of distortion.

 

Sony-A77-incamera-correctie

Image stabilization

 
At Sony, image stabilization takes place in the camera body and works effectively. Image stabilization ("Steady shot") has been tested with the Sony 70 -300 mm set to 70 mm. From 1/100 seconds, there is a measurable difference between photos taken with or without image stabilization. For shutter speeds longer than 1/50 seconds, the difference becomes visible to the naked eye too. IS-Sony-70-300

Vignetting

 

Vignetting will never be more than approximately half a stop, whereby the risk of visible vignetting is the highest up to and including aperture 5.6. Above aperture 8, vignetting is negligible. Yet you expect less vignetting if you have set the camera to automatic correction of vignetting.

During the practice testing, there were pretty, evenly gray skies, but there too no vignetting is visible at 300 mm and maximum aperture.

Move your mouse over the image to view the Imatest results.

No-vignettting-Sony-70-300

Distortion

 
The light barrel distortion of the Sony 70-300 mm is kept within boundaries reasonably and in practice, it is not annoyingly present. But based on the in-camera correction and the professional nature of this lens, you would hope that even better results for distortion would be possible. distortion-Sony-70-300

Bokeh

 
The Sony 70-300 mm gives a nice round bokeh. This is no surprise, given the long focal length of this lens. Bokeh-Sony-70-300

Flare

 
In general, this lens has little trouble with flare. In terms of radiation, the Sony 70-300 mm G performs slightly less than the Sony 70-400 mm. In this example, you see ghosting, occuring while taking a picture of the moon, which you see at the bottom of the image. The Sony 70-400 mm did not suffer from ghosting in the same photo session, but is almost twice as expensive as the Sony 70-300 mm. flare-Sony-70-300

Resolution

 

The resolution of jpg files created with the Sony 70-300 mm is very high at all apertures and over the entire zoom range. Only at 70 mm and maximum aperture, the resolution was slightly less. Personally, I prefer that over a lower resolution at the longest focal length, where most telephoto zoom lenses suffer from.

In general, the resolution in the corners is close to the resolution in the center. At 300 mm, the resolution in the corners remains slightly behind the resolution in the center.

Click on the image for more Imatest results.

resolutie-Sony-70-300
Below is a practice shot taken with a focal length of 300 mm at full aperture. On the right, you see a 100 % image cropping on the place of the red mark.

duifsony-70-300300mm

duifcropsony-70-300300mm

Chromatic aberration

 

Chromatic aberration is low at all apertures and all focal lengths. In practice, you will not encounter visible chromatic aberration when using the Sony 70-300 mm.

Click on the image for more Imatest results.

CA-Sony-70-300

Conclusion Sony 70-300 mm F4.5-5.6 G SSM review

conclusieproduct2-Sony-70-300

Look in our list of reviewed lenses to compare the performance of this lens with other lenses.
ECWYSIWYG score: This table shows the performance of this lens when you store the files in the camera as jpg, with all available in-camera lens corrections applied. This score gives you for this lens/test camera combination: "What you see is what you get".
70
105
7.3
6.7
8.3
8.7
8.4
133
200
7.4
7.0
8.6
9.1
7.2
200
300
7.7
7.4
7.8
9.1
7.5
266
400
7.4
7.1
7.7
8.8
7.5
300
450
7.0
6.6
7.8
8.7
7.2
Overall
Overall
7.3
6.9
8.0
8.9
7.5

Pros

  • High resolution and low chromatic aberration over the entire zoom range

 Cons

    • No real cons, considerations are:
    • Distortion and vignetting could be corrected better
    • Limited luminosity for a professional lens
    • Large lens hood not handy
 
For less than 1,000 Euros, you have just a really good lens with the Sony 70-300 mm, of which there really is not much to complain about. But as a professional photographer, I would maybe prefer the Sony 70-400 mm. The larger zoom range makes that lens more unique than the Sony 70-300 mm. In terms of optical performance they are very similar.

 

Ivo Freriks
Author: Ivo Freriks
With Camera Review Stuff I hope to make a modest contribution to the pleasure that you get from photography. By testing cameras and lenses in the same way, evluating the results and weighing up the pros and cons, I hope to help you find the right camera or lens.

0
0
0
s2smodern

Comments (2)

  1. Dylan

Thanks, very good review, I use this lens and a77 for wildlife photography

 
  1. Ivo Freriks    Dylan

Hi Dylan,<br /><br />Probably your wildlife images will be more beautiful than the image of a pigeon we used to illustrate our review.<br />If you would like to share some of them, I would like to add them to our review.<br /><br />Regards,<br...

Hi Dylan,<br /><br />Probably your wildlife images will be more beautiful than the image of a pigeon we used to illustrate our review.<br />If you would like to share some of them, I would like to add them to our review.<br /><br />Regards,<br /><br />Ivo

Read More
 

Leave your comments

Posting comment as a guest.
Attachments (0 / 3)
Share Your Location