Should I buy a Contax N1 and 24-85 zoom

M

maxpax

Hello
I am a photorealist painter and I currently use a Contax G2 and 45 to take photos from which to produce my work (if anyone is interested have a look at
Please, Log in or Register to view URLs content!
), however I really need to go back to an SLR as I would like a bigger viewfinder and a D.O.F preview, but I dont really want to lose autofocus or Zeiss lenses. Which leaves me with the N1 and the 24-85 zoom which would be an ideal focal length range for me. I dont really fancy the NX or the lighter 28-80 zoom.
I have read that the autofocus performance of the N1 is not very good , can anyone clarify this , is it worse than my G2 ? bearing in mind I usually work in good light and shoot contrasty street scenes or still lifes. Does it hunt a lot or find it difficult to lock on to something you think it wouldnt have any trouble with? Is it noisy ?
I have read that the 24 - 85 zoom is an outstanding performer and can rival prime lenses for quality , is this true ? as it would be the performance of this lens that would sway me to invest in this system.

I am new to these types of forums and asking questions like this so if I have broken any etiquette rules or been too long winded , I apologise in advance.

David Finnigan
 

coyot

Well-Known Member
> David,

Hi,

I have the N1 with the 24-85. The camera is very good and the lens is great. Once in a while, the autofocus is a bit of a problem (dark rooms, or very, very poor light at a distance). But, overall the focus works just fine for 99% of the types of shots that I do (portraits, some action ... football, etc.)

The lens is great. I also have the G2 with the 35mm lens, and while I love the G2 for its' ability to be a stealth shooter, I shoot alot more with my N1 or my ND.

I think you would be very pleased with the N system. Great system.

I just posted a shot to
Please, Log in or Register to view URLs content!
that I just took with the ND with the 24-85 lens. Very poor light, but the image still works.

I look forward to checking out your work. Welcome to the forum.

Michael.
 

coyot

Well-Known Member
> David,

I looked at your images at the gallery. Very lovely, I liked several, (tabletop still life, motorcycle, smokers ...)

I've always enjoyed the old masters that could paint a portrait, and the vivid clarity would be the impact. So, it looks like you convert your photos to oils??? or acrylics???

Please let me know. I marked your gallery on my favorites list.

Thanks,

Michael.
 
M

maxpax

Michael

Thank you for your comments regarding the N1 , very helpful.
To be honest as much as I love the results from my G2 In certain situations I have had problems in getting the autofocus locking on to something even in bright conditions in a busy city street. As I dont like to hang about too long I have sometimes walked away without the shot . I wouldn't want to be in the same boat with the N1 , its not neccessarily the speed I am interested in its how positive it is , ie whether it 'hunts' around or is uncertain about whether to find focus or not.

Also thank you for your kind comments about my work , as a matter of fact I work in oils and paint on stretched linen. The canvas sizes go up to about 50 inches by 40 inches. I aim to produce a large oil painting which has all the 'artifacts' and look of a photograph.

Thanks

David Finnigan
 

gjames52

Well-Known Member
David

With talent like yours I think you could use any camera! I do think the design of the N series focus system would lend to your work as you can select the precise area you want to focus and without recomposing make the photograph.

Thanks for sharing you work.
I am amazed by the detail and how you can duplicate chrome, shining and in shadow.

Thanks
Gilbert
 

jvmcontax5

New Member
> [David: Sounds like the N1 and 24-85 would be perfect for the work you plan to do. I am selling my mint condition N1, 24-85 and TLA 360. I have decided to go digital and am currently using a Canon digital SLR. I purchased the N1 last December; hate to part with it, but I can use the money to purchase premium lenses for my Canon digital. Email or call me if you are interested.

Joseph - jvmurray@comcast.net]
 
R

robinadshead

> Hi David,

Let me add my dos centimos here. I found that my N1 with the 24-85 was the best handling SLR I have ever used. Everyone says the autofocus is slow, but it is not, in a real world where you are NOT shooting sports for a living. The autofocus is quicker and surer than my lovely G2's, and the lens is a chunky beauty. The lens quality is, simply, Zeiss. 'nuff said.

For what you want to use it for, you will not be bothered by the weight and bulk, and you will find the instant change to manual focus very useful and satisfying. I heartily recommend this camera.

Hope this helps.

Saludos, Robin
 

skimmel

Member
I have read a lot about the autofocus issues surrounding the N1. Does anyone know if earlier models had more issues than more recent ones? (That is, was there some type of software/hardware fix that was ever employed?)

I have also read that the autofocus is better with the NX. Is this true?
 

albert4321

Well-Known Member
The AF for N1 + 24-85 combo is super fast and super quiet due to the USM. It does hunt sometimes in low light or low contrast situation.

