CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42

Started 3 months ago | Photos
TimHar
TimHar Contributing Member • Posts: 669
CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42
8

CZJ Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42 @ f4 with Yeenon macro helicoid adapter

CZJ Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42 @ f2 with Yeenon macro helicoid adapter

CZJ Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42 @ f8 with Yeenon macro helicoid adapter

CZJ Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42 @ f8 with Yeenon macro helicoid adapter, multiple photo stitch

fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42
2

TimHar wrote:

CZJ Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42 @ f8 with Yeenon macro helicoid adapter

CZJ Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42 @ f8 with Yeenon macro helicoid adapter, multiple photo stitch

I love these photos. While they aren't typically anybody's favorites, I like thes landscape, high detail shots with vintage lenses.

Actually, I don't use my Biotar 8/2 as often as it deserves it. It's a very sharp lens with plenty of resolution, great corners a little down, a nice warm palette, and some global contrast compression (good for scenes with high DR).

I find it as adorable and a bit higher resolving that another lens I really like, if you can find a very good copy, the CZJ 50/2 Pancolar (in my copies, the f2 is more to my linking and seems a bit different computation).

Thanks for sharing these photos. The last one could make for a nice print too.

MOD Tom Caldwell Forum Pro • Posts: 43,014
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42
1

Well done Tom.

Is this the lens that the Helios-44 copied? It has been said that the Russian version in time improved the breed but a CZJ version must have also been a later Biotar version from the Carl Zeiss firm.

-- hide signature --

Tom Caldwell

fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42

Tom Caldwell wrote:

Well done Tom.

Is this the lens that the Helios-44 copied? It has been said that the Russian version in time improved the breed but a CZJ version must have also been a later Biotar version from the Carl Zeiss firm.

I think there are some forum members that may know for real. I read the original was much a copy, then they evolved it and it became its own thing. I have a 44-2 and a 44-M7. The 44-2 may  need CLA, it is low contrast and doesn't resolve high. My Biotar is better, but the colors are very different, and seems like a completely different lens. And the 44-M7 is a contrast beast in the center, high contrast and punchy, but doesn't have the corners of the Biotar. The Pancolar, while not the same exactly, is pretty much the same scheme, and also renders a bit different, but I feel is much closer to the Biotar. Judging from the copies I have and known sample variety, and given Helios is a long lived line, I think the better answer is by a historian!

TimHar
OP TimHar Contributing Member • Posts: 669
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42
4

fferreres wrote:

TimHar wrote:

I love these photos. While they aren't typically anybody's favorites, I like thes landscape, high detail shots with vintage lenses.

Actually, I don't use my Biotar 8/2 as often as it deserves it. It's a very sharp lens with plenty of resolution, great corners a little down, a nice warm palette, and some global contrast compression (good for scenes with high DR).

I find it as adorable and a bit higher resolving that another lens I really like, if you can find a very good copy, the CZJ 50/2 Pancolar (in my copies, the f2 is more to my linking and seems a bit different computation).

Thanks for sharing these photos. The last one could make for a nice print too.

Thank you:-) This is the first postwar version with 17 iris blades from 1949 this one is small and most likely has elements made before 1942. I have the third version silver 1Q (first quality) with 10 iris blades from 1959. It's much larger and has better coatings and a bit sharper. Some photos:

Silver Biotar 1Q 58mm f2 M42

I had Pancolar 50mm f1.8 Electric, your version has slightly different optical formula and is radioactive. Here are the photo from APSC camera:

CZJ Pancolar MC 50mm f1.8 Electric M42

CZJ Pancolar MC 50mm f1.8 Electric M42

CZJ Pancolar MC 50mm f1.8 Electric M42

Both lenses belong to Xenon-Biotar family with Lecia Summicron R 50mm f2 V1 and Schneider-Kreuznach Xenon. I had them all.

