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ZK 50mm f1.4 on ebay
Posted By: kcjonez, 10-05-2018, 04:43 AM

Don't see these very often.
Not a bad deal.
Zeiss Planar f1.4 50mm Pentax K mount | eBay
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10-06-2018, 12:42 AM   #2
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Looks like a good deal, but I can't help wondering if it is five times better than a good old SMC Pentax M or A.
10-06-2018, 09:20 AM   #3
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no , not,
some sellers are trying to max their profit, no I would never pay that much tor this lens
10-06-2018, 06:21 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wasp Quote
Looks like a good deal, but I can't help wondering if it is five times better than a good old SMC Pentax M or A.
Or maybe 40% as good as the new DFA50?

10-07-2018, 09:28 AM   #5
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The Pentax-A 1.4 counterpart isn't a great optical performer wide open but it has a lot of character and great colour. However for this kind of money(or less) any of the 1.2/50mm Pentax mf lenses would kill this zeiss.
10-07-2018, 09:56 AM - 3 Likes   #6
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I'd like to ask each of the above commenters if they have ever actually owned the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 lens? Also, have they ever owned a Pentax SMC Pentax M or A 50mm f/1.4 lens?

If they've never owned the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 lens, I wonder on what they are basing their comments (such as "the Pentax mf lenses would kill this Zeiss"). Such sweeping comments sound to me like over generalizations by photographers who have little (if any) experience with this Zeiss lens.

I've owned 4 different copies of this Zeiss lens. While I not my favorite Zeiss 50mm lens (the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 Milvus is much MUCH better) this older Zeiss "Classic" version 50mm f/1.4 lens does perform well if one works to its' strengths (Zeiss colors, wide open performance).


This 50mm f/1.4 ZK lens for sale on ebay is going for about twice what a ZF version of this lens goes for. I would not pay $500 for this ZK version, rather, I'd prefer to save $200 - $300 and buy this same lens in the ZF mount and adapt it to K mount.


Also, comparing lenses to me is more of a personal thing, based upon ones own visual preferences and style of photography. I've owned a couple of Pentax f/1.2 lenses, and never much cared for them. But I'd never put them down just because I don't happen to care for their performance at wider apertures.

Further, comparing this older Zeiss lens to a much newer and more expensive Pentax lens (DFA50), is probably not an apples to apples comparision. Of course the DFA50 is a better lens, and it costs three or four times what this older Zeiss costs also.

Last edited by Fenwoodian; 10-07-2018 at 10:03 AM.
10-07-2018, 11:26 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fenwoodian Quote
.
I'd like to ask each of the above commenters if they have ever actually owned the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 lens? Also, have they ever owned a Pentax SMC Pentax M or A 50mm f/1.4 lens?

If they've never owned the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 lens, I wonder on what they are basing their comments (such as "the Pentax mf lenses would kill this Zeiss"). Such sweeping comments sound to me like over generalizations by photographers who have little (if any) experience with this Zeiss lens.

I've owned 4 different copies of this Zeiss lens. While I not my favorite Zeiss 50mm lens (the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 Milvus is much MUCH better) this older Zeiss "Classic" version 50mm f/1.4 lens does perform well if one works to its' strengths (Zeiss colors, wide open performance).


This 50mm f/1.4 ZK lens for sale on ebay is going for about twice what a ZF version of this lens goes for. I would not pay $500 for this ZK version, rather, I'd prefer to save $200 - $300 and buy this same lens in the ZF mount and adapt it to K mount.


Also, comparing lenses to me is more of a personal thing, based upon ones own visual preferences and style of photography. I've owned a couple of Pentax f/1.2 lenses, and never much cared for them. But I'd never put them down just because I don't happen to care for their performance at wider apertures.

Further, comparing this older Zeiss lens to a much newer and more expensive Pentax lens (DFA50), is probably not an apples to apples comparision. Of course the DFA50 is a better lens, and it costs three or four times what this older Zeiss costs also.
I think an interesting comparison would be this Zeiss version vs. the 8-element ST 50/1.4.
10-07-2018, 07:27 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fenwoodian Quote
I'd like to ask each of the above commenters if they have ever actually owned the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 lens? Also, have they ever owned a Pentax SMC Pentax M or A 50mm f/1.4 lens?
Thanks for asking. Yes to all. As with you all I can offer is my opinion. I like the A 1.2/50mm pentax because I prefer the Contrast, Bokeh and Sharpness.

10-08-2018, 12:17 AM   #9
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Just like how the shredded Banksy is now worth more than what it was worth when it was whole ....
10-08-2018, 12:48 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I think an interesting comparison would be this Zeiss version vs. the 8-element ST 50/1.4.
That would be a battle of the titans.
10-09-2018, 09:32 AM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I think an interesting comparison would be this Zeiss version vs. the 8-element ST 50/1.4.
I owned both at different time, so no direct side by side compare. 8-element ST is known for its very smooth bokeh and beautiful transition, but not for sharpness and resolution wide open -- few lenses at that time are design for wide open sharpness. So it really depends what you are looking for. Although 8-element ST has a name of Zeiss killer, it is not. resolution, contrast, CA control... Zeiss is better in most area. Focus is much better on ST.Bokeh is smoother on ST at large aperture.
Zeiss is good, for good reasons.
And, my K50/1.2 is not contrasty, not even as contrasty as A 50/1.4, even at same aperture. Color is not as rich as well. Get better after F2-2.8. Maybe A 1.2 is very different?
10-09-2018, 09:56 AM - 1 Like   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by grahame Quote
I owned both at different time, so no direct side by side compare. 8-element ST is known for its very smooth bokeh and beautiful transition, but not for sharpness and resolution wide open -- few lenses at that time are design for wide open sharpness. So it really depends what you are looking for. Although 8-element ST has a name of Zeiss killer, it is not. resolution, contrast, CA control... Zeiss is better in most area. Focus is much better on ST.Bokeh is smoother on ST at large aperture.
Zeiss is good, for good reasons.
And, my K50/1.2 is not contrasty, not even as contrasty as A 50/1.4, even at same aperture. Color is not as rich as well. Get better after F2-2.8. Maybe A 1.2 is very different?
I have the 8-element, K50/1.2, A50/1.2, many 50/1.4ís ST - FA, and the new D FA*. It might be interesting to attempt some sort of controlled study.

