70 200mm versus 70 300mm

G

Guest

I bought both of these N1 lenses to try and would return one after my test results were seen. I was hoping the more expensive 300mm zoom would win the battle because I wanted the AF/MF option without flipping a tiny switch on the lens barrel.
I work for Fuji Film's largest processing lab in the NY area and I have access to the best printers in the world including Agfa, Gretag and the Fuji Frontier digital printer. So yesterday I borrowed a tripod, mounted the N1 with 400ASA film, set the aperature at F8 and shot a series of photos with both lenses. I used common markings on both lenses, 70mm, 100mm and 200mm. I went to work on a Saturday evening to process the results. I was disappointed with my findings. In all three ranges the cheaper lens beat out the more expensive 300mm lens. I wanted the results to be the other way around since the money difference doesn't bother me. I don't mind paying for quality but the crisper photos with the less expensive lens is hard to walk away from. I'm seeing this easily with 4X6 inch prints with one eye which has corneal blindness. I'm sure the difference with 8X10s would be huge. I guess I have to return the $1500 lens and deal with the tiny switch on the lens barrel. Rick
 
G

Guest

Don't you find the AUTO FOCUS function comparatively slow?
thanks for firsthand impression.
Tino
 
G

Guest

Are you referring to having to flip a switch on the 70/200 versus not having to do this on the 70/300? If this is your question, i use this camera mostly for travel non action photos and have had zero complaints with the AF system of this camera. I am not happy with having to flip a switch on the lens for MF, but it's the trade off for sharpness. Without doubt the cheaper lens has better optics. I know people refer to this camera as having a slow AF system as compared to Nikon and Canon but it suits me fine and the optics is why I have owned Contax cameras for 20+ years.
 
G

Guest

I have to say that I am not surprised at all that the "cheapo" 70-200 is optically superior to the (let's face it) overpriced 70-300. First of all, the price difference isn't all THAT big; I believe about $400. A lot of this price difference must have gone into costs associated with more complex (but also more compromised) optical design to extend 200 to 300 mm, the definitely more quiet motor, the manual focusing override (the little switch), and internal focusing (I believe). The 70-200 is simpler in design and misses some of these niceties, but it's optical formula is well-proven. For instance, look at Canon/Nikon etc; they all have professional 70/80-200 lenses, but NONE of them make a high grade 70-300.
I chose the 70-200 for that reason; it is light weight, excellent, and affordable. I don't like tripods so I don't need 200-300mm. The AF is quite good but indeed it is not suitable for sports - but neither is the 70-300 or any other N1 lens.
 
G

Guest

You cannot compare the 70-200mm N lens to the professional Canon and Nikon 70/80-200mm lenses. The N lens is not a pro lens. If you want to compare apples and apples, wait for the 70-200 f/2.8 N lens which will compete with the Ninon and Canon 70/80-200mm f/2.8 lenses. However, the f/2.8 N lens will not be cheap!
 
G

Guest

Sorry, forgot one last point. Why do you say you don't like tripods and so you don't need the 200mm to 300mm range. One does not negate the other, and that extra range is very useful and certainly does not require a tripod.

I have many shots at the 300mm end taken on Provia 100F handheld.
 
G

Guest

Simon, of course I can. The 70-200 may not be a pro-lens (whatever that is), but pricewise it is the same as the old push-pull 80-200/F2.8 from Nikon (which I used to own) and it is clearly MUCH more expensive than any consumer 70-200 on the market. That may put in the pro-sumer range I guess? Anyways, my point is that there is no pro-lens in the 70-300 range because you can not make the optics as good as 70-200, and if the quality is not good enough, it can not be a prolens. I do not like tripods because I do not like to lug them around, I already have enough to carry. The weight of the 70-300 is a serious concern here (I got rid of my Nikon for that reason; just never wanted to carry it around). Of course I would love to have something light that I can extend to 300mm, or 400 or 500mm. Point is, I can handhold up to 200mm with provia 100F reasonably well but I am much worse with 300mm (I have owned those) and 100 speed film. You are a very fortunate man having no problems with carrying a heavy bag AND keeping your hands tremble-free.
 
