pshummer: I'm glad to know that you included Nikon 85 f1.8G for this test. For what is worth, this lens has a lot of value but now I can see the difference as compared to much more expensive Zeiss lens. It's also interesting to note that Zeiss moved its production to Japan and that you see "made in Japan" on the lens. They say that they had to do it because of a high production cost in Germany and Japan is the only other country in the world that can produce the lens up to Zeiss standard.
Cosina has been making camera lenses in Japan for Zeiss for years.
QuarryCat: talking about Zeiss OTUS -if we talk about the best lenses in the market - but what about Leica Summilux?
Can't exactly mount new Leica Summiluxes on a DSLR.
Gediminas 8: "one of the most successful commercial pop stars of all time"
This "of all time" is really tiring.
Technically, she has played with the Stones.
But no she's a safe pop girl. (Not even like Elvis, making black music safish of white people.)
Stu 5: The actual contract for those who have not seen it:
Thanks, that's the current, 2015, contract.
But Sheldon's complaint started with a contract from 2011.
photophile: wow - I must have been on another planet these past few...decades. I'd like to think I have my finger on contemporary popular culture - but Taylor Swift - apparently "one of the most successful commercial pop stars of all time " appears to have slipped my radar. Maybe its because i don't listen to radio anymore. Do radio stations still compile the Top 40 every week ? Or is it all downloads nowadays ?
Anyway - wonder what became of pop stars from my own youth - Queen, The Police, Blondie....
She's just the current safe pop girl, but she does write her own trite songs.
She's been in the tabloids for years, if you've missed her songs.
Blondie is performing again, and Sting has been doing his own shows for years.
It's beyond downloads to streaming.
harveysteeves: so, interesting that now Taylor's new album is going to be exclusively on Apple … is that smell a rat?
Where did you read that?
photominion: Can someone tell me how it is that people are willing to spend 3'000-4'000 $ for a camera body that is technically obsolete after 2 years and are NOT ever going to be willing to spend 4 grand on a lens that will last them 10 to 20 years without it being qualitatively surpassed by any other in that time span?
Might be the same thing with ppl spending 4 grand on a flat screen Tv and then buying a 200$ "home theater surround system" even though audio components will last 20 years whereas the Tv value drops 50% per year..
Zooms almost always introduce other problems and expenses.
Generally if you can't compose the image correctly with the lens you have, you should be using another lens of fixed focal length.
The lens is significantly better than a $400 lens. Better than the Canikon $1500 lenses too.
There's no compelling reason to buy say a 5DS over a 5DII. The real reasons to buy new cameras are better higher ISOs, better AF and faster frame rates, and sometimes video. Unless you print huge, pixels were never that important beyond about 10MP.
DXO lens scores can tell if a lens is good or not, but can't really see beyond that. I suggest using the lenses and ignoring DXO.
Per Inge Oestmoen: This test shows very clearly that the Zeiss Otus 85 mm is really superior. Its performance is incomparably superior to that of the less expensive Nikon and Canon 85 mm lenses.
High performance at full aperture is a very important quality. Therefore the test shows that even if you may not get ten times better performance, you get much better performance if you pay much more.
It would be even more relevant to see the Zeiss Otus 85mm 14 compared against the Canon EF 85mm 1.2 and the Nikkor 85mm 1.4. Such a comparison would likely show much less difference, so that the more expensive Canon and Nikon offerings are very good choices for those who want high performance.
Per Inge Oestmoen, Norway
The Nikon 85mm f/1.4 and the Canon 50m f/1.2 don't have the colour of the Zeiss Otuses, or other optically good Zeisses for that matter,
Though that Canon is good bit better than the Nikon.
(The Nikon 24-70 f/2.8 is pretty good for colour, and it looks like Nikon is starting to learn some things with its APSC kitzooms.)
Yes, I've tried all three, but not the 85mm f/1.2 Canon.
All are plenty sharp.
Gabor Szantai: Should we expect a Sigma 85/1.4 ART with autofocus what delivers the 98% of the Otus' quality for the one-third of the Zeiss' price?
PhotoShop, CaptureOne, etc don't allow you to add the better colour and light that a good Zeiss has. And this is easy to see. Sigma Art lenses are certainly an improvement over better Canikon lenses, but Sigma has a way to go.
Better lens examples from Fuji, Olympus and Samsung also surpass Canikon.
BobYIL: A big smoooch on my $500 85/1.8G for not being shy to stand against a reference lens costing 9-times as much..
That Nikon is a 1.8 lens, you'd have to compare the price of a 1.4 lens from Nikon. And the 85mm f/1.4 Nikon is about a third of the price of the Zeiss, not a ninth.
It's easier to make slower lenses optically good.
And for colour Nikon isn't close to Zeiss, even less sharp Zeisses.
MAC: Colors and skin tones look off. Noise is 3 stops behind 6d. Expensive for what it is.
You're in luck the 6D, body only, is on sale this week at B+H for about 1400usd, but you'd need a lens.
No kidding. One is a full framed DSLR with fewer pixels.
behind the 6D?
GotoDengo: Would've been interesting to see how each combo performed at, say, f2.8. Honestly, nobody spends this kind of money on an 85mm lens to shoot at 5.6, so that's neither here nor there. And few shoot wide open with the CaNikon options, either, as they're not known to be especially good wide open. F2.2 to f2.8, though, I would've liked to see.
The 85mm Otus open to f/2.0 on the 5DS was excellent when I tried it last week.
Albeit the background occupies the edge zone in my samples, so no part of the edge of the frame is in focus to check for sharpness.
I also shot the 50mm f/1.2 Canon L on the 5DS, and that lens seemed a bit sharper at f/2.2, but the Zeiss had better colour. And I wasn't testing either lens for sharpness all the way across the image.
biza43: I find these comparisons and tests pointless, really... Nobody buys an Otus because it performs great stopped down... people buy this sort of lenses because they want wide open no-compromise performance.
If all you want is to shoot f5.6, then don't buy the Otus, buy any 85 f1.8.
Also, high res sensors demand the best from lenses and from photographers, so you should not expect budget lenses to perform well wide open with such cameras.
It's not a pointless test, but the DPR studio scene doesn't really show up one of the significant strengths of the Otus--almost any decent Zeiss really.
No, I don't know how to make a repeatable test that would.
artnaz: Note that the Nikon is pretty comparable to the Otus in the corners wide open!
Because Nikon knows how to make a sharp lens, but sharpness is far from the only draw of Zeiss Otus.
People buy Zeiss lenses because they do subtle colour+light differences much better than almost all Canikon lenses.
Indeed the Otus lenses are also sharp, but so are many of the better Canikons.
Meaning this DPR studio scene isn't really set up to show what an Otus can do in all respects.
steelhead3: This is fun (I normally don't pay much attention to the comparometer). Looking at the Oriental gals skin tone, the Canon is yellow/green and the Nikon is pink (the opposite of excepted dogma of the internet)
You need to download the raws and do the extractions yourself, before drawing those kinds of conclusions.
Last week, under bad lighting, I tried both the 50mm f/1.2 Canon and the Zeiss Otus 85mm on a Canon 5DS. The Canon lens is surprisingly good, and yes very sharp, but as expected the Otus does colour better.
The point being: It would be nice to see some non-DPR studio shots with the Zeiss, out in the "real world", since DPR has the Otuses for testing.