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Archive 2009 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?

  
 
ndwgolf1
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


Thanks .....just love the skin tones



Apr 25, 2024 at 08:10 PM
ndwgolf1
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


Probably the wrong group to ask but what’s best for portraiture Voitlander 110:2.5 or Zeiss 100:2


Apr 25, 2024 at 09:31 PM
philip_pj
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


The Voigt gets my vote unreservedly. Its attention to glass selection is unrivalled in modern short telephoto primes and portraits can be expected to reveal that class. It is effectively an Otus tier lens, similar complexity, APD glass and rounded rendering. The 100MP was a microcontrast star in its day and still is a fine performer, despite its well-known colour issues. It might be a bit 'tough' for skin tones.

You get a lot however with the 110/2.5 - versatility at all focal distances, full macro, superb LoCA correction (important for much of wide aperture portraiture in uncontrolled locations) and superior technical performance. It is stronger wide open than the 100MP is at any aperture!

It is very much an old school lens. I'd put it a class above the commercial 105/1.4 lenses from Sigma and Nikon. At 14/12 elements in groups, it is the company's 'no holds barred' most complex lens - they are known for extracting top performance from realtively simple designs. At $1100 it is an absolute bargain..reading/viewing:

---

'Every Voigtländer lens that I’ve used has consistently left me very pleased with the color rendition – it is both rich and accurate. In a head to head between this lens and another incredible APO lens (the Zeiss Milvus 135mm F2), I actually felt that the Voigtländer color was a little bit better..'

https://dustinabbott.net/2020/03/voigtlander-110mm-f2-5-apo-lanthar-macro-review/

https://phillipreeve.net/blog/voigtlander-110mm-f2-5-apo-review/

https://www.stevehuffphoto.com/2019/02/04/out-on-the-town-with-the-voigtlander-110mm-f-2-5-apo-lanthar-and-sony-a7iii/

YT video title: 'Voigtländer 110mm f/2.5 Macro APO-Lanthar lens review' (see 0:54)

https://www.flickr.com/photos/twitchy_finger/48701729116/in/pool-3145821@N21/



Apr 25, 2024 at 10:23 PM
ndwgolf1
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


They just offered me to try a Leica 90mm APO as well. Decision decisions decision 🙈🙈🙈


Apr 25, 2024 at 11:22 PM
Steve Spencer
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


philip_pj wrote:
The Voigt gets my vote unreservedly. Its attention to glass selection is unrivalled in modern short telephoto primes and portraits can be expected to reveal that class. It is effectively an Otus tier lens, similar complexity, APD glass and rounded rendering. The 100MP was a microcontrast star in its day and still is a fine performer, despite its well-known colour issues. It might be a bit 'tough' for skin tones.

You get a lot however with the 110/2.5 - versatility at all focal distances, full macro, superb LoCA correction (important for much of wide aperture portraiture in uncontrolled locations) and superior
...Show more

Although I usually agree with Philip, I want to offer a different point of view in this instance. I have both the Voitlander 110 f/2.5 APO and the Zeiss ZE 100 f/2 Makro and for portraits I prefer the Zeiss lens. Don't get me wrong the Voigt 110 f/2.5 APO is a great lens in all the ways Philip noted, but for portraits I really care about the bokeh a lens produces and especially the transition zones and as good as the Voigt 110 f/2.5 APO is, I think the bokeh is only average and nothing to write home about. The lens doesn't have rounded blades, so if you stop down a little sometimes you see the aperture shape in the highlights and the transition between in focus to out of focus is pretty abrupt and can look harsh at time.
In contrast, the Zeiss 100 f/2 Makro has in my view quite beautiful bokeh with slow soft transition zones from in focus to out of focus. The lens also has nice round highlights even stopped down.
Both lenses are great, but different horses for different courses, IMO, and I like the look of the Zeiss lens better for portraits even if the Voigt lens is better for a number of other applications.



Apr 26, 2024 at 12:01 AM
ndwgolf1
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?



I ended up buying a new Leica 90mm Summercron APO with the TArtasins manual adapter looks and works beautifully.



Apr 26, 2024 at 06:29 PM
philip_pj
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


It can be quite a journey to find a portrait lens you like, it seems much more so than wider focal lengths. The subject matter demands a lot of care and of course photographic preferences come into play.

The 24 year old (5/5) 90mm APO in M form is a good blend of old school, soft wide open (see below quote) with great stopped down performance, by f5.6 or so. As with Zeiss equivalents, very flat field and low aberrations. Many liked the pre-asph R lens as well.