G

Guest

Why do you assume price puts the lens into some defined group such as consumer, pro-sumer or amateur. It doesn't have anything to do with price. The 70-200 N lens is not a 'pro' lens in any respect. The 'pro' N lenses will be the fixed f/2.8 zooms and the 400mm f/4, all of which will probably have superior optical quality due to the fixed aperture. That fixed aperture is what will appeal to the 'pro' users, and they will pay a high price in the N range for it I suspect.

As for carrying a bag and having tremble free hands, using ISO 100 film in sunlight with a 300mm lens at f/5.6, even applying the Sunny 16 rule, you should be at around 1/1000s. You must have severe shakes if you cannot capture a reasonably satisfactory handheld image at that speed.
 
G

Guest

Dear Simon, Do you know when this 70 - 200N F2.8 lens will be available? Will I have to make a choice between a car or lens? What price range will it fall into? I'll guess at around $2200.
 
G

Guest

Rick

Sorry, I don't have any dates. I guess Photokina would be a good venue to at least announce additional N lenses, if not launch them, so perhaps September.
 
G

Guest

Has Contax indicated there might be a 2.8 70-200N? When and where?
 
G

Guest

When and where did they indicate it or when and where will they appear? If the former, I heard a few weeks ago in a private email from Contax. If the latter, I have no idea.
 

dirk

CI-Founder
Hi Stan,

as soon as there are more specific data available, I will put it in the news folder. I try to persist to announce things to early because Contax may change its mind again and then all the talking starts in the internet. But it seems very likely that N-lenses/zooms with 2.8 aperture or bigger will come within the next 6-12 months. But these will cost also some money...

In General: It is for sure that Contax/Zeiss will enlarge their N-lens choice and their camera choice (not only N-cameras).

You can expect some nice surprises here. If you follow the threads and the structure of the Contaxinfo.com-Forum closely, you can guess already a little bit


Dirk
 
G

Guest

I want to add one more thing to the Simon-discussion and then I'll leave the topic. To state that price has "nothing" to do with being a pro or consumer lens is just silly. Cheap lenses are for the mass market or consumers, expensive lenses are of the "pro-quality" for the very few who really need or want it. That often comes with fast aperture, but do you consider the majority of Sigma's F2.8 lenses prolenses? Probably not, because they are not built well, flare and coating issue, etc..But guess what: they're cheap. Many pro-lenses are actually not all that good at F2.8 but they do usually have it to make the pro's life easier. It's nice that when you step out in the blazing sun your hands are steady enough at F5.6 for 300mm shots. Unfortunately, I often find myself in much lower light situations (it usually gives a prettier picture), and in that case I do need a tripod, which I can't deal with.
 
G

Guest

Does anyone have any s&le photos taken with the 70-200? I am trying to decide which lens to purchase. I like the speed and size of the 70-200.

Thanks
Marc
 

dirk

CI-Founder
Hi Marc,

I have nothing scanned yet, but it is an excellent zoom. I switched from my N70-300 to the N70-200 because of size and weight.

Handholding is with the 70-200 a lot easier then with the 70-300. There is almost 400g difference.

AF is astonishing quiet. But slightly louder then the N70-300. And NO dualfocus.

Very good handling. Lens hood (GB-77) makes it almost too long for my taste. It looks almost like a gun.

Optical quality excellent, slightly better then the N70-300. AND better aperture (3.5-4.5) then the N70-300.

I do not think taht pictures on the web will help you to determine the difference between the two. On this quality level very difficult with screen solution.

I shot a roll with velvia for portraits of my girlfriend. You see the smallest whole in the skin of the face. My girlfriend does not like this lens anymore after that experience. Or use another film.

hope that helps

Dirk
 
G

Guest

I agree that the 70-300 is way too heavy. I took it hiking to the mountains a week ago (my first rolls with my new NX) and it was, quite literally, a pain in the neck.
 
G

Guest

According to Contax in NJ the GB-77 hood for the 70 - 200N lens is not available in the USA. Does anyone know where I can get it?
 
G

Guest

You might try FotoHobby in Frankfurt. I bought my 28 PC from them and they were reliable. I think they have been in business for a very long time. Mostly Leica.
 
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