Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
04-07-2017, 11:56 AM   #1
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Zeiss 100/2 Makro-Planar VS Zeiss 135/2 APO Sonnar - Which Lens Is Best?

For some time now I've owned a Zeiss ZF 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar lens that I Leitax adapted for use on my Pentax K1 camera. It's become one of my favorite lenses for flower photography.

Just today I finished Leitax converting an excellent copy of the highly rated Zeiss 135mm f/2 APO Sonnar lens from Nikon F to Pentax K mount for fellow Pentax Forums member Les (aka les3547).

This is the first Zeiss 135/2 APO lens that I've had my hands on - what a beauty! Many reviewers have said that this lens is "Otus" quality!

Les told me I could try it out on my K1 before I send it to him. Thanks so much Les for that kind offer!

So, while I've still got Les' fabulous Zeiss 135/2 APO lens, I thought that it might be interesting to shoot the same subjects with both the Z100 and Z135 lenses.

This won't be a scientific test. I know that the fields of view are very different; however these are Zeiss' two longest telephoto lenses, and I thought some of you might be interested in seeing a quick comparison of images.

What types of images or subjects might you recommend I shoot in this little shoot-out? Please keep in mind that I live in northern Wisconsin USA and the snow has just recently melted and most of the vegetation here is still brown and dead.

Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 

Last edited by Fenwoodian; 04-08-2017 at 10:08 AM.
04-07-2017, 12:26 PM - 1 Like   #2
Site Supporter




Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9
Fenwoodian - curiousity: You do conversions to PK mount? Where are you located or near - I am in Tomah and would like to hear or learn more. :-)
04-07-2017, 12:57 PM   #3
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by jeffdrew Quote
Fenwoodian - curiousity: You do conversions to PK mount? Where are you located or near - I am in Tomah and would like to hear or learn more. :-)
Jeff, nice to meet you! I live in the Wausau area.

Of the 16 Zeiss ZF "Classic" and "Milvus" lenses I've converted to Pentax K mount, I still have six of them. The rest I've either sold or converted for someone else.
04-07-2017, 03:07 PM   #4
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Original Poster
First photo is from the 135. Second photo is from the 100. Both were shot hand held at f/2.

When viewed at 100%, to my eye they both exhibit similar sharpness. I like the bokeh each lens produces.

The color on the metallic chimes is better and more realistic and pure in the 135 image. Notice that the out of focus chimes and the rope in the 100 image have purple and green fringing on their edges. While all of the little ropes in the 135 image are jet black without any fringing.

.

Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 

Last edited by Fenwoodian; 04-07-2017 at 03:39 PM.
04-07-2017, 03:24 PM   #5
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Original Poster
Here's a 100% crop of a high contrast subject - my outside electric meter.

135 image first, 100 image second.

Hand held at f/2.

Again, notice the lack of color fringing on the 135, while the 100 has tons of green fringing.

.
Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 
04-07-2017, 03:34 PM   #6
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Original Poster
Again 135 image is the first one. Both shot at f/2

Both have nice colors and good sharpness.


.
Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 

Last edited by Fenwoodian; 04-08-2017 at 07:30 PM.
04-07-2017, 03:35 PM   #7
Site Supporter
les3547's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Sebastopol, California
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,870
QuoteOriginally posted by Fenwoodian Quote
Again, notice the lack of color fringing on the 135, while the 100 has tons of green fringing.

.
I read an article on the Zeiss 135mm discussing the fact that some lens makers claim their lenses are apochromatic (like the Sigma Art) but are actually not fully APO. That's very unlike the Zeiss 135mm f/2 Apo Sonnar T* ZF.2 Lens which is a true APO lens and thus should be pretty much immune to fringing.
04-07-2017, 03:42 PM   #8
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by les3547 Quote
I read an article on the Zeiss 135mm discussing the fact that some lens makers claim their lenses are apochromatic (like the Sigma Art) but are actually not fully APO. That's very unlike the Zeiss 135mm f/2 Apo Sonnar T* ZF.2 Lens which is a true APO lens and thus should be pretty much immune to fringing.