IMO the K-Series 50ís render warmer than the M and A and later series due to coating changes. The K50/1.2 is soft below f/2 but still a nic lens for someone who likes to play with lenses.

.:
10-10-2018, 12:56 AM - 1 Like   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sliver-Surfer Quote
Thanks for asking. Yes to all. As with you all I can offer is my opinion. I like the A 1.2/50mm pentax because I prefer the Contrast, Bokeh and Sharpness.
Well, let's not exaggerate.
I own three different f/1.2 fifties, and the Pentax is not the best.
If you value sharpness, especially outside the center of the frame - I don't - you got to stop down a few clicks.
Bokeh is nice, but it's ruined by an horrendous amount of Bokeh fringing (LoCA).
Contrast is quite good for an f/1.2 lens (thanks to SMC coating), but not at the top.
All in all, a nice lens that shines in its own specific way, not a great all-rounder like the Zeiss.

I have no first hand experience with modern Zeiss lenses, only with old ones like those for Rollei and Contax (not the f/1.4 unfortunately).
Being a collector, my judgement, and my purchase strategies, are conditioned by my love for vintage optics.
Though I can make and educated guess, based on Flickr pictures and MTF charts. I tend to agree with @Fenwoodian: the new design should beat the Classic version, and economically it makes more sense to leitax a ZF version or even the Contax one.
Having said all that, I just missed a Sigma EX DG HSM sold from japan, like new, for $292 shipped. It should match the Zeiss at the center, and it's AF.
As I already wrote on another thread, I got interested in the Samyang, which is a kind of poor man's Zeiss Classic. If it's half as good as the 135mm it would be a very interesting alternative option. Maybe not as distant from the Zeiss as some people think... and here I stop, cause I might come out with some blasphemy
After I extensively tried the Samyangs I have, in all honesty I can say I'm seriously impressed. More by the 35mm and 24mm, and a bit less by the 14mm and 85mm, but all of them are fine lenses. Not with a great build, but not plasticky either, and the former two show a brightness of the image that is normally found in optics of more noble lineage.

Regarding the LoCA shown by the Pentax 1.2/50mm, I want to be clear.
I don't mean that it can't be found in other lenses, even blue blood ones. Actually my Leitz Elmarit 2.8/135mm has plenty.
It is the kind of bokeh fringing. The Elmarit has much softer rings around OOF highlights, while the Pentax has thick well defined blue rings that can be used creatively but most of the times are plain annoying.

---------- Post added 10-10-18 at 10:46 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by grahame Quote
8-element ST is known for its very smooth bokeh and beautiful transition, but not for sharpness and resolution wide open -- few lenses at that time are design for wide open sharpness.
Did you see the MTF chart on photodo.com?
I have been impressed by the bokeh and the round, beautiful rendition of the 8-elements version of the Super Tak.
These are not qualities that are in any way reflected in an MTF chart, but still are an important (to my taste, prevalent) character that we consider when we express a judgement about a lens.
Just sticking to the MTF chart, and leaving out any other consideration, what left me seriously impressed is the level of performance stopped down.
Let's not forget that it's a single coated lens, and that contrast, together with resolution, gives the perceived sharpness (which is essentially what MTF measures). The old tests were done with targets, which meant that a lens could score high (i.e. resolve a high number of lines/mm), without giving a perception of good sharpness, cause the contrast was low.
MTF charts give a more realistic measurement, and in this case the chart highlights the performance of the lens stopped down.
Wide open it's rather good at the center, and quite bad at the borders, but once it's stopped down a few clicks it gets better than the FA 1.4/50mm!
Consistently better from medium to minimal apertures. It seems that this design suffers diffraction way less than a more modern one.
Really impressive.

Last edited by cyberjunkie; 10-10-2018 at 01:48 AM.
10-10-2018, 03:44 AM   #14
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The Zeiss lenses have their on character and their own way of rendering the subject. Not better, not worse, just different. If you want sharpness or flat field performance the Pentax i.7/1.8's were better for that than the Pentax 1.4/1.2's. It was even noted in the Pentax literature. As for this lens, it is a very good price. Most of the ones from Japan are at 50% higher and often even more.
10-10-2018, 04:46 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by kcjonez Quote
Or maybe 40% as good as the new DFA50?
Given that the figure of $500 is the auction starting price (I would suggest the seller is looking for more) that 40% could be 60%. If you were willing to give up AE and go for the cheaper Leitax ZF conversion, that might make the value proposition more appealing than a K50/1.4, but how many would pass up the ZK at the asking price for this copy (let alone the sellerís view of its worth), and spend the extra on AF and WR, and possibly a more attractive optical performance?

Iíve seen some output from ZK lenses, but never owned one. Thereís no doubt theyíre impressive, but with the new Pentax glass looking so good, at the prices the ZKs seem to be commanding, I never will own one (with no new UWA Pentax in sight, I had thought the Zeiss 21 might find a home here, but not at the current asking prices).
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