The GetDPI Photography Forum

Great to see you here. Join our insightful photographic forum today and start tapping into a huge wealth of photographic knowledge. Completing our simple registration process will allow you to gain access to exclusive content, add your own topics and posts, share your work and connect with other members through your own private inbox! And don’t forget to say hi!

Zeiss Lens Photos and Discussion

carstenw

New member
What is the deal with the spring? Did you have to fabricate anything? For the 80-200/4 I had to come up with a spacer, and not having a home workshop I was having some trouble, but eventually cut a reasonably thick and hard piece of plastic with a scalpel. I would really like not having to fabricate anything, but other than that, I am fine with my hands.
 
D

dcjs

Guest
What is the deal with the spring?
The spring sits in grooves in the screw and the brass pin, and it is secured with glue in those grooves (seems kind of excessive to me in the first place). On one of the copies I converted the glue really didn't want to come off at first, and you need to break it loose at both ends to be able to detach the spring from the screw at one side, turn it around and attach it to a different screw. You don't need to fabricate anything, but a soldering iron may be handy to apply heat to the screws/glue locally in order to loosen the spring more easily.
 

CVickery

Member
I'm going to leave both my 35-70/3.4 and the 80-200/4 in C/Y mount for now since I have a Contax 167MT that I'd like to use them on, as well as the 5DII with an adapter. I haven't tried a Leitax C/Y>Nikon, but I have done their C/Y>EF (Planar 100/2) and the Nikon>EF (ZF25/2.8) and both were trivial installs. I have a Leica Macro 60/2.8 on the way and plan to use a Leitax R>Nikon mount. I own a Fuji S5Pro and I quite like the IQ, particularly the jpg color, but the Nikon mount is a bit restrictive for alt lenses.
 

carstenw

New member
Yes, it is, true, but I do really like the cameras and the operation in general, so I put up with the reverse focusing direction, the reverse aperture direction, the reverse everything direction, the need for Leitax adapters when they work at all, and just do it anyway. Sigh.

I will keep my eyes open for a clean, reasonably priced 35-70 and see if I can even find one. I like my equipment to be in very good shape, both optically and the lens exterior itself, but I do have to pay more for that, and wait longer.
 

carstenw

New member
I have been trying to get a good shot of this nice bush for a few weeks now, but nothing ever really caught it the way I wanted to. This is the first time that I come close, although I am not completely happy with the result. ZF21:

 

bensonga

Well-known member
Could someone explain the Zeiss naming convention to me? Are all the Zx (ZF, ZE, ZM etc) 35mm cameras and Cx (CY, CV, etc) medium format? I'm assuming that CV is for Hasselblad V-series Zeiss lenses (the only ones I own).

TIA!

Gary
 

carstenw

New member
ZF and ZF.2 are Nikon F mount, the latter with a chip so that you can get full EXIF, set the aperture with the wheel and use matrix metering.

ZE is Canon EOS mount.

ZS is m-42 mount I believe, although these are discontinued now.

ZA is Sony A mount, and are completely different lenses from the above, which are all optically identical.

The Hasselblad lenses are called Hasselblad, IIRC, and not Zeiss, although they are made by Zeiss.

ZM lenses are Leica M mount, and are completely different designs, generally not as good as the SLR lenses, with possibly 2 exceptions: 18mm f/4 and 25mm f/2.8. The 85mm f/2 might also be very good, but it is so big and expensive that everyone just buys a Leica instead :)

CY or C/Y is Contax/Yashica, a 35mm film mount corresponding to Contax and Yashica cameras. These are very good lenses, and the more modern ZF/ZE/etc lenses are often closely based on these designs. The 21mm f/2.8 Distagon is probably the most famous example.

CV is probably Cosina-Voigtländer, and has nothing to do with Zeiss, other than they are also currently made by Cosina. The Hasselblad lenses are C, CF, CFi, CFE and FE series. I own three FE lenses. Very good lenses, and some are good enough to still be good adapted to a DSLR, but not all.

There are also Contax 645 lenses, as well as the Zeiss lenses for the Rolleiflex 6008/Hy6 system, and these two systems have some of the best Zeiss lenses ever made. Then there are Contax G lenses, which are small AF lenses for a Contax rangefinder-like compact film camera, I believe, although you definitely want to check a better source for that. These are currently only interesting for Contax G or NEX, m4/3, etc. users, and are problematic to adapt, although very good.

There are also some Zeiss large format lenses. I know little about them, but they are apparently well regarded in the rendering department, but have very small image circles compared to Schneider or Rodenstock lenses, and are somewhat rare.

I think I covered everything, which probably means I didn't. Oh, Nokia has a high-end range of cellphones with Zeiss lenses :)
 

trisberg

New member
ZM lenses are Leica M mount, and are completely different designs, generally not as good as the SLR lenses, with possibly 2 exceptions: 18mm f/4 and 25mm f/2.8. The 85mm f/2 might also be very good, but it is so big and expensive that everyone just buys a Leica instead :)
Not sure what you base this on. From my experience the ZM Biogon 21/2.8, 21/4.5, 25/2,8 and 35/2.8 are superb lenses. So are the two ZM 50s where the C Sonnar has a unique character and some focus shift to contend with. And the ZM Biogon 35/2 is no slouch either. So that leaves the ZM 28/2.8 which is not bad at all, very sharp in the center and a little less so at the edges.

