New ZS Zeiss lenses for ContaxYashica mount

wang

Well-Known Member
I am sure there are many of you sharing the same boat with me. You might wonder if the new series of Zeiss lenses could be used in the Contax gear.

What you need is a M42 to C-Y adapter. With this adapter you could fit the new ZS lenses to cameras like RX and Aria.

The first two lenses are too familar to Contax users. Zeiss already hinted that the ZS 50 1.4 and ZS 85 1.4 could be the same as the C-Y counterpart.

The new ZS Makro-Planar 60 2.0 could be quite exciting. If you are not happy with the current choices of C-Y 35mm lenses, the news that the other lens is ZS Distagon 35mm f2 could be quite exciting as well.
 

fotografz

Well-Known Member
The M42 mount seems like a stop-gap maneuver of limited appeal. Only dyed in the wool Zeiss lovers will go to such lengths as to use uncoupled, stop down metering lenses ... when the remainder of the world has moved on to AF, or at least fully coupled aperture control (shooting Makro is an exception of course, because it is a more deliberate method of shooting).

I've been using Zeiss lenses like the 85/1.2, 28/2, 35-135/3.3 and 70-210/3.5 on Canon full frame DSLRs. But in truth they are difficult to use in real practice ... unless you use them wide open most of the time (which is primarily how I do use them). None of the new FZ lenses hold any appeal for me. They are redundant focal lengths if applied to my Canons, I certainly am not dumping more cash into the dying Contax C/Y system sitting on my shelf, and more certainly, I'm not switching to Nikon because (IMO) they are headed for the grave if they don't get a full frame digital sensor with-in a year or two.

However, I think Zeiss may have something up their sleeve with-in a year or so. Something that will rock our boat. A hint about what could be coming can be detected in what they did for Sinar : -)

I'm done spending hard earned money on the ever-changing, fickle world of modern photography. With film cameras dropping like flies, film companies disappearing, and volatile pricing of everything out there ... I will apply what I've learned from the swirling world of DSLRs ... I'm going to wait.

In the meantime, I shall use what I have and stop fretting about marginal improvements designed to suck more money out of my wallet to save some lens company or camera maker.

I will act only when the innovation is a quantum leap forward. A Zeiss series of AF lenses with fast apertures and blazing focus speed ... and fully coupled controls would do that.

Zeiss heritage is one of supplying superlative quality lenses that professionals aspire to and advanced amateurs covet. For 35mm in today's world that means AF. If I want superb MF 35mm lenses, Leica makes everything I need or want... including a Camera I can put them on. I don't think there is room for 2 manual focus lens makers in a world of shrinking demand.

I am determined to vote with my wallet, and send a message to all these lens and camera makers ... no compromises. Lead, follow, or get out of the way. Zeiss is a leader, but they are acting like a follower. Time to take the lead again Mr. Zeiss.
 
D

djg

I'm with you, Marc. For Zeiss and our sake I do hope this is a stop-gap. As you say, the market for this kind of set-up is really small and many have already invested in CY and R lenses. These new ones don't seem to add much if anything new. Only a fully-coupled line of Zeiss / EOS lenses would make shell more money out, or some super-fantastic lens configuration.

I hope you're right and they rock our boat a year from now!
 

wang

Well-Known Member
Well, I am waiting for THE system as well.

I agree that stopping down is a pain. I remember when I was using Leica 60 2.8 on a 10D, I focused with 2.8 but I had to stop down to f8 on every shot. Now, I am using Sony R1 for my work. It can focus in many points within 1/2 second a bit like shooting machine gun. The only limiting factor is for the flashes to catch up.

At leisure when you are not using the money making gear, here is the time when things like film and the screw mount of M42 becomes interesting. Slow gear is for fun. So I have great expectation for the new ZS system. I am using C-Y 60 2.8 quite a lot. This lens is superior to C-Y 50 1.4 in reproducing the skin tone. Portraits from this lens is more pleasing than C-Y 50. I believe the type of glasses they use on this 60 is much different from the 50s.

ZS 60 f2 should meet my expectations quite well. The aperture is big enough so you don't stop down that much. I would very much believe that it will have a very useable f2 as in the case for ZM 50 f2.

C-Y 35 2.8 lacks punch, while C-Y 35 1.4 is a bit weak at the corners. I would expect much to see in ZF 35 2 with Zeiss modern technology. The ZF 35 2 looks big to me. Big Zeiss lenses do sometimes equate performance. It does remind you of C-Y 28 2 and hopefully the performance is comparable as well.

I doubt if I will buy Nikon gear for the new series. I like the mirror of AX and RX very much. Does Nikon have lighter and adequately d&ened mirrors ?
 

stan_parry

Well-Known Member
I have a Digilux 2 and really like the results for slide shows and video. I don't really do much printing. I am interested in the R1 for its added range. How do you find the quality of the prints. I do mainly landscapes and architecture for personal use. Cathedrals is a special interest and often it is quite dark. I was surprised at how well the Digilux handled dark situations. On screen looked better than the reality.