Leitz Summicron 50mm f2 Leica R V1

Leitz Summicron 50mm f2 Leica R V1

Schneider-Kreuznach Xenon 50mm f1.9 M42

Schneider-Kreuznach Xenon 50mm f1.9 M42

TimHar
OP TimHar Contributing Member • Posts: 669
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42

Tom Caldwell wrote:

Well done Tom.

Is this the lens that the Helios-44 copied? It has been said that the Russian version in time improved the breed but a CZJ version must have also been a later Biotar version from the Carl Zeiss firm.

Thank you Tom

The second version the silver Biotar from early 50' they copied and later as you said gradually improved, but Biotar genetics are obvious. Her are the photos from Helios made in 1984:

Helios 58mm f2 from 1984

Helios 58mm f2 from 1984

MOD Tom Caldwell Forum Pro • Posts: 43,014
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42
1

TimHar wrote:

Tom Caldwell wrote:

Well done Tom.

Is this the lens that the Helios-44 copied? It has been said that the Russian version in time improved the breed but a CZJ version must have also been a later Biotar version from the Carl Zeiss firm.

Sorry about my freudian slip above - I think that it is obvious that I meant “Tim” and was not congratulating myself ….

Thank you Tom

The second version the silver Biotar from early 50' they copied and later as you said gradually improved, but Biotar genetics are obvious. Her are the photos from Helios made in 1984:

Helios 58mm f2 from 1984

Helios 58mm f2 from 1984

It is not just the lens, the person that wields both has quite a lot of bearing on the end result

I suppose that my comment was as much about the fact that the USSR production ran into millions as the H-44 was issued as a kit lens. That the same lens was revised and issued in so many variations.  The Russian production dwarfed the German production many times over.

By the time of the CZJ version even the german industry was probably having a re-think of this classic lens that can now be had at some very keen prices.

It comments on the major differences of capitalist and planned economies.

Where things are made exceptionally well in a capitalist situation they are made with the very best materials and priced accordingly not many are sold - they become rare and hold their value.

The “same thing” made in a planned economy might be composed of cheaper materials and can be sold cheaply.  In theory it could be just as good and because there were so many made they are now quite cheap because they are still plentiful and supply and demand kicks in.

Not that stating the obvious makes it any different but the musings might be interesting.

Obviously we also compare just what happens when small numbers of the “real thing” meet up with large numbers of an equivalent  that quite possibly might be just as good.

Some simply think that cheaper must not be “as good”.

I have mentioned before that some of the more expensive Russian lenses are not very good and only their limited-production rare-value makes them expensive.

Sometimes we have to reset our value-radar when wearing our “free-market” thoughts.

-- hide signature --

Tom Caldwell

fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42
1

TimHar wrote:

fferreres wrote:

TimHar wrote:

I love these photos. While they aren't typically anybody's favorites, I like thes landscape, high detail shots with vintage lenses.

Actually, I don't use my Biotar 8/2 as often as it deserves it. It's a very sharp lens with plenty of resolution, great corners a little down, a nice warm palette, and some global contrast compression (good for scenes with high DR).

I find it as adorable and a bit higher resolving that another lens I really like, if you can find a very good copy, the CZJ 50/2 Pancolar (in my copies, the f2 is more to my linking and seems a bit different computation).

Thanks for sharing these photos. The last one could make for a nice print too.

Thank you:-) This is the first postwar version with 17 iris blades from 1949 this one is small and most likely has elements made before 1942.

Wow. I am not sure I've ever seen one. Photos look pretty good for such an old lens!

I have the third version silver 1Q (first quality) with 10 iris blades from 1959. It's much larger and has better coatings and a bit sharper. Some photos:

Silver Biotar 1Q 58mm f2 M42

I just checked and I think I have this version, something like 3.5 million serial. It has a strange logo that now I reason may mean 1Q. So all these (3rd gen silver) lenses have the 1Q logo?

I had Pancolar 50mm f1.8 Electric, your version has slightly different optical formula and is radioactive. Here are the photo from APSC camera:

I find the rendering so good. So much to my liking. The f2 isn't radioactive, only the initial batches of the 1.8, then they modified the design with some airspace and eliminated the Thorium. I also have the 1.8 (non radioactive version). Another somewhat similar rendering lens (but it's different cast) is the Oreston 1.8.

