July 29, 2014, 11:26:44 PM

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Messages - TWI by Dustin Abbott

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1
Great review, thanks for posting.

Unfortunately, I see this as a stellar lens I'll never use.  Large aperture glass simply has to have AF in my hands or the value of that huge opening is lost on anything I shoot that is moving (even slowly).  I'd end up stopping it down just to avoid missing with manual focusing. 

As such, I'd only opt for an MF lens if it were on a tripod for landscape work.  And as much as 135mm certainly has a place in landscape work, it's not a focal length I reach for enough to justify $2k out of pocket.

So I flag stellar lenses like these in the 'win the lottery / when-I-retire bucket': magical, but not a priority for what I shoot.  Keep in mind that I am an enthusiast who has only grown up on having AF on everything I've shot -- pros or folks with significant rangefinder / MF lens experience may be able to net a high percentage of keepers with it.

- A

Well put.  Lenses like this are perfect for those who have the disposal income to get the best and then use it in the more leisurely fashion that it deserves.  It will highly reward those that take some time with it, but the real world precludes always having such time or opportunity.

...or money.

2
After few shoots of this Zeiss both on Canon then on A7r I was in trouble: it put shame on the other my (still beloved) lenses

It is a bit haunting.  But then I look at the amazing images my 135L can still produce and realize that I can live on :)

3
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Review: Zeiss 135mm f/2 APO Sonnar T*
« on: July 26, 2014, 09:30:36 PM »
The resolution of the Zeiss is truly amazing. All Zeiss lenses are not this spectacular but WOW that is amazing!
As usual GREAT Review, Dustin!   
The only Zeiss that I have in my kit is the Zeiss 21mm f/2.8 and that is pretty impressive as well.

Dustin, are you still planning on reviewing the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 Art??...I think that you mentioned a while back that you were going to do a review and a comparison, right?
Maybe I missed it, I tried a search but could not find it.
Thanks!

Two of my equipment suppliers made promises and then didn't have stock at the review time.  I have just had the original Sigma 50mm f/1.4, which I will do a brief review of (didn't particularly like it), and will do the newer Sigma soon.  I've got the new Tamron "superzooms" right now. (28-300mm VC, and 16-300 VC for crop).  I will be getting the new Canon 16-35mm f/4 IS and the Tamron 18-200mm for the EOS M mount next week.  I've got lots of lenses on the go for review right now, but the Sigma will probably be next.

4
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Review: Zeiss 135mm f/2 APO Sonnar T*
« on: July 26, 2014, 04:04:50 PM »
If only Zeiss made AF Canon lenses.  :P


I think I can safely say that all of us agree with you on that point.  This lens with AF and IS would be worth $3000+.  It is crazy good optically.


You could just buy an a99, or A7R and E4 adapter paired with the Sony 135 sonnar f.18 and have AF

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/463924-REG/Sony_SAL135F18Z_SAL_135F18Z_135mm_f_1_8_Carl.html

$1700


That 135mm F/1.8 w/ In-body IS makes me jealous everytime I see one. I wish canon would update the 135L to that lens so I can finally put to rest my desire/Un-desire to own a 70-200II.


I've read the 135mm f/1.8 isn't as good optically as the Sonnar.  I've not used the lens, though, so I don't know that firsthand.

5
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Review: Zeiss 135mm f/2 APO Sonnar T*
« on: July 26, 2014, 04:03:27 PM »
The test shot at f2 on the Canon is clearly slightly back focused and therefore not a fair example. It makes the Canon look softer than it really is.

I used the same focus on both examples.  This second shot was taken from about 6 feet further back.  Both very focused using Live View 10x.  The results show the same disparity.  If you click on the link to Bryan's charts at TDP you'll get the same results from his chart testing.  It's hard to believe it's that much better (I was shocked, too), but I'm afraid the results speak for themselves.

