Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

Started Mar 26, 2013 | Discussions
DRode
OP DRode Senior Member • Posts: 2,815
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?
1

I very much like the 35mm f/1.8. IMO, it is a really solid lens. The "character" of the lens is neutral. Nice bokeh, good contrast, pleasant color rendering. It's very similar to may of my most often used Nikon lenses. Solid, predictable workhorses.

What intrigues me  with the Zeiss 24mm is twofold. First is the spec sheet stuff. 24mm (36mm equivalent) is really useful. For me, it's well suited for indoor family shots as well as landscapes and cityscapes (I like the perspective).  The excellent build is nice but not particularly important to me. It's a fast f/1.8 lens which is a plus. It does not have OSS which is one of the fee negatives. The fact that it focuses closely, has very little distortion and excellent sharpness and microcontrast mean it's a lens with few compromises.

The second thing is the character of the lens. The way images render and pop. The way they seem a bit more intense and the way the lens is not neutral but has a distinct personality. This is what I'm trying to get a handle on. Special is good. I like special

The discussions are really helpful. Some sample images would be better yet. If it's really, really that good, I might drop the cash to get it. But I'm not spending $1100 for something that is not significantly superior to my 35mm f1/.8.

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Jefenator
Jefenator Senior Member • Posts: 2,685
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?
1

Here's one sample:

Got a bunch more here:

http://jeffaddicott.smugmug.com/Other/SEL24-Samples/28624321_VgrZ4R#!i=2427808895&k=fxR67Kx

I'll let you decide how they compare against your 35/1.8. 

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J Yohan Regular Member • Posts: 146
different perspective..

The Carl Zeiss 24mm with my NEX 7 is THE reason why I haven't fallen in love with my X100s yet.. X100s simply can't compete with the CZ24 in terms of sharpness. while sharpness isn't the only factor in IQ, I have to stop down the X100s to f4 to match the CZ24 at F1.8 in the center.

I'm starting to get more keepers with the X100s as I get more familiar with the camera. But the Carl Zeiss 24mm might be the best any mirrorless system or compact camera has to offer.

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srkus New Member • Posts: 20
Re: different perspective..

I am not an expert in lens characteristics but what I can say is that the rendition that the CZ 24mm 1.8 produces is definitely something you will notice compared to other native e-mount lenses. It is very sharp even at 1.8 and allows for some really nice low light shots. You cannot really compare it to the new 35 mm 1.8 lens as they are different lenses and 24 mm is considerably harder to make. Also, there are not many 24 mm APS-C sensor lenses out there, if any, so I guess hence the higher price. The only "negative" side is its size, especially when used with the lens hood but I guess the smaller design was not possible and would degrade the image quality.

Cheers,

Srdjan

Astrophotographer 10 Forum Pro • Posts: 10,483
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

I looked at your gallery and I agree those images do jump out and have fantastic colour and sharpness.

Greg.

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Pablo4 Forum Member • Posts: 56
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

The Sigma 30/2.8 IS SHARPER!

straylightrun Senior Member • Posts: 1,441
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

It's special because it's 24mm and f/1.8.

35/1.8 is not as wide as 24. 19 and 20 are a stop slower.

Maybe when Sigma or Tamron release a physically shorter 24/2, then you can actually compare apples to apples.

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bill hansen Veteran Member • Posts: 8,912
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

Jeff - Very nice collection of images shot with the SEL24mm - a nice spectrum of subjects, nice compositions, sharp images. Your gallery should reassure people who are considering the SEL24 above the Zeiss. My favorite of this collection is still the one you posted to this thread.

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Bill Hansen
Ithaca NY, USA

bill hansen Veteran Member • Posts: 8,912
Oops - it's a Zeiss

Sorry about that - I wrote too quickly, not thinking that this SEL is also a Zeiss lens

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Bill Hansen
Ithaca NY, USA

Jefenator
Jefenator Senior Member • Posts: 2,685
Re: Oops - it's a Zeiss

bill hansen wrote:

Sorry about that - I wrote too quickly, not thinking that this SEL is also a Zeiss lens

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Bill Hansen
Ithaca NY, USA

LOL - was about to correct you. Thanks for the kind words. 

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Jerry R Forum Pro • Posts: 10,145
Re: On focus, CA with the 24mm & the C3 is minimum.

I don't think the C3 corrects JPEGs.

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The Photo Ninja Senior Member • Posts: 2,242
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?
dark13star
dark13star Senior Member • Posts: 1,707
One could ask...

What's so special about the Nex system, and answer that it has the Zeiss 24mm.

While there are now solid e-mount lenses out there, this one is still the only one that stands out as having a distinctive character. It is worth every penny, but then again, I'm of the school that lenses should cost more than cameras. Our camera bodies are transient; we upgrade them regularly in the digital age. Good glass is timeless and it's where I count my investment in photography equipment.

Just a different way of seeing it.

Rich

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martindesu
martindesu Senior Member • Posts: 1,246
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

As has been stated previously, a huge consideration for me was the close-focus ability. It sets it apart from most manual glass at the 24mm focal length.

I was considering a Canon FD 24mm, but they aren't exactly 'cheap' if looking for one in good condition. By the time I found a good example (about 1/3rd Zeiss price), I had decided that I would prefer a lens with warranty, autofocus, closer focus, great bokeh, excellent sharpness, and EXIF.