CZJ Pancolar MC 50mm f1.8 Electric M42

CZJ Pancolar MC 50mm f1.8 Electric M42

CZJ Pancolar MC 50mm f1.8 Electric M42

I reallly like all these Pancolar photos. It really is a very versatile lens, neither modern nor old. It has quit some LoCA which only shows in very high contrast bright white regions. It's better in actual images, than in tests. It has amazing resolution, I like it a lot in the A7RIII.

Both lenses belong to Xenon-Biotar family with Lecia Summicron R 50mm f2 V1 and Schneider-Kreuznach Xenon. I had them all.

Leitz Summicron 50mm f2 Leica R V1

Leitz Summicron 50mm f2 Leica R V1

Don't show me lenses I don't have, especially Leitz! These photos look amazing! I've not see much posted or mentioned in this forum, probably because it's been discussed in the past. What's your take on the R Summicron? They aren't even that expensive (in Leica Dollar$ I mean)

Schneider-Kreuznach Xenon 50mm f1.9 M42

Schneider-Kreuznach Xenon 50mm f1.9 M42

I have one Xenon for QBM (SL Xenon). I am not sure how to categorize it, I consider it quite good. So far, it does good images -little flaws- but that don't move me. I am not sure if it's the color balance or what.

TimHar
OP TimHar Contributing Member • Posts: 669
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42

Tom Caldwell wrote:

TimHar wrote:

Tom Caldwell wrote:

Well done Tom.

Is this the lens that the Helios-44 copied? It has been said that the Russian version in time improved the breed but a CZJ version must have also been a later Biotar version from the Carl Zeiss firm.

Sorry about my freudian slip above - I think that it is obvious that I meant “Tim” and was not congratulating myself ….

Thank you Tom

The second version the silver Biotar from early 50' they copied and later as you said gradually improved, but Biotar genetics are obvious. Her are the photos from Helios made in 1984:

It is not just the lens, the person that wields both has quite a lot of bearing on the end result

I suppose that my comment was as much about the fact that the USSR production ran into millions as the H-44 was issued as a kit lens. That the same lens was revised and issued in so many variations. The Russian production dwarfed the German production many times over.

By the time of the CZJ version even the german industry was probably having a re-think of this classic lens that can now be had at some very keen prices.

It comments on the major differences of capitalist and planned economies.

Where things are made exceptionally well in a capitalist situation they are made with the very best materials and priced accordingly not many are sold - they become rare and hold their value.

The “same thing” made in a planned economy might be composed of cheaper materials and can be sold cheaply. In theory it could be just as good and because there were so many made they are now quite cheap because they are still plentiful and supply and demand kicks in.

Not that stating the obvious makes it any different but the musings might be interesting.

Obviously we also compare just what happens when small numbers of the “real thing” meet up with large numbers of an equivalent that quite possibly might be just as good.

Some simply think that cheaper must not be “as good”.

I have mentioned before that some of the more expensive Russian lenses are not very good and only their limited-production rare-value makes them expensive.

Sometimes we have to reset our value-radar when wearing our “free-market” thoughts.

Thank you

I agree with you Tom, I think the same.

TimHar
OP TimHar Contributing Member • Posts: 669
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42

fferreres wrote:

TimHar wrote:

fferreres wrote:

TimHar wrote:

I love these photos. While they aren't typically anybody's favorites, I like thes landscape, high detail shots with vintage lenses.

Actually, I don't use my Biotar 8/2 as often as it deserves it. It's a very sharp lens with plenty of resolution, great corners a little down, a nice warm palette, and some global contrast compression (good for scenes with high DR).

I find it as adorable and a bit higher resolving that another lens I really like, if you can find a very good copy, the CZJ 50/2 Pancolar (in my copies, the f2 is more to my linking and seems a bit different computation).

Thanks for sharing these photos. The last one could make for a nice print too.

