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Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review
  
 
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review
David Braddon-Mitchell, aka @DavidBM, posted a review on the Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO at phillipreeve.net.

Here is an excerpt from his conclusion:

"At this stage Iím pretty convinced that the optical qualities are as Zeissí own MTF suggests; impeccable..."

"..I think itís safe to say that itís optically one of the finest lenses you can buy...But it is very expensive: so it will justify its price only if itís not only optically outstanding but also offers ergonomic and handling advantages that make it preferable to larger, faster and cheaper lenses."

Read the full review here.

-------

Order the Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO:

B&H Photo | Adorama







May 30, 2017 at 03:19 PM
bluloo
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Nice review


May 30, 2017 at 04:51 PM
jhinkey
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Nice review David.

This is such and "in-between" lens for me:
- f/2.8, excellent wide open, AF, OIS . .
- expensive, but that's relative of course
- large-ish & heavy-ish (compared to alternatives)

Would I take it hiking: no, too big and heavy
Would I use it for indoor, low light events: maybe, but it's f/2.8, not f/2, so ISO would suffer a bit. Subject movement sometimes dictates min. shutter speed, so OIS maybe not that useful.
Would I use it for landscapes: Likely not as my Telyt is just fine for that
Would I use it for candid portraits: Likely, as sometimes f/2 is too little DOF at close range, OIS is nice, and AF handy too . . .

So really, it can't replace my 135/3.4 APO Telyt, but maybe can replace my 135/2 ZF.2. Though I'd rather just wait for for Sony to come out with a native E mount version of the 135/1.8.

Nice to see a f/2.8 prime be impeccable wide open and great to have choices for the A7RII!



May 30, 2017 at 05:34 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


The review is very well balanced. It shows the worse case scenarios regarding bokeh and flare performance.
It's refreshing to see a non-biased review from someone who actually own the lens.
Great job David!



May 30, 2017 at 09:59 PM
genji
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Fred Miranda wrote:
The review is very well balanced. It shows the worse case scenarios regarding bokeh and flare performance.
It's refreshing to see a non-biased review from someone who actually own the lens.
Great job David!


Exactly. In addition, David writes with a grace and clarity that make the review a pleasure to read.



May 30, 2017 at 10:03 PM
GMPhotography
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Yes well done. Was trying not to read it as my Sigma 135 is having troubles on the A9 and you know me, that spells buy something else. Lol


May 30, 2017 at 10:16 PM
bjornthun
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Thanks to David for a very thorough and useful review of the Batis 135.


May 31, 2017 at 12:02 AM
ediblestarfish
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Just got mine today, not much time to play with the diminishing light, but my initial impressions are the same as this excellent review.


May 31, 2017 at 04:48 AM
MaTiHH
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


David, thanks for the excellent review, very well done!

As for the alternatives I used to shoot with the Minolta AF 135/2.8, low cost (around 150Ä used today), good image quality and sunstars and an excellent built. Nearly undestroyable, I'd say.

And it can do sunstars:

[url=https://flic.kr/p/DSHQeS]

Hamburg Speicherstadt 1[/url] by martin timmann, auf Flickr



May 31, 2017 at 06:06 AM
 

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justruss
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Thanks David!

It's always great having trusted members write up these sorts of reviews.

And shout-out to P.R. for hosting such great reviews (and selecting such solid reviewers).




May 31, 2017 at 07:56 AM
Aztatlan
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Great review. I'd love the Batis in my bag as a lightweight tele for travel/hiking/landscape but the price is a bit rich for the fairly rare occasion I'd use it. I'm also not sure it's really got enough reach to justify packing alongside my 90mm. The hunt continues


May 31, 2017 at 10:30 AM
Phillip Reeve
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


justruss wrote:
Thanks David!

It's always great having trusted members write up these sorts of reviews.

And shout-out to P.R. for hosting such great reviews (and selecting such solid reviewers).


