Sony FE 24mm f/1.4 Versus ZEISS Batis 25mm f/2: Which is the Best for Astrophotography?

If you're looking at shooting NEOWISE or some astrophotography, which lens would be your best bet?

Astrophotography is one of the trickier disciplines, with more knowledge and sometimes more gear required to get the shot you're after. It has always been one of the genres of photography I've been drawn to most, and when possible, I'll shoot it. However, I live just outside of London and so the light pollution borders the ridiculous for 2 hours in all directions!

One difficulty of shooting great, expansive images of the night sky is getting the right lens. You need a wide lens (astro can and often should be shot with longer lenses, but generally a wide lens is better for capturing the Milky Way or more stars) and that wide lens needs to be fast. Typically, getting both of those features has been expensive, though prices have been more accommodating in recent years. In this video, landscape and astrophotographer, Mike Smith, does a side-by-side comparison of two of the strongest lenses for Sony full frame cameras: the Sony FE 24mm f/1.4 and the ZEISS Batis 25mm f/2.

I went into the video not knowing the prices of these two and expected that the Sony would be better, but too expensive to justify over the ZEISS. In fact, it appeared to me that the Sony was indeed better as expected, sporting an entire stop extra of light, and performing better with vignetting and coma abberation, but that it also isn't much more expensive. The Sony is currently $1,398 and the ZEISS is usually $1,299 but on sale at $1,104 at the time of writing this article. Even at the sale price, I would be going for the Sony. What about you?

Robert K Baggs's picture

Robert K Baggs is a professional portrait and commercial photographer, educator, and consultant from England. Robert has a First-Class degree in Philosophy and a Master's by Research. In 2015 Robert's work on plagiarism in photography was published as part of several universities' photography degree syllabuses.

Log in or register to post comments
1 Comment

I am really surprised the rendering of the two lenses, including in terms of colors is so close. The sony 24GM is definitely a great lens, but most will shoot it at f2 or f2.2 to get the best results.. What surprises me in your test is, aside from vignetting (obviously better on the 24GM), the Batis seems to have the same level of quality at f2 than the Sony 24GM.. which makes it actually quite attractive