Some camera gear, available today, are revolutionary bits of kit, beautiful even. Their technology is cutting edge, the price tag is exorbitant. When you are not using it, it sits on your shelf and is a showpiece.
The Sony FE 28-60mm f/4-5.6 is not in the realm of that type of camera gear.
Since I got my Sony a7C, in the summer of 2021, it has become what I use for most of my camera work. Surprisingly though, I have been also using the kit lens, a Sony FE 28-60mm f/4-5.6 full-frame lens, that came with it. Why is it so unusual though?
I generally hate kit lenses. Kit lenses, usually sold as a starter lens for new interchangeable lens cameras, are usually just ‘meh’ pieces of kit. For me, the Sony 28-60mm may have changed that notion.
The Sony 28-60mm design
This lens is a compact, very light, full-frame zoom lens built for Sony Alpha cameras. Its dust- and moisture-resistant design, meant to keep a camera small and easily carry-able. Honestly, when I first read about this lens, I thought the publicity team for Sony was overhyping it for people starting. I was wrong.
- Great for everyday photography.
- A small, well-built, lens with a retracting structure.
- Optical quality is better than it lets on.
- Unusable when the lens is retracted. If Sony could have made the lens a hard f/8, focused to infinity when the lens is in its retracted state it would be perfect.
- Focal Length: 28 -60mm
- 35 mm equivalent focal length (APS-C): 42–90mm
- Aperture: f/4-5.6
- Angle of View (35 mm): 75–40°
- Angle of View (APS-C): 54–27°
- Size and Weight: 3.45 x 5.35 in. / 31.25 oz
- Filter Diameter (mm): 40.5
- Minimum Focus Distance: Wide 0.99 ft (0.3 m), Tele 1.48 ft (0.45 m)
- Lens Controls: Focusing ring / Zooming ring
In the field
The Sony 28-60mm has performed much better than I ever expected. The autofocus performance and the image quality are nothing short of amazing for a kit lens. It also works well on APS-C cameras.
The Sony 28-60mm is a great everyday photography lens. It doesn’t hold a light to something like the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 — that would be like comparing a standard pickup truck to a sports car.
While it might not be the best lens in the world, the Sony FE 28-60mm f/4-5.6 may just be the best kit lens ever.