Thank you:-) This is the first postwar version with 17 iris blades from 1949 this one is small and most likely has elements made before 1942.

Wow. I am not sure I've ever seen one. Photos look pretty good for such an old lens!

I have the third version silver 1Q (first quality) with 10 iris blades from 1959. It's much larger and has better coatings and a bit sharper. Some photos:

I just checked and I think I have this version, something like 3.5 million serial. It has a strange logo that now I reason may mean 1Q. So all these (3rd gen silver) lenses have the 1Q logo?

I find the rendering so good. So much to my liking. The f2 isn't radioactive, only the initial batches of the 1.8, then they modified the design with some airspace and eliminated the Thorium. I also have the 1.8 (non radioactive version). Another somewhat similar rendering lens (but it's different cast) is the Oreston 1.8.

I reallly like all these Pancolar photos. It really is a very versatile lens, neither modern nor old. It has quit some LoCA which only shows in very high contrast bright white regions. It's better in actual images, than in tests. It has amazing resolution, I like it a lot in the A7RIII.

Both lenses belong to Xenon-Biotar family with Lecia Summicron R 50mm f2 V1 and Schneider-Kreuznach Xenon. I had them all.

Don't show me lenses I don't have, especially Leitz! These photos look amazing! I've not see much posted or mentioned in this forum, probably because it's been discussed in the past. What's your take on the R Summicron? They aren't even that expensive (in Leica Dollar$ I mean)

I have one Xenon for QBM (SL Xenon). I am not sure how to categorize it, I consider it quite good. So far, it does good images -little flaws- but that don't move me. I am not sure if it's the color balance or what.

Here is a very good test and background of post-war Biotars 58mm it's translated from Japanese or Korean by Google translate:

https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=nl&sl=ja&tl=en&u=https%3A%2F%2Fspiral-m42.blogspot.nl%2F2010%2F11%2Fcarl-zeiss-jena-biotar-58mmf2m42.html

Pancolars are very undervalued lenses, for me are among the best 50'ever.

I never owned Meyer Goerlitz Oreston 50mm 1.8 the cool blueish cast comes from the coatings.

Summicron 50 is very fine lens, sharp, heavy, beautiful rendition but it's too expensive for a 50mm lens.

Xenon 50mm I had was M42 version and was quite good but I like Pancolar, Summicron and Biotar more.

Thank you

fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42

TimHar wrote:

fferreres wrote:

TimHar wrote:

fferreres wrote:

TimHar wrote:

I love these photos. While they aren't typically anybody's favorites, I like thes landscape, high detail shots with vintage lenses.

Actually, I don't use my Biotar 8/2 as often as it deserves it. It's a very sharp lens with plenty of resolution, great corners a little down, a nice warm palette, and some global contrast compression (good for scenes with high DR).

I find it as adorable and a bit higher resolving that another lens I really like, if you can find a very good copy, the CZJ 50/2 Pancolar (in my copies, the f2 is more to my linking and seems a bit different computation).

Thanks for sharing these photos. The last one could make for a nice print too.

Thank you:-) This is the first postwar version with 17 iris blades from 1949 this one is small and most likely has elements made before 1942.

Wow. I am not sure I've ever seen one. Photos look pretty good for such an old lens!

I have the third version silver 1Q (first quality) with 10 iris blades from 1959. It's much larger and has better coatings and a bit sharper. Some photos:

I just checked and I think I have this version, something like 3.5 million serial. It has a strange logo that now I reason may mean 1Q. So all these (3rd gen silver) lenses have the 1Q logo?

I find the rendering so good. So much to my liking. The f2 isn't radioactive, only the initial batches of the 1.8, then they modified the design with some airspace and eliminated the Thorium. I also have the 1.8 (non radioactive version). Another somewhat similar rendering lens (but it's different cast) is the Oreston 1.8.

I reallly like all these Pancolar photos. It really is a very versatile lens, neither modern nor old. It has quit some LoCA which only shows in very high contrast bright white regions. It's better in actual images, than in tests. It has amazing resolution, I like it a lot in the A7RIII.