Thanks for the explanation Les. Want to trade lenses?

04-07-2017, 04:10 PM   #9
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Original Poster
Here's a hand held f/2 shot of a McDonald's outside sign. Again, the 135 image is the first one. These are both 100% crops.

Both have nice colors, comparable sharpness, but notice the green fringing around the windows on the white car in the background on the 100 image.

.
Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 
04-07-2017, 04:43 PM   #10
Tas
Site Supporter




Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Brisbane, QLD
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,242
QuoteOriginally posted by Fenwoodian Quote
What types of images or subjects might you recommend I shoot in this little shoot-out?
I don't know whether to thank you or call you names for awakening LBA again.

The posts so far are quite interesting, and I was interested in some comparisons so thought I'd post some examples and hopefully you'll be able to find similar before you have to forward the lens on.

I'm interested in how they compare when focused closer to and at infinity: like this with a wider aperture (here the focus is on the person and the f4 aperture softens the background more for the difussed light & cloud when no sharpening is applied to the sky):


And something similar to this where the 100mm is stopped down to f11:


I've no expectations mate, just what you can consider in the time you have.

I'd like to mention too that if you're hand holding it's best to match the SR focal length to the lens, assuming you haven't turned it off due to some of the fast shutter speeds used.

Thanks for offering to do the comparison and thank you Les for letting Dave have the opportunity to share what he finds.

Tas
04-08-2017, 07:02 AM   #11
Forum Member




Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 53
Wonderful post and very informative. Have you also done any conversions from the Contax Zeiss versions of the lens -- if so, any particular models you'd recommend looking for? Also, out of curiosity, have you had the opportunity to compare the 100 with the current Pentax 100 macro. If you get the chance I'd love to see how the 135 and 100 handle busy corners like branches, foliage at F8 and F11.
04-08-2017, 07:30 AM   #12
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by travelswsage Quote
Wonderful post and very informative. Have you also done any conversions from the Contax Zeiss versions of the lens -- if so, any particular models you'd recommend looking for? Also, out of curiosity, have you had the opportunity to compare the 100 with the current Pentax 100 macro. If you get the chance I'd love to see how the 135 and 100 handle busy corners like branches, foliage at F8 and F11.
I may be doing some shooting tomorrow at f/8 and f/11.

No, I've never personally converted any Contax Zeiss lenses. However, I did buy one already Leitax converted, it was the Contax Carl Zeiss 50mm 1.7 lens. The Leitax conversion on this lens was a convoluted mess. It had a big spring on the Leitax adapter that kept coming off. The spring controled the aperture and when shooting I never knew what aperture I'd be shooting or when the stupid spring would come off. It was not at all a strong/secure/reliable adapter like the Leitax adapter for Zeiss "Classic" and "Milvus" lenses is.

Based on my experience with the Leitax adapted Contax Carl Zeiss 50mm 1.7 lens, I would never again purchase another Contax Carl Zeiss lens! I was so unhappy and frustrated with that unreliable Contax Carl Zeiss 50mm 1.7 that I ended up throwing it in the garbage!

Two years ago I owned the latest WR Pentax 100mm macro lens. I shot it on a K3ii. I did not have a Zeiss 100/2 Makro Planar at the time I owned the Pentax 100 macro. But I remember that I was very impressed with the Pentax 100 macro. Compared with the Zeiss 100 I'd say: the Pentax 100 might be a tiny bit sharper, both have excellent colors, the Zeiss has a bit better micro-contrast, the Pentax is much smaller and lighter than the Zeiss, the Zeiss has much better manual focusing, and the Zeiss is made much better and will last decades longer than the Pentax. While I could certainly purchase a Pentax 100 macro if I wanted as it's about half the price of the Zeiss 100. But I believe that I will stick with the Zeiss 100 because at f/2 with subjects 10 to 30 feet from the camera, the Zeiss has a "3D Pop" that's extremely appealing to me. (by the way, based on very limited shooting yesterday with the Zeiss 135mm lens, I'd say that the Zeiss 135mm lens has at least as much "3D pop" (maybe even more) than the Zeiss 100mm lens does).