A big thank you from the team and me to David as well, as many have said here: he did a splendid job

Sony as well as Zeiss have done a very good job as well in the sense that they have created a network of affiliated photographers who get privileged access to new products and other benefits and in return their reviews of new products are usually very favorable which makes it hard to distinguish signal from noise. I think this makes it even more important to have independent reviews and I am very happy that my blog has become a platform with very little marketing noise. By myself I could only deliver a fraction of the reviews we can publish as a team.



May 31, 2017 at 11:13 AM
Chris_88
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Great review, David. I don't use a 135mm prime often enough to justify even considering the Batis, but it was an interesting read nonetheless.

One little nitpick: I assume you have no first-hand experience with the Sony 135 1.8, but I would have liked a brief discussion/mention of that lens in the alternative lens section. After all, for all its shortcomings (AF motor, CA wide open), this lens is still a very viable option on e-mount.



May 31, 2017 at 11:38 AM
seanj
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Great review. Thanks.

I think I'd love this lens, but I would get too hung up on the f/2.8. That simple comparison with the Zeiss ZF.2 2/135 Apo Sonnar wide open is easily noticeable to me. I prefer the higher dissolving power of the f/2. I don't like the size of my Rokinon 135/2 (or manual only focus), but I can't justify losing its IQ for now.



May 31, 2017 at 11:52 AM
DavidBM
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


Chris_88 wrote:
Great review, David. I don't use a 135mm prime often enough to justify even considering the Batis, but it was an interesting read nonetheless.

One little nitpick: I assume you have no first-hand experience with the Sony 135 1.8, but I would have liked a brief discussion/mention of that lens in the alternative lens section. After all, for all its shortcomings (AF motor, CA wide open), this lens is still a very viable option on e-mount.


Hi Chris; yes you are right that it is absence of hands on experience of the ZA which led me not to mention what is by all accounts a very fine lens. But I didn't want to just report second hand opinions - which I have to say all do seem to agree with your account of it. All the alternatives mentioned in their own sections were ones either I've used, or some other writer on the Phillip Reeve blog has reviewed.

I notice that Phillip has added a comment that he has compared the ZA to the legacy Minolta (which was pretty good) and that it was sharper at f1.8 than the Minolta at any aperture...



May 31, 2017 at 12:10 PM
Phillip Reeve
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review




DavidBM wrote:
Hi Chris; yes you are right that it is absence of hands on experience of the ZA which led me not to mention what is by all accounts a very fine lens. But I didn't want to just report second hand opinions - which I have to say all do seem to agree with your account of it. All the alternatives mentioned in their own sections were ones either I've used, or some other writer on the Phillip Reeve blog has reviewed.

I notice that Phillip has added a comment that he has compared the ZA to the legacy Minolta (which
...Show more
Actually the ZA 1.8/135 was one of the very first lenses I reviewed on the blog (therefore the review doesn't quite match our current standards) but so far I hadn't added it to any of our lists so little wonder that you didn't find it.

The ZA doesn't leave anything to be desired as far as sharpness is concerned and I would rate it's bokeh the smoothest of any available 135mm lens but it is well known that if suffers from significant axial CA. It is also a big fat lens and you can choose between using AF which is far more limited than that of the Batis or focus manually with a focusing ring which is nice by AF lens standards but has a very large diameter and a little play.



May 31, 2017 at 12:26 PM
Chris_88
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 APO Review


DavidBM wrote:
Hi Chris; yes you are right that it is absence of hands on experience of the ZA which led me not to mention what is by all accounts a very fine lens. But I didn't want to just report second hand opinions - which I have to say all do seem to agree with your account of it. All the alternatives mentioned in their own sections were ones either I've used, or some other writer on the Phillip Reeve blog has reviewed.

I notice that Phillip has added a comment that he has compared the ZA to the legacy Minolta (which
...Show more

Thanks, David. I remembered Philip's earlier review of the big Sonnar and hence just wondered. Again, just a little nitpick to an otherwise excellent review with great shots. It's nice to see an early review of a Zeiss lens written by somebody who clearly does NOT have a (too?) cozy relationship with the folks in Oberkochen.



May 31, 2017 at 10:17 PM







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