Those points are not equally important, of course.

In the end I wanted it, and could afford it, so here we are. Drop by the Leica forums, and all of a sudden the Zeiss 24 becomes are bargain-bin priced lens

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NowHearThis
NowHearThis Veteran Member • Posts: 3,506
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

DRode wrote:

What makes this lens particularly desirable? Ignoring the famous name for a moment, what does this lens bring to the table that makes it worth over $1,000.

I've been fairly impressed with the 35mm f1/.8. It's sharp, fast focuses accurately and low distortion and CA and, unlike the Zeiss, has OSS.

The Sigma 19m and 30mm bracket the 24mm focal length. They are not stabilized either. But they are small lightweight and perform well. The 30mm appears to be especially sharp. Either lens can be had for under $200 and the soon to be released refreshed lenses might be better.

I've seen some images from the Zeiss that were very nice. Some were excellent. However, I've seen excellent images from all of the lenses mentioned above. What I'm trying to understand is what make the Zeiss worth 2x, 3x even 5x as much?

Color, Contrast.  Shoot with some great glass and you'll understand.  There may be sharper lenses out there, but the "look" you get out of the 24mm Zeiss is unequalled in the E-mount.  And that "look" is sometimes what people are willing to pay for.

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cptrios Senior Member • Posts: 1,352
Re: different perspective..

J Yohan wrote:

The Carl Zeiss 24mm with my NEX 7 is THE reason why I haven't fallen in love with my X100s yet.. X100s simply can't compete with the CZ24 in terms of sharpness. while sharpness isn't the only factor in IQ, I have to stop down the X100s to f4 to match the CZ24 at F1.8 in the center.

I'm starting to get more keepers with the X100s as I get more familiar with the camera. But the Carl Zeiss 24mm might be the best any mirrorless system or compact camera has to offer.

Really? I have the X100 (same lens as the X100s), and it's as sharp in the center at all f-stops as any lens I've ever used. Maybe the 16MP is stressing it a bit?

One thing about the X100 lens is that it doesn't perform spectacularly with close subjects. The farther away you get from your focus point, the sharper it gets. Have you only shot closeup with the X100s so far?

DRode
OP DRode Senior Member • Posts: 2,815
I'm sold...

Thanks for all the information and samples.

I've spent a lot of time looking at various Zeiss images and many, many from the SEL24F18Z. The Zeiss Look is distinctive and I like what I see. The close focus is a big deal for me. I often want to get closer than my lens will allow.

I was blown away with how well it held up to the Leica 24mm Summilux. CA is the only real negative with this lens and it appears easily correctable. As a side note, CA like this lens exhibits is typical of high quality prime at wide apertures.

It is expensive but I've paid much more for lenses in the past.

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j450n74y Forum Member • Posts: 85
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

hi guys

i was budgetting $450 for my next lens..

i was looking at the sel35f18 for $420 brand new..but can get a used zeiss 24mm f1.8 for $750

whats the consensus..which to get?

Thanks!

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richiemccaw Contributing Member • Posts: 919
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

j450n74y wrote:

hi guys

i was budgetting $450 for my next lens..

i was looking at the sel35f18 for $420 brand new..but can get a used zeiss 24mm f1.8 for $750

whats the consensus..which to get?

Thanks!

I have a similar question to j450n74y. Not sure if its considered hijacking the thread but here it goes.

I have the SEL35F18 but am looking at the SEL24F18Z.

Key reason being that I'm not that happy with my recently acquired Canon FD 24mm F2.8. The image just doesnt look that sharp as the FD 50mm F1.4. I havent taken both FD lenses out into daylight to test (which I expect to this weekend).

Hence I'm just looking around for another 24mm lens. And was also considering the Contax G 45mm and 90mm lenses, seeing as to how many users have alluded to the sharpness of these lenses.

So really, are we even able to compare the SEL35F18 with the SEL24F18Z?

Cheers.

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richiemccaw Contributing Member • Posts: 919
Re: Sony Zeiss 24mm - What is so special?

richiemccaw wrote:

j450n74y wrote:

hi guys

i was budgetting $450 for my next lens..

i was looking at the sel35f18 for $420 brand new..but can get a used zeiss 24mm f1.8 for $750

whats the consensus..which to get?

Thanks!

I have a similar question to j450n74y. Not sure if its considered hijacking the thread but here it goes.

I have the SEL35F18 but am looking at the SEL24F18Z.

Key reason being that I'm not that happy with my recently acquired Canon FD 24mm F2.8. The image just doesnt look that sharp as the FD 50mm F1.4. I havent taken both FD lenses out into daylight to test (which I expect to this weekend).

Hence I'm just looking around for another 24mm lens. And was also considering the Contax G 45mm and 90mm lenses, seeing as to how many users have alluded to the sharpness of these lenses.

So really, are we even able to compare the SEL35F18 with the SEL24F18Z?

Cheers.

Sorry I just noticed another thread discussing this question. Please feel free to ignore my question on the SEL35F18 and SEL24F18Z but if you may comment on the sharpness of the Zeiss 24mm to the other lenses mentioned in my previous posts, I would greatly appreciate that as well.

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