Zeiss ZE is EF mount - 50 and 85 f/1.4 soon with 21 f/2.8 next year

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by mark u, Sep 14, 2008.

  1. For those who read German:

    http://www.digitalkamera.de/Meldung/Neue_Objektive_von_Zeiss_jetzt_auch_mit_EF_Bajonett/5111.aspx
     
  2. Tiny URL of Google translation from German to English

    http://tiny.cc/6b5K8
     
  3. The German is easier ;)

    EF mount lenses feature focus confirmation, metering/operation with all modes (Av, Tv, M, P...) except A-DEP, lens data transmitted to EXIF, distance reporting for E-TTL II.

    Expect Zeiss to have something in English in a few hours here:

    http://www.zeiss.com/photo
     
  4. Are there any plans for auto focus lenses?
     
  5. I could get used to manual focus with the beep confirmation. All I need to know is the camera says its in focus. And if I want to change it, I have that purogative to do so.

    Someone has said that the new Zeiss 50 1.4 lens is not as good as the old Contax version based on the bokeh it produces. Anyone confirm this?
     
  6. Should be interesting if these new lenses rival the old ones, I can`t believe canon can persist in not upgrading its ancient 50 1.4 when other brands are puttin out better options. I would not buy another ef50 1.4 and use a 1.8, for 1.4 now use zeuko. hope this zeiss is nice.
     
  7. "Should be interesting if these new lenses rival the old ones, I can`t believe canon can persist in not upgrading its ancient
    50 1.4 when other brands are puttin out better options."

    Seems to me the EF 50 1.4 USM only dates from the mid-90s, hardly ancient by 50mm standards! I suspect most lens
    designers are merely using the same old classical optical designs for current 50mm primes, maybe with minor tweaks
    and a new barrel.

    I was never happy with the EF 50 1.4. I do really like my EF 50 2.5 CM and 50 1.2L USM, so no biggie. More choices
    than such a tiny market needs. Mostly old farts shooting 50mm 'cause they grew up with it.

    I'd never buy a manual focus lens for an EOS body. After all, I switched to EOS in the 90s so I could use AF as MF was
    getting increasingly difficult for my eyes. Still have my old MF Nikon gear and use them as paperweights. My old Nikkor 50 1.4 AI is a nice
    loupe!
     
  8. >Mostly old farts shooting 50mm 'cause they grew up with it.

    Lotsa young farts also use 50mm for portraits on their DSLRs with cropped sensors.
     
  9. In English at dpreview.com:

    Carl Zeiss has confirmed that the mysterious 'ZE' mount it will start making lenses for is the Canon EF mount. Initially the company will make its Planar T* 50mm and 85mm F1.4 manual focus lenses available. Both will be available by the end of 2008. The range of lenses in the Canon mount will be expanded in future.

    http://www.dpreview.com/news/0809/08091501Zeissforcanon.asp
     
  10. Although a MF lens, IMHO many buyers will choose the Planar T* 1.4/50 over the Canon or Sigma 1.4/50 due mainly to its undoubtedly great looks and Zeiss brand!

    For me, at least for the moment, I'll stick to my $100 Contax/Yashica mount Planar T* 1.4/50 with a cheap AF confirm adapter.
     
  11. There are now a couple of articles in English on the Zeiss site - one reports on the experience of a couple of photographers with the new EF mount lenses and includes some small images shot with them, while the other is basically the new product announcement and includes a photo of the 50mm that shows it has no aperture ring.

    This article:

    http://www.colorfoto.de/News/Carl-Zeiss-SLR-Objektive-_-Jetzt-auch-mit-EF-Bajonett_4488943.html

    mentions that several Canon patents related to the EF mount have now expired - which has allowed Zeiss to use them without requiring a licence. A corollary is that all other third party lens manufacturers will be able to do likewise.
     
  12. Good news, especially the auto aperture bit. Personally I was hoping the 28mm would be announced first so I could use it as a 'standard' on my 450D, I guess I will have to wait a bit longer. The 85mm doesn't interest me as I am more than happy with my Canon 85/1.8, but I might be tempted by the 50mm.
     
  13. Not the most interesting lens releases to me. Canon already makes excellent 50 and 85 lenses. I was hoping for wide angle, where Canon is more weak.
     
