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Zeiss 12mm f/2.8 Touit T*

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
3 9473 Apr 12, 2021
Recommended By Average Price
100% of reviewers $666.33
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.00
8.00
9.0
Screen_Shot_2013-11-14_at_10_45_13_AM

Specifications:
Name: Carl Zeiss 12mm f/2.8 Touit 2.8/12
Image Circle: APS-C
Type: Wide Prime
Focal Length: 12mm
APS Equivalent: 1.5x: 18mm
Max Aperture: f/2.8
Min Aperture: f/22
Diaphragm Blades: 9 (rounded)
Lens Construction: 11 elements in 8 groups with 2 aspherical and 3 anomalous partial dispersion elements
Diagonal Angle of View
(Based on image circle): 99 degrees
Focus Details: Autofocus; With grippy focus ring for precise manual focusing
Front Element Rotation: No
Zoom System: n/a
Closest Focus: 18cm / 7.1 in.
Magnification Ratio: 0.11x / 1:9
Filter Size: 67mm
Dimensions
(Length x Diameter): X: 68 x 65 mm / 2.68 x 2.56 in.
E: 68 x 65 mm / 2.68 x 2.56 in.
Weight: X: 270g / 9.52 oz
E: 260g / 9.17 oz
Notes: Available CSC mounts: Fujifilm X-Mount, Sony NEX E-Mount (X-Mount version has aperture ring, E-Mount does not).
Online Price: US$1,000



 


          
brycemilton
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Registered: Aug 13, 2020
Location: United States
Posts: 71
Review Date: Apr 12, 2021 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $500.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Excellent optics. Decent autofocus. Saves EXIF data in the files. Well built. Better flare control than SamyangRokinon 12/2. Minimal distortion. Very sharp, even wide-open.
Cons:
MSRP is way too high. A stop slower and significantly pricier than the SamyangRokinon 12/2. Aperture ring on Fuji version is too loose (spins inadvertently).

This lens has been around for a while, but since it's relatively uncommon, I figured I'd share some thoughts. Introduced back in 2013 with the sobering price tag of $1,250 USD, it was simultaneously one of the first autofocus lenses from Zeiss and the most extreme rectilinear wide angle primes available for the Fuji-X and Sony-E mounts.

Honest reviewers rightly called out that the optical performance and build quality wasn't quite the gold standard set by other notable Zeiss lenses, and that, for the money, it was hard to recommend over the objectively superior XF 14/2.8. Since then, Zeiss first cut the price, and then ultimately cut the entire Touit line in the face of weak sales and relentless competition from Korea and China, most notably the popular Samyang/Rokinon 12/2.

Having sold my Sammy (because I struggled with color correcting it and disliked the 6-bladed aperture), I picked up the 9-bladed Zeiss last week for $500 (used and in excellent condition). At used lens prices, I'm finding a lot to like and little to complain about. It's stoutly built, focuses quickly (with the latest 1.2 firmware update that enabled PDAF for cameras like my X-Pro3), is optically excellent, and seems to slot in perfectly between the xf14/2.8 and the Samyang 12/2 in terms of build quality, and optical performance.

If I didn't already own and love the xf16/1.4, I'd probably have gone for Fuji's "mighty" xf14/2.8. but I wanted wider because 21mm is just a little too close to the 24mm for my needs. For astro shooters, the Samyang's excellent coma control and extra stop of light gathering is currently unmatched, and the Fuji xf14/2.8 is one of the best travel and landscape UWAs available for any system, but for general photography at the 12mm focal length, the Zeiss is a worthy option when priced appropriately.


Apr 12, 2021
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jeffbuzz
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Registered: Jan 23, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 2278
Review Date: Apr 19, 2020 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $999.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Stunning contrast and color. Optically corrected with very minimal distortion. Smooth and precise operation. Exceptional build quality.
Cons:

The Touit 12mm continues to be the widest autofocus prime lens available for the Fuji X mount. Other third party lenses exist but are manual focus and lack any electronic connection to the camera. The Zeiss is fully connected so you have autofocus and full EXIF data is communicated while shooting.

Image quality is stunning. Zeiss design, glass and coatings provide that unmistakable Zeiss "look". Sharpness from high micro contrast provides an almost 3D effect to images. Considering the extreme wide angle view, distortion is very well controlled optically so there is no need for destructive correction with in-camera or post-production profiles.

Build quality is typical Zeiss: solid and aesthetically pleasing. AF is quick and accurate. Manual focus is control-by-wire but also smooth and precise. On the Fuji mount version there is an aperture ring with one-third stop clicks and an A(uto) setting. The hood provides adequate coverage from glare and protection from light rain or snow so it is useful all the time. Having standard 67mm filter threads is helpful. Many ultrawide lenses lack filter threads so having this is a bonus for simple UV/protective purposes or ND/CPL usage.

In comparison to the alternatives I find the Zeiss the best choice for a Fuji X wide angle. It is much, much smaller and lighter than the behemoth Fuji 8-16mm. Image sharpness and distortion of the Zeiss are much better than the Fuji 10-24mm. Build quality and operational smoothness are better than the Fuji 14mm. Samyang and Venus lenses have "dumb" mounts offering manual focus only and pass no EXIF data to the camera. The image quality of the Ziess is far superior. The Samyang 12mm and Venus 9mm are much softer in the corners.


Apr 19, 2020
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Grenache
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Registered: Dec 17, 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 3073
Review Date: Feb 9, 2015 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $500.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Excellent distortion control, colors, and AF speed.
Cons:
It makes all other wide angle lenses for mirrorless cameras look like garbage.

After having shot the Zeiss 2.8/21 on Canon FF for a couple years and loving it, I was skeptical of this lens. To my surprise, it rivals its full frame brother - blasphemy - in all categories except the build quality. To be fair, it is a very well built lens, and for the Sony/Fuji crop camera models is a nice weight and balance. I was also surprised at how rapid the autofocus was. Being used to manual focusing the 21, I expected to have to do the same on the Sony mount. Instead, the AF performance was great.

How is the distortion? I have used it for portraits, and the subject looks just fine. There are no other lenses in this focal length where I would try that.

I purchased this lens as a two-pack with the 32mm and essentially got them for half normal price. Even at full price, this lens is a great performer.

Zeiss colors and image rendition in a lightweight package. What is not to like???


Feb 9, 2015
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Zeiss 12mm f/2.8 Touit T*

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
3 9473 Apr 12, 2021
Recommended By Average Price
100% of reviewers $666.33
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.00
8.00
9.0
Screen_Shot_2013-11-14_at_10_45_13_AM

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