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Contax 85N and 100N Reviews

 
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John Black



Joined: 24 Jun 2007
Posts: 41
Location: Dallas, TX

PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2008 7:23 pm    Post subject: Contax 85N and 100N Reviews Reply with quote

My $.02 on each lens -

http://www.pebbleplace.com/Personal/Contax_85N.html

http://www.pebbleplace.com/Personal/Contax_100N_Makro.html

I have a 24-85N (again) and will eventually post a review for it too. I haven't had much opportunity to use it yet, so after it has several hundred clicks, I'll write the review.
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doc



Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 26

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2008 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello John! I'm using both 85L and N; I find the Canon sharper in corners (my Planar needs to be stopped down @ 5,6) but much more prone to CA (fringing) wide open; I mostly use these lenses for portrait. I'm supposed to choose which one to keep and which one to sell... Crying or Very sad
I'd like to know your opinion. By the way, I also use a Planar 2/100 which is a great lens but also shows CA wide open...
Thanks!
Francesco
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jjlphoto



Joined: 17 Jan 2007
Posts: 102

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2008 2:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John-

Thanks for the great reviews.

One thing that the linked PhotoZone review failed to mention was that the Contax 85/1.4 is not merely a reincarnation of the former CY 84/1.4, but a whole new design. Rather than a general purpose lens, it was designed specifically to be a portrait lens, hence the sharpness reduction as you move towards the edges. If one compared the CY 85/1.2 against the Canon 1.2, then you would see the Contax really shine. Unfortunately, a manual focus 1.2 lens is just not practical IMO.


Hopefully this adresses the previous posters findings as well.
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doc



Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 26

PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

...

Last edited by doc on Tue Apr 29, 2008 5:48 pm; edited 1 time in total
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John Black



Joined: 24 Jun 2007
Posts: 41
Location: Dallas, TX

PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jjlphoto wrote:
John-

Thanks for the great reviews.

One thing that the linked PhotoZone review failed to mention was that the Contax 85/1.4 is not merely a reincarnation of the former CY 84/1.4, but a whole new design. Rather than a general purpose lens, it was designed specifically to be a portrait lens, hence the sharpness reduction as you move towards the edges. If one compared the CY 85/1.2 against the Canon 1.2, then you would see the Contax really shine. Unfortunately, a manual focus 1.2 lens is just not practical IMO.


Hopefully this adresses the previous posters findings as well.



Hi John - Do you have anything that points to that? I've read it in posts and I'd like to mention that in the review if I could find a reasonable supporting source. I'm not going for any Pulitzers or Webby's, but I'd like to beef up that review. My experience with the lens was very short since it came back AFTER all the medium format gear had been purchased. Thus, it was sold very quickly to help offset the medium format stuff.

I hope Bo-ming can resolve his sourcing issues. I've been holding off on publishing those reviews (and the 24-85N review) because there's no point in creating demand that can't be filled...
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jjlphoto



Joined: 17 Jan 2007
Posts: 102

PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 5:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John-

The Zeiss PDF for this lens's MTF /tech data makes mention that it is an all new design. Unfortunately, I cannot recall where I read that portrait use was its main function.
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conurus
Site Admin


Joined: 15 Aug 2006
Posts: 795
Location: Vancouver, Canada

PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 11:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, the purported portrait orientation was not explicitly stated but was implied. According to Zeiss, "As a novelty in such a fast lens, the high performance is maintained over the entire focusing range from infinity down to minimum object distance."

This coincides with my own experience: the sharpest aperture is f/4 (at f/5.6 center sharpness begins to decrease due to diffraction, though corner sharpness may continue to increase). f/4 is still a large enough aperture for portraiture. The texture of garments is realistically rendered, indicating high resolution and great microcontrast.

_________________
I am a bird and I uncovered the E, EF and N-mount communication protocols!
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John Black



Joined: 24 Jun 2007
Posts: 41
Location: Dallas, TX

PostPosted: Thu May 01, 2008 4:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. Slight edits made to the articles. Nothing new, I'm editing them all the time. I'm the typo-king! Smile
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