I've owned many expensive, super-premium lenses over the years. The Zeiss 135mm APO is right up there with the very best lenses I've ever used! I still like my Zeiss 100mm Makro-Planar, but the Zeiss 135mm APO is clearly the better lens and at another level.

Is the Zeiss 135mm APO the very best telephoto lens for the Pentax K1? The Zeiss 135mm APO betters every telephoto Pentax, Sigma, Samyang, Zeiss, Voightlander, Canon, and Nikkor lens I've ever owned. Unfortunately, I've never used the legendary Pentax-A* 135mm F1.8. I can not offer an opinion on how these two lenses would compare. I doubt I'll ever buy a Pentax-A* 135mm F1.8 lens as they are rare and expensive (around twice the price of the Zeiss 135mm APO).

Last edited by Fenwoodian; 04-08-2017 at 11:22 AM.
04-08-2017, 03:01 PM   #13
Forum Member




Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 53
Wow, thanks for all the info. I'll give up on the idea of looking for the Contax lenses and watch for the Nikon versions. I do have the Pentax 100 macro and find it very sharp -- as always nailing focus on macros is my biggest obstacle. The 135 sounds incredible.
04-08-2017, 05:52 PM   #14
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Original Poster
f/5.6 from a tripod. 135 is the first one.

Very similar image qualities. I could not find any color fringing at 100% on the Zeiss 100mm image.

If forced to point out the smallest of observable differences between these photos when studied on a good monitor, I'd say the micro-contrast evidenced in the white/gray tree bark is ever so slightly better in the 135mm image.

.
Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 

Last edited by Fenwoodian; 04-10-2017 at 03:41 PM.
04-08-2017, 06:33 PM   #15
Site Supporter
Fenwoodian's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2015
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,271
Original Poster
f/8

These images were shot at f/8 on a tripod. 135 image is the first one.

I focused on the sign on the yellow building.

The white you see in the distant background is snow on a 72 run ski hill that's in my town. Yes, if you look closely you might even see skiers on it.

When I studied the 100mm image at 100% I could find no significant color fringing.

When viewing these f/8 images at 100%, it is evident that the 135mm lens shows slightly better sharpness than the 100mm lens (of course I'm trying my best to compensate for the difference in fields of view).

I also shot this same scene at f/11 with each lens. For the 100mm lens, the sharpness at f/8 and at f/11 was very close; however, on the 135mm images, I noticed a decrease in sharpness when I went from f/8 to f/11.
Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 

Last edited by Fenwoodian; 04-13-2017 at 05:46 PM.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
apo, apo sonnar, image, images, k-mount, lens, lenses, makro-planar vs zeiss, pentax, pentax lens, post, slr lens, sonnar which lens, zeiss, zeiss 135/2 apo
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Carl Zeiss T* ZK mounts (Distagon, Planar, Makro-Planar) Tom S. Lens Clubs 902 2 Days Ago 02:17 AM
For Sale - Sold: 3 ZK Lenses: Zeiss 35 mm F2, Zeiss 50 mm F2 Makro, and Zeiss 85 mm F1.4 Planar Vantage-Point Sold Items 10 08-31-2016 08:11 PM
K-5 IIs w/ Zeiss 50mm f2 Makro-Planar Photos (& One 100% Crop) neil Pentax K-5 7 11-04-2012 10:04 PM
Zeiss Makro-Planar 2/100 ZK test shots! tcom Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 22 08-17-2008 12:13 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 02:50 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top