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Archive 2013 · leica vs zeiss
  
 
sebboh
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p.3 #1 · leica vs zeiss


jcolwell wrote:
Thanks Carsten.

When it comes to "Leica vs. Zeiss", I always say, "Yes"!


lol, can't disagree.

here's a comparison of the m 35 lux and c/y 35/1.4 at a much closer distance where they have clearly different looks.

the scene: an orchid at about .6 meters with a background roughly 1.5 meters behind the orchid. note: this is closer than the lux would be able to focus on a leica camera, but it's a nice portrait distance on a NEX. all settings are lightroom 4's defaults except that i normalized white balance in every shot to the same point in the background (sliver stereo). you can click to open the image in a new tab and flip between them.

whole frame leica:


whole frame zeiss:


100% crop leica:


100% crop zeiss:


now @f/2

leica:


zeiss:


100% crop leica:


100% crop zeiss:


smaller apertures to come shortly...



Feb 18, 2013 at 02:32 AM
philip_pj
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p.3 #2 · leica vs zeiss


Well, both are uncontroversially wonderful.

It's difficult lighting, and the exposure is critical in general appearance in these images. Which probably says more about the similarities than anything else.

'I mean that the higher contrast of the Zeiss loses it some shadow detail.'

You won't find anyone making lower contrast lenses anytime soon, quite the contrary, they know each new gen of sensors will only have greater DR, not less. But, for a given DR your point is taken, and isn't that part of the charm of older lenses?

Weight is another factor - CZ say 830g for the ZF.2; Overgaard quotes 685 grams for the Leica, much lighter whichever way it goes, most fast 35mms are ~600 grams.



Feb 18, 2013 at 02:36 AM
philip_pj
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p.3 #3 · leica vs zeiss


You have to love the CY 35/1.4 look, such control and colour realism.


Feb 18, 2013 at 02:44 AM
pdmphoto
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p.3 #4 · leica vs zeiss


The CY (Contax/Yashica) Zeiss 35/1.4 is much lighter than the ZE/F versions. The CY used in the comparison above is <600g. My Rollei/Zeiss 35/1.4 comes in at 568g on my kitchen scale.

Gotta love the look of the original Zeiss 35/1.4's. The new ZE/F's are sharper across the frame but loose some of that special drawing style.



Feb 18, 2013 at 03:10 AM
sebboh
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p.3 #5 · leica vs zeiss


@f/2.8

leica:


zeiss:


100% crop leica:


100% crop zeiss:



@f/4

leica:


zeiss:


100% crop leica:


100% crop zeiss:



f/5.6

leica:


zeiss:


100% crop leica:


100% crop zeiss:




Feb 18, 2013 at 03:17 AM
Gary Clennan
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p.3 #6 · leica vs zeiss


Thanks for the comparisons Derek! Much appreciated.


Feb 18, 2013 at 03:56 AM
Mescalamba
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p.3 #7 · leica vs zeiss


pdmphoto wrote:
The CY (Contax/Yashica) Zeiss 35/1.4 is much lighter than the ZE/F versions. The CY used in the comparison above is <600g. My Rollei/Zeiss 35/1.4 comes in at 568g on my kitchen scale.

Gotta love the look of the original Zeiss 35/1.4's. The new ZE/F's are sharper across the frame but loose some of that special drawing style.


Exactly reason why my first "true" alt lens was C/Y and not ZE/F. Tho it came with price (very dusty rear element.. will need probably trip to Oberkochen, just hope they can clean it).



Feb 18, 2013 at 04:04 AM
sebboh
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p.3 #8 · leica vs zeiss


yeah, at short distances i don't think anything can beat the look of the c/y 35/1.4 from f/1.4-2.8. at f/4 and above i think i actually prefer the leica, but the differences are much smaller.

Mescalamba wrote:
Exactly reason why my first "true" alt lens was C/Y and not ZE/F. Tho it came with price (very dusty rear element.. will need probably trip to Oberkochen, just hope they can clean it).


hope it's an MM version. zeiss wan't interested in servicing my AEG.



Feb 18, 2013 at 04:39 AM
carstenw
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p.3 #9 · leica vs zeiss


philip_pj wrote:
carsten, thanks for doing this for us. For your preferred form of photography, which would you choose and why?


I am leaning towards the Zeiss, because it fits in with my other Zeiss lenses better, has full electronic coupling, and very importantly: is easier to focus. Were I using it on my (ex) D3, I would not give so much weight to the focusing, but the D800 is a beast. I also slightly prefer the DoF distribution of the Zeiss. Pretty much everything else I prefer about the Leica though, so if I had to choose the Leica for some reason, I would not be unhappy.