May be of interest re the Leica 90/2 APO-Summicron, particularly regarding aberration incidence by aperture, and the now-popular rapid focus fall-off:

'Close up performance at full aperture delivers very crisp pictures over the whole image field. The very high level of correction of this lens brings a rapid drop to the unsharpness area, where outlines of objects are preserved. Details however are washed out. This behavior in the sharpness-unsharpness gradient, a very rapid and abrupt change from the plane of focus to the unsharpness zone, is typical of the current Leica M lenses.'

'The step from f/2.8 to f/2 seems a small one. In fact some aberrations increase by a factor of nine and
that amount of aberration is not easy to control and correct. The designer needs to accept a reduced image quality or if possible he has to aim for a higher level of correction. Leica designers have been well aware of the absolute and relative performance of the 90mm Summicron and its production life of almost 20 years
shows that a better correction had to wait for new tools.'

Leica M lenses: their soul and secrets - Erwin Puts.




Apr 27, 2024 at 02:01 AM
pmeheut
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


philip_pj wrote:
The 24 year old (5/5) 90mm APO in M form is a good blend of old school, soft wide open (see below quote)

I owned it as well as the R version, used a friend's one a few weeks ago and never noticed it is "soft wide open".

For portrait, I liked the 80mm/1.4 R. Soft a 1.4 getting better at f/2 and even more at f/4 but with very nuanced colors.
But this was in the film days, I wonder how it behaves on a high-res sensor.



Apr 27, 2024 at 07:10 AM
coralnut
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


Sidetrack: Has anyone adapted a tripod collar for this lens? It seems like it would be possible / useful for macro work, instead of hanging all of the weight off of the camera's lens mount where the cantilevered lens it would be prone to vibration.


Apr 27, 2024 at 10:08 AM
Ripolini
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p.2 #10 · p.2 #10 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


coralnut wrote:
Sidetrack: Has anyone adapted a tripod collar for this lens? It seems like it would be possible / useful for macro work, instead of hanging all of the weight off of the camera's lens mount where the cantilevered lens it would be prone to vibration.


I have no issue with vibrations at 1:2. I use EFCS on both Z6 and D780 though. When using Z6 (and FTZ) I attach the tripod to the FTZ, not to the camera (see https://kirkphoto.com/universal-camera-plate-for-nikon-ftz-adapter.html).
Another option is the Novoflez NIKZ adapter + ASTAT RZ tripod collar combo. The Novoflex adapter has no electrical contact (no information transmission between the lens and the camera).



Apr 29, 2024 at 01:46 AM
Ripolini
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p.2 #11 · p.2 #11 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


philip_pj wrote:
The Voigt gets my vote unreservedly. Its attention to glass selection is unrivalled in modern short telephoto primes and portraits can be expected to reveal that class. It is effectively an Otus tier lens, similar complexity, APD glass and rounded rendering.


Do you know of any side-by-side comparison between the CV 110/2.5 and the Nikkor Z 105/2.8 MC?
Thanks.




Apr 29, 2024 at 02:00 AM
rico
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p.2 #12 · p.2 #12 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


Ripolini wrote:
Do you know of any side-by-side comparison between the CV 110/2.5 and the Nikkor Z 105/2.8 MC?

I have so many ways to hit 100mm it's ridiculous. In CZ C/Y alone there's P100, S100, SP100. Throw in the 100STF, Nikon F and Canon nFD zooms, and a few Leica 90s. That said, a comparo between C/V 110 and 105 MC would be a monster matchup. Based on images I perused, the MC seems to have a microscopic level of defocus CA while the V/C is simply perfect in this regard (no surprise given the insane optical formula). For my intended purposes, the MC would win for the AF: I have enough manual-focus primes.



Apr 29, 2024 at 08:28 PM
philip_pj
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p.2 #13 · p.2 #13 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


Would be great to see more comparisons of the better 100mm crop. I don't necessarily mark down any of them due to pixel scale CA but others do, so I mentioned it. The Z 105/2.8 looks like a cracking lens too, and VR - very handy. People love it, 630g also an advantage. Lucky Nikonistas.

PM, it's why I posted the lengthy piece from Puts, it seems ambiguous. The f2 results show it to be what I call a 60-80-90 lens, for 40-20-10 lpmm in MTF. The 60% lens contrast is the soft part of the equation, and even after makers could do better they steered clear of doing so. The 100MP fits this mould as well - flat fields and aberration control (astigmatism) disguise their lack of final detail rendering. The idea dates from Contarex days.

