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Carl Zeiss drops 'Carl', becomes 'ZEISS'

By dpreview staff on Jun 28, 2013 at 18:24 GMT

We've all been there - your friend Carl is over by the fridge, getting some ice, and there you are with an expensive new Carl Zeiss lens, and you're describing it to someone, and Carl keeps saying 'What? What did you say? Do you want ice?' It's confusing. No wonder then that German lens manufacturer Carl Zeiss has decided to officially drop the 'Carl' (sorry, Carl) and will henceforth be known simply as ZEISS.

According to the manufacturer's blog, the decision was taken to 'create consistency' across its brand communications, given that 'the brand has been called ZEISS for a long time [and] in general language usage, 'ZEISS' is already well established in many countries and languages when referring to both the logo and the company'. 

German lens manufacturer Carl Zeiss has announced that to create consistency across its brand communications, it will henceforth be known simply as 'ZEISS', and its range of high-end lenses will be re-branded accordingly. [photo: ZEISS]

Comments

Total comments: 116
12
FrankWerner
By FrankWerner (9 months ago)

Just wait for the new company called "Carl"

0 upvotes
Black Dot Bob
By Black Dot Bob (9 months ago)

Sooooooooooooooooooooo.... Will Hasselblad now become Hassel? And Kodak become Obsolete: Oh that's right they already are.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (9 months ago)

I suggest that they drop the SS to become ZEI.

0 upvotes
Long Live Film
By Long Live Film (9 months ago)

*sigh* now i need to take a sharpie to all of my lenses so no one gets confused.

0 upvotes
Dhabits
By Dhabits (9 months ago)

Zeiss Lion would've been better.

0 upvotes
slick83
By slick83 (9 months ago)

Carl would not be happy about it. Just sayin ...

0 upvotes
designdef
By designdef (9 months ago)

Soon after the Sony RX100 was launched, comments started appearing that the Blue Zeiss badge was starting to come off. Mine wasn't but naturally I had a pick at it and was surprised to find it wasn't the metallic enamel badge it seemed to be, but just another sticky 'label'. It's the way things are going. One of the worst inventions of modern times is.... marketing. These people profess to know everything but have created nothing themselves:) I think the family should SUE! Come back Carl, you're part of my heritage!

0 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (9 months ago)

Don't take it too hard, Carl; Ernst Leitz had both his first and last name taken off.

1 upvote
Salib
By Salib (9 months ago)

it is the same, the most important is the quality, I see ZEISS more lighter for more publishing around

1 upvote
Najib
By Najib (10 months ago)

Carl Zeiss to Zeiss Touit....LAME!!!

4 upvotes
Boris PM C
By Boris PM C (10 months ago)

Director talking to the photographer in a studio shooting session with a model:
"What Zeiss are you wearing?"
"Well, get me a size zero."
"Not you."

4 upvotes
OneGuy
By OneGuy (10 months ago)

Changed his name to Charlie and works in the tuna industry? Sounds fishy

0 upvotes
Al Valentino
By Al Valentino (10 months ago)

Carl Zeiss was a household name and seems more personal than simply Zeiss. It portrays a man that had a vision and built a company that excelled at quality products. Dropping the founders name makes this somewhat impersonal - a company taken over by the bean counters.

If they should change any name it should be the "Touit" name that now goes with their new mirrorless line of lenses. Touit sounds silly and girly.

These days it seems many companies keep breaking things that never needed fixing. I prefer leaving the name alone. But, I am okay with Fujifilm shortening the name to simply Fuji for obvious reasons.

12 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (10 months ago)

a great German turned into a Japanese.

1 upvote
Rachotilko
By Rachotilko (10 months ago)

I hope at least somebody here has found this an opportunity to pay respect to this creative and industrious man: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Zeiss

2 upvotes
Al Valentino
By Al Valentino (10 months ago)

Thanks for posting the link. Remembering the man that built the 'name' brand helps to understand the foundation of his legacy.

0 upvotes
Peter KT Lim
By Peter KT Lim (10 months ago)

Ha...ha...those bought the "Carl Zeiss" lenses overnight become old lens !