6
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Review: Zeiss 135mm f/2 APO Sonnar T*
« on: July 26, 2014, 12:13:46 PM »
Very nice review. Thank you for the time you have spent on it.
I am really impressed of the detail the Zeis lens captures like in the crop of the dandelion. Still I will hold on to my 135L obviously AF is an important reason.

Excellent review Dustin.

I am also impressed by the details that the Zeiss lens captures.

Thanks for the review.

Thanks for the feedback from both of you!  The 135L is not a bad consolation prize at all!

7
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Review: Zeiss 135mm f/2 APO Sonnar T*
« on: July 26, 2014, 12:12:43 PM »
On a different note, have you done a review of your 14mm f2.8?  My kid is getting into night photography and he needs something wider.


I did review the 14mm f/2.8:  you can find the review here:  http://dustinabbott.net/2013/10/rokinon-14mm-f2-8-wide-angle-review/


Thanks so much, exactly what I was looking for.


You're welcome

8
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Review: Zeiss 135mm f/2 APO Sonnar T*
« on: July 26, 2014, 12:12:26 PM »
I've been attracted to the Zeiss lenses on a number of occasions, but, regrettably the truth is I've never been that good at manually focusing, even in the days before AF  :-[

I hear you.  I would be interested in trying replacing the focusing screen in one of my 6D bodies with one more suited to manual focus.  I do enjoy using vintage lenses a lot, and if I did invest in Zeiss glass I think I would change the screen in one body and use it primarily for manual focus.

9
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Review: Zeiss 135mm f/2 APO Sonnar T*
« on: July 26, 2014, 11:12:45 AM »
Nice review.  I was reading along and going "meh, they are pretty similar" until I got to the crop of the dandelion.  That one made me mad because I own the 135L.  Sigh.

On a different note, have you done a review of your 14mm f2.8?  My kid is getting into night photography and he needs something wider.


I thought the exact same thing until I actually compared the two side by side.  The micro-contrast in the Zeiss just kills the 135L.  I mean, kills it.

I did review the 14mm f/2.8:  you can find the review here:  http://dustinabbott.net/2013/10/rokinon-14mm-f2-8-wide-angle-review/

10
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Review: Zeiss 135mm f/2 APO Sonnar T*
« on: July 26, 2014, 10:51:24 AM »
If only Zeiss made AF Canon lenses.  :P

I think I can safely say that all of us agree with you on that point.  This lens with AF and IS would be worth $3000+.  It is crazy good optically.

11
Abstract / Re: Beautiful bokeh! Let me see yours!
« on: July 25, 2014, 08:03:43 PM »
The Zeiss APO Sonnar T 135mm f/2 is utterly bokehlicious:

Instrumental by Thousand Word Images by Dustin Abbott, on Flickr

Friday is for Fences by Thousand Word Images by Dustin Abbott, on Flickr

12
Landscape / Re: Beautiful sunsets
« on: July 25, 2014, 07:53:19 PM »
Here's one with the Rokinon 14mm + the Samyang filter holder/ND Grad.  Single RAW exposure with a little tweaking.

Decadent Decay by Thousand Word Images by Dustin Abbott, on Flickr

13
Canon EF Prime Lenses / Re: Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM
« on: July 25, 2014, 07:48:48 PM »
Sharp enough that you can crop in a fair bit and still have awesome resolution:

The Horseman of the Apocalypse by Thousand Word Images by Dustin Abbott, on Flickr

14
I've got one for review purposes right now, and I dislike it so much that I'm having a hard time doing the review.  So much green fringing, and I can't seem to get it to nail focus even after multiple AFMAs.

It may not help it that I am also reviewing the Zeiss APO Sonnar T 2/135mm ZE and it is pretty close to optical perfection (and should be for a manual only focus lens that costs nearly $2500!)

15
seems to provide much smoother bokeh than my 70-200/2.8L v2!  But I knew it would.
Smoother than my Nikon 70-200/4 VR. too.

The bokeh is better.  The V2 still has it beat in AF speed (a bit) and works much better with extenders.  As a bare lens, however, the Tamron provides stunningly good value.

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