SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?

Started Mar 8, 2013 | Questions
Jeepit
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to digidownunder, Mar 10, 2013

digidownunder wrote:

I use both four thirds And Sony systems professionally.Some weeks I think the E5 & 35-100 F2 is an unbeatable combination,next week I consider selling everything else except sony system.Its a very tough choice with no clear winner.I have recently purchased the A77 with matching 16-50 2.8 lens due to its outstanding value for money at the moments.

Great value I agree.

Its more fun to use than the e5 and makes a better family/travel all roundcamera.Low light ability is no better than E5 though.

Did not know about the low light info, though I have read that some people who post on the Sony forum discuss to much noise at higher ISO's.

I wouldnt use this camera with the Zeiss 24-70 which i own,too big,heavy & cumbersome for general use,professional use for me only .Quality wise the Zeiss compared to the olm 12-60 is a tough call.the Zeiss can have that extra special color,3D rendering and biting sharpness but It can also look harsh & hard sometimes and isnt particularly sharp wide open & in corners.12-60 is sharp at any apeture and any condition,less contrasty than zeiss but more subtle in tone with better shadow details in dark tones.

Yes I have noticed better detail in the shadows since shooting with the 12-60mm, much better than the 18-180mm.

I have lots of other legacy Zeiss glass & olympus HG and my general feeling between the two is that I cannot decide which i prefer.Zeiss generally excells with 3D pop & color & biting SHARPNESS at optimal apetures.I guess Zeiss does at times give you a bit more of a unique look,however that look sometimes doesnt always work for the better.Images can sometimes be just too contrasty & harsh.You may see some purple fringing with certain Zeiss lenses,something Ive never seen with olympus digital lenses Ive used.

Theparagraph above is exactly the type of info I need.

Olympus lenses are more usuable at any apeture,dust & moisture sealed and smaller than equivalent Zeiss,more subtle rendering,sharp over entire frame,more subtle and delicate color & IMO better value for money.If you do get the A77 without the 16-50 2.8 which I can reccomend,consider the Zeiss 16-80,much more portable,affordable and focal length better matched toAPSC sensor.If you loved

i do.

& used the live view on your 330,I also own that camera,you wont be too impressed with live on the E5,a step backward.Sonys A 77 live view is the best around.

on the market currently?

Bottom line ,I wouldnt buy an E5 for personal use as I just think its too big & complicated as a general use camera,as a professional tool I love it though.ITs replacement might change all that though.If your buying a camera purley for photography only assignments and not an everyday camera,then the E 5 to use with your 12-60 makes alot of sense.

Personal use too start with, but I would like to enter the professional area at some point.  So I'm also trying to think 12-18 months ahead as we'll (make sense)?

I do love the 12-60mm on my E330 but, it being  9 yr old camera it does have it limitations...hence wanting to upgrade to newer technology.

I wouldnt choose any sony & Zeiss combo over this unless you want everyday use/portability in which case I would go for A77 & 16-50 2.8 combo,that comb can be had for$1200.00 at the moment,hope this helps,cheers.

Thanks your reply helps a tremendous amount.  This is exactly the type of info I was looking for.  I wanted to have someone who has used these two specific cameras with the AF lenses.  I was looking for personal experience information to compare Zeiss AF lenses to Oly SHG/HG lenses , and some personal experience with the A77.

I'm not interested in the E5 due to the old technology sensor.  If I'm going to spend a thousand + dollars on a new camera, I want it to have the most up to date technology in it.  That's why I placed the A77/78 in my post...with a nod to the future A78 & E7 that supposedly will be coming out in Aug-Sept.

I'm not interested in the OMD E-5 because the size of the camera is too small (even with the optional grip on it) and the m4/3 lens selection leaves a lot less to be desired.  If Oly comes out with a hybrid 4/3-m4/3 camera and it is in between the size of E5  & the OMD E5, then I will seriously look at this camera; as long the 4/3 AF issues are resolved with the micro side of the camera.

I would like to pm you or you pm me so I can pick your professional photography brain for more pro suggestions/ comments.

Thanks for your input/assistance so far.

Rick

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erichK
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There are no magic lenses...
In reply to Jeepit, Mar 10, 2013

But there are some hugely overpriced ones.  As a German who had a late relative working for a top optics firm, I was quite surprised when, learning that I wanted to become a photographer, almsot four decades ago, he urgently advised me *not* to buy the Leica M4 and Summicron 50 f2 I was just trying out, and instead look at the new OM system and also Nikon's cameras.

