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Optical formulaperformance variations of MM lenses


New Member
i'm about to fully plunge into zeiss MM lenses. I tried an N1 with a sonnar zoom and the colors were amazing, buty i prefer manual focus.

here is my question

are MM lenses 50, 100 Makro, 180 basically the same formula if i but used or new.. when did the multicoating start ?

I particularly picky about that becasue i can tell the difference between my 1.4 nikkor ais and my 1.8 AFD, eventhough the build qualioty of new lenses stink, the optical performance is there.

what about contax line ? are newer better for the MM line ?

thank so much


Well-Known Member
According to Zeiss the optical formulae for MM lenses and the pre MM (AE lenses)are identical. The coating process dates back several decades and is also identical. As for which is "best" you will receive varied opinions. Almost all of the MM lenses are made in Japan, whereas most of the AE lenses were made in Germany. This fact alone causes many users to prefer the German made lenses, but no one, to the best of my knowledge, has demonstrated any objective differences in the performance between the Japanese and German lenses. Naturally if you have a camera which is capable of shutter priority autoexposure and you wish to use this capability, you will need to select MM lenses.

Old or new, you cant go wrong with Zeiss glass.