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Archive 2012 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm
  
 
hubsand
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


My 14-24mm finally came home this weekend: after ceremonial removal of the Canon adaptor and re-installation of the waterproofing gasket it mated epically, 2011-style, to the sound of a Strauss waltz, with a Nikon body. First contact!

This lens basically ended - or stopped in its tracks - quite a quest to find wide angles that could live with Canon sensors . . . but that was then, this is now and after living with the 14-24mm for several years I'm wondering whether the costly new Zeiss 15mm offers something at the wide end that the Nikon lens doesn't.

On paper it looks like it's a much smarter and better corrected lens at 15mm than the stellar Nikon zoom, whose resolution gallingly tapers off toward the long end where it's best behaved . . . but has anyone had the chance to compare them on the D800E which, incidentally, has completely supplanted all my Canon equipment?



Aug 06, 2012 at 04:31 PM
thedruid
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


Head over to Getdpi and click on the Nikon section. Near top you will find some recent info on ZF's including the 15mm...it may only be D800 but plenty of input from others as well with E.


Aug 06, 2012 at 05:49 PM
ja_joyce
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


Here is an interesting comparison, with the Samyang 14mm f/2.8 thrown in for good measure.

14-24 vs 15 vs 14

For me the Zeiss 15mm and 14-24 are just different. Either you want the ultimate UWA (the Ziess) or you want the flexibility of a WA-UWA zoom that is outstanding in its own right, but compromised compared to the very best. Although in the corners the Nikon may actually outperform the prime.

The zoom works for me, but YMMV as always.



Aug 06, 2012 at 05:56 PM
Hardcore
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


They zeiss 15mm imo made a big mistake by making the hood non-removable. It would be nice to be able to use the lee filter system with the zeiss although they might not even make a filter adapter that big....

The 14-24mm has the sw150 which is a big bonus if you require graduated filters.



Aug 06, 2012 at 06:11 PM
vkumar
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


What is the sw150?
Vijay



Aug 06, 2012 at 10:41 PM
Steve Perry
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


@Ja_Joyce - Thanks for the link! Great comparison

I was thinking about the Zeiss 15mm, but that comparo makes me think that it's not $3000 better than the Nikon - esp at the apertures I tend to shoot. I'm starting to find that to be true with a lot of zeiss glass in fact. Tried the 25mm 2.8 and 28mm - was totally unimpressed. The Nikon 24 1.4 and 28mm 1.8 are easily as good (better, IMO having now owned all of them).

I REALLY wanted to like Zeiss, but I'm starting to think they are way overhyped by folks trying to justify their purchases (with exceptions to the 21mm and 100mm). To the OP - I'd personally stick with the 14-24.



Aug 06, 2012 at 11:18 PM
splathrop
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


Steve Perry, I think you are right that not all Zeiss is sensational. But if you ever shoot 50mm you definitely want to try the 50mm f/2 MP. And the 35mm f/1.4 will grow on you, too. I would add those two to the ones you mention, as being at the top of the part of the Zeiss lineup that I know about. No experience with the 15mm or the new 25mm.


Aug 07, 2012 at 02:35 AM
 

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Thorsten
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


Steve Perry wrote:
@Ja_Joyce - Thanks for the link! Great comparison

I was thinking about the Zeiss 15mm, but that comparo makes me think that it's not $3000 better than the Nikon - esp at the apertures I tend to shoot. I'm starting to find that to be true with a lot of zeiss glass in fact. Tried the 25mm 2.8 and 28mm - was totally unimpressed. The Nikon 24 1.4 and 28mm 1.8 are easily as good (better, IMO having now owned all of them).

I REALLY wanted to like Zeiss, but I'm starting to think they are way overhyped by folks
...Show more

This pretty much matches my own experience. I've tried many of the Zeiss lenses (including the 28 you mentioned) and they weren't necessarily better than Nikon. I.e. I actually like the 60/2.8G better than the 50MP. I ended up with just the 21, 35/2 and 100. As for the new one, if I were to get a 15mm prime lens, especially for $3k, it had better have a shift feature.



Aug 07, 2012 at 03:59 AM
awacs
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


vkumar wrote:
What is the sw150?
Vijay

Lee grad filter holder thingy for 14-24.

Or I could just tell you when I see you tomorrow.

Aram



Aug 07, 2012 at 04:03 AM
hubsand
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


That's extremely helpful - thanks for the link. Almost saves me the trouble of doing the same test!

They demonstrate that the Zeiss design ethos continues to the present: optimise the lens for sky-high Zone 1 resolution; don't worry quite so much about Zones 2 and 3. Under the scrutiny of the more demanding NEX7, the Zeiss 15mm's Zone 1/2 potential is shown to be peerless. Back on the D800E, its Zone 3 performance is revealed as sub-par. Here the 14-24mm is shockingly good.

Given that the most demanding users of this focal length will want consistent edge-to-edge resolution performance, the Nikon still looks like a good bet.

The Samyang performs impressively in this regard - raising hopes for their forthcoming 24mm Shift lens. But the distortion is heinous - whereas the Zeiss is superb. Although the Nikon doesn't resolve quite as well at 17-20mm it is almost distortion-free - not requiring any lossy geometry correction.

The best real world test would be to take all three files at like apertures, polish each until they're presentable (ie, fix the CA on the 14-24mm), correct for distortion - then compare.



Aug 07, 2012 at 11:53 AM
Zebrabot
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


The problem is the distagon 15mm Zf.2 doesn't really exist, so there's nothing to compare.




Aug 07, 2012 at 08:44 PM
Frank_Maiello
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


Thorsten wrote:
...if I were to get a 15mm prime lens, especially for $3k, it had better have a shift feature.


Now that would be an incredible lens, but it would be an incredible FIVE thousand dollar lens, at the least.



Aug 07, 2012 at 10:55 PM
Thorsten
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Zeiss 15mm v Nikon 14-24mm


Frank_Maiello wrote:
Now that would be an incredible lens, but it would be an incredible FIVE thousand dollar lens, at the least.


It doesn't need to be Zeiss (though I do wonder why Zeiss didn't go for it). A Nikon version of the 17mm T/S lens (Canon's is $2400) would be just fine for me. In fact, Nikon recently filed a patent for it, so it may be coming. It would be way more useful than the ZF 15mm lens.



Aug 08, 2012 at 05:24 AM





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