Zeiss lenses for Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Samsung and Fuji DSLR Camera

by Enche Tjin on June 20, 2010

Carl Zeiss prime lenses for SLR has been well-known for its quality. Zeiss lenses are available for DSLR cameras such as Nikon, Fuji, Canon EOS, Pentax and Samsung. Are Zeiss lenses are better than lenses from manufacturer lenses?
From the functionality, Zeiss lenses are quite far behind from manufacturers lenses. Zeiss lenses do not have image stabilization and can’t auto focus. As a result, it is less convenient to use.

carl-zeiss-logo-lensAlthough Zeiss lenses looks old and not up to date, it has some good points:
+ High quality optic
+ Great quality control so that you will likely to receive a good copy.
+ Nice out of focus rendition that looks like 3D
+ Full metal construction compared to plastic
+ Large, precise and smooth manual focusing mechanism
+ Adjustable ½ f-stop intervals

And some negative points
- Out of focus areas of the pictures are attractive but not fully rounded (leaf-shaped).
- Price, although it might rise over the time, because Zeiss lenses are quite rare.

Basically, you can use it with any DSLR you have, but I recommend using it with full frame camera because the lens is optimized for full frame camera and also the viewfinder of full frame camera is significantly bigger so it is easier when you manual focus. Having live view is also very beneficial to aid focusing.

Zeiss lenses are best for enthusiasts photographer because it draws you back to the basics of photography, especially composition and perspective. By using prime lens instead of modern AF /zoom lens, you might try to frame the shot in the best way possible.
However, you might won’t use Zeiss lenses for fast action or events photography because it does not has auto focus system.

Some Zeiss lenses that I recommend are:

100mm-zeiss-macroZeiss 100mm macro f/2
Super sharp, very thin depth of field and great out of focus rendition, good for headshot and macro / close-up photography. Not many Macro lens has aperture bigger than f/2.8. I only know two, this lens and Tamron 60mm f/2. Dimension/weight: 76 X 113mm / 680g. filter size: 67mm Price: $1850

zeiss-85-f14Zeiss 85mm f/1.4
85mm is ideal as a portrait lens because it compresses background and produces nice and smooth Bokeh. Like Zeiss 100mm, this lens is very sharp especially f/2 and above. Dimension/weight: 77 X 85mm / 600g. filter size: 77mm Price: $1300

50mm-zeissZeiss 50mm f/1.4
Normal lens that has field of view similar to what our eyes see when mounted in full frame camera. This lens is timeless. Good for general purpose / walk around. It is also great for nice soft portrait especially when mounted in crop sensor DSLR camera. Dimension/weight: 66 X 69mm / 350g. filter size: 58mm Price: $750

zeiss-35mm-f2Zeiss 35mm f/2
This wide angle lens is great for indoor, street photography, everyday life, and environmental portrait. Dimension/weight: 64 X 97mm / 470g. filter size: 82mm Price: $1000

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

~බිன்ku~ June 20, 2010 at 9:44 pm

Oh, What about Sony Mounts? :-o
Specially 16-85mm is well known as a better one in it’s class. :-o

Never knew that They have Samsung and Fuji (but they use F mount, eh?) mounts as well.

Enche Tjin June 20, 2010 at 9:49 pm

Fuji has DSLR using F mount *but they seem to discontinue their DSLR.
Samsung has K-mount similar to Pentax.

I don’t see any A mount tho. Here is the link.

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