Feb 18, 2013 at 08:13 AM
carstenw
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p.3 #10 · leica vs zeiss


philip_pj wrote:
You won't find anyone making lower contrast lenses anytime soon, quite the contrary, they know each new gen of sensors will only have greater DR, not less. But, for a given DR your point is taken, and isn't that part of the charm of older lenses?

Weight is another factor - CZ say 830g for the ZF.2; Overgaard quotes 685 grams for the Leica, much lighter whichever way it goes, most fast 35mms are ~600 grams.


I understand that the high contrast look makes a lens look sharper, and thus sells lenses, but I don't see the point of gaining DR with one hand while throwing it away with the other. Leica has always gone their own way here, and I do appreciate it. There is a delicateness to the Leica results which is missing in the Zeiss photos.

The Leica weighs 703g on my kitchen scale, with both caps (the bottom cap being a Zeiss cap!). The Zeiss weighs 897g, so you are right, the Zeiss is a fair amount heavier. It didn't feel that way in the hand, since the Zeiss is so much more voluminous. The Leica feels a bit denser.

Here are another two bonus shots, made with my one studio light and a reflector for an upcoming eBay auction, Leica first. This is at f/16 and f/11, respectively. I don't see much difference at this point, other than the extra wideness of the Leica, but the Leica is a little sharper, and still carries a bit more depth of field. Thus the second shot is sharp front-to-back with the Leica, but not quite with the Zeiss.


























Feb 18, 2013 at 08:25 AM
 

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carstenw
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p.3 #11 · leica vs zeiss


Mescalamba wrote:
Exactly reason why my first "true" alt lens was C/Y and not ZE/F. Tho it came with price (very dusty rear element.. will need probably trip to Oberkochen, just hope they can clean it).


Err, a second reason is that the ZF version didn't exist until a couple of years ago



Feb 18, 2013 at 08:29 AM
sebboh
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p.3 #12 · leica vs zeiss


carstenw wrote:
Err, a second reason is that the ZF version didn't exist until a couple of years ago


he just got it recently, i believe you commented on his picture of it.



Feb 18, 2013 at 08:55 AM
Almass
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p.3 #13 · leica vs zeiss


Carsten. Thank you for the test.

I don't think we can generalize that all Zeiss are warmer than all Leica R, I look at each lens different render. Some shots you want sharpness, some you want contrast, some you want Bokeh....etc....Which ever way you look at it, it is a subjective judgement at this level of glass.

While you made it perfectly clear about a variation in Focus, few questions based on your EXIF:

1- Why did you use EV?
2- The shutter speed varies in some shots. Why?
3- I understand that LR reads the camera settings even in RAW. Are your D800 settings set to Normal and Neutral where applicable?
4- Whenever you have time, can you color correct a set of Leica/Zeiss same pictures to the best of your ability. The cc should be done with few hours in between pics in order to erase your visual memory and not have similar files.

It has been sometime since I ran a side by side test and the latest one was with the Leica R 100/2.8 vs Zeiss ZF2 100/2 vs Voigt 125/2.5 and the Leica R came out trumps. The test is somewhere here on the FM Forum and managed to upset the Voigt fans.

I use both Leica and Zeiss glass. In general, I am heavily biased towards Leica. But my reason to use both is the different drawing style each one portrays. Depending primarily on my mood and secondly on the subject matter, I would use one or the other.
Take a portrait for example to be shot with an 85 focal length. Would I shoot with a Lux 80/1.4 or a ZF2 85/1.4, a CY 85/1.2 or an 85/1.4G?
It depends on my mood evaluating the model, the light and the set up/location.

In general, Leica R for its character and Zeiss for its pop.......For 3D I use Maya



Feb 18, 2013 at 09:01 AM
AhamB
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p.3 #14 · leica vs zeiss


Almass wrote:
It has been sometime since I ran a side by side test and the latest one was with the Leica R 100/2.8 vs Zeiss ZF2 100/2 vs Voigt 125/2.5 and the Leica R came out trumps. The test is somewhere here on the FM Forum and managed to upset the Voigt fans.


Here: http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1025651/0#9747210



Feb 18, 2013 at 12:23 PM
Mescalamba
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p.3 #15 · leica vs zeiss


sebboh wrote:
yeah, at short distances i don't think anything can beat the look of the c/y 35/1.4 from f/1.4-2.8. at f/4 and above i think i actually prefer the leica, but the differences are much smaller.

hope it's an MM version. zeiss wan't interested in servicing my AEG.


I know, already asked Zeiss few days ago. I have MM, cause there is no "kit" online to adapt AE to Nikon F. Or at least I didnt found any. Bought it here on FM from some asian gear trader (wasnt probably my brightest moment) but it was reasonably cheap. Tho I guess full cleaning from Zeiss wont be..

