Alley in Pisa, Italy

by Lars Kotthoff

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19

Cine lenses do have to overcome certain limitations that don't really apply to still cameras. Still lenses will usually exhibit the phenomenom of "breathing" during focus. Breathing will cause the image to appear to get larger when the focus shifts, a non-issue for a still camera, but a big issue when doing motion picture recording. Fixing that isn't free, ...


19

Carl Zeiss is a very well respected lens maker, and very literally one of the reasons "German engineering" conjures images of precision and care. Camera phone manufacturers license the name (and, maybe but not necessarily, actual lens technology) from Zeiss in order to borrow some of that high-end image. This isn't necessarily all chicanery: companies who ...


15

This is a classic example of the power of branding and marketing. If you're a manufacturer that hasn't made a name for itself in optics (like Nokia), you can create the idea of a premium product by using a lens from someone who does (like Carl Zeiss).


15

They're both Cine lenses mounted on Canon 1DCs. The 1DC is a variant of Canon's 1DX flagship DSLR, which can shoot 4K video using the central APS-H region of the 35mm sensor. The one on the left is an Angenieux Optimo 12x, a very high end 24-290mm T2.8 cine superzoom lens: The one on the right is a Zeiss master series T1.3 prime lens, probably the 12mm: ...


12

There is a clear difference in intent and design philosophy. The Canon 50 f/1.2L is a bokeh machine, offering not only shallower depth of field (due to the ultra wide f/1.2 aperture) but also a smoother background blur on account of the decision to leave a certain amount of spherical aberration in the design. It's a lens with character and a distinct look, ...


8

It is one of the lens design compromises they have chosen to make. While I don't think anyone can know for sure the reasons behind that decision, I can think of several likely ones: Zeiss's own most successful cameras are rangefinders, which do not auto focus. These are the only cameras they still make today. MF lenses avoid any complication from ...


7

That combo should be fine as suggested above, however the actual deciding factor for all lenses is not the WEIGHT of the lens, but the TORQUE applied to the mount. Torque is the actual pulling/twisting force, which is (basically) weight X distance. (also the lens's centre of gravity has a large effect on this calculation, it is NOT simply length of lens X ...


6

The cine lenses are different optically in that they are designed to minimise focus breathing, that is small changes in focal length when focussing, however they are very closely related to still photography designs.


6

It was a physical coupling for early built-in exposure meters. It hooked into a coupling pin on the camera body to tell the exposure meter what f-number the lens was set at. It looked something like this: Nikon F2 Photomic, 1971, from mir.com Here's the user's guide, look for "Lens Aperture Coupling". As for why Zeiss still has it on their lenses? I ...


5

A lot of lens names are a product of the overlap between the engineering and the marketing sides of the lens design process. The names themselves are created to sound appealing to customers, and many of them are variations on common terms in optical engineering. In addition, it is common in optical design to use an existing lens as your starting point when ...


5

A huge factor is that cine lenses are most often color matched so that you can swap lenses or use multiple cameras and you are guaranteed an identical color balance from each and every camera. You won't notice subtle color shifts in single photos of a series, but with an animated film image and lots of edits... it's painfully obvious. Color matching is so ...


5

The lens still weighs less than the camera. Barely. This is significant because the mount flange is designed to handle at least that much weight so that the camera will not place too much stress on the connection when a much heavier lens is being supported by a tripod or monopod and the camera body is hanging unsupported from the lens.


4

Wikipedia lists Canon's (outer) throat mount diameter as 54mm vs. Nikon's at 44mm. This means, at the mount, there is an extra 31.4mm of circumference on a Canon lens vs the same Nikon lens (assuming the lens is throat-diameter-limited) that has to be made. Depending on how Zeiss chooses to incorporate this extra girth in the packaging of the lens, the ...