  14. Great... more lenses to fantasize about owning... :(
     
  15. Great... more lenses to fantasize about owning... :)
     
  16. interesting that Zeiss only mentions EOS and EF mounts but never mentions Canon in their release.
     
  17. "A corollary is that all other third party lens manufacturers will be able to do likewise."

    I would love to see what Sigma, Tamron, and Tokina could design for Canon now that the EF-mount patents have expired.
     
  18. It's nice to see that Canon users will have some affordable primes. <Snicker>
     
  19. I suspect that the most recent offerings from third parties are already taking advantage of any formerly patented design elements that are still relevant (they will be just as aware as Zeiss of the patents): however, the nature of lens electronic control in terms of the circuitry used has changed completely since 1987. Instead of custom designed ICs per lens we now have rather more generic MPU and program designs. More recent innovations such as stabilisation are already offered by Tamron and Sigma as well as Nikon. Manufacturers have found ways around the patents that work. However, the ending of some patent protection should mean that users can have more confidence in the functionality of alternatives.
     
  20. Hey guys, you do realize that these lenses are made by Cosina, right? I'm sure they're good, and they do have that cool '70s look I like, but are they really "super-quality" lenses worth over $600 for a 50mm?
     
  21. Re: Stephen.

    Yes, they're made by Cosina, but so what? Cosina has stepped it up a notch over the last few years. They're producing some excellent quality lenses, and I would expect these to be no exception. Have you ever seen or handled any of the M-mount rangefinder lenses made by Cosina for Zeiss or Voigtlander. They're solid as a rock and they're giving Leica hell in terms of image quality, sometimes with out even considering the much lower prices.

    Whether it's worth it to you is entirely personal, but I'm planning to save up for a few of these.

    Paul
     
  22. I am a user of the Nikon-mount ZF 50/1.4 and it is a great lens mechanically and optically. It really adds
    quality to my available light photos. I have made some A3 prints shot at f/2.8 (on D3) and they're really
    detailed. The bokeh at f/1.4 is not the best, but at f/2.8 there's nothing to complain about.

    I don't think there is anything to be concerned about with regards to the location of manufacture. All of my ZF
    lenses have been flawless in terms of cleanness & mechanical quality. Initially I had some issues focusing my
    25mm but after rigorous testing I found it was more to do with my eyes and careless use than a lens fault. The
    35mm and 50mm, as well as the 100mm f/2 macro in particular are great lenses. (I have tested the 100mm only
    briefly and will be getting it soon. It's expensive but very crisp and CA-free. )

    The look of the images is different from Nikkors. I don't think the ZF lenses are expensive for what they
    deliver. They're not always the best lenses to use, e.g. when compared with the new $1500 Nikkor zooms but they
    are very flare resistant, contrasty, flat field, compared to the Nikkors and easily better than the (somewhat
    dated) equivalent Nikon primes.

    I think anyone looking for a top quality macro lens or a wide angle / normal prime and likes to use manual focus
    and wide apertures would do well to at least consider the new Zeiss lenses. They're not for everyone, but they're
    worth a serious consideration. They're practical lenses meant to be used, not for snob appeal but because they
    are very good at what they do.
     
  23. Although I compared ZF lenses to Nikkors, I think analogous results should be possible using the Canon mount versions.
     
  24. "Someone has said that the new Zeiss 50 1.4 lens is not as good as the old Contax version based on the bokeh it produces. Anyone confirm this?"

    My Contax Zeiss 1.4/50 (the Ninja star version) is capable of producing some utterly horrible out-of-focus highlights under the right conditions. But sometimes its bokeh is interesting and beautiful.
     
  25. >My Contax Zeiss 1.4/50 (the Ninja star version) is capable of producing some utterly horrible out-of-focus highlights under the right conditions.

    All Zeiss (non-Jena) lenses from 1972 onwards sport the T* logo and coating.

    Virtually all 50mm lenses have poor background bokeh wide-open because of over-corrected spherical aberration intended to improve sharpness.
     
  26. "All Zeiss (non-Jena) lenses from 1972 onwards sport the T* logo and coating."

    I was not referring to the T* coatings but to the shape of the aperture opening, which at F2 and F2.8 somewhat resembles a ninja throwing star.
     
  27. Mark U paraphrasing a Colorfoto article - "mentions that several Canon patents related to the EF mount have now expired"

    Yes. About 3 years ago, back when Zeiss was still using that as an excuse.

    "which has allowed Zeiss to use them without requiring a licence."

