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Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 300mm f/4

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3 22,139 Sat September 12, 2020
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100% of reviewers $222.50 10.00
Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 300mm f/4

Producer: Carl Zeiss Jena (DDR)
Model: Sonnar - (two versions: "Zebra" and MC - Multi Coated)
Focal length: 300mm
Max. aperture: f/4
Min. aperture: f/45
Aperture blades: 7
Min. focus distance: 4m
Filter diameter: 86mm
Weight: 1550g (MC), 2070g (Zebra)
Length: 204mm (MC), 224mm (Zebra)
There were two design versions according to information on this site:
The lens design was recalculated in 1963 and then again in 1974 - finally resulting in 520g lighter and 20mm shorter Multi Coatad version that I posses.
Mount Type:
Price History:

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New Member

Registered: September, 2020
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: September 12, 2020 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: N/A 


Hi Folks,

Just a precision about the versions. The "Zebra" optical version has nothig to compare with the MC version. The MC version is closer to the Meyer-Optik Orestegonn 300mm than the original zebra design. This was done essentially for cost reasons because the original zebra was very difficult and expensive to manufacture.

As a consequence the chromatic performance of the later MC versions is much lower thant the older ones (zebra type). You can find some comparisons here :

The chromatism is reduced on MC types when it is stopped down.
New Member

Registered: November, 2013
Posts: 8
Lens Review Date: August 5, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $300.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: extremely sharp lens
Cons: none
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 10    Value: 10    Camera Used: k200d,k-x k-s1   

++ this lens of Carl ZEISS JENA is an apochromate lens 5/2 construction with ED fluorit glass !!!

++ excellent sharpness at f8

++ with focal reductor 0.7 excellent sharp marco shootings 2.8/210 possible

++ nearly no CA's

++ excellent bokeh

++ excellent color rendition

full points
Forum Member

Registered: December, 2012
Location: Warsaw
Posts: 83

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 23, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $145.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very good image quality: color redintion, sharpness, contrast, bokeh. FF and 6x6 ready.
Cons: Size and weight must be taken under consideration but with this kind of lens this is just a factnot a con.

Another classic lens from Carl Zeiss: SONNAR 300mm f/4.

Thanks to it's newer design it weights "only" 50% more than SMC-K 300mm f/4 - not 100% more as with old design "Zebra" type.
The lens can be used handheld. Due to it's weight, it is very stable, so shutter speeds of 1/30 - 1/50 are not a problem at all (thanks to SR).

Lens is fully usable wide open, from f/5,6 on it is VERY sharp. I didn't have any problem to get crisp images few minutes after I first tried it.

Colours are warm and saturated, bokeh very natural and pleasing. Crisp sharpness of the main subject and subtle tonal transition (due to simple Sonnar design) together with great bokeh creates great 3D effect.

The lens handles like a Takumar with working aperture metering on Program - which is what I like very much.
Pentacon Six/Pentax adapter is a must, big screw-in sunshade is included in a set (same size as CZJ Sonnar 180mm f/2,8).
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