Some stuff (dust) can be taken care off if its just between aperture/front/rear group, those lens are not hard to take apart. But when its inside lens group (like mine), then I have no idea how to get there, probably not possible without right tools. Depends whats problem with your AEG.

Otherwise I could buy second hand ZF.2 locally for same price, not in best condition (missing caps and that lever AiS thingie) but glass was perfect. Not sure if I made mistake or not.



Feb 18, 2013 at 01:39 PM
timballic
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p.3 #16 · leica vs zeiss


carstenw wrote:

http://throughthelensdarkly.com/forums/LeicaVsZeiss35/20130217-LeicaVsZeiss-01.jpg

http://throughthelensdarkly.com/forums/LeicaVsZeiss35/20130217-LeicaVsZeiss-02.jpg


http://throughthelensdarkly.com/forums/LeicaVsZeiss35/20130217-LeicaVsZeiss-11.jpg

http://throughthelensdarkly.com/forums/LeicaVsZeiss35/20130217-LeicaVsZeiss-12.jpg

http://throughthelensdarkly.com/forums/LeicaVsZeiss35/20130217-LeicaVsZeiss-13.jpg

http://throughthelensdarkly.com/forums/LeicaVsZeiss35/20130217-LeicaVsZeiss-14.jpg



In some of the couplets, like the first, a difference is immediately obvious, (Colour fringing in the branches, overall colour, slight difference in boke)

in others a slight difference in exposure seems to mask most differences, like in the porch,

and in the last here the difference is more subtle, with the gentler boke of the leica and greater contrast of the zeiss only becoming noticeable (to me) after quite a lot of to-ing and fro-ing.

In some I find myself preferring the Leica's look and in others, the Zeiss.


Edited on Feb 18, 2013 at 01:57 PM · View previous versions



Feb 18, 2013 at 01:49 PM
carstenw
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p.3 #17 · leica vs zeiss




he just got it recently, i believe you commented on his picture of it.


Ah, I completely misread his statement, I read "the" instead of "my", which changes the meaning dramatically. Oops.



Feb 18, 2013 at 01:55 PM
carstenw
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p.3 #18 · leica vs zeiss


Almass wrote:
While you made it perfectly clear about a variation in Focus, few questions based on your EXIF:

1- Why did you use EV?
2- The shutter speed varies in some shots. Why?
3- I understand that LR reads the camera settings even in RAW. Are your D800 settings set to Normal and Neutral where applicable?
4- Whenever you have time, can you color correct a set of Leica/Zeiss same pictures to the best of your ability. The cc should be done with few hours in between pics in order to erase your visual memory and not have similar files.


Good questions.

1) I used A mode, not M mode, letting the camera choose the exposure. After seeing a couple of times that a straight exposure blew out the sky, I moved to a -0.5 exposure compensation.

2) I used A mode, so the camera sometimes changed the exposure. I let it do what it wanted. If one lens exposes darker, I am more interested in seeing how it is handled than in correcting it, which is trivial.

3) For Picture Styles, it is set to a variation of Vidid, with some minor changes. I wanted to try to match the colours of the screen to reality as much as I could. Green is the culprit here, normally duller on the screen than in real life. I don't know what LR does with this information, so I cannot really correct for it.

4) I am not completely sure what you mean with colour correct?



Feb 18, 2013 at 02:00 PM
carstenw
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p.3 #19 · leica vs zeiss


timballic wrote:
In some of the couplets, like the first, a difference is immediately obvious, (Colour fringing in the branches, overall colour, slight difference in boke)

in others a slight difference in exposure seems to mask most differences, like in the porch,

and in the last here the difference is more subtle, with the gentler boke of the leica and greater contrast of the zeiss only becoming noticeable (to me) after quite a lot of to-ing and fro-ing.

In some I find myself preferring the Leica's look and in others, the Zeiss.


Yes, there are clearly more free variables than we are aware of In general, I slightly prefer the Leica's rendering at the zoomed in level, but the Zeiss rendering as a whole. There is much subtlety to the Leica rendering, but more impact from the Zeiss. I guess this is half a dozen of one and six of the other.



Feb 18, 2013 at 02:03 PM
AhamB
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p.3 #20 · leica vs zeiss


zhangyue wrote:
But I don't feel they have magic powders in term of lens design or performance. Modern Canikon/sigma can do the same thing with AF but poorer mechanic.


The fact that they can doesn't mean that they always have a lens with similar performance in the same focal length and price range available. All brands have some unique lenses to offer.



Feb 18, 2013 at 02:10 PM
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