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Richard Murdey
By Richard Murdey (9 months ago)

Yes, yes they did. About 12 h older than they were the night previous in fact.

1 upvote
SBoudreault
By SBoudreault (9 months ago)

And not you can sell them for twice what you paid for them, like old leitz lenses :)

1 upvote
Peter KT Lim
By Peter KT Lim (9 months ago)

Hard to say,may be I say may be - your great grandson can sell them off triple what you paid for, wait long long !

0 upvotes
King Penguin
By King Penguin (10 months ago)

Next they'll drop the Zeiss bit and just have an unpronounceable squiggle.......just like Prince (or whatever he is called these days)

1 upvote
yabokkie
By yabokkie (10 months ago)

Zeiss sounds like a brand of Neandertals'

0 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (10 months ago)

Man, dropping Carl hurt my head. ;)

-Carl

4 upvotes
40daystogo
By 40daystogo (10 months ago)

I don't agree with this. I realise many brands are trying to modernize, but the "Carl Zeiss" name has a cachet of quality. I'd not pleased to see it go.

13 upvotes
wilsonlaidlaw
By wilsonlaidlaw (10 months ago)

I totally agree. As the owner of 11 Carl Zeiss lenses from the 1930's through to 2012, I am sad that they decided to kill off poor old Carl. History should not be binned.
Wilson

9 upvotes
Rick Knepper
By Rick Knepper (10 months ago)

Does this mean my Carl Zeiss lenses become collector's items?

1 upvote
Peter KT Lim
By Peter KT Lim (10 months ago)

No, become old lenses.

3 upvotes
Ernest M Aquilio
By Ernest M Aquilio (10 months ago)

Only in death does he have a name... his name is Carl Paulson, his name is Carl Paulson, his name is Carl Paulson, his name is Carl Paulson, his name is Carl Paulson

0 upvotes
Craig from Nevada
By Craig from Nevada (10 months ago)

They should have dropped their prices along with the "Carl".

Comment edited 19 seconds after posting
10 upvotes
Rick Knepper
By Rick Knepper (10 months ago)

Actually, this was quite funny in spite of the fact that most Zeiss lenses are well worth their price.

4 upvotes
Craig from Nevada
By Craig from Nevada (10 months ago)

You pay a premium for the name.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
Rage Joe
By Rage Joe (10 months ago)

Maybe the premium now drops off as Carl does. Let's hope so.

4 upvotes
Antony John
By Antony John (10 months ago)

Hopefully the IQ and overall quality won't drop too.
Quality does come at a price.

1 upvote
MarshallG
By MarshallG (10 months ago)

I can't afford the price of Zeiss.

0 upvotes
Peter KT Lim
By Peter KT Lim (10 months ago)

Zeiss still don't understand today photography trend, their lenses almost never change the design since 1970 and I don't understand WHY they don't include auto-focus and image-stabilizer in the lenses. Why because most of the zeiss lens supporter they are old they need the auto-focus to keep photo sharp and the stabilizer to help their shaky hand !

3 upvotes
Plastek
By Plastek (9 months ago)

Zeiss got a contract with Sony forbidding them to release AF glass for other DSLRs. So if you want AF-Zeiss - buy a ZA one (these are brilliant lenses, some of them being much sharper than ZF alternatives - eg. 50 or 85mm)

0 upvotes
Long Live Film
By Long Live Film (9 months ago)

Cosina Zeiss lenses ARE over priced.

0 upvotes
Paul Guba
By Paul Guba (10 months ago)

Its all part of a marketing campaign to reach the all important 18-25 demographic. The next phase will be to change the spelling to something cooler "Zice". Corporate tie ins with the NBA. Then some rapper or dj will endorse them simply as "Z" you know cause like its the last letter and nothing should come after it. You will then be able to get your "Z" wear at all the exclusive shops.

11 upvotes
Rage Joe
By Rage Joe (10 months ago)

Will.I.am.Zeiss

2 upvotes
ljclark
By ljclark (9 months ago)

I want my wearable blue dots and flags.

(But I guess I can use blue Avery labels until the Zeiss dots show up...)

0 upvotes
CameraLabTester
By CameraLabTester (10 months ago)

Well if Carl Zeiss so, then so be it...

