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What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?
  
 
singularity001
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


I've seen threads debating all around 35mm's or landscape focused ones where corner sharpness and field curvature are talking points, but I'm curious what are people's favorite 35mm lens when we just talk portraits?

This question is also a bit self serving as I'm trying to decide on a 35mm solution. In the recent favorite lens for TAP thread, I notice a lot of you guys seem to be loving the ZM 35/1.4. So I'm sure that one will get some votes, but I'm curious if anyone is using the C/Y 35/1.4?

For me personally I'm debating between ZM 35/1.4, C/Y 35/1.4, or RX1RII. Thought about the Zony 35/1.4 but it takes up too much space.



Oct 24, 2016 at 05:00 PM
AGeoJO
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


For use directly without any adapter and being able to take advantage of the AF capabilities, such as Eye-AF. and for its rendition: Sony FE 35mm f/1.4. Yes, it is fairly bulky and not a lightweight lens but I love it. For portability and convenience while getting Eye-AF: RX1 RII but for using on the TAP and the least expensive out of the three: Voigtlander 35mm f/1.7. I will sell one of the two before too long however....


Oct 24, 2016 at 05:11 PM
rioni
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


After trying so many, I've given up and just accept the RX1* is the best.


Oct 24, 2016 at 05:38 PM
Steve Spencer
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


For me it is the ZF 35mm f/1.4. I love the rendering of that lens for portraits. I have the Zeiss ZM 35 f/1.4 too, and it is very nice and much smaller. The ZM is quite competent for portraits, and is a great all arounder. Still for portraits, I typically reach for the ZF.


Oct 24, 2016 at 07:59 PM
arduluth
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


Probably the Sony Zeiss FE 35mm f/1.4. Only rented it for a wedding, loved the images. Great look for people. Too big and heavy for me personally to buy a copy, but if the C/Y 35/1.4 is OK size-wise I would keep it in mind.


Oct 24, 2016 at 09:22 PM
scrappydog
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


I love my ZM 35/1.4. It gets my vote. My Fuji X100S is competent too, as it has a leaf shutter and the lens is reasonably sharp in the center at f/2 (not sure if relevant on a Sony board).


Oct 24, 2016 at 09:51 PM
DavidBM
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


Another vote for the FE 1.4/35 (if you can find a centred copy)
It's got glorious bokeh; really the nicest I have see in any interchangeable 35mm lens. And eye AF.
And the whole thing weighs no more than an Rxir as well as being cheaper and having f 1.4. So unless you want the rx as a carry everywhere camera by itself, I think the FE makes more sense as a purchase in addition to your regular kit.

It is indeed huge. But for me it's mainly a people lens. I would never take it hiking or biking so it doesn't really worry me. Maybe if I shot street I would find it too large, but that's not my thing.



Oct 24, 2016 at 10:07 PM
singularity001
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?




Steve Spencer wrote:
For me it is the ZF 35mm f/1.4. I love the rendering of that lens for portraits. I have the Zeiss ZM 35 f/1.4 too, and it is very nice and much smaller. The ZM is quite competent for portraits, and is a great all arounder. Still for portraits, I typically reach for the ZF.


Took a look at some images on Flickr from the 35mm ZF lens and the rendering definitely does look delicious!



Oct 24, 2016 at 10:11 PM
Eoin
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


I like the CY look across many focal lengths, 35 being 2nd only to the 100 f2 planar. However adding an adapter and not having any auto focus or electronic aperture swayed my decision to get the FE 35 f1.4.

Am I happy, yes. Beautiful, beautiful lens. Well work the extra size.



Oct 24, 2016 at 11:08 PM
retrofocus
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


CV 35/1.2 II. Simply excellent for portraits.


Oct 24, 2016 at 11:09 PM
 

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Jack Thompson
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


Another vote for the ZM 35 1.4. I wouldn't want to use it in low light professionally though. TAP is too unreliable in low light for me. But in decent light, pretty awesome, so small (compared to other options) and the rendering is gorgeous.


