The Zeiss 45mm/f2.8 pancake lens

G

Guest

Could someone bring me up to speed regarding the 45mm f2.8p lens? I am new to this stuff, and have been doing a fair bit of research, but I am sure I am missing something here. This lens has an amazingly low weight and size, and still offers a half decent maximum aperture at 2.8. Can someone perhaps do a comparison with a 50mm 1.4. I realize the the 50mm 1.4 will do so much more in low light situations, but what else should I be aware of?
 
G

Guest

Hi Gavin,

the 45/2.8 is a great lens. If you want to compare it optically with the 50/1.4, I would recommend you to have a look at the MTF charts of both lenses in the download section.

I think the most important difference is the size and weight. The 50/1.4 is one of the best lenses available on the market. Even the new N-system has with its 50/1.4 the exact same lens design. If Zeiss is not improving that lens in a totally new system, you can conclude, that it must be already extremely good, even for such an "old design".

The 45/2.8 might be not as good as the 50/1.4 optically, but the question is, whether you will see that difference in your personal shooting style. The same argument is valid for the weight and size differences. The 45 weights 90g, the 50/1.4 275g. The size difference is tremendous.

If you i.e. use a Contax Aria or Contax S2 with the 45/2.8, you have the perfect compact camera with all desirable features of the SLR system and a very good performance. The S2 weights roughly 565g, the Aria 480g with the 45 together 655g/570g. Compare that to a Contax T3 with 230g or Leica Minilux with 330g. There is not that much difference anymore...

But the size of the 45 lens has alo disadvantages if you change often the aperture it is not as comfortable as with the 50/1.4. If you use lens hoods it is even worse.

I almost never shoot with aperture 1.4; the reason is the shallow depth of field. So 2.8 is better for me. With a Fuji Provia 400F, this should be also no big deal anymore in low light situations...

dirk
 
G

Guest

I have the 45mm/2.8 AE and 50mm/1.7 lenses. The pancake is definitely a good choice for travel, and it's as light as can be for a lens. It is a little contrasty compared to the 50mm; with it's 4 element Tessar design. And yes the aperture and focus rings are so darn close together that you can mess the focus up when changing the aperture. If I had a choice of only one lens though, I would choose the 50mm/1.7 for it's shear sharpness and color rendition.
 
G

Guest

Hi all,

I am recently interested to have a T-45mm because I would like to put my 159MM with this lens in my suitcase all the time. Weight becomes important to me.

Having reviewed the earlier dicussion in this thread, quality wise should be okay. I also compared the price to P50mm/1.4. I was surprised that the T-45 is more expansive. I never had a thought that such simple lens costs higher.

Could someone help to answer if the T-45 is really more expansive ? Or tell me why it is more expansive.

Thanks,
Francis Chow.
 
G

Guest

Hi Francis!

I think this is a question of marketing. You are right when wondering why the 50/1,4 is cheaper (and IMHO better), but when Zeiss startet with the Tessar in 1982, it costed half of the Planar 1,7 (!!) - and I got it. But it did not sell very often. Now maybe Zeiss thinks that only expensive lens are attractive? If weight is important to You I think You will be very satisfied with the pancake.

Regards
Wolfgang
 
G

Guest

Hi Wolfgang,

Thanks for your indication. I think I would prefer to use 50/1.7 if the T45 has no special feature buy expansive.

Regards,
Francis.
 
G

Guest

what a stupid question! the price was lower than the 50/1.4 in earlier years which then rised when demand was higher and production price too. its so simple. pls shoot instead if discussion. or should we start again a special discussion leica/zeiss. leica lenses are more protected agains dust. but they are not better, maybe different.
 
G

Guest

> Michael, I've often wondered if you are rude by hobby, or by profession. Which is it? Where do you get off calling anyone stupid for asking a question?
 
G

Guest

Hey guys,

please calm down and respect the netiquette on this forum...

Thanks

Dirk
 
G

Guest

> Dirk and the rest of the group, I apologize for typing what I did. -Lynn
 
G

Guest

By Lynn Loeffel on Thursday, November 28, 2002 - 6:40 pm: Print Post Edit Post
> Dirk and the rest of the group, I apologize for typing what I did. -Lynn

No apology needed. You were right.

Dave
 
G

Guest

and i am working too much. plus all the ignorance around me. i still wonder why people have so much time comparing lenses. it seam to be more interesting compairing instead of shooting. there were times-when i started buying contax after having bad experience with lens quality-olympus om-zuiko-lenses-i tested every lens. then i realized there is only one more expensive brand-leica-but not better-optically.
 
