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Zeiss 135mm f/2 Apo Sonnar T*

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
5 7956 May 26, 2015
Recommended By Average Price
100% of reviewers $2,111.25
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.80
9.40
9.8
Screen_Shot_2013-11-14_at_10_52_06_AM

Specifications:
Name: Carl Zeiss 135mm f/2 Apo Sonnar T* 2/135
Image Circle: 35mm
Type: Telephoto Prime
Focal Length: 135mm
APS Equivalent: 1.5x: 202.5mm
1.6x: 216mm
Max Aperture: f/2
Min Aperture: f/22
Diaphragm Blades: 9 (rounded)
Lens Construction: 11 elements in 8 groups
Diagonal Angle of View
(Based on image circle): 18.7 degrees
Focus Details: Manual focus only
Front Element Rotation:
Zoom System: n/a
Closest Focus: 80cm / 2.62 ft.
Magnification Ratio: 0.25x / 1:4
Filter Size: 77mm
Dimensions
(Length x Diameter): 130mm x 84mm / 5.11 in. x 3.31 in. (ZE)
Weight: 930g / 32.8 oz (ZE)
Notes: Available SLR mounts: Canon EF-mount (ZE), Nikon F-Mount (ZF.2)
Online Price: US$2,150



 


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R10
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Registered: Jan 4, 2008
Location: Germany
Posts: 60
Review Date: May 26, 2015 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: resolution, sharpness, contrast, 3D, Bokeh, color, no aberrations whatsoever, smooth precise MF, built like a tank
Cons:
lens cap sucks (flipping off your hand due to longitudinal(!) ribbing); replaced mine immediately with that for the Otus Distagon 55 f/1.4 (itís 77mm too, has good grip and is planar).

Intro:
I use this lens on a D810 and I have many years of experience with premium lenses such as, e.g., the Leica Apo-Macro-Elmarit-R 100 f/2.8.
End Intro.

My best lens in 30 years. Period. Rivalled by quite a few modern tele lenses as of f5.6 or f8 in various aspects but second to none (to no non-Otus) with respect to the combination of all of its qualities - and at full aperture (which is f2 here!), second to none in any quality (donít know the Nikkor AF-S 200 f2 -beast thought). Especially at medium to longer distances, the Zeiss Apo Sonnarís f2-capabilities shine. At these distances, its 3D rendition and Bokeh really makes a difference.


Btw: Itís been reported (by Zeiss) that this lens actually is an Otus class lens. It just came along before the Otus series (and name) was inaugurated.

@arthury: Why your 9-points rating? In your review you say that you have no complaints (except the cap) ...


May 26, 2015
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rewart
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Registered: Mar 11, 2013
Location: N/A
Posts: 14
Review Date: Mar 31, 2014 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,125.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Breathtaking sharpness and bokeh, rich colour, compelling 3-dimensionality, and complete and absolute lack of any chromatic aberration.
Cons:
Lens cap needs to be replaced right out of the box - a broken-record complaint for Zeiss' entire lens lineup.

This is a truly stunning lens.

I also have the Canon 135/2L, which I have always thought was a wonderfully sharp lens. The Zeiss, without hesitation, trumps it in terms of sharpness. Even at f/2 the Zeiss challenges the Canon lens stopped-down.

The ZE 135 also has a very smooth bokeh, and the focus transition (going into and then out-of focus) is very subtle and realistic.

The quality of the bokeh, especially when contrasted with the wonderfully crisp in-focus sharpness, and then the handing of the focus transition, lend the Zeiss that wonderfully compelling 3-D look to its images.

The 135mm focal length has its uses, and they are obviously not universal. If you like the focal length, and aren't in so much of a hurry as to need autofocus, this lens is truly sensational and I feel worth the hefty price tag.


Mar 31, 2014
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digicV
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Registered: Feb 8, 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 122
Review Date: Mar 14, 2014 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Breath taking resolution, eye popping images wide open. A joy to hold and use. Replaced my Nikon 200 f2 with this for portraits. Easier to focus through viewfinder than the Zeiss Otus 55mm
Cons:
There are no cons. Period

Throw away your bulky 200mm f2 or the 70-200. Get this lovely-to-hold smaller lens for awe-inspiring images shot wide open.
The bright image in the viewfinder is easy to manual focus.
If you can afford the best for FX then look no further


Mar 14, 2014
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arthury
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Registered: Sep 1, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 11
Review Date: Jan 25, 2014 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,120.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Excellent color correction. The Nikkor 70-200mm/2.8VR2 and the 200mm/2VR2 are close but a zoom cannot match the resolution of a prime and the 200mm/2VR2 is very heavy.
Cons:
Lens cap be be improved.
Jan 25, 2014
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rgingo
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Registered: Jun 24, 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Nov 19, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: extremely clean and sharp at f:2 (compared to other pro lenses)...the most sharp and crisp stopped down; focus is very easy and precise; extremely high contrast even with backlight/high flare situations
Cons:
slightly heavy, but does balance well

It is absolutely the best lens I have ever used for selective focus environmental portraiture. The contrast of supersharp against very smooth bokeh backgrounds is ideal. The ultra-high contrast and apochromatic color correction produced by this lens allows a more gentle (softer contrast) overall tonality to be used for the image during post-processing. The super-clean color and tonality which results is extremely pleasing. When combined with the Nikon D800e sensor, there is no doubt that this combo will match or beat the quality of most medium format digital.

Nov 19, 2013
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Zeiss 135mm f/2 Apo Sonnar T*

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
5 7956 May 26, 2015
Recommended By Average Price
100% of reviewers $2,111.25
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.80
9.40
9.8
Screen_Shot_2013-11-14_at_10_52_06_AM

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