October 22, 2014, 12:02:29 AM

Author Topic: Anyone tried the Zeiss 18mm, Zeiss 21mm, or Tokina 17-35 on 5d2 or 5d3?  (Read 2669 times)

birdman

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I am deciding to stay with Canon, after much thought (not too much actually). I use the 17-40L on my 5d2, which is pretty decent. I want to upgrade to a sharper lens, but don't look forward to losing: 1) Autofocus 2) zoom range or 3) ability to use filters. Maybe that's why, even at $699 on sale, I have not bought the Tokina 16-28.

The Zeiss glass (especially 21/2.8 Distagon) is supposedly a phenomenal lens. The 18mm is rated very highly, too. I know, I know, I can rent these and try them out. If I rented a wide angle, it would only be one i didn't already have or really plan to buy. Maybe I can rent the Zeiss 18mm since finding a 21mm used for under $1,300 seems impossible.

The Tokina is most in line to what I need, at least on paper. But with limited sample photos and reviews, the decision becomes much less clear. I believe it is probably very similar in IQ to the 17-40 I already own. I know the distortion control is very good on the tokina, but i need sharpness across the frame!! Please share your experiences, if any. Thanks
5d2; 17-40L; 35L; 50/1.8 Mk. 1; 70-300 IS; 100mm/2.8

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birdman

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Before I get killed on comments, I meant I would only rent a lens that I didn't already have that focal length covered or that I didn't realistically plan on buying (in other words, would never rent the Tokina 17-35 or Zeiss 21mm). Please excuse me, I have only had a few hours of sleep since last night.  :P
5d2; 17-40L; 35L; 50/1.8 Mk. 1; 70-300 IS; 100mm/2.8

Axilrod

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The Zeiss 21mm is an incredible lens, most likely the sharpest lens around that focal length period.  And yes, both the 21mm and the 18mm have excellent corner sharpness.  I love my 16-35 II, but it's not that sharp wide open and not that sharp in the corners, nowhere close to the Zeiss anyways.  If you can live without manual focus and find one for the right price, go for the Zeiss.  The cheapest I've seen the 21mm is around $1450 used, and they dont come around often.  You can find the 18mm for around $1100 used, maybe less as they are only around $1300 new. 

I don't have any experience with the Tokina you mentioned, but if it performs anywhere close to the 11-16 I'd say it's a viable option. The Tokina is also an f/4 and it looks like it's about the same as the 17-40 in sharpness, but not as sharp in the corners.  Also the Canon looks much better at 35mm than the Tokina at 35mm.  Stopped down a bit the Canon looks a good bit sharper.  So I'd venture to say that if you aren't happy with your 17-40mm, the  Tokina will be a disappointment.  Neither can compare to the Zeiss 18 or 21, that's for sure.
5DIII/5DII/Bunch of L's and ZE's, currently rearranging.

te4o

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I used the 21/2.8 ZE on my new 5D3 and was relieved to see that it is easiest to MF among all my ZE primes. Sharp as usual and good on FF. You need to decice whether on MArk II or on Mark III...
5D3 (04/12), Carl Zeiss ZE 21, 35/1.4, 50MP, 100MP
Canon 135/2, Sigma 85/1.4
SONY RX100

jm345

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The Zeiss 21/2.8 ZE is in a league by itself. Excellent sharpness even out to the corners. The only Canon lens in that range that is as good is the TS-E II 24mm, but it costs even more than the Zeiss. I have seen used Zeiss 21/2.8 on Ebay in the $1400 range recently. That's where I got mine. And it works great with the 5dIII.

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