G

Guest

>i still wonder why people have so much time comparing lenses.<

It is interesting to read the experiences of other people with different pieces of equipment. There is a lot of valuable experience out there, and I for one like to profit from the experience of others. Optical excellence is not the only important characteristic of a lens.

Alex
 
G

Guest

Dear all,

The question is raised by me. I am surprised that the discussion became emotional after 2 days. First of all, I have to say that Lynn did nothing wrong. I am eagerly to discuss rationally. So I am giving my response to Michael rationally.

1. Demand increasing is not resulting in price increasing. Market price is a mix of a lot of parameters, like market maturity, product life cycle, technology change, objective of marketer, market penetration extent.......etc.

2. Production cost rises not only on one type of lens, but all. If this was the reason why T45 price increasing, it should happened to P50, too.

3. Not all people can afford to buy and try all CZ lens. I cannot at least. I am here to appreciate that Dirk founded the Web-site. We can get the valueable information without paying high price to learn.

Regards,
Francis.
 
G

Guest

cz-lenses are very very cheap used. just have a look into the several photomagazines. you need not mmx, my zeiss-lenses are 22 years old and they are still the best ones. since i jumped from olympus to contax in 1978 i do need not test and compare anymore. if one cannot afford zeiss then buy cheaper lenses but do not complain about inferiour quality. some years a go some nikon-professionals told me the know the light-reflexion-problem(shooting under difficult contrast sceneriey like in the mountains) has beeen solved better with zeiss-lenses. but they must use nikon because of other superiorities of the nikon-system. ok there are also differences between different zeiss-lenses. the g2-90mm is such a case. is not perfect in the edges. maybe the tester did not check every third negative. because the second will be bent outside the cartridge. even leica-people confessed this problem. thats why my next camera will be rrtsIII again, with the sucking system. all tests made without the optical bench must then be questioned- if lens was not tested with rtsIII. i only want help and people profitting from my year-long experiences.
 
G

Guest

I shoot most often with an Aria and the 45mm Tessar. I got into Contax because of this lens... at the time, Nikon had yet to release their 45mm, Pentax was being idiotic about making their 45mm pancake widely available, and Olympus had discontinued theirs, so I went with the Aria and the Tessar.

The idea was to have a SLR I could just wander about and take pictures with, and not worry about weight. I'm not into rangefinders or P&Ses (I love Depth of Field preview too much), so a small SLR with a tiny lens was the perfect compromise.

The results are phenomenal: in the right light, the tonality and subtlety of color are amazing, I learned the value of good bokeh, and yes, it's tack sharp. I will second the sentiment expressed by someone else that it can be a bit too contrasty in glaring bright light, tho... images can look overexposed under the wrong circumstances.

All in all, a great performer. My particular ex&le had awful build quality, tho. It's already got a cleaning mark, and the focus action is too stiff, causing the lens helical to come loose, to the barrel of the lens rotates a small amount when you focus it, very disconcerting. I'm sending it in for another repair, but I may just get another. I've been told that poorly made lenses of this type are very rare... just got (un)lucky, I guess.

Flaws and all, I use it more often than my exquisite 28mm f/2.8 and so-so 80-200 f/4. (This was also a turkey in build quality... it focuses past infinity to unsharpness, the filter threads unscrewed off the barrel along with the polarizer, and the zoom action is way too stiff. Image quality is nothing short of awesome, tho.)

I like the slightly wider "normal" aspect of the 45mm vs. a 50mm, the Tessar provides a distinctive "look" that's neither Planar nor Distagon, and I really like it's tiny size... the 50mm 1.7 and 1.4 may offer slightly better image quality, but they are big and bulky.

So, I say, "Go for it!" Warts and all, I'm not unhappy with mine as a daily shooter.

Matt Gabriel
 
G

Guest

Hi Matt,

I agree though I have just used the T45 for 1 1/2 months. The performance seems better than the MTF's description. My main purpose to buy this is to want to have a camera in pocket. I always use it with my 159 w/o winder. A little bigger than Aria + T45.

The biggest Aperture is f2.8 so that the out of focus effect is not signigicant. However, the perspective is very closed to human eyes which is good for street snap short. Will discover more later.

Francis.
 
G

Guest

Hello All,

I wanted to mention a problem I've recently discovered using this lens. The rear element/housing has been touching the mirror on my RTSII thus causing it to lock/jam until I released the lens from the body. It didn't happen on the 159mm nor the RTSIII. It seems it happens only with the II. I'm not sure if the mirror needs adjustment or the lens (photos seems focused), but it would seem strange for an AE lens from the same era to have problems (older version with green arrow and f8).
 

wang

Well-Known Member
Last few days I had a big augment with another e-bay member concerning this. Could anyone give an opinion on the dots in the lens.
 
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