Surprisingly bad lens, Batis 40mm f/2 CF

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Alice732 Regular Member • Posts: 215
Surprisingly bad lens, Batis 40mm f/2 CF
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The Batis lenses generally all suffer from the same ergonomic problems like

  • extremely big
  • no buttons/switches
  • no aperture ring
  • no linear focus ring
  • useless screen

But they have all had excellent optical characteristics, with the 18 and 135 being my favorites.

The 40mm f/2 CF however, other than having one switch on it, I just have nothing good to say about it. It's a ginormous lens with only f/2 and and it's not even that sharp. Now days it's generally accepted that a premium lens should at least be f/1.4 or if it's f/2 it better be wicked sharp, but the Batis is neither.

https://www.lenstip.com/589.4-Lens_review-Carl_Zeiss_Batis_40_mm_f_2_CF__Image_resolution.html

It's especially hilarious when I saw this review today and I quote

The Zeiss 2/40 CF already at the maximum relative aperture is able to provide images of good quality

I guess it's technically "good" as in it looks fine when not pixel peeping, but is that what I pay Zeiss price for?

That's some German pixie dust bias logic right there, cuz if you just look at the numbers, almost any other lens is sharper in the center at f/2, even the Samyang 45mm f/1.8 is sharper than it, at f/1.8, even the generic sony 35mm f/1.8 is sharper than it! And of course the 35GM wipes the floor, not even close.

I literally can't find a lens that's less sharp than the 40CF in their reviews, other than the cheap sony 50/1.8. Oh but it's sharp when stopped down, like you hear from any expensive but unsharp lenses. Yea obviously, a $100 Chinese lens is sharp stopped down, the kit lens is sharp when stopped down, who cares?

This is the only Batis lens with a "CF" tag meaning it can "close focus" but not really no it can't. The maximum reproduction ratio is like the same as.... almost any other 35mm lens? Ok it's slightly closer than most but it's not even 1:2

Comparisons:

  • Sony FE 35mm f/1.8

Much cheaper, much smaller, sharper, has AF/MF switch

  • Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM

Much better in every way imaginable, slightly more expensive

  • Sony FE 40mm f/2.5 G

MUCH cheaper, much better in every way imaginable, slower

  • Samyang 45mm f/1.8

MUCH MUCH cheaper, much smaller, sharper

  • Sigma 35mm f2 DG DN

MUCH cheaper, much smaller, MUCH better ergonomics, sharper

  • Sigma 45mm f/2.8 DG DN

MUCH cheaper, much better in every way imaginable, slower

  • Voigtlander Nokton 40mm f/1.2

Cheaper, sharper, much faster, smaller

  • Voigtlander APO-Lanthar 35mm f/2

MUCH MUCH sharper, cheaper, much smaller

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