Zeiss who?

Well Zeiss me! I'm Carl!

.

2 upvotes
wilsonlaidlaw
By wilsonlaidlaw (10 months ago)

All money in the pockets of the PR industry and the printers for new headed paper.

It never fails to amaze me that the PR gonks still manage to persuade presumably clever and experienced board directors, that a small change in logo/name makes any real difference whatsoever, other than to the balance in the PR company's bank account.

You really want to go and shout at those directors "its the product that matters stupid!"

Wilson

4 upvotes
Ulfric M Douglas
By Ulfric M Douglas (10 months ago)

His girlfriend Jena will be upset!

3 upvotes
Long Live Film
By Long Live Film (9 months ago)

thats ok, i think she is a Communist anyway :)

1 upvote
tornwald
By tornwald (10 months ago)

I prefer John

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Anepo
By Anepo (10 months ago)

in my country we always say Carl Zeiss & we don't confuse it with anything because there is no company named Carl in our country because CARL is not a name in our country.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (10 months ago)

".... your friend Carl is over by the fridge, getting some ice, and there you are with an expensive new Carl Zeiss lens, and you're describing it to someone, and Carl keeps saying 'What? What did you say? Do you want ice?' It's confusing."

Confusing? Yes. Not making any sense whatsoever? Yes, indeed.

BTW, I am still waiting for a white paper treatise as to why "ARRIFLEX" is now being "only" called "ARRI."

Must be a slow news day over there in Germania.

1 upvote
Abhijith Kannankavil
By Abhijith Kannankavil (10 months ago)

Wasnn't ARRI the brand name and ARRIFLEX a camera produced by them?

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (9 months ago)

There is no more ARRIFLEX, only ARRI. No more CARL, either. Wonder how long will the name "ARRI" lasts after this silly, daft move.

0 upvotes
Mahmoud Mousef
By Mahmoud Mousef (10 months ago)

Well, Carl still gets confused for office products:
http://www.carl-officeproducts.com/

...but this is progress.
Lucky we don't have a Lucy Leica company.

http://corporate.zeiss.com/about/en_au/about-carl-zeiss.html
Zeiss seems to be stuck in the black&white era if those photos are anything to go by.

0 upvotes
Beppone
By Beppone (10 months ago)

Ok, there was indeed no Lucy Leica,
but there was Lucy's brother Ernst.

Leica was "Ernst Leitz Camera AG" some years ago and Ernst had to leave, just as Carl today.

R.I.P. Carl and Ernst. @~'-,~~

5 upvotes
LJ - Eljot
By LJ - Eljot (10 months ago)

Well Zeiss Ikon dropped the Zeiss to be not confused with Carl Zeiss anymore.

0 upvotes
deleted_081301
By deleted_081301 (10 months ago)

Zeiss Ikon were useing that name on the "Rebadged" Cosina/Voightlander film rangefinders up until quite recent
the cameras were made for "Carl Zeiss" and had a range of Cosina made Carl Zeiss lenses with M mounts http://www.kenrockwell.com/zeiss/ikon.htm a similar Cosina was also badged as a "Rollie"

the reason "Carl Zeiss" didnt badge it as a "Contax" is due to contractual reasons with Yashica

"Zeiss Ikon" is a trade mark of "Carl Zeiss" or maybe just "Zeiss" ;-)

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
1 upvote
LJ - Eljot
By LJ - Eljot (10 months ago)

You see? You are confused. I mean that company: http://www.ikon.de/en/site/vacant2/About-AssaAbloybe/HISTORY-TEST/ The one that makes security locks.

1 upvote
LJ - Eljot
By LJ - Eljot (10 months ago)

And by the way, its Kyocera not Yashica. Yashica was acquired by Kyocera in 1983. They sold trademark rights of Yashica to MF Jebsen Group in 2008.

0 upvotes
deleted_081301
By deleted_081301 (10 months ago)

Carl Zeiss are still advertising the "Zeiss ikon" 35mm rangefinder camera (Re badged Cosina) on the web site as we type http://lenses.zeiss.com/camera-lenses/en_gb/camera_lenses/zeiss-ikon/zeiss_ikon_camera.html
your are of course correct about Kyocera

0 upvotes
Deleted78792
By Deleted78792 (10 months ago)

Okay, I admit I enjoyed the joke and the play of words by DPR. You brought a big grin to my face, thank you.