When I told him that I wanted the best and weren't Leitz (and Zeiss) the best., his answer was "sometimes" and much the same that Chris Mak says here.  But also that I would need a camera system, and because each lens for the Leica would cost as much as a whole brace of lenses for the Olympus or even Nikon, even if he could get some at a discount.  Because some of these lenses, he confided, were, even by this top German optics firms testing,, very good indeed.

I only briefly made a living at photography, but have continued to pursue and enjoy it, mostly using Olympus (and occasionally Nikon).  When I tried a Sony 900 and some of the Zeiss lenses for it a couple of years ago, then looked at the five figure total that buying this camera and a cheaper second body plus Zeiss lenses to replace my 12-60 and 50-200 SWD zooms and 50f2 macro and 11-22mm zoom would cost, I very much remembered what my uncle had confided.  Instead, I spent about a third as much adding a used 150f2 and a "demo" 7-14 SHG and a Panalaica 25 f1.4 to my collection.

Lately, I have been gratified to discover that all three of these lenses also work quite well on my OM-D.

Certainly *some* of the Zeiss lenses are magnificent,  you have the money and time and interest - and strong back! - you might be to take some great pictures with them.  The post about the "professional" usage of such lenses is quite relevant here. However, for general shooting the very rational range of Olympus HG lenses, with their relatively light weight is pretty hard tp beat.  And most of the SHG range actually give the best of Leitz and Zeiss a pretty good run for the money in such special areas and bouquet and quality of construction.

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philosomatographer
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to Jeepit, Mar 11, 2013

Your question is not easy to answer at all, primarily because Zeiss makes lenses for full-format 35mm that allow you to shoow images with very shallow depth-of-field, great for creative use. There are simply no Olympus equivalents to:

  • 24/25mm f/2.0
  • 35mm f/1.4
  • 50mm f/1.4
  • 85mm f/1.4
  • 100mm f/2.0 Makro Planar
  • 135mm f/1.8 or f/2.0

With that being said, at "equivalent" apertures (i.e. say f/2.8 on the Olympus SHG lenses, f/5.6 on the Zeiss lenses) the SHG lenses are in most cases superior to the Zeiss lenses in terms of resolution, and freedom from light falloff. The Olympus SHG lenses are literally as technically-perfect as the come, a feat only equalled now by Zeiss with the new Distagon 55mm f/1.4 (which is huge, just like the SHG lenses - i.e. Zeiss also applying the principle of telecentricity at the cost of size).

If you take the creative possibilities of really shallow DOF out of the picture, the Olympus SHG lenses are, in my experience, superior - not only from an imaging perspective, but also build quality / weather sealing / autofocus speed (some Zeiss lenses, like the Sony 85 1.4, is truly dismal in that regard, and others are manual-focus only). No current Zeiss lenses are weather-sealed, the Olympus SHG lenses don't fear even complete immersion in water (for short periods!) or severe dust and mud. Simply a class above.

The Zeiss manual-focus lenses have a very typical "Cosina" look and feel, very much like the cheap off-brand 1970s manual focus lenses (made by the same manufacturer) - and distinctly inferior to the manual-focus Nikkor lenses (I use both the Zeiss and Nikon lenses on my Nikon F). They sure impress people only used to wobbly zoom lenses though.

My biggest disappointment in the new Zeiss lenses came when trying the Distagon 35 1.4. It's not only gargantuan, but its optical performance is distinctly weak for the size and cost (it's much larger than it's autofocus competitors, or even a 24-70mm zoom). A thoroughly B-grade optical design that only really makes sense on film, where you are not counting pixels (something I do all the time, though). I feel that many of the Zeiss lenses suffer from a similar fate - nice, solid, but nothing special optically.

That's just the opinion of somebody who's used them and settled on the Olympus SHG optics in the end. Your mileage may vary.

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Skeeterbytes
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to philosomatographer, Mar 11, 2013

philosomatographer wrote:

Your question is not easy to answer at all, primarily because Zeiss makes lenses for full-format 35mm that allow you to shoow images with very shallow depth-of-field, great for creative use. There are simply no Olympus equivalents to:

  • 24/25mm f/2.0
  • 35mm f/1.4
  • 50mm f/1.4
  • 85mm f/1.4
  • 100mm f/2.0 Makro Planar
  • 135mm f/1.8 or f/2.0

With that being said, at "equivalent" apertures (i.e. say f/2.8 on the Olympus SHG lenses, f/5.6 on the Zeiss lenses) the SHG lenses are in most cases superior to the Zeiss lenses in terms of resolution, and freedom from light falloff. The Olympus SHG lenses are literally as technically-perfect as the come, a feat only equalled now by Zeiss with the new Distagon 55mm f/1.4 (which is huge, just like the SHG lenses - i.e. Zeiss also applying the principle of telecentricity at the cost of size).