Maybe this impression is based on them usually being compared to Leica glass while the SLR lenses mostly would be compared with Nikon and Canon lenses.

There is also a ZK series for Pentax K mount.

-Thomas
 

bensonga

Well-known member
Thanks Carsten! Glad I asked, because I had a number of misconceptions.

Since I posted my question, I did a little further research on the Zeiss lenses for Hasselblad V-series cameras. The most recent Zeiss "Classic" lenses (now apparently discontinued, but originally available in the 50, 120 Makro and 180 series) had a designation of "ZV" on the lens (as well as the CFE Hasselblad coding).

So....in general, I think I will use the shorthand "ZV" here when referring to my Hasselblad Zeiss lenses (all CF, CFi or CFE versions)....as in the ZV 40mm CFE IF lens, which was actually the lens I used for the "Nodwell" shot above, taken with my CFV-16 back (not the 50mm CFE FLE lens, as I had noted in the original post).

Gary
 

carstenw

New member
Not sure what you base this on. From my experience the ZM Biogon 21/2.8, 21/4.5, 25/2,8 and 35/2.8 are superb lenses. So are the two ZM 50s where the C Sonnar has a unique character and some focus shift to contend with. And the ZM Biogon 35/2 is no slouch either. So that leaves the ZM 28/2.8 which is not bad at all, very sharp in the center and a little less so at the edges.

Maybe this impression is based on them usually being compared to Leica glass while the SLR lenses mostly would be compared with Nikon and Canon lenses.
This vague conclusion was based on a number of people over on FM who owned both ZM and ZE lenses, and had done some comparisons. Corner problems, harsh boke, CA and a less beautiful look were some of the problems which surprised the ZM owners who were used to ZE lenses. The 35/2 was one of the worst culprits in the looks department. Some of the problems were also more specific to the lacking Leica M9 profile for the lenses. I believe that the 21/4.5 was one of these.

This is not to say that they are bad lenses, not at all! Most are very good. It is just that if you move from SLR with loved ZE/ZF lenses to Leica M, you might be in for a disappointment. The 25/2.8 was specifically an exception. Most of these are also much better on the M8.

Since I am writing this, I need to say that this is not my personal experience. I own only Leica lenses for the M system. If you are interested, I can put you in touch with two people who can provide comparison samples.
 

trisberg

New member
Carsten,

Thanks for the clarification.

Yes, I know that the 21/4.5 has some issues on the M9, but that is mostly the M9s fault and not a problem with the lens itself. Coding seems to be necessary for any wide angles on the M9 as well and again this is more of an M9 problem.

The 25/2.8 is a great performer and I would say that the 35/2.8 is on the same level.

I would agree that the 35/2 has some interesting issues wide open but in general I find it performs well stopped down a bit. I haven't compared any of these with the SLR lenses but I find the ZM lenses perform well enough for my needs at a much lower cost compared to the Leica equivalents.

-Thomas
 

philber

Member
Carsten,

The 25/2.8 is a great performer and I would say that the 35/2.8 is on the same level.

-Thomas
Second that. The ZM 25 I tried was clearly in the same class as ZE glass, and among the better ones AFAIAC. The same applies to the ZM 50 f:2.0 which I own. Very good glass indeed, with this planar rendering that I am fond of. The 35 f:2.8 is also very good, though maybe a shade less so, but still withint reach of, say, the ZE 28 f:2.0. Except when it comes to close focusing, of course. And the best Zeiss glass ever to pass through my hands is also a rangefinder, it is the Contax 21mm G.
 

carstenw

New member
Yes, they are definitely very good lenses. The main problem is the comparison with the ZF/ZE lenses, which are overall a tick better. It is not surprising really. Zeiss has a long history of SLR lenses, and some real pearls. The ZM lenses are very good, but not legendarily good.
 

carstenw

New member
Here is an HDR shot, two captures for shadow and highlight detail. I am still not good at tone mapping in Photoshop, but I am learning. ZF21.

 

trisberg

New member
Carsten, nice shots with the ZF21. Really like how it renders the vegetation.

Here is one from the New Hampshire Seacost last week. This is with the ZM 28mm.



-Thomas
 

carstenw

New member
Carsten, nice shots with the ZF21. Really like how it renders the vegetation.

Here is one from the New Hampshire Seacost last week. This is with the ZM 28mm.
Captures the feeling of the weather really well. It looks very chilly.

The ZF21 shots I have just worked on are interesting, in that the 100% sharpness is not that great (and I need to figure out what I did wrong), but as soon as you downres (and it would probably be the same for printing), it has an amazing "look of sharpness". Close up it looks more like watercolour, which I have seen in other shots before with various lenses, especially with the Kodak SRL/n.
 
Top