Now Carl will probably finally feel less self-conscious about the ice in his drink. And he may even stop feeling something is wrong with his eyes.

0 upvotes
km25
By km25 (10 months ago)

Well if his middle name was Franc, it would be KFC. No big deal to me, it is still easyer the Voigtlander. Besides do not good Germans spell Carl with a K. Well I hope no one confussed by all the other Co. named Zeiss.... no more CZ.

1 upvote
LJ - Eljot
By LJ - Eljot (10 months ago)

Normaly we write Karl but for some reasons his name was Carl Zeiss. Poeple at that time thought it would look more educated to write the names more latin like. Same with Markus/Marcus and some others.

0 upvotes
Kodachrome200
By Kodachrome200 (10 months ago)

I liked the brand name Carl Zeiss

7 upvotes
samhain
By samhain (10 months ago)

Bout time.

0 upvotes
RichRMA
By RichRMA (10 months ago)

Could be worse. Remember Kentucky Fried Chicken changing to KFC to be more "hip?" That was about the time they "kiled off" (video-wise) Col. Sanders too.

0 upvotes
Michaels7
By Michaels7 (10 months ago)

Actually Kentucky Fried Chicken sold the business but not the brand name. So the new owners had to use KFC instead. In some areas you'll see the Kentucky Fried Chicken, which more than likely the owner is getting paid from the person that's using the name. There's one here in the Bay area in Oakland, Ca.

0 upvotes
beckmarc
By beckmarc (10 months ago)

I thought it was to hide the word "fried" which had become bad for business.

3 upvotes
viktoriskra
By viktoriskra (10 months ago)

"We've all been there - your friend Carl is over by the fridge, getting some ice, and there you are with an expensive new Carl Zeiss lens, and you're describing it to someone, and Carl keeps saying 'What? What did you say? Do you want ice?' It's confusing."

This is the pinnacle of journalism.

2 upvotes
Funduro
By Funduro (10 months ago)

Lordy. Lighten up. The writers are not journalist. You are mixing up this site with the NYT or San Jose Mercury.

1 upvote
Solar Eagle
By Solar Eagle (10 months ago)

I think it's great. Very amusing. In fact I wanted to read it a couple times, just because its silly and fun. :)

2 upvotes
samhain
By samhain (10 months ago)

Thanks for writing like people speak in 2013 and not like a robot. It's refreshing.

2 upvotes
DVT80111
By DVT80111 (10 months ago)

Well, today is the end of the Carl Dung nickname. RIP

0 upvotes
aleksanderpolo
By aleksanderpolo (10 months ago)

And yet they use "Touit"

6 upvotes
LensBeginner
By LensBeginner (10 months ago)

C'mon, you can tou it, Carl!

0 upvotes
Najinsky
By Najinsky (10 months ago)

Can I be your new joke writer for your headlines. I promise I'll never use Carl and Ice in the same sentence again.

Comment edited 25 seconds after posting
1 upvote
LensBeginner
By LensBeginner (10 months ago)

You could say you were involved in a carl crash...

1 upvote
yabokkie
By yabokkie (10 months ago)

feel sorry about Carl's death.

0 upvotes
manakiin
By manakiin (10 months ago)

I like Carl's eyes...

1 upvote
Mescalamba
By Mescalamba (10 months ago)

Well, Leitz Camera did this some time ago, I think it was about time for Zeiss too. :D

0 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (10 months ago)

a brand simplifies communication and resists competition.

0 upvotes
JimWongyyz
By JimWongyyz (10 months ago)

Do you think Zeiss is just name synonym to premier quality ? Just Ralph Lauren paint at Home Depot. We know Ralph Lauren has no clue about latex paint, it just means Ralph Lauren paint is a high end quality paint. When you pay a Zeiss lens for your Sony camera, you are buying a premier Sony lens. Agree ?