If you take the creative possibilities of really shallow DOF out of the picture, the Olympus SHG lenses are, in my experience, superior - not only from an imaging perspective, but also build quality / weather sealing / autofocus speed (some Zeiss lenses, like the Sony 85 1.4, is truly dismal in that regard, and others are manual-focus only). No current Zeiss lenses are weather-sealed, the Olympus SHG lenses don't fear even complete immersion in water (for short periods!) or severe dust and mud. Simply a class above.

The Zeiss manual-focus lenses have a very typical "Cosina" look and feel, very much like the cheap off-brand 1970s manual focus lenses (made by the same manufacturer) - and distinctly inferior to the manual-focus Nikkor lenses (I use both the Zeiss and Nikon lenses on my Nikon F). They sure impress people only used to wobbly zoom lenses though.

My biggest disappointment in the new Zeiss lenses came when trying the Distagon 35 1.4. It's not only gargantuan, but its optical performance is distinctly weak for the size and cost (it's much larger than it's autofocus competitors, or even a 24-70mm zoom). A thoroughly B-grade optical design that only really makes sense on film, where you are not counting pixels (something I do all the time, though). I feel that many of the Zeiss lenses suffer from a similar fate - nice, solid, but nothing special optically.

That's just the opinion of somebody who's used them and settled on the Olympus SHG optics in the end. Your mileage may vary.

Agreed. For 4/3 at least, Oly eschewed primes for zooms in comparison with the OM system. Interesting, then, that µ4/3 has rekindled their interes in high-quality zooms. Would be interesting, for example, to see a Zeiss 85/1.4 equivalent versus the 75/1.8.

I switched to Contax from a mix of Pentax and Nikon, and can attest the biggest difference was in color rendition. In a mix of slides from the three systems on a light table, the Zeiss transparancies were always easy to pick out from their saturated colors. Pretty sure this was at least because of the T* coating. My 25/2.8. 50/1.4 and 85/2.8 handled the bulk of my shooting and my only zoom was a Tamron.

I started with the N system because I knew they were developing the N-Digital and I wanted to be ready for the day I could afford one. Accordingly, I got two zooms and the 100 Makro-Planar; by then the fast primes were hugely expensive compared to their C/Y counterparts. Results were still "Zeiss-like" but I believe any advantage they had over their counterparts was much less pronounced. Still, the T* coating gives good results and the big Makro is spectacular. (A place in Canada converts them to Canon mount for an unholy sum of cash.)

Schneider hasn't come up in the conversation, but I'm VERY interested in their µ4/3 primes. They made some very good lenses for the better Kodak digicams (e.g., the P880) and I'd love to give them a go on my E-M5.

Cheers,

Rick

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Jeepit
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to philosomatographer, Mar 11, 2013

Thank you for your comments.  All the comments are aiding in my decision whether to change from Olympus to Sony more precisely the future A78 dSLR.  I needed more info on Zeiss lenses on how they compare to Zuiko lenses.

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Chris Mak
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to philosomatographer, Mar 11, 2013

philosomatographer wrote:

Your question is not easy to answer at all, primarily because Zeiss makes lenses for full-format 35mm that allow you to shoow images with very shallow depth-of-field, great for creative use. There are simply no Olympus equivalents to:

  • 24/25mm f/2.0
  • 35mm f/1.4
  • 50mm f/1.4
  • 85mm f/1.4
  • 100mm f/2.0 Makro Planar
  • 135mm f/1.8 or f/2.0

With that being said, at "equivalent" apertures (i.e. say f/2.8 on the Olympus SHG lenses, f/5.6 on the Zeiss lenses) the SHG lenses are in most cases superior to the Zeiss lenses in terms of resolution, and freedom from light falloff. The Olympus SHG lenses are literally as technically-perfect as the come, a feat only equalled now by Zeiss with the new Distagon 55mm f/1.4 (which is huge, just like the SHG lenses - i.e. Zeiss also applying the principle of telecentricity at the cost of size).

