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Contax N Lenses vs Canon L Lenses

colin

Well-Known Member
Marc, I'm not a Canon user now. Last time I was I had just purchased a new Canon Pellix; shows you how long ago that was. I know that both Nikon and Canon produce image stabilizing lenses and I recall in reading the initial tests from possibly Pop.Photo, that images a re degraded when this feature is used. Can't tell you the reason, just know that I remember the reference. Maybe some diehard Canon owners can enlighten us.
Colin
 

paulcontax

Well-Known Member
There have been several lens tests in german photo magazines all stating that non-IS lenses were better than their IS counterparts.... I have been using the 28-135 IS and I haven't been that happy with the lens. I Git same quality with other cheaper lenses from Sigma for ex&le. And for the IS benefit I'm using primes instead - much better quality is same light conditions ! (2.8/28, 2/35, 1.8/50 and 2/100). Just my 2 cents... Paul
 
D

douglas

Switch to Leica SLR lenses and you won't have any problems. They are far better optically and mechanically.
Doug
 

bjornsor

Member
I'm interested in Contax/Zeiss, not Canon (or Nikon). Why don't move this thread to a Canon site. This Canon talk is of no interest.
 

singlo

Active Member
This thread indeed drifts out of focus...IS lens is more proned to flare and ghosting because of the additional image stablising optical elements (approx. 5-7)added to the design. The more optical elements, the worst flaring occurs particularly shooting towards the sun with IS zooms.The IS optical elements also introduce additional aberrations and therefore you will often find more LD glasses are needed in more expensive L IS- zooms and primes.
 
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pansies

Hi! Having just decided that digital is not for me, I am soon to go back to the RX Body. Having had in the past the AX,RX, and the N1,I have decided that the one I favoured best was the RX.As I cannot remember the lenses which I carried for that body, I am hoping that some of you will be able to make constructive, comments or suggestions of a suitable combination of about 4 lenses for the RX.
Kind Regards. Ken.T.
 
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writing4me

Hi Ken, Maybe you could tell the group what sort of subjects (people, landscape, architecture, etc) and in what types of conditions (indoor, low light, outdoors, sandy dusty places, etc) you like to shoot. That would make it easier to make suggestions. Good luck. -Lynn
 
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mikel

Ken,

As Lynn said, it depends
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I personally have following 4 lenses that cover most of my needs - Distagon 28mm f/2.8, Planar 50mm f/1.4, Sonnar 85mm f/2.8 and Sonnar 135mm f/2.8. I also need Planar 85mm f/1.4 and Distagon 35mm f/1.4, but I will add these later
happy.gif


Marc,

The main problem with IS is the fact that it is accomplished via a group of additional elements positioned inside the lens. This group is there regardless of whether you use IS or not. IS is accomplished by moving this group "correcting" your handshake. The problem with it is that:

a) it requires complete redesign of a specific lens to make it an "IS" lens.

Case in point - 70-200mm f/2.8 L "IS" has 23 (!) elements in 18 groups (thus 36 air-to-glass surfaces)

70-200mm f/2.8 L has 18 elements in 15 groups (30 air-to-glass surfaces) and 160 grams lighter

b) with these extra air-to-glass surfaces light loss becomes more significant and it's more prone to flare. See point "a".

c) more elements means more complex manufacturing, harder to achieve tolerances when assembling, mounting and centering lenses and different barrel from a regular lens

d) mechanism that moves these "IS" group lenses has to be very precise, which is easier said than done. It also depends on how accurate these gyro sensors are. Thus - shifts in focus and various aberrations even when the IS is turned off are possible, since that group moves up or down perpendicular to the optical axis - meaning there is a room for it in the barrel.

Nikon didn't start making VR lenses until relatively recently for pretty much the same reasons - they saw more cons than they saw pros. Only demand for these kind of lenses forced them to start making them.


Mike.
 

fotografz

Well-Known Member
Thank you Mike. I didn't know all that.

Kenneth, I have contemplated going back to an RX myself. There were some legendary Zeiss lenses in the manual system that I wish I had never parted with... and a few I never got around to getting.
 
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pansies

Hi Folks! Many thanks for your replies which are much appreciated. My interests are portrait, landscape,and just wandering around the countryside where I live and shooting old barns,derelict farm machinery, and farmers who have never had a shave for about four days etc. I think two of my previous lenses were the 25mm f2.8,and the 50mm f1.4 and I'm almost sure that I had the 85mm as well. At a mere 75yrs young carting weight around has to be another consideration.My present camera is a featherweight Nikon Coolpix 5700, not a bad little machine, but as I said before digital is not for me. It is common knowledge or beleif that prime lenses are superior to zooms,which could eleviate some of the weight,which now gives rise to the question, Is the differential in weight between four primes,as against two zooms,worth the differnce in quality. Over to you my friends.
Kind Regards Ken.T.
 

fotografz

Well-Known Member
Contax and Zeiss SLR gear are not a "light weight" decision. Then again, either are most SLRs. I may not be 75 years of age, but I feel that way after a 10 hour wedding carting around just about any pro level SLR system.

Perhaps an Aria and a few select zooms would work for what you like to shoot. Were it me and I were shooting the list you outlined, I'd just take a Leica M and 3 lenses max, or a 90 and TriElmar ... since this is a Contax forum substitute a G camera and a few lenses. Just a thought. Weight verses quality of image would not be in question that way... since both are well established features of these rangefinder systems.
 
