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Zeiss S-Planar on Canon full frame DSLR


Active Member
Does anyone have experience with using Carl Zeiss Macro S-Planar 2.8 60mm on a full frame Canon DSLR? And perhaps someone has used it alongside or compared it to Canon Macro lenses?

For macro work the usual problems with using Contax lens on Canon AF body are no so pronounced as most of the work is tripod base, manual focus anyway and aperture stop down is not a problem.

But how does it fare optically? I could imagine that is should be better than Canon 50mm compact macro. But what about the Canon 2.8 100mm Macro? I know 100mm gives you a different perspective and lets you be further from the subject, but still these lense can be compared optically.


Well-Known Member
It's excellent. Most macro from all major systems are pretty good, so you have to be pretty critical to see a huge difference. The Canon 100/2.8 Macro is no slouch for ex&le.

Be aware that the Contax C/Y aperture arm has to be ground down to work on a Canon full frame camera. I have a Contax Macro with a Canon adapter mount for sale. It's already modified for a Canon 5D and 1DsMKII.


New Member
FWIW Even though I'm a Zeiss Lens bigot and have used the 60c macro extensively I find the earlier (non-USM) version of the Canon 100/2.8 macro to be a consistently beautiful performer. Also FWIW, Mike Johnston has published some subjective assessments of Lens Bokeh in his newsletter and I believe he only gave three lenses a 10 out of 10 in his evaluation: the 4th gen Leica summicron M 35mm, the Rodenstock APO-Sironar-S view camera lens, and the non-USM version of the Canon 100/2.8 macro.


Active Member
Thanks Marc, for this swift answer.

Does the grinding down work need to be done with all contax lens or specifically S-Planar (and some other specific lenses)? I now recall that you posted on this subject a while ago - I think it was about one of the top zeisses - I'll see if I can find that thread.

Thanks for the kind offer to buy your lens, but I have the lens already. But sans adapter.

I am thinking of finally buying a digital camera and am wondering if some of my existing Zeiss glass could be recycled. Apart from S-Planar, my other Contax lens are quite regular (50 1.4; 25 28 85 135 2.8's and 28-85) and their counterparts in the Canon range are most probably as good or nearly as good BUT without all the hassle.

Having read on the troubles with various adapters and infinity focus, my general feeling is that only the supertuscans of the Contax stable (85 1.2 100 2 etc) merit the hassle of adapting them to Canon DSLR. The reportedly good adapters (son's and foto huppert) each cost more than most of my contax lens. So maybe, maybe I could stick with my S-planar and the 25 and/or 28 2.8.


Active Member

Yes, I have read that Mike Johnston's Bokeh paper. But I did not remember that detail about Canon 100mm Macro. Indeed , it appears to be really good lens.

Are you referring to Zeiss 60mm compact macro? S-Planar is a different lens.

But anyway - as you can see from my post above, I realize that there may be many good reasoons not to use my Contax glass on the canon. I am just trying to find some reasons to stick to at least some of my contax lenses. :)


I use several C/Y Zeiss lenses (as well as a couple of Leicas, the 100/2.8 APO macro and the 21-35 Vario-Elmar) on my EOS 1DsII and have fortunately had no problems with the adapters hitting infinity. I use DSLR-eXchange adapters, but unfotunately Jorge Torralba doesn't make them anymore. My Leica adapters are Fotodiox which have been selected / optimized by Pham Minh Son. I believe he also makes / sells EOS-Zeiss adapters.


Well-Known Member
Keep the 25 and 28. Canon wide angles are no match for Zeiss. Neither of those Contax lenses need any adjustmens, and I had no problem with using them via adapters.