In this Sony lens review I will be going over the all-in-one E-Mount PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens which is designed for the APS-C sensor sized cameras like the A6000 for example. I have lots of sample video, photos, and real world experience to share with you so strap in for this highly detailed review!
The SELP18105G lens goes for a fair price of ~$598 US in my opinion considering the features, range, and constant f/4 aperture. The lens is also fully self contained, so nothing protrudes out of the front when you zoom in or out. The front of the lens doesn’t rotate and is a 72mm thread, so if you want to use a polarizing filter (Click Here) it’s no problem at all.
Weighing in at almost a full pound (1.06 lb, or 482 g) , the E PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens is not exactly lightweight. In fact it’s pretty heavy for a lens considering how light the actual mirrorless e-mount cameras are these days. The size is also quite large at Approx. 3.07 x 4.33″ (78 x 110 mm).
- E-Mount Lens/APS-C Format
- 27-157.5mm (35mm Equivalent)
- Aperture Range: f/4 to f/22
- Two ED & Three Aspherical Elements
- Optical SteadyShot Image Stabilization
- Power Zoom Lever; Handycam Technology
- Internal Focus
- Seven-Blade Circular Diaphragm
- Minimum Focus Distance = 1.48′ / 45 cm
- Filter Thread = 72mm
- Weight = 15.1 oz / 427 g
- Retail Price = $598 @ Bhphoto
Sony E PZ 18-105mm f4 OSS G lens Review – Video Version
Here is my highly detailed Sony PZ 18-105mm f4 OSS G lens video review, and I recommend watching even if you read this entire article. I have a lot of extra info in the video as I talk in Lightroom about the photos in detail.
Sample Videos and Lens Testing
Real World Sample Photos
First a few from an aquarium trip which shows off the great versatility and low light hand-holding abilities in my opinion. Please click on the photos for a nice high resolution gallery style slideshow.
A few more real world sample photos
A few product photography style sample photos
Same scene at f/4 and then f/7.1 for visual comparison
Full Frame E-Mount A7/r/s??
Yes the E PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens will work on the full frame e-mount cameras, but the camera will by default switch to crop factor mode. You can also put it in full frame mode if you want, but the corners will obviously not look good as the lens is designed for the smaller aps-c sized sensor.
Lab Testing Photos
Here are the Lab test photos at a variety of focal lengths and the standard apertures. Be sure to click on the images for the larger ~1100px versions! I used a tri-pod with the self-timer and turned off OSS for these images, just so you know.
18mm @ f/4
No Lens Correction so note the distortion.
With lens correction using Lightroom lens profile.
18mm@ f/4 – 100% Crops
105mm @ f/4 with No lens correction
With Lens Correction via Lightroom
105mm @ f/4 – 100% Crops
105mm Minimum Focus Distance Test
E PZ 18-105mm G lens vs E 16-70mm Zeiss Lens?
I know a lot of you are wondering if the 18-105mm OSS G lens is a better deal than the Zeiss 16-70mm lens. I wrote and entire article on the matter here >>
In summary it is and isn’t to be perfectly honest. The optics of the Zeiss lens are significantly better and noticeable. Shooting @ f/4 on the Zeiss is very sharp and f/4 on the 18-105mm lens is a little soft for example. The distortion on the Zeiss is somewhat noticeable at 16mm, but way more controlled than the G lens and 16mm is significantly wider than 18mm on a crop factor camera. 2mm might not seem like much, but when you are indoors in a tight space it makes a difference.
The Zeiss lens is also significantly more compact when at 16mm, because it extends to zoom unlike the 18-105mm g lens. The contrast is also better on the Zeiss and the additional 2mm at the wide end is great for you landscape shooters.
The Zeiss 16-70mm f/4 OSS lens goes for ~$998 US, and the 18-105mm G lens goes for ~$598.
Clearly the 18-105mm lens is a better value for the dollar features wise, but not in optical quality when compared to the Zeiss 16-70mm lens.
Overall I would rate the Sony PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens really high when factoring in the overall image quality, video quality, cost to value, and user experience . The lens is a bit heavy for those weight conscious folks, and also quite large if your looking for the smallest form factor lenses available. In my opinion the SELP18105G lens is ideal for somebody who wants both killer video and photos without having to change the lens hardly ever. With an 18-105mm range, you can take all kinds of photos ranging from landscapes to portraits. The constant f/4 aperture and 3-speed variable zoom makes filming a breeze and a lot of fun as well.
It really makes the movies a lot more pleasing to the eye when you add a nice slow zoom and panning effect for example. When using a camera slider, you can really get some special effects with a little practice and patience. If you are not interested in video, then this lens is not the best option for you in my opinion. It’s a great lens for photography though, don’t get me wrong, it’s just the size and weight of the lens I am talking about. For example, you could get the E 55-210mm lens which I reviewed here, and get much more telephoto range in combination with the kit lens for much less money spent. That being said, the sel18105g is better than the kit lenses in the build quality department and the G optics are more consistent. It also has a wide all-in-one range that is appealing to any photographer. So, if the size and weight are not a concern, this is a very good lens for photography!
The Zeiss E 16-70mm f/4 OSS lens on the other hand, is a better option for photographs, because it’s wider for landscapes, sharper, and has much better optical distortion control. The downside is it’s a lot more money and has less telephoto range which makes it hard to justify for many. It’s more of an investment thought that will stay with many camera bodies over the years . Once you use killer Zeiss glass it’s hard to go back I must tell you from personal experience. Your perception of image quality changes once you take some photos with a top quality lens. More E-Mount Lens Reviews this way >>
That is about it for this Sony Lens review, and I really hope you got what you were looking for. Please feel free to ask questions or comment below as always!
Thanks again, Jay
Sony PZ 18-105mm f/4 OSS G lens for $598 US @ BHPhoto (Click Here)