Zeiss Lenses

Zeiss ZM M-Mount Lenes – The Lenses I “Need”, and not just “Want”

Over the last 6 or so months I’ve really bought into the Zeiss ZM system of lenses. I’ve gone from owning 2 of them to 5, and in combination with film and digital cameras they mount to, I now feel like I have all I “need” from my photography equipment. Significantly, the last three of these lenses have been bought at a time that I’ve been describing as a bit of a “low ebb” in my photography. So I thought I’d write a bit about which lenses I’ve chosen and why I’ve chosen them at this particular point in my photography journey.

Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 ZM

Zeiss 35mm 1.4 ZM Distagon Review – Optically Awesome!

There’s quite a few lenses I’ve been asked to review by readers of this website over the years, but there aren’t many that I’ve been asked about as much as the Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 ZM Distagon. Ironically, it’s one lens that I’ve always been absolutely certain of the outcome of me writing about it. This lens was almost undoubtedly going to be optically awesome, the only real question that hung over it related to its larger-than-average size. In fact, this is pretty much the narrative of every review, blog post and forum thread out there. It’s incredible, but it’s big! What more is there to say? Of course, what I’d failed to comprehend prior to trying it is that I might stumble upon a character trait I’d really love…

Zeiss 50mm f/2 Planar vs Jupiter-8 50mm f/2 – by Simon King

For my approach to photography I find that 50mm makes sense for a lens with the greatest capacity for intimacy in an image. 90mm is my go-to for street composition involving large scale geometry and light/shadow play. 21mm is for wide scenes, and an emphasis on scale and perspective. This leaves 50 for portraits and photojournalism where I feel comfortable moving quickly through a crowd, or taking candid shots. Zone focusing is easier than with 90, which needs precision on the rangefinder for spot on focus. Everyone’s use of lenses is different, and some may prefer a 35mm for the kind of photojournalism I just described.

Leica 90mm f/2.8 Elmarit-M Review – closing the door on modern Leica lenses (in favour of Zeiss)

I’ve gone off Leica glass – the newer stuff at least. I touched on this in a roundabout way in my 28mm Elmarit-M review, but since then it’s become ever more clear to me that it’s just not for me – it’s just too “good” for my tastes. This really couldn’t be truer of the Leica 90mm Elmarit-M, which is exactly why have just replaced it.

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