Both lenses belong to Xenon-Biotar family with Lecia Summicron R 50mm f2 V1 and Schneider-Kreuznach Xenon. I had them all.

Don't show me lenses I don't have, especially Leitz! These photos look amazing! I've not see much posted or mentioned in this forum, probably because it's been discussed in the past. What's your take on the R Summicron? They aren't even that expensive (in Leica Dollar$ I mean)

I have one Xenon for QBM (SL Xenon). I am not sure how to categorize it, I consider it quite good. So far, it does good images -little flaws- but that don't move me. I am not sure if it's the color balance or what.

Here is a very good test and background of post-war Biotars 58mm it's translated from Japanese or Korean by Google translate:

https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=nl&sl=ja&tl=en&u=https%3A%2F%2Fspiral-m42.blogspot.nl%2F2010%2F11%2Fcarl-zeiss-jena-biotar-58mmf2m42.html

Pancolars are very undervalued lenses, for me are among the best 50'ever.

I never owned Meyer Goerlitz Oreston 50mm 1.8 the cool blueish cast comes from the coatings.

Summicron 50 is very fine lens, sharp, heavy, beautiful rendition but it's too expensive for a 50mm lens.

50mm is probably the FL that I have found harder of all, and where I have more dissatisfaction, on average. They are usually pushed beyond reasonable, sacrificing image quality more than not.

This doesn't happen nearly as much in other FL. I think if I would have had the Summicron as my first lens, my disappointment with most vintage 50mm would have been way worst, to the point of affecting my impression about the entire lens brands.

Xenon 50mm I had was M42 version and was quite good but I like Pancolar, Summicron and Biotar more.

Mine is quite good. It's renders fine details very well. I agree with that Trio, and add the variants of Tessar/Elmar 3.5 in good copies/clean to the list, because they are tiny have a simpler rendering with outstanding quality. The only probable exception is the Topcor 58/1.4, and some/any of the macro Xenotars.

Thank you

RMGoodLight
RMGoodLight Forum Member • Posts: 91
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42
1

A very detailed page about the history and creation of the Biotar line, including the Carl Zeiss Jena Biotar 5,5cm f2 can be found in German: https://zeissikonveb.de/start/objektive/normalobjektive/biotar.html

Constructed in 1937 it was produced until 1961 by Carl Zeiss Jena. It was produced in different mounts. If the lens writing states the focal length in cm then it was build before 1950. The optical construction was not changed from its first design in 1936 until its end in 1961. The russians produced a Helios copy. There should be a lot of copies of this lens since it was a mass product of the early days of the GDR photo industry.

 RMGoodLight's gear list:RMGoodLight's gear list
Sigma DP2 Merrill Fujifilm X-A1 Fujifilm X-T10 Fujifilm X-E3 Fujifilm XF 18mm F2 R +5 more
fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42

RMGoodLight wrote:

A very detailed page about the history and creation of the Biotar line, including the Carl Zeiss Jena Biotar 5,5cm f2 can be found in German: https://zeissikonveb.de/start/objektive/normalobjektive/biotar.html

Constructed in 1937 it was produced until 1961 by Carl Zeiss Jena. It was produced in different mounts. If the lens writing states the focal length in cm then it was build before 1950. The optical construction was not changed from its first design in 1936 until its end in 1961. The russians produced a Helios copy. There should be a lot of copies of this lens since it was a mass product of the early days of the GDR photo industry.

I didn't know it was that old! I though it may be an early 1950 or very late 1940s.

RMGoodLight
RMGoodLight Forum Member • Posts: 91
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42
1

I'm no expert but what I have read the story of east German photo industry is quite a bitter one.