4

A small part of the differences can be accounted for by the shorter flange distance for Canon. For the same sensor to rear lens element distance the EF mount version must be 2.5mm longer than the Nikon version at the back of the lens. The Canon mount diameter is also 54mm across, compared to 44mm for Nikon, so the lens may need to be larger in ...


3

Not a comparative answer, but Nikon has their current-generation PC-E lenses on their "recommended" list for the D800 in the Technical Solutions document. According to Nikon, the subset of lenses in this list offer maximum resolution of all the lenses they make. In other words, they are a top-notch choice. (To be honest, though, I also wonder if this list ...


3

I have the ZE (Canon mount) version of this exact lens, and my friend has the Nikon ZF.2 version, so am in a good position to advise. It has both pro's and con's, and they must be considered carefully as this is no small outlay of change to purchase! Firstly, this lens is amazingly sharp when you get it right ... I say this because I've used it to create ...


3

Carl Zeiss lens families are in fact different lens designs (as in combination of optical elements). You can read about them at Wikipedia: Planar Tessar Sonnar


3

With a digital SLR there are several advantages your film rangefinder doesn't share. Combining Live View with the depth of field preview button (or any other setting that stops the lens down while viewing the scene via Live View) allows for precise manual focusing, usually with the subject magnified 5x or 10x on the camera's rear LCD. Another advantage is ...


2

On the one hand is the brand name as Rowland say, and because Sony and Nokia and maybe other brands can't produce their own lenses, maybe on the contract have to say that this lens are Carl Zeiss. On the other hand is the unique knowlege of the glass creation specially for lenses. Every glass is not made with the same procedure. Carl Zeiss claims that can ...


2

To add to the above I don't consider a degree of spherical abberation to be a problem in a manual focus lens. MF emplies a more deliberate, careful focus and composure process, plus you can always focus stopped down if needed. Lens design is allways a compromise of so many factors and Zeiss lenses are designed for a different market. When shooting a ...


2

In answer to another question of mine, Matt Grum left a couple links that describe focus shift. One of them linked a very excellent page by Zeiss that explains why they chose a lens design that incurrs significant focus shift at wide apertures for closer focus distances: C-Sonnar T* 1,5/50 ZM Information about special features for dealers and ...


2

My understanding is that micro-contrast is the ability of the lens to differentiate between areas that are very slightly different in color or luminosity. Sharpness is how well resolved the boundaries between color areas are. The two are closely related, however micro-contrast is a particular optical property while sharpness is the result of a combination ...


2

The vast majority of Zeiss lenses are indeed made in Japan. Of currently listed Zeiss (non-cine) camera lenses, only the ZM Distagon 15mm f2.8 is Made in Germany (also in that line, the ZM Planar 85mm f2 was too made in Germany). Even the super-high end Otus 55mm is Made in Japan (Zeiss confirmed this via their Flickr account in a recent post). The fact ...


2

It works the same way the sigma and canon works on a crop camera. From the looks of it in different reviews, it is the name you'll be paying for. Look at this comparison: http://phoblographer.wpengine.com/2011/11/14/quick-comparison-canon-50mm-f1-8-sigma-50mm-f1-4-and-zeiss-50mm-f1-4/ I'd get the Sigma.


1

Some of the Zeiss lenses are that much better than the comparable offerings from Canon, Nikon, or other third party manufacturers such as Sigma. This is not one of those lenses. It is not as sharp, has about the same amount of CA, distortion, and vignettes about the same as the Sigma and a tad less than the Canon when mounted on a full frame body. The only ...


1

Currently, it appears that none of the Zeiss lenses are now manufactured in Germany (all Japan). Here is some more info from BH Photo the subject: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/find/newsLetter/Carl-Zeiss.jsp


1

It's a bit of a personal choice, but the Zeiss lenses all have a reputation for great quality. Before I'd spend this much money, I'd rent it. I just checked lensrental.com and they don't rent the 100 (although they do rent the 85), but Borrowlenses does have it. It will probably cost you $100 to rent (with shipping and insurance) but I think its money well ...



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