If you take the creative possibilities of really shallow DOF out of the picture, the Olympus SHG lenses are, in my experience, superior - not only from an imaging perspective, but also build quality / weather sealing / autofocus speed (some Zeiss lenses, like the Sony 85 1.4, is truly dismal in that regard, and others are manual-focus only). No current Zeiss lenses are weather-sealed, the Olympus SHG lenses don't fear even complete immersion in water (for short periods!) or severe dust and mud. Simply a class above.

There's a lot more about the creative possibilities of the latest Zeiss MF lenses, than just shallow DOF on full frame. The lenses were designed with a specific rendering at specific distances in mind. If you use the lenses for what they were designed for, the results can be unique and outstanding. The close focus 25/2.8 for example, can blur medium distance backgrounds beautifully like the 14-35/2 could not at f2. There is a very specific rendering that is in itself a result of very good designing. There's also a color rendition, that makes many "mainstream" lenses look a bit boring once you are used to it. Which means people often revert to over-post processing to get a certain "pop" and nice color, but the out of the box Zeiss results are often much more natural, especially when you use a good raw converter. And on top of that, some of the Zeiss lenses have terrific light transmission, which gives very natural colors in dimmer light. I have the Zeiss 85/1.4 and could not possibly deduct from that lenses' outstanding build quality and superb manual focus ring, how it should qualify as "dismal". Sure, its AF is rather none existent and it is not weather sealed, but I assume you weren't expecting that.

The zuiko SHG lenses (the ones I had: 14-35/2, 35-100/2, 150/2) are simply better all round lenses, with a higher degree of technical perfection (for what that is worth by the way). But they also lack some of the qualities of the Zeiss lenses, and although that will in part be, because there is no Olympus body with the sensor qualities of the Pentax k5IIs yet, they are simply much more neutral in many ways, rendering and color. That can be a quality, but also lacks the unique highs of Zeiss rendering. Once Olympus releases a body with a truly high quality sensor, you can really rate the difference, but for the Zeiss lenses there is the upgrade possibility to full frame.

The Zeiss manual-focus lenses have a very typical "Cosina" look and feel, very much like the cheap off-brand 1970s manual focus lenses (made by the same manufacturer) - and distinctly inferior to the manual-focus Nikkor lenses (I use both the Zeiss and Nikon lenses on my Nikon F). They sure impress people only used to wobbly zoom lenses though.

They impressed mé (that was used to three SHG lenses), and still do. There is certainly nothing cheap about them, neither about the build, nor about the image quality.

My biggest disappointment in the new Zeiss lenses came when trying the Distagon 35 1.4. It's not only gargantuan, but its optical performance is distinctly weak for the size and cost (it's much larger than it's autofocus competitors, or even a 24-70mm zoom). A thoroughly B-grade optical design that only really makes sense on film, where you are not counting pixels (something I do all the time, though). I feel that many of the Zeiss lenses suffer from a similar fate - nice, solid, but nothing special optically.

Goodness, B-grade, nothing special optically... Have you tried the Zeiss 50/2 makro planar, or the Zeiss 100/2 makro planar? I unfortunately will not be able to get the 100/2, as it is not made in pentax mount anymore, and the ones that have it, refuse to sell it, so it does not turn up second hand. But I did manage to get the 50/2, and if that lens is B-grade, I'll never want anything else than B-grade again (including the SHG zuikos!). It is spectacularly sharp, refined in rendering, and with beautiful color and bokeh. Different from the 14-35/2 at 35(70)mm, but in no way less, I would say even better actually, certainly color wise.

What makes the zuiko SHG's so special, is the fact that they are AF, weather sealed zoom lenses (in part) with prime like IQ. Your estimation of the Zeiss primes' build quality and IQ, well... that's not to be taken seriously.

That's just the opinion of somebody who's used them and settled on the Olympus SHG optics in the end. Your mileage may vary.

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Skeeterbytes
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to Skeeterbytes, Mar 11, 2013

Skeeterbytes wrote:

I started with the N system because I knew they were developing the N-Digital and I wanted to be ready for the day I could afford one. Accordingly, I got two zooms and the 100 Makro-Planar; by then the fast primes were hugely expensive compared to their C/Y counterparts. Results were still "Zeiss-like" but I believe any advantage they had over their counterparts was much less pronounced. Still, the T* coating gives good results and the big Makro is spectacular. (A place in Canada converts them to Canon mount for an unholy sum of cash.)

Cheers,

Rick

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[Edit] I should have written "Makro Sonnar.""

