It’s 9 months since I took the step and bought my first Zeiss lens, it was the Milvus 1.4/50 after using Philippe’s legendary Otus 55 and 28 in Paris. See #614 I Used an Otus but purchased a Milvus
Since June the Milvus family has grown to:
You may have guessed I’ve fallen in love Zeiss MF lens, due to the IQ and that Zeiss look, that’s a personal preference, like shooting what you want to shoot, which is what I enjoy doing now instead of trying to get “likes” on social media or from camera club judges.
Let me explain the 21 replaced my 16 – 35 zoom. After reviewing the focal length most often used in Lightroom, 21 was very close to the large majority, of course there were outliers I was prepared to compromise.
The 35 was a straight swap for the Nikon 1.8/35.
The 135 was sort of a swap from my Nikon 2.8/105 macro lens which had hardly been used in the 4 years I owned it. The 135 can be used as a macro as it has 1:4 image ratio and with extension tubes you can get very close. I know some purists would say you really can only use a macro lens for close-ups, again I’m prepared to compromise.
In the short time I have owned the 135 it has become a favourite when you need/want to isolate a subject. It’s sharp across all apertures, barrel distortion is none existent and the rendering is very pleasing to the eye even straight out of the camera.
Now to try and explain why I chose to exchange (I use this term extremely loosely) relatively good Nikon AF Zoom Lens and primes for the expensive heavy manual focus lenses. I now only own 2 zoom lens 2.8/24 – 70 and 4.5-5.6/80 – 400 for wildlife/sport etc and 1.8/50 & 1.8/85, they haven’t been used since before June last year and are gathering dust in my office/camera room.
I find that when using a MF lens I slow right down and really think about the composition that has flashed into my head. Yes I know you can do that also with any camera/lens combination but having to manually focus on your subject makes me a little more careful.
To concentrate to ensure 2 things , firstly composition, and secondly that I nail focus. I have to rely on Nikon’s focus verification in the viewfinder for this and at times it’s not up to speed or could it be operator error, to be totally honest it’s the latter.
The ideal situation would be to use a tripod at all times and use live view, unfortunately it’s not always convenient to carry and use a tripod. Then good old fashion camera technique must be relied upon and at times it can be hit and miss. My focus rate for is about say 7 out of 10. I’m prepared to accept that situation.
In a nut shell I’m a happy camper with my decision to go down the Zeiss route and will continue to explore what the lens combination I now own can produce with diligence.
Please log in again. The login page will open in a new tab. After logging in you can close it and return to this page.