Black & White Photography Magazine test of Zeiss prime lenses

The May 2010 edition of B&W Photography has the following Zeis lenses on test by Lee Frost.

21mm f2.8 Distagon, 28mm f2.0 Distagon, 50mm f2.0 Makkro Planar, 85mm  f1.4 Planar

Frankly it is a pretty lightweight article with no printed comparisons, but it does come to similar conclusions to my article and testing. The 21mm is the pick of the bunch as it is a unique lens, incredibly sharp and comfortably outperforms the Canon 17-40 f4.0. The 50mm Macro lens is useful, sharp and excceds the quality of the Canon L24-70 f2.8 zoom. (No comparison is made with a Canon 50mm lens). The 28mm f2.0 did not outperform the Canon 24-70L and the 85mm similarly was not noticably sharper than the Canon 70-200 f4L.

No testing or mention was made of focus shift issues with the 85mm lens, where the plane of focus moves away from the camera as the lens is stopped down from f1.4 to around f2.8, making precise focussing almost impossible unless using depth of field preview and live view simultaneously, which is not  too convenient for a portrait lens!
I have uploaded many examples taken with the Zeiss 21mm f2.8  to the Flickr Zeiss Distagon Group.

Zeiss 21mm examples on Flickr

Zeiss 21mm

Author: waynegrundy

Technology Professional and photographer

One thought on “Black & White Photography Magazine test of Zeiss prime lenses”

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