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writing4me

Hello again Ken, You mention that you really like your RX, so it is good that you have a body selected that really suits you. How about picking up one or two lenses as a time, and see if they cover most of your shooting. Then if you find a gap, pick up another of a different focal length? It's always nice for me to just buy one lens as a time and really get to know it before adding another. Otherwise I tend to look at a bag full of lenses and debate too much about which one I want with me. Of course, that might just be an idiosychrasy of my own.

For the shooting you do, maybe a 50, 85 (2.8) and 135 would fill out your requirements. You could start with the 50 and 135 and see if this fills your needs. None are very expensive or large. I use a 50 for general shooting very often, especially when walking around in small towns. (I have the 50/1.7 and have never lusted for the 1.4) The 135 is nice for isolating elements, flowers, buildings, etc, and also nice for portraits without having to get in too close to the subject. (Those independent Farmers might be more comfortable being photographed at a distance than close up with an 85.) I wouldn't recommend the 28-85 zoom, only because it is a large heavy piece of glass that I found too unwieldy for everyday use. Otherwise, optically I liked it. I'm not a wide angle sort of person, you may have different thoughts about these suggestions. I tend to like teles the best of all.

I hope this might give some food for thought
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Best of luck! -Lynn L.
 

jsmisc

Well-Known Member
I agree with Lynn about the 50mm. I think it's an underated and underused length. I have started using the 45 on my G2 again as it's a good general purpose sort of lens. 50 is similar.
John
 

gjames52

Well-Known Member
Ken:

I also like the 50mm lens, I like it for perspective, landscape, size, weight, image size, and it is easy to carry. I also like for 100mm 90mm portraits. All things considered perhaps a G2 with a 45mm and 90mm will meet all of your needs. Also, with a rebate of $650.00 for a G2, 45mm, flash. and 90mm is hard to pass up.

P.S. mine fits snugly in a small Bellingham Pola bag which also lends itself to being used.

Regards

Gilbert
 
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pansies

Hi Folks. Many thanks for your thoughts, and suggestions, the ball is clearly in my court, as from now on. Thanks once again.
Regards Ken.T.
 

paulcontax

Well-Known Member
Hi Ken,

I have made equal experiences (other brands than you) and came back to Contax-film gear. I have been convinced by the 2.8/28 which is a MUST HAVE for me. Additionally use a 50mm Planar and the 2.8/135. The 2.8/35 is also very good but I don't need the additional 35 between 28 and 50mm. I have a teleconverter too for the long end (seldom used) and for the ultra-wide a cheap Vivitar 19mm (much better than the Tokina 17mm ! - at least my copy).

When going out with only the 3 Zeiss-lenses (I have the 137 MA which I like very much - the RX is too expensive here for me) I have far less weight than with any Zoom-lens kit. (Having Tamron, Tokina and Vivitar lenses so I know a lot of these manufacturers and according to my experiences the Tamrons are the best of them : SP28-80, 35-135) This set is not only lightweight but also very good optically and you can handhold the shots much better, the camera is much better to carry ....

Good luck with your Contax/Zeiss equipment !

Paul
 
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mikel

Ken,

How about Contax Aria with Planar 50mm f/1.4 as a primary go-around-shooting-unshaved-farmers-and-other-things lens, Distagon 28mm f/2.8 when you need wider angle, Sonnar 85mm f/2.8 when you need more or-less good lens for portraiture and Sonnar 135mm f/2.8 with Contax Mutar III 1.4 when you need long to very long telephoto? All these lenses are very light and you can possibly haul around Aria with one lens attached and another lens in the pouch or small bag all the time with you. And if you want faster lenses - just add Planar 85mm f/1.4 to it and maybe Distagon 35mm f/1.4. That is, if the budget, style and physical fitness permits.

This is more or less setup that I got and I absolutely love it for its portability. I carry two lenses, flash + bounce card, remote release cable, microfiber cloth, brush, blower, filters, extra batteries for camera and flash, one or two extra rolls of film, few more small items in one Lowepro photobag on my shoulder. Aria with one lens attached in C-6 case with strap over the neck. Pretty neat combo I think. Although I'm not sure I will want to do that when I'm 75. In this case I would probably recommend one body + one lens kind of deal. Preferably optically fast lens. Such as Distagon 35mm f/1.4 or Planar 50mm f/1.4 or maybe even Planar 85mm f/1.4 (although I wouldn't think of using it as all-around kind of lens).

Do you have any professional photo store close to you where you can rent some of these items? If so, it might be a good idea to try it first, to see if it will work for you.

Good luck!

Mike.
 

ksklo

Well-Known Member
Hi Ken T.,

I am sure by now you must have pretty much made up your mind on your lens selection. I would just like to add my little comments since I find my own setup quite compact and satisfies almost all my needs. I have the 21/2.8, 28/2.8, 50/1.4 and the VS 80-200/4 along with an Aria body.

Personally I like the 21/2.8 a lot because for landscape pictures, I find the dramatic perspective given by the ultrawide is always very unique and pleasant. On the other hand, it is quite heavy and if weight is really a concern, you may consider going with the standard, 35/2.8 and 25/2.8.

The VS 80-200, in my opinion, is lightweight and offers the versatility one needs to shoot portraits. I just cannot imagine the farmers you talked about would be willing to pose for you and with the zoom, I believe it would be much easier for you to frame effectively.

Just my 2 cents. Good luck and please let all of us know what your final decision is.

Regards,
Ken Lo
 
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