Cheers,

Rick

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arief poerniawan
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to Jeepit, Mar 12, 2013

I choose SHG lens over Zeiss since SHG lens is one of the shrapness and it has auto focus.. btw i have 4 SHG lens all of them are excelent, the price is also reasonable

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Jeepit
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to arief poerniawan, Mar 13, 2013

arief poerniawan wrote:

I choose SHG lens over Zeiss since SHG lens is one of the shrapness and it has auto focus.. btw i have 4 SHG lens all of them are excelent, the price is also reasonable

Thank you for your insight.  I'm trying very hard not to have gear lust for the Sony A78 (future camera, just like the future E7).  But its becoming more challenging every day, due to the photos I see on the Sony forum page for the A77.  That is why I asked about Zeiss lenses compared to Zuiko SHG/HG lenses.  I would like tm stay with Oly but my gut tells me I may be disappointed when the new Olympus camera comes out in Autumn. That it will not truly support 4/3 lenses without an adapter.

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philosomatographer
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Schneider...
In reply to Skeeterbytes, Mar 15, 2013

Thanks for your experience - I agree fully

Schneider-Kreuznach makes great lenses indeed, I use their large-format lenses at least once a week. Even wide open (as I like to shoot them most of the time), I have never been able to detect any flaw or shortcoming whatsoever - they do nothing but please. The lenses they will be producing for mirrorless digital cameras should be most interesting, considering their provenance of optical excellence. Some recent darkroom prints of mine:

Time and space

Concave / Convex

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philosomatographer
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to Chris Mak, Mar 15, 2013

Hi Chris,

You misunderstand me - I was addressing one or two very specific concerns, not the Zeiss lens line in general - which certainly have some very superb designs. Just to clarify:

Chris Mak wrote:

I have the Zeiss 85/1.4 and could not possibly deduct from that lenses' outstanding build quality and superb manual focus ring, how it should qualify as "dismal". Sure, its AF is rather none existent and it is not weather sealed, but I assume you weren't expecting that.

Oh, I was referring specifically to the autofocus on the Zeiss for SOny 85 1.4, which is dysmal by any measurement The optical qualities are superb, and the rendering is beautiful - the Sony 85/1.4 is a better optical design for technical image quality than the Nikon/Canon-mount, manual-focus 85/1.4, which is a more purposefully "soft" portrait lens. So - I am not talking the lens down in general, just the AF abilities of the Sony-mount one, in the context of the OP's comparison of Sony Zeiss AF lenses compared to SHG.

Goodness, B-grade, nothing special optically... Have you tried the Zeiss 50/2 makro planar, or the Zeiss 100/2 makro planar?

​I have, yes! Both are good, but not the best available. The Olympus OM lenses in these focal lenghts (50/2.0 Macro, 90/2.0 Macro - both of which I have a lot of experience with) are better to my tastes - but such things matter little when you're dealing with some of the best lenses ever.

However, I was here specifically referring to the Distagon 35mm f/1.4, which is very disappointing considering the enormous size and cost. Both "cheap brand" Sigma and Samyang 35mm f/1.4 lenses are demonstrably superior in almost every optical parameter. One would have expected the Zeiss to be a world-beater, but it's only "OK".

Those who purchased on, though, will feel compelled to defend it as the best 35mm f/1.4 ever, but it's simply not true. I used this lens as an example that one should not attach too much virtue to the brand of a lens - even Zeiss makes average lenses now and then.

What is different, is that Zeiss has some average lenses in the "premium" or "professional" line - something which Olympus does not have at all. All of Olympus' professional lenses are spectacular beyond reproach.

Unfortunately... Olympus has a very average sensor in the professional camera, as if to make up for it...

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Skeeterbytes
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Re: Schneider...
In reply to philosomatographer, Mar 15, 2013

Lovely! And no fuss with noise, banding or APS-C equivalence.

Does my heart good that you and a handful of others are keeping big-format film alive. Had a bit of 4x5 time "back in the day" but not enough to truly master it to my satisfaction. The pleasures of printing from big negatives can't be overstated. (Even had the opportunity to work with 8X10, a Rodenstock lens and a Polariod back, which was a whole other realm.)

Cheers,

Rick

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Chris Mak
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to philosomatographer, Mar 15, 2013

philosomatographer wrote:

Hi Chris,

You misunderstand me - I was addressing one or two very specific concerns, not the Zeiss lens line in general - which certainly have some very superb designs.

Well, you wére addressing the Zeiss lenses made by Cosina in general, and that's not realistic, both 50/2 macro and 100/2 macro are Zeiss designed, but made by Cosina. I also have the 35/2 distagon and 28/2 distagon, and build is to last a lifetime, all metal and glass.