Thanks
 

wang

Well-Known Member
Digilux 2 is a good camera with a nice taste from Leica. Its lens is excellent with wide aperture. It was introduced about two years ago with a very high street price because it is a Leica. With that amount of money you could buy two R1 nowadays.

If you are a Leica fan, keep it. Otherwise, keep up with the flow and sell it as soon as you can. At the moment, R1 has the best performance to price ratio. If you are after performance, R1 is definitely superior to Digilux. R1 could offer you more freedom in the perspective for the cathedrals. With a 24mm lens you can go nearer the cathedral for the same magnification, it could be more interesting.

If you are doing slides the extra pixels from R1 might not be important to you. If you do much cropping the additional pixels could make a big difference. The added pixels are more important in prints, it will show up the difference very easily in 8X10. In 5 million pixels prints, some detail has a cartoon like appearance. R1 gives a much higher degree of realism in larger prints.
 

snikolaev

Well-Known Member
Speaking of M42-to-C/Y... Could someone give me a hint whether there is an adapter which could be permanently mounted on a lense, not on a body. All adapters I saw are designed to be places into body first. They even offer a kind of tool to de-mount them. Well, I love my RTS III too much to use such things against it. Thanks.
 

wang

Well-Known Member
I used this M42 C-Y adapter for mounting my Zeiss Jena 200 2.8 to my C-Y camera.

It was operated in the way you described, what is wrong with that ? My camera mount don't get damaged.

I am a photographer. Unless you are a collector, it is another question.
 

snikolaev

Well-Known Member
Thanks for sharing your experience! I'm also a photograper. I just ment that it's not a convenient way to change lenses in field. So, this would be terrific to handle M42 ones as they'd be ordinary C/Y AE ones, you know. But looks like I want too much...
 

wang

Well-Known Member
Although you might like your RTSIII a lot, there are Nikon cameras which are considered to be some of the best SLRs.

I like RTSIII, unfortunately the lack of support from Kyocera made me worried about owning it, as RTSIII is very complicated
and might need special care.

I have 5 C-Y bodies and 16 C-Y lenses, I am still thinking about whish to go for, ZF or ZS.
 

snikolaev

Well-Known Member
Well, with all my respect to Nikon and Canon brands (I own and frequently use Canon 1V - this is the real performer too), there is something else about Contax gear... I'd call it "look and feel" or even "soul". It's not so hi-tech equipped, but it's so pleasant to use, that I prefer my RTS III over the 1V whenever it's possible. Sorry, this note might be off-topic. Just wanted to share...
 

wang

Well-Known Member
I wouldn't consider Canon's body very soulful. Perhaps we can call the Canon body the universal recipient because they can accept lenses of many different mounts.

Although I have not been using Nikon's bodies, I heard that the Nikon F could be the best SLR body ever made. Like RTSIII, they have 100% viewfinder and mirror lock and these features were introduced in 1950s. They are mechanical as well, so less worries with electronic failure. Part of the reason that Zeiss decided to introduce the ZF lenses is because the Nikon F bodies are good and there are plenty of them around.

So I need to decide whether to get the Nikon F bodies or get the ZS lenses.
 

fotografz

Well-Known Member
I doubt that Zeiss will produce the real stellar lenses from the C/Y collection in either ZF or ZS mounts. 55/1.2, 85/1.2, 70-200/3.5, or the 35-135/3.5. Although, these are ridiculously expensive, so the new offerings sure would be welcome.

I think the F6 is a really interesting alternative because it offers the latest advancements in metering, etc., can accept various focussing screens, plus provides focus confirmation in the viewfinder. It's the only way to get fully automated aperture control other than with a Contax body ... and there are Nikon lenses that are actually pretty good that you can also use: ( 85/2.8 T/S Macro, which allows you to alter the plane of focus to increase DOF, 105DC & 135 DC, 200/2 ED AF VR which is getting rave reviews for it's improved Bokeh over previous Nikon long lenses, and allows hand holding at lower shutter speeds).

Canon cameras with CS lenses need to be manually stopped down. Which is PITA unless you always shoot wide open or just a stop or two down from wide open.
 
D

djg

Unless you're shooting slow moving scenes
. I'm gearing up to go do some stop-down metering in the island of Langkawi in Malaysia, flying out this Wednesday for some badly needed R&R away from work. Hopefully I'll be back on the 25th with a few fairly sharp and well-exposed images
.
 

wang

Well-Known Member
I went to the second hand shop to try some Nikon bodies.

I love the Nikon F2 and its derivatives. It can be purely mechanical, very rugged, really something to rely on. Most important of all, the weight of the mirror is very light and does not creat much vibration when it hits the roof. It has a mirror lock. I would be quite happy to use it with the new ZF lenses.

I think F6 is for someone like Marc for his job when speed is important, it is a bit too expensive for me and I don't need much high tech electronics. I am those kind of people happy with slow mechanical stuff.
 
Top