Oct 24, 2016 at 11:17 PM
damhieu
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


My pick is rx1r, love little sonnar


Oct 25, 2016 at 01:35 AM
DannyBurkPhoto
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


ZE 35/1.4 - wonderful and very 3-D rendering. I haven't used the C/Y version, but I imagine that they would be fairly similar.

I'm really liking what I see of the ZM 35/1.4 also, but I've not used it myself.



Oct 25, 2016 at 01:39 AM
GabrielPhoto
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


Another vote for the Sony/Zeiss 35mm 1.4! Just fantastic rendering. Along with my 85mm 1.4 GM are the two carry everywhere lens I keep in my Tenba DNA 8 bag as my kit when I am not going out with a specific purpose to shoot.


Oct 25, 2016 at 03:11 AM
taz_k
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


My favourite is the Zeiss Distagon 35/1.4 ZF2. Very nice bokeh and the transition from sharp to unsharp is very smooth. Also very sharp if you stop it down 1-2 steps.

I also own the Sony/Zeiss 35/1.4 which is also a great lens. Can't go wrong with either one.



Oct 25, 2016 at 08:40 AM
genji
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


singularity001 wrote:
I've seen threads debating all around 35mm's or landscape focused ones where corner sharpness and field curvature are talking points, but I'm curious what are people's favorite 35mm lens when we just talk portraits?

This question is also a bit self serving as I'm trying to decide on a 35mm solution. In the recent favorite lens for TAP thread, I notice a lot of you guys seem to be loving the ZM 35/1.4. So I'm sure that one will get some votes, but I'm curious if anyone is using the C/Y 35/1.4?

For me personally I'm debating between ZM 35/1.4, C/Y
...Show more

I guess it depends what you mean by "too much" or, alternatively, how you define size. I have both lenses and an RX1R II. Without hood, front cap, and rear cap, the relevant dimensions are as follows.

Contax C/Y 35/1.4 (with a Rayqual C/Y->E adapter)
Weight: 691g
Length: 109mm
Diameter: 70mm
Filter Size: 67mm

Zony FE 35/1.4
Weight: 634g
Length: 118mm
Diameter: 78mm
Filter size: 72mm

So the Zony is slightly longer and slightly "thicker" than the Contax but it weighs less. Looking at the lenses side by side, the Zony definitely looks bulkier, which is probably what you mean by its taking up too much space. But when you pick up the lenses, one after another, the extra weight of the Contax is really obvious.

If size and resolution are paramount and cost less so, the ZM 35/1.4 is an easy choice (and one that many FMers have made). But the Zony currently has one huge advantage: Eye AF. Even so, I'm really tempted by the ZM 35/1.4 and, should the Techart people manage to reverse engineer Eye AF, I'll sell both the Contax and the Zony and buy a ZM. I haven't discussed the RX1R II because it represents an entirely different use case.



Oct 25, 2016 at 09:56 AM
philip_pj
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


I use an RX1 for redundancy as well as its great versatility, but in purely pictorial terms the CY is very likely the most impressive 35mm ever made; a star connoisseur lens in a very good lens range. The acid test? If Zeiss re-released this one it would sell like hot cakes, no doubt about that.


Oct 25, 2016 at 01:04 PM
Mystik
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


RX1/r/II


Oct 25, 2016 at 01:52 PM
farfisa
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


Minolta AF 35/1.4 is my favourite. (The Sony A-mount 35/1.4 G is based on this lens)

I also have the FE 35/1.4 which is sharper, more contrast wide open and focuses much more quietly, but I still think the Minolta wins for character and colour.



Oct 25, 2016 at 02:21 PM
freaklikeme
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · What's your favorite 35mm portrait lens?


Both the pre-ASPH Summilux-M 35 and the Summilux-R 35 are great people lenses. The Lux-R has gotten ridiculously expensive, but you can still find copies of the M for less than $2k.

If I couldn't get or use either of those lenses, third choice would be the ZF Distagon 35/1.4, which has, in my opinion, the prettiest bokeh in a fast 35. The FE 35/1.4 comes close, but I think the Zeiss-designed lens wins with it's gentler focus transitions.



Oct 26, 2016 at 07:45 PM
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