A friend of mine owns the NX with the 28-80 and he was impressed how much faster the AF for the N1 + 24-85 combo. The 28-80 zoom does not have USM. So I guess the lens itself would be slower and nosier. I cannot tell if the AF with the NX is better than the N1. But the handling in N1 is so much better IMO.
 

skimmel

Member
Thanks Albert. Has anyone else had experience with either improvements in the N1 since it first came out and/or differences in the N1 vs NX in terms of autofocus reliability and speed?
 

ras

Member
Stephen - I am with Albert here. I am still not sure where some of purported stories come from about the N1 AF; certainly some camera's may not have worked well but I am sure you can find the same with Nikon or Canon camera's. At some point these stories start to lead their own life, it seems (thanks to the internet no doubt), without being footed in reality. In any event, I've had mine (N1) now for a year and a half and its AF is dead-on. The central sensor is faster and more sensitive in low light than the surrounding ones, but that is to be expected. In normal light they all work very well. The N1 is a much more sophisticated and sturdy camera than the NX, which is illustrated in their price differential. I think you would be sorely mistaken to take the NX over the N1 over a perceived mythical AF problem. The N1 is much larger and costly; that should be the only reason not to get it; otherwise it is a splendid camera, very easy to use. Also bear in mind that the flash on the NX only covers 28 mm -on, and will likely project a shadow with the huge 24-85 (which was for me the only reason to get this system) even without the large lens hood.

I am no sure what you would like to hear, but the n1 is one fine camera which I hope to use until digital becomes affordable and equal to film in quality (which si still years away for me, I'm sure). BTW, Velvia 100 and the N1/24-85 are a match made in heaven.
 
R

raj

I have recently been using the NX and 28-80. The focus is fast and accurate. In low light it activates the AF sensor and had no problem focusing in low light. But compared to my older Nikon 601 with a Tamaron 28-200 the view finder is darker by 2 stops.
 
A

Artifest

Stephen – Although I am new to this forum I have been using the N1 in combination with a 17-35, 24-85 and 70-300 mm for quite a while. My camera bears serial 006644 and definitely is one of the earlier ones made. Recently I took a number of pictures at a polo match. ONLY two were SLIGHTLY off! As you may know, polo is a (very) fast game and I must say this camera does quite well in action photography.
I completely agree with Otola here; don’t always believe what you hear or read, especially when it comes from unidentified sources on the internet. Also remember that numbers and scores do not always give you the right idea. Personal experience from the ones who know is what counts! And yes Velvia 100F (as well as Provia 100F!) are made for this camera!

Regards, Vincent
 

fotografz

Well-Known Member
Get the N1 and 24-85, you will not be sorry.

In truth the AF is slower than say the Canon and Nikon Pro level cameras like the F5. F-100, EOS 1V etc.. But the full time manual override and Zeiss glass image qualities makes up for it, and then some.
 
W

writing4me

Raj - you mention that the viewfinder is darker. That might be due to a slower lens rather than a fault of the camera. The camera will show you the scene using the fastest/widest aperature it has on the lens before stopping down automatically to take your photo. So if you hang a 50/1.7 on the front, the image you see in the viewfinder will be brighter than if you put a 300/5.6 by a very big amount. When you compared the two cameras for brightness of viewfinder, what were the lenses fastest aperatures? I'm glad you enjoy the camera and that it is working so well for you. I have considered that camera many times, but do not own it. -Lynn
 
R

raj

Lynn,

the Tamaron 28-200 was also 3.3 or 3.5 and slower at telephoto side maybe 4 or 5.6 but then also the viewfinder was really bright. The viewfinder of NX reminds me of my first SLR a Pantex spotmatic. By the way there was no DOP preview on the Nikon 601. The NX flash also is a mystry which I am trying to solve. See a picture I have posted at
Please, Log in or Register to view URLs content!
 

elsha

Member
Why not consider prime lenses, like the 50mm or the 100mm. You are better off with these primes as far as distortion, sharpness and resolution is concerned. Good luck.
Elie
 
A

arlen

Hello,
I am a serious amature using the c645. I am considering getting the N1 for constant carry around. With the Nam1 adapter do the 645 lenses work well with the N1? How do the focal lengths change, if at all? Will this make sense rather than springing for the 24-85? I hate to stop using the lenses I've come to love.

Arlen
 

albert4321

Well-Known Member
Arlen,

Your C645 80mm standard lens mounted on the N1 will have 80mm focal length, which is perfect for portaiture and table top.

The 24-85 zoom is my most used lens for my N system. It is a very good and convenience lens to carry around.

Al.
 
A

arlen

Al,
Thanks for the focal length info. I figured this would be true. My most used lens for the c645 is the 120mm, it is incredible. I have the 45-90 but keep the 120 attached.
Do you have experience in the quality, using the 645 lenses, compared to using a lens designed for the camera?

Arlen
 
Top