1 upvote
Mescalamba
By Mescalamba (10 months ago)

No, you are buying lens designed by Zeiss up to Sony parameters. Which obviously include a lot stuff, so they are more compromised than something like ZF.2 135/2. That said, for example ZA 135/1.8 is one-of-a-kind lens.

And since Sony parameters for E-mount were bit too restrictive for Zeiss, we now can get Touit lens.

0 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (10 months ago)

Sony won't be that stupid to tell Zeiss how they design and make lenses or Zeiss may do it themselves.

3 upvotes
putomax
By putomax (10 months ago)

in this embracing of Bauhaus philosophy they could also drop the price and world would be a better documented place :D

2 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (10 months ago)

for two same lenses, I'd grade one with a Leica or Zeiss brand lower because I'll have to remove these dirt myself with added cost/labor.

Cosina/Pana/Sony/Tomi ...
drop the brand please.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Mescalamba
By Mescalamba (10 months ago)

putomax - than make labor in civilised countries cheaper, and glass for lens too..

Yea you cant and thats why Zeiss lens wont be cheaper. :)

0 upvotes
alphacam
By alphacam (10 months ago)

lol / cool / interesting

1 upvote
Wye Photography
By Wye Photography (10 months ago)

My Carl Zeiss lenses are the best lenses I have ever used (Hasselblad and Contax RTS and G2). No difference between the German ones and Japanese ones. They will always be Carl Zeiss lenses. I feel this is a bad move.

0 upvotes
viking79
By viking79 (10 months ago)

I have never called them anything but Zeiss anyway, so the name change seems natural. As long as I don't have to type: ZEISS™

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
Mescalamba
By Mescalamba (10 months ago)

I like my Zeiss lens, but I never refered about them any other way than just "Zeiss".

But I would prefer if ZF/ZE/ZM lens still said "Carl Zeiss" on lens. Its sorta nice tradition. For rest I dont care that much.

Comment edited 18 seconds after posting
3 upvotes
JEROME NOLAS
By JEROME NOLAS (10 months ago)

We don't get too many good news from Germania land these days... Leica X with f 6.4 and made in China Zeiss for rich&silly people...

4 upvotes
Chris Noble
By Chris Noble (10 months ago)

Japanese Panasonic makes lenses in China and stamps the German name Leica on them. All legal of course, "brands" have huge value in a world-wide economy, and the brand owners are very careful to do licensing deals that don't dilute their brand. I saw a Polaroid (bankrupt many years ago) camera in Barcelona last week; made in China of course. Swiss law stipulates that to put "Swiss Made" on a mechanical watch, at least 51% of the manufacturing "value" has to be in Switzerland -- the rest is usually in China, and since the Chinese workers get paid a small fraction of the Swiss ones, most of the watch assembly is done there before the last few wheels are added in Switzerland.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 54 seconds after posting
4 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (10 months ago)

if those Japanese companies look further into the future, they should expect emerging Korean and Chinese companies become tough rivals just like themselves to the Germans half a century ago.

it's in the interests of Japanese themselves to kill these German brands for good before they fall into enemies' hands with high value (added by high qualtiy products of Japanese companies).

0 upvotes
guamy
By guamy (10 months ago)

How about ZEISS+YAHOO=ZEISSHOO or YAZEISS

0 upvotes
LensBeginner
By LensBeginner (10 months ago)

...or ASSHOO... :-P ;-)

1 upvote
AlanG
By AlanG (10 months ago)

Big mistake. They should have renamed Cosina to - Kaito Zeiss instead.

Comment edited 36 seconds after posting
1 upvote
yabokkie
By yabokkie (10 months ago)

whatever the name, Zeiss means good products,
made by a Japanese/Asian company,
which got no good brand of it's own.

2 upvotes
Mescalamba
By Mescalamba (10 months ago)

Voigtlaender despite being forgotten is probably oldest "living" brand. And for some it has nice sound too.

Btw. not all lens from Zeiss are made by Cosina. :) Plus they mostly just construct lens from parts.

0 upvotes
deleted_081301
By deleted_081301 (10 months ago)

Voightlander A Living Brand .... dont make me laugh
they died out at the end of the sixty's ... the "Name " was passed around for another 15 years of badge Engineering then eventually licensed to "Cosina" .....

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Total comments: 116
12