Sony PZ 10-20mm F4 G Image Gallery
June 7th, 2022
I’ve been openly questioning of Sony’s commitment to its APS-C platform, as both camera and lens releases in that space have been few and far between over the past 3 years. Sony’s development on full frame has been rather frenzied during that same period, with a number of new camera and what I consider a golden age for lens development. I’ve reviewed one lens after another that I really, really liked in the full frame space, which tells me that Sony has really hit its stride as a camera lens maker. But APS-C has seemed to be on the back burner. And while I still see a lot of room for Sony to deliver a robust sports-oriented APS-C body (something to contend with the new Canon EOS R7 would be nice!), they are taking large strides to shore up the wide angle end of their APS-C catalog with three releases: the E 10-20mm F4 PZ OSS (Powerzoom), the E 15mm F1.4 G, and the Sony E 11mm F1.8 lens. This isn’t the first time that Sony has done some of its better APS-C lenses in bunches, as the last “G” lenses (mid-tier superior lenses) for APS-C came together in 2019: the Sony E 70-350mm F4.5-6.3 G OSS (my review here) and the Sony E 16-55mm F2.8 G. I’ve been fortunate enough to have gotten to spend some time with all three of these new releases, and so I’ll follow up my coverage of the 15mm F1.4 G (my review here) with the zoom in this lineup – the Sony E PZ 10-20mm F4 G.
The key here is the PZ, which refers to PowerZoom. Sony has had an existing wide angle zoom for APS-C in the form of the E 10-18mm F4 OSS lens, but there is a recognition that more and more photographers actually do a mix of photos and video. We call these “hybrid” photographers, and it is clear that Sony has been designing its cameras with this in mind. Their a6300 was a breakthrough in this regard, allowing photographers to capture really good 4K video in an APS-C body at a time when most of the competition was stuck at 1080P. But there also needs to be some concessions to the unique needs of video in lenses as well, and that’s where the PowerZoom (PZ) comes into play. The 10-20PZ is essentially an APS-C counterpart to the recent full frame FE PZ 16-35mm F4 G lens with a full frame equivalent of 15-30mm (1.5x APS-C crop factor). The PowerZoom capability means that not only can you smoothly zoom in and out with the switch on the side of the lens (with much smoother zooms than you can achieve with a ring), but if you have the right accessory (a Bluetooth remote or wireless shooting grip like the GP-VPT2BT or even just using the Sony app), you have the option of off-camera control. This gives the smoothest results of all, of course, as you can have the camera on a tripod and have no vibration introduced into the process. This is a next level option for video shooters, and Sony has set the price point actually below that of the 10-18mm F4 despite the larger zoom range and new features (though the new lens loses the Optical Stabilizer that the older lens had).
Sony reserves the G designation for its mid-tier lenses and G Master for its superior lenses, and I’ve found that there is a lot of value to be found in the G lineup. These lenses have more advanced features like weather sealing and a focus hold button, and Sony has packed a lot features into a very small package here.
- Superior G Lens image quality with two ED elements and one ED Aspherical element
- Linear motor autofocus
- A focus on video performance, with minimal focus breathing
- Linear manual focus for more precise manual focus and repeatable focus changes
- More physical controls, including an AF/MF switch, PowerZoom control, and a focus hold button
- Dust and moisture resistant design
- Internally focusing and zooming design
- Close minimum focus of 20cm (Autofocus = 0.14x magnification) or 17cm (Manual Focus = 0.18x magnification)
- World’s smallest ultra-wide APS-C zoom
This is a beautiful, well crafted lens that is in many ways similar to Sony’s full frame series of recent G primes (24mm F2.8, 40mm F2.5, and 50mm F2.5 G primes – click the hyperlinks for reviews of each lens). Though small and light, it feels premium, and its optical performance certainly backs that up, delivering beautifully detailed images all across the frame even at F4:
The final retail price hasn’t been announced as of the time of this review, though Sony gives a range of $700-800 USD. That’s not cheap, but it is certainly much cheaper and smaller than the full frame 16-35mm PZ lens, which will retail at $1200 USD. This will almost certainly become an indispensable tool for those who do vlogging or want a wide angle lens with zoom capabilities. The constant maximum aperture of F4 means that exposure doesn’t change as you zoom, giving you even more flexibility for both stills and video.
Ultimately you will have to decide if the premium price point matches the premium performance, but you can learn more by watching my definitive video review or reading my text review of the PZ 10-20mm…or just enjoy the photos below.
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I want to thank Sony Canada (and Gentec) for the loaner of this lens. As always, this is a completely independent review. The opinions here are completely my own. *The tests and most of the photos that I share as a part of my review cycle have been done with the Sony a6400 along with the Sony Alpha 1 which will serve as my benchmark camera for the foreseeable future (my review here).
Photos of the Sony PZ 10-20mm F4 G
Photos Taken with the Sony PZ 10-20mm F4 G
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