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Distagon 28mm f2 is it worth it

G

Guest

I'm currently looking for a wide angle lens for my S2.

The obvious bargain is the 28mm f2.8 which is said to be superb, plus it's lightweight. 2nd hand prices seem to be around £150.

The 25mm f2.8 is said to be more 'soulful' but costs twice as much as the 28mm f2.8. 2nd hand prices seem to be around £250-300.

The 28mm f2 is obviously a superb lens, heavy though, and costs a fortune, if you can get one. The going rate seems to be £400+ for a good 2nd hand one.

There is very little difference between a 28mm and 25mm in terms of field of view, so I'm not too bothered which one I go for. As the main use for a wide angle will be landscape/architecture, is the loss of one f-stop actually going to loose me anyting? Does anyone actually use the 28mm f2 AT f2??

Basically is the 25mm f2.5 worth the extra over the 28mm f2.8, and is the 28mm f2 worth the extra over the 25mm f2.8??

Thanks,
Jon
 
G

Guest

Jon

I'm repeating myself here but I'd definitely go for the 25 over the 28 f2.8 (I've no eperience with the f2). I had the 28 and didn't like it - it was often not quite wide enough and I often thought that it was soft at the edges (others' opinions suggest however that the 28 "should" be sharper, but that wasn't my experience at all. I ended up with a very battered-looking 25 and it's been my most used lens ever since. I especially like the perspective and the lack of distortion.

On the perspective front it is, perhaps, surprising that I prefer it so much over the 28 as I'm sure I've read somewhere that it is really more like a 26 or 27mm focal length, so apparently very close to the 28.

My experience is that these are really two very different lenses. It would be interesting to hear from Dirk, or anyone else, if they have a view on why these two lenses co-exist and why one is twice the price of the other.

As I've said I've no experience of the f2 but I can't recall any time when I would have wanted that extra half-stop.

Hope this helps
John
 
G

Guest

"My experience is that these are really two very different lenses. It would be interesting to hear from Dirk, or anyone else, if they have a view on why these two lenses co-exist and why one is twice the price of the other."

Hi John,

Im am pleased about your high opinion about me, but to be honest I do not think that I am an expert in this field. I prefer the 25MM over the 28MM because of the different angle and the imppression I get on the final photo. For me personally pictures taken with the 25 are looking more three-dimensional, more "real". In German I would call it "Plastizitat". I have the impression to put my hand out and touch the subjct more easily then with the 28. But this is a personal thing.

I never made test shots with both together though. I think everybody should decide this for himself. Either you like more the 28 or more the 25 in general. This might depend on your shooting style/subjects too.

For the comparison between the 28/2.8 with the old 28/2.0 I would recommend the MTF charts on this site. Optically the 28/2.8 is definitely better. I think that very often (same with Leica) there are myths, if a lens was produced in Germany. I trust in this matter more the MTF charts.

dirk
 
G

Guest

John Walton wrote:

"I'm repeating myself here but I'd definitely go for the 25 over the 28 f2.8 (I've no eperience with the f2). I had the 28 and didn't like it - it was often not quite wide enough and I often thought that it was soft at the edges (others' opinions suggest however that the 28 "should" be sharper, but that wasn't my experience at all. I ended up with a very battered-looking 25 and it's been my most used lens ever since."

All I know is that:

- The Zeiss specs for the D28/2.8 and D25/2.8 are very similar. - Independent lens tests (photodo, il prode) suggest that the D28/2.8 is far better. - Users of the D25/2.8 are very happy with their lens.

"I especially like the perspective and the lack of distortion."

Once and for all, a lens does not offer a perspective. A lens offers an angle of view. Perspective is determined by the viewpoint that the photographer takes.=20 The curvilinear distortion of the D28/2.8 is similar to that of the D25/2.8, so distortion is not a factor that would favor one lens over the other.

"As I've said I've no experience of the f2 but I can't recall any time when I would have wanted that extra half-stop."

It's an extra full stop.=20

So much is clear to me, the added value of the D28/2 is found in its large aperture, and, most of all, in the marvel of the floating element: photographs at close range are brilliant and sharp.=20

W.
 
G

Guest

Thanks for the comments.

I've seen a 25mm f2.8 for £200 which is 'supposed' to be mint... I'll go and check it out.

I can get a 28mm f2.8 and a 25mm f2.8 for much less than the cost of a 28mm f2... maybe I'll get both and do some benchmarks.

I do think that it is unlikely that I'd need the f2 aperture on a wide angle, yes I'd love the 28mm f2 lens as it's a nice big piece of engineering... given a chance (i.e. a lottery win) I'd buy one of every Zeiss lens on the market.

Thanks for the advice,
Jon
 
G

Guest

Jon

If you can find a 25 for £200 you'll have found a bargain - I'm pretty sure that I paid about £330 for mine about three years ago and it was anything but mint. Having said that, I was told by a sales assistant in Jessops in Sheffield that he picked one up for £5 at a car boot sale! I don't think he was winding me up either but he seemed quite ignorant of the value of what he'd got (strangely I wasn't surprised!)


Paul

Ouch!


John
 
G

Guest

My 25mm f2.8 Carl Zeiss is in Rolleiflex SL35E mount. It is an older, "Made in West Germany" lens, and is a good lens even by today's standards. My new, 28mm f2.8 MM lens in Contax/Yashica mount is Japanese-made and the pictures it produces are slightly sharper and contrasty and with slightly less vignetting when wide open. That said, I think one should consider the angle of view as more important than any marginal quality differences. My current preference is for the 35mm point of view in most situations, and I find the Zeiss 35mm f2.8MM lens quite splendid.
 
P

pham_minh_son

The floating element is the key to the Zeiss Distagon T* 28mm F2.0. The lens is also known as the Hollywood 28. The floating element make this lens versatile in close up and in far distance shooting. Thus, it is a very powerful tool for architectural photographer.

-Son
 

med007

Active Member
Son knows his lenses!

I haven't as yet been able to test out a 28mm 2.0 I ordered for my camera. However I have other Zeiss lenses in constant use.

My greatest experience is with the 21mm Distagon and the 28-85 Variosonnar. The latter is an amazing portrait lens, imparting some extra human factor to the pictures, a walk around street lens and a landscape lens!

There appears to something special about the plane of focus of the 28 2.8 that helps with landscapes. It appears that the plane of focus is curved towards the camera at the periphery of the field enabling the objects near the camera to remain in focus more than you would expect from DOF tables!

The wonderful 28 2.0 holds promise for me. Once mine is set up to properly fit my 1DII, I'll report on its performance for practical landscape work.

I'd like to hear more of of peoples experience using these lenses!

Asher
 

fotografz

Well-Known Member
I recently aquired a mint version of this lens and adapted it to my Canon 1DsMKII. I will be using it today to shoot a wedding.
Preliminary tests of the lens reveals it to be worth every penny invested. I will know for sure by tonight after the wedding shoot.

If I get time, I'll post a shot or two with the 28/2 this weekend.
 
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