With the beginning of the 20th century the later eastern part of Germany became something like the biggest and most important hotspot for camera and lens making. A lot of small business gathered there, f.e. Carl Zeiss Jena, Meyer-Görlitz or Ernemann-Werken. Germany was that spot that Japan is today as manufacturer and designer. A lot of camera and lens patents and ground breaking designs where created in Germany. After WWII Zeiss emigrated to west Germany and moved to Oberkochern. The remaining factory in the eastern part was (in Jena) was stripped by the Russian military as reparation. Most machines, camera and lens designs and even engineers where brought to the new Soviet union and used to produce the later Helios lenses and Zorki cameras.

The remaining employees of Carl Zeiss Jena worked hard to rebuild the fabrication and succeeded. They produced new cameras, lenses, new designs and patents that where groundbreaking of the time. But a lot of lenses based on designs that where created before WWII.

With losing WWII all German camera and lens patents where freed and could be used by other manufacturers. That hurt the German photo industry and was the basement of the rise of Japans photo industry. Japan used the patents and build up new companies that produced lenses. Later with the creation of zoom lenses Japans photo industry outrun the east German industry that never produced a single zoom lens. Until then east German photo industry could compete with the west (til the early 70th). Most of the east German photo makers where put together to one (Praktika) at this time. But instead producing more and better lenses the output shrinked. Some major developments on the worlds photo marked where addressed to late (Zoom, SLRs) and so east Germany lost his top spot. Some lens production was transfered to Bulgaria and lens makers as Sigma produced own rebranded lenses under the eastern Praktika brand.

After 1990 the east German photo industry was finished. Most fabrication was closed. A lot of people lost their jobs and never returned. West Carl Zeiss got the best bites from Carl Zeiss Jena but never moved back to Jena. The rest is history. From the former hot spot only Zeiss and Leica are there.

 RMGoodLight's gear list:RMGoodLight's gear list
Sigma DP2 Merrill Fujifilm X-A1 Fujifilm X-T10 Fujifilm X-E3 Fujifilm XF 18mm F2 R +5 more
fferreres Veteran Member • Posts: 6,943
Re: CZJ Black Biotar 5,8cm f2 M42

RMGoodLight wrote:

I'm no expert but what I have read the story of east German photo industry is quite a bitter one.

With the beginning of the 20th century the later eastern part of Germany became something like the biggest and most important hotspot for camera and lens making. A lot of small business gathered there, f.e. Carl Zeiss Jena, Meyer-Görlitz or Ernemann-Werken. Germany was that spot that Japan is today as manufacturer and designer. A lot of camera and lens patents and ground breaking designs where created in Germany. After WWII Zeiss emigrated to west Germany and moved to Oberkochern. The remaining factory in the eastern part was (in Jena) was stripped by the Russian military as reparation. Most machines, camera and lens designs and even engineers where brought to the new Soviet union and used to produce the later Helios lenses and Zorki cameras.

The remaining employees of Carl Zeiss Jena worked hard to rebuild the fabrication and succeeded. They produced new cameras, lenses, new designs and patents that where groundbreaking of the time. But a lot of lenses based on designs that where created before WWII.

With losing WWII all German camera and lens patents where freed and could be used by other manufacturers. That hurt the German photo industry and was the basement of the rise of Japans photo industry. Japan used the patents and build up new companies that produced lenses. Later with the creation of zoom lenses Japans photo industry outrun the east German industry that never produced a single zoom lens. Until then east German photo industry could compete with the west (til the early 70th). Most of the east German photo makers where put together to one (Praktika) at this time. But instead producing more and better lenses the output shrinked. Some major developments on the worlds photo marked where addressed to late (Zoom, SLRs) and so east Germany lost his top spot. Some lens production was transfered to Bulgaria and lens makers as Sigma produced own rebranded lenses under the eastern Praktika brand.

After 1990 the east German photo industry was finished. Most fabrication was closed. A lot of people lost their jobs and never returned. West Carl Zeiss got the best bites from Carl Zeiss Jena but never moved back to Jena. The rest is history. From the former hot spot only Zeiss and Leica are there.

Yes, it's very normal, as these shifts are economic processes, but in this case, all patents, research, everything was sacked. It's ironic that most of this industry shifted to Japan, an ally to Germany in WWII.

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