Just to clarify:

Chris Mak wrote:

I have the Zeiss 85/1.4 and could not possibly deduct from that lenses' outstanding build quality and superb manual focus ring, how it should qualify as "dismal". Sure, its AF is rather none existent and it is not weather sealed, but I assume you weren't expecting that.

Oh, I was referring specifically to the autofocus on the Zeiss for SOny 85 1.4, which is dysmal by any measurement The optical qualities are superb, and the rendering is beautiful - the Sony 85/1.4 is a better optical design for technical image quality than the Nikon/Canon-mount, manual-focus 85/1.4, which is a more purposefully "soft" portrait lens. So - I am not talking the lens down in general, just the AF abilities of the Sony-mount one, in the context of the OP's comparison of Sony Zeiss AF lenses compared to SHG.

Goodness, B-grade, nothing special optically... Have you tried the Zeiss 50/2 makro planar, or the Zeiss 100/2 makro planar?

​I have, yes! Both are good, but not the best available. The Olympus OM lenses in these focal lenghts (50/2.0 Macro, 90/2.0 Macro - both of which I have a lot of experience with) are better to my tastes - but such things matter little when you're dealing with some of the best lenses ever.

That is actually interesting! You may know that I hold the SHG zuikos in (very) high regard, and these OM lenses are similarly uncompromising, simply made to offer the very best IQ without trying to go small and light. These lenses represent the Olympus I went for, even though I never had them myself. If Olympus had continued on that road (and they wére actually planning to release a digital 100mm macro!!) I would have never switched! The OM lenses had 35mm film to get the best out of them, and I just never saw that kind of quality in the images of the SHG lenses on the E3/E5, although many will disagree on that, and they have every right to. Myself, I believe the camera to get the best out of the SHG lenses has not been released yet, and I jumped ship like so many, because Olympus was creating a sense that they were not going to release that body my SHG lenses were waiting for.

I know a bit about these high quality OM lenses, but still I prefer the Zeiss color rendition myself, vibrant and lively.

However, I was here specifically referring to the Distagon 35mm f/1.4, which is very disappointing considering the enormous size and cost. Both "cheap brand" Sigma and Samyang 35mm f/1.4 lenses are demonstrably superior in almost every optical parameter. One would have expected the Zeiss to be a world-beater, but it's only "OK".

I don't know the Zeiss 35/1.4, it isn't made in Pentax mount, so I cannot comment on it, but even if it was available in ZK mount, I would never buy a lens like that, the 35/2 distagon is more than enough for me at that focal length, and the only prime lens that I would spend 2000,- on (and I díd) is the zuiko 150/2. (of course not counting my 500mm prime)

Those who purchased on, though, will feel compelled to defend it as the best 35mm f/1.4 ever, but it's simply not true. I used this lens as an example that one should not attach too much virtue to the brand of a lens - even Zeiss makes average lenses now and then.

What is different, is that Zeiss has some average lenses in the "premium" or "professional" line - something which Olympus does not have at all. All of Olympus' professional lenses are spectacular beyond reproach.

Unfortunately... Olympus has a very average sensor in the professional camera, as if to make up for it...

Let's hope that Olympus realizes what they have made with the SHG lenses, even if it is only for the few that are still interested in uncompromising image quality, in a time where we are literally washed away by digital images day in and day out. In that sense I really feel that it was much more exiting to use these really high quality lenses in the film photography era. Most don't even see the qualities of these lenses anymore in a time of downsized and overly post-processed images that come by at such a pace that you wonder how you have to educate your eyes at all.

I would still love to see Olympus come out with a 14-bit high DR 16mp DSLR, with a base iso of 100 at most....

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philosomatographer
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Re: SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?
In reply to Chris Mak, Mar 17, 2013

Agreed on all fronts - but most of all with your wish of a high-DR, ISO100-base replacement for the E-5. Until then, the E-5 produces images that make me very happy indeed, it's a wonderful piece of engineering.

I am not jumping ship any time soon - since the DSLR is a niche for me in anyway - and i only recently invested in a 14-35/2.0.

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Entropius
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They're all "good enough"
In reply to Jeepit, Mar 17, 2013

Jeepit wrote:

Which one do you feel is the better lens, in terms of sharpness, value for your $, lens build and overall quality?

Every Olympus HG or SHG lens I've used or seen is one good enough to shoot wide open without worry, with no serious aberrations or flaws. You can't really ask much more out of lenses.

I've never used Zeiss glass, but I imagine it is too.

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