Contax superwides

G

Guest

I have some experience with a couple of the Contax SLR superwide lenses, but don't own one now. The 21mm is a marvelous but oversized lens, I've heard wonderful things about the 15mm but it's ungodly expensive, and the 18mm f4 doesn't seem to get a lot of attention or respect. I "need" to add one, and would enjoy hearing from anyone who had tested and compared two or all of these lenses and came to some conclusion as to how good they were (relative to the high standards of the entire Contax lens line, of course).
 
G

Guest

I have an 18mm and a 25mm Zeiss for my RTSIII. The reason for purchasing these 2 lenses has a lot to do with the angle of view (check the specs) compared with the 50mm 1.4 lens.
The 18mm is a cracking lens, with virtually no distortion, and very consistent colour rendition compared to the other Zeiss lenses.
You have to be careful with the in camera metering because it is such a wide view, and I often cross check the meter reading with an incident reading from a hand held meter.
If there is a problem, it's getting a filter to fit the front to protect the front element - if you thought the lens was expensive wait till you see the price of the filter - it has to be big to stop vignetting.
In summary, it's a great lens, and gives excellent results. Check out some of the photos on
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for more of this and other Zeiss lenses.
 
G

Guest

I have used the Distagon 21mm/f2.8 and it is the sharpest wide angle lens I have used. With this lens you can shoot wide open and still have very sharp pictures. The lens does not feel oversized when you work with it. The filtersize is 82mm. I sold my C/Y system and bought the N-system, but I really miss the D21mm/f2.8. I will buy the lens directly when it is released with N-mount!
 
G

Guest

Hi Patrik,
I like the 21mm/2.8 so much that this is the most important reason for me to keep the manual system in favour to the N-system. Although the new 17-35mm 2.8 N is a good lens,it can only focus down to 0.5m. 21mm/2.8 C-Y can go down to 0.22m.Focusing in close range is interesting with wide angles.Joseph
 
G

Guest

Specifications of the 21mm Distagon were so impressive that I ordered one -- and I'm a Canon D30 user! Quality wide-angles from Canon don't exist, and the 1.6x of the D30 just multiplies the problem.

I now have an RTS III and the 21mm performs like a dream. Plus, I get free bicep exercise! I'm turning into a Contax fanatic: film scanner arrives tomorrow.
 
G

Guest

> > > > very much so, the 21mm Distagon is probably still the best, only Leica 21mm > Emarit-M come close or equal. > Brgds/Kaisern > > >
 
G

Guest

> I now have an RTS III and the 21mm performs like a dream. Plus, I get> free bicep exercise! I'm turning into a Contax fanatic: film scanner> arrives tomorrow.

It aint the lightest combo around to be sure , but it just doesnt get any better than this........ Steve
 
G

Guest

Any experience with a Yashica 15mm Fisheye? Is it a quality optic?

Thanks,
Dave
 
G

Guest

Stunning optics, although not something you can use all the time. Expensive but made in smaller numbers than most. Great in confined spaces. Able to be converted to a rectilinear image after scanning and modifying digitally. Apparently equates to something around 12mm after conversion. A bit hard to find and easy to damage if you make a habit of placing it front element down on less than even surfaces. You learn to be more careful when you pay Zeiss prices for such a lens. Regards,

Gary
 

pickle

Member
I have experience of the Yashica 15mm Fisheye. I was very impressed with it. It was sharp to the corners (170-degree field). I even used it for night-sky pictures (a difficult test for any lens) and all the stars had pin-point images.
 
D

dja

>>I have experience of the Yashica 15mm Fisheye. I was very impressed with it. It was sharp to the corners (170-degree field). I even used it for night-sky pictures (a difficult test for any lens) and all the stars had pin-point images.<<

Couldn't agree more. VERY sharp with VERY even illumination. But it's a tough find. On Ebay USA recently, a rather generic unit quickly sold for $485 USD. (slight "small rub mark" on the front element and "the rear element have some thing look like spider web type of seperations around the edge of lens") Even with faults, this lens was quickly grabbed at nearly $500. Maybe someone with more money than brains. ;)

David
 

edek

Member
I am using the 16mm 2,8 Distagon. It is quite difficult to use because it produce a great distorsion, but the image quality and sharpness is incredibly !! is e special lens for special photos. I sold all the photos done with it, people like them very much, is an unusual way to see the world.
Regards. EDEK
 

rico

Well-Known Member
Edek,

Totally agree! This is another overpriced CZ lens but is stunningly sharp across most of the field, with only a tinge of lateral color near the edge. While it produces that crazy fisheye look at the drop of a hat, I have been quite success using it as a normal lens.

My other fisheye is used on a Canon DSLR with a 1.6X sensor crop. The less extreme angle-of-view, - and the fisheye property of preserving shapes - makes this combo the ultimate "people lens". I really wish the Mutar III worked with the F-Distagon.
 

edek

Member
Hi Rico, about 16mm, I am using one not stil mine but I can buy it for about 600 dollars, not too much compared with the prices i have seen on the web. I dont know what to do, I have Nikon gear but want to complete the ccontax one. I need more a 28 and some tele may be 85 or 135 for my job, and cheapper than a 16, but..... this distagon is really a tentation, may be not to work with but to have fantastic and incredible fun fotos, like I said is another way to see the world! and in photography is just this diferent way to show the scene what has more impact on the people.
Regards.
EDEK<<<<<<<<
 

rico

Well-Known Member
For cheap fisheye fun, perhaps you can choose the Sigma 15/2.8 ($300 new), or the Russian version ($100 new). These will fit all the common SLR mounts. There is also a Yashica C/Y version but it is - of course - discontinued and scarce.
 

wilsonlaidlaw

Well-Known Member
If anyone is willing to wait until I finish the current roll in my RX (may take a little time as mainly using G2 at present) I can email them a scanned copy of some photos I have recently taken with the Zenit 16mm Fisheye, trying it very stopped down and camera on tripod to see if it really is a lens or a paperweight. One of the main problems is the lens is completely uncoupled i.e. neither AE nor MM so if you open up to focus/frame, you have to remember to stop down afterwards as it is useless wide open. My recommendation would be to save up for the Sigma or hunt around for a Yashica - TANSTAAFL. Wilson
 

melvin

Member
I use the distagon 18/4 for 6 months now. It is my favourite lens. Very sharp and brilliant. There is really no reason why someone should not use this lens.

See the enclosed photo.
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Melvin
 
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