    No one has ever required a license. The highest courts around the world have supported the A/B team approach to reverse engineering for interoperability for decades. By the time third party lens makers had gotten around to doing clones of Canon, Nikon, etc. protocols, the computer industry had already spent billions (literally) hashing this out.

    No licenses, ever. That's just a Zeiss attempt to create a smokescreen.

    "A corollary is that all other third party lens manufacturers will be able to do likewise."

    I take it that this is some rather unsuccessful attempt at humor...

    Mark, don't take Colorfoto too seriously. They're like the "Weekly World News" or "Star" of the photographic industry. I remember the article they published about Nikon discontinuing the F mount so that they could bring out full frame.

    Here's a link to a little thing I wrote a while back documenting 4 or 5 of Colorfoto's most pathetic bits of yellow journalism...

    http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1000&message=24072500
     
  28. Impressive. When Zeiss makes the wide angle lenses that will be a good thing. You certainly can't whine too much about a 21mm lens not having autofocus.
     
  29. I hope Leica follows suit - or better yet offers an adapter that allows focus confirmation - I love my Leica R lenses attached to my 20D with my Novoflex adapter.
     
  30. >better yet offers an adapter that allows focus confirmation

    Why wait for Leica when you can buy them NOW? Look up happypagehk, haoda, Tago Tech, etc.
     
  31. Just got a response from Zeiss. Seems like they are serious about new designs -

    "Dear Customer,

    Thanks for your request and your interest in our products.
    As published in our press release from September 15th, Carl Zeiss is expanding its successful line of SLR lenses: ZE lenses with EF bayonet for all analog and digital EOS camera models. As with all EF lenses, the new ZE lenses from Carl Zeiss transfer all information exclusively via electronic contacts. This means that all exposure modes such as programmed auto exposure, shutter priority, aperture priority and manual setting are supported. The camera’s automatic focus confirmation also remains available to an unlimited extent with these manual focus lenses. With digital SLRs, the lens data and all exposure data can also be accessed via the camera’s EXIF file. Even E-TTL flash metering is supported. The first lenses to be available will be the Planar T* 1.4/50 ZE and the Planar T* 1.4/85 ZE in the last quarter of this year. Further focal lengths will be added to the line within the next few months.

    Further information about ZE lenses and about our current product range can be found at

    http://www.zeiss.com/photo


    Best Regards

    Bertram Hönlinger"
     
  32. The AMD/Intel patent wars did indeed show that emulation of a black box was permissible, but making a direct copy was not. As I have discussed before, those wars influenced design decisions and reverse engineering approaches by independent lens makers. The resolution of the legal issues has allowed much more robust emulations by third party manufacturers. However, as I pointed out above, almost everybody now uses a totally different approach to electronic lens controls - gone are ASICs, in are MPUs and EAROMs, so patents have ceased to be the constraint they once were. As to Zeiss? I guess you'd have to be a fly on the wall at board meetings to know the true story.
     
  33. "gone are AISCs"

    But were they ever here to begin with? I remember even the oldest Nikon lenses I worked with using 4 bit microcontrollers. The Nikon hardware layer is a SPI port.

    Patent expiration doesn't "resolve" legal issues. You can't copy code exactly unless the copyrights expire, and the patent documentation isn't exact, it's really not even very close.

    As far as being a fly on the wall at Zeiss, well, if you've ever a Zeiss rep in person waffling on the issues of what part, exactly, Zeiss played in the design of Zeiss branded Sony lenses, you'd understand why one takes anything they say with a grain of salt.
     
  34. "Patent expiration doesn't "resolve" legal issues."

    Read what I wrote (which doesn't even remotely imply what you suggest). Once AMD's methods of reverse engineering gained court approval the same principles could be freely adopted by any other manufacturer facing the issue. Prior to that court decision, manufacturers could be threatened with the type of suits that Intel slapped on AMD - essentially requiring them to cease all production and have any product (even in customers' hands) destroyed. The consequence was that reverse engineering methods were severely constrained, and third party devices were often not reliable.
     
  35. All
    I have just started shooting with both these lenses. So I thought that might posts some pictures. Or links to the pictures.
    Go here: http://barebonescommunication.wordpress.com/2009/03/26/what-barthes-never-new-about-carl-zeiss/
    Best regards
    Knut
    00Ssoj-119687784.jpg
     

Share This Page

1111