Portraits can do very well with the traditional design, of course - 20 and 40 lpmm are vital for them. But nowadays, Leica makes the SL version of the 90/2 APO with stratospheric MTF wide open, and the last Otus (100/1.4) does so as well. Others have learned how to do so too.

Overall, it's a good thing as these lenses double for other uses. I love my S100 but want more for say, landscapes and open nature work. As Dr Nasse says, high MTF for broad/medium edges is no guarantee of brilliant images. That where the 80% 40 lpmm comes into play. Once seen, never forgotten.



Apr 29, 2024 at 09:40 PM
nntnam
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p.2 #14 · p.2 #14 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


I had the 100MP for a long time and loved it. Still regret selling it a couple of years ago.
However, I wouldn't recommend it for portrait work, despite it having a gorgeous bokeh.
The lens has too much contrast/micro contrast even wide-opened. It highlights the imperfections perfectly



Apr 30, 2024 at 08:52 PM
rico
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p.2 #15 · p.2 #15 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


nntnam wrote:
I had the 100MP for a long time and loved it. Still regret selling it a couple of years ago.
However, I wouldn't recommend it for portrait work, despite it having a gorgeous bokeh.
The lens has too much contrast/micro contrast even wide-opened. It highlights the imperfections perfectly

I agree that a dermatology analysis is not what people want from a portrait of themselves. For a compact and well-behaved prime at this FL, the S100 is a leading contender, and our local master of this lens is Philip. Stopped down to get sufficient DOF means the fast 100s serve no purpose—unless half an eyeball in focus is the goal. The P100 is medium contrast and not painfully sharp:



A7ii, CZ P100 C/Y, wide open, one strobe. I only shot at f/2 for the jollies, and placing key elements of the face in the field of focus was a true pain. Fortunately, the subject was patient!



Apr 30, 2024 at 09:57 PM
philip_pj
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p.2 #16 · p.2 #16 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


Jack of all trades, master of none, I'm afraid, Rico. lol. The Sonnar 100/3.5, bought as an allrounder in DSLR days, turned out some portraits I'm very happy with, blessed to have got them really. Agree re aperture too, had no choice with the S100.

The 80mm/1.4 R, we had a guy who posted some from a horse race meet some years back, very nice indeed, a distinct look all its own, like the pre-asph 90/2. The old lenses were/are hard to beat. I'm been trying to move on from the S100 for years now, so I avoid looking back. But here's one, since we are going over these older lenses. They have such presence, and seem to get the best out of the subject. I pine for a light Otus (Sonnar) 100/1.4, it would never be short of a mount! Zeiss went out with a bang, not a whimper.









Apr 30, 2024 at 11:54 PM
Goodrich
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p.2 #17 · p.2 #17 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


Zeiss continue to make cine lenses, I think as it's probably not worth the candle making cheap stills lenses.

The 105mm was the first lens that I bought for my Nikon kit that showed me what the cut above looked like. It was fantastic, so far as image quality was concerned, although CA was not great wide open and, it was manual focus, which can be fine for some macro work, but is a bit tiresome for live subjects, these days.



May 03, 2024 at 05:15 PM
philip_pj
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p.2 #18 · p.2 #18 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


Do you think the days have changed? We must recognise manual focus is not for everyone. For most, photography is all about expediency, so the allure of automation wins the day for them. But it is a pyrrhic victory, in terms of creativity.

The tactile experience appears to be intrinsic to craft-oriented creative activities. The use of our hands and the hand/eye interplay turns something on in our minds. We become an essential part of the process rather than an observer of the automation. Seen another way, the MF process is lens-centric, whereas AF photography is camera-centric. In essence, one is artisanal, the other is computer operation.

Many find using MF lenses for human subjects energising rather than enervating. Time passes so easily because concentration is intensified. You see the feedback in the viewfinder as you work the aperture and focus rings on these products of industrial art, making conscious decisions about the image to be. Human subjects seem to sense this difference, judging by their facial expressions.



May 04, 2024 at 12:04 AM
coralnut
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p.2 #19 · p.2 #19 · Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar for portrait work?


> Human subjects seem to sense this difference, judging by their facial expressions.

I agree that when the photographer gives their subject the time, effort, and cognition to compose an artisanal photograph, the subject appreciates the experience as being a significant moment in time, rather than just another insignificant moment in time that was instantly captured by automation. The perceived value of that emotive experience in time comes through in subtle facial expressions because in that moment you've taken the time to make a connection.



May 05, 2024 at 09:44 PM
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