Ad
Ad
Ad
Pages: [1]   Bottom of Page
Print
Author Topic: Zooms reported to be equal or better than the correspondent Prime  (Read 3550 times)
EinstStein
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 291


« on: December 31, 2012, 08:36:11 PM »
ReplyReply

Several zooms have been reported to be equal or better than the correspondent prime lenses. Among which I've read include Leica R 35-70m f2.8, Leica R 70-80mm, Zeiss 35-70mm, and Contax 645 45-90mm.
I've never seen the two Leica R. They are extremely expensive now. I have the Contax 645 45-90mm. It is a very sweet lens. It makes my 80mm and 45mm lens sitting on the cold bench almost forever.

I'm cleaning up all medium format gears. They are too heavy. I'm switching to light weight 35mm format. I'm in search of the zoom lens that can give me reasonably satisfaction like the Contax 645 45-90mm. It doesn't have to match the 45-90mm -- 35mm format to match the Zeiss medium format?  yes, I know, it's impossible. But I'd like the best possible.

Any other zoom that fall in this category? I've compared Canon L 24-70mm 2.8, good but not yet, it has to be better than that.   
Logged
Brian Hirschfeld
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 797



WWW
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2013, 10:25:40 PM »
ReplyReply

Have you tried the new Canon 24-70mm I have heard that it is very good. I have and use the Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 and it is the lens that I use most, or is always on at least one of my cameras, if I am carrying both the D4 and D3s in most situations.

IQ and weight wise you'll prob want a D800 or D800e for a good quality/price/size ratio it seems
Logged

www.brianhirschfeldphotography.com / www.flickr.com/brianhirschfeldphotography
---------------------------------------------------------------
Leica / Nikon / Hasselblad / Mamiya ~ Proud IQ180 owner
ErikKaffehr
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 7642


WWW
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2013, 11:04:40 PM »
ReplyReply

Hi,

Recommendation on D800 seems to be a sound one regarding resolution.

Regarding lenses here is a nice write up: http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/03/d800-lens-selection

I'm somewhat skeptical about zooms being as good as primes. They can be very good, but often not across the whole image. All primes are not created equal either.

Note: I am using Sony, not a Nikon user, but I have seen a lot of lenses and seen a lot of tests.

Best regards
Erik
Logged

FredBGG
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1651


« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2013, 12:41:57 AM »
ReplyReply

No zooms can match primes.

Maybe the closest it with long focal length zooms.

All the above mentioned zooms while being quite good zooms, none are as good as the Primes.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2013, 12:50:53 AM by FredBGG » Logged
Vladimirovich
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1320


« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2013, 01:14:22 AM »
ReplyReply

No zooms can match primes.
try 43 14-35/2 & 35-100/2
Logged
Rob C
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 12213


« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2013, 03:35:21 AM »
ReplyReply

Have you tried the new Canon 24-70mm I have heard that it is very good. I have and use the Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 and it is the lens that I use most, or is always on at least one of my cameras, if I am carrying both the D4 and D3s in most situations.

IQ and weight wise you'll prob want a D800 or D800e for a good quality/price/size ratio it seems



Brian, at the risk of sounding like a stuck record:

I bought a new Nikkor 2.8/24-70 G as a GP lens (I thought).

It was my first zoom in a career that began in 1960. It was also my last. It was hopeless on all important points: too poor in quality, too bulky.

I have heard people claim that zooms are as good (if not better) regarding IQ than some primes from the same manufacturers. That leads me to conclude that either these people have no dea of what IQ means or that my zoom lens was a piece of shit. If the latter, then Nikon and any other manufacturer producing and allowing such rubbish out through the factory door should be hauled over the coals, held to ridicule and then boycotted.

There should simply be no way that each lens is not tested before being dumped on the market. (Does Boeing do that? Does Rolls-Royce? I know for a fact R-R does not!)

It’s madness to float along with such manufacturers and nod the head wisely, saying that controls cost money, blah, blah, blah. This course of action might, just might have some validity if you are a pro living in a city with all the services; you might, just might be able to find a dealer who wil permit you to try lens after lens before buying one that works. This has not been my experience – ever. My 24-70 only left my TLC because I bought another focal length I didn’t really want instead, and added money. And even should you find such an accommodating dealer, is it right that anyone should have to go through all those hoops?

So what does this imply? It implies that poor-quality returns will either be destined for the dump, or that they will end up being resold to some unsuspecting person without the experience to know how bad the product actually is. I wonder which… right.

Had that lens been my first Nikkor, I would now be a Canon user. If I didn’t read the photographic press or use forums such as this.

Think about it, Mr Maker. The throat you’re cutting is ultimately your own.

Rob C
Logged

opgr
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1125


WWW
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2013, 04:45:41 AM »
ReplyReply

That leads me to conclude that either these people have no dea of what IQ means or that my zoom lens was a piece of shit.

As usual probably a bit of both?

I believe the whole zoom > prime conundrum stems from the idea that lenses these days are judged almost solely on sharpness. And there is little doubt in my mind that some of the newest zooms are excessively much sharper than some older primes. Whether they actually "draw" a pleasing picture is of a different nature, and most amateurs and some pros will not care since they aren't able to discern the difference anyway.

I'm too lazy to look up the article, but I believe it was Sean Reid who had a wonderful article on this site about the difference in drawing of several primes. I seriously wonder how many people actually grasped the content of the article which included ample pictures...
Logged

Regards,
Oscar Rysdyk
theimagingfactory
Chairman Bill
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1567


WWW
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2013, 05:01:07 AM »
ReplyReply

No zooms can match primes.

My Nikon 18-35 out-performs the Nikon 20mm I had. Far, far better.
Logged

Rob C
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 12213


« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2013, 08:58:43 AM »
ReplyReply

Perhaps, and who would know better than you as owner?

I have had two 24mm, three 50mm, one 85mm, two 105mm, two 135mm, one 180mm, one 200mm, one 300mm and two 500mm Cats from Nikon in my time. Plus that horrid 24-70 G, once.

The reasons for duplication? I wore some out, I changed systems completely to 6x7 and then back. So, I can only compare at the 24mm end, the 50mm middle, and the 70mm is perhaps close enough to the old 85mm.

What's even more disturbing, this was tried out on my D200, a cropped format! How it would have fared on my D700 I shudder to think.
I don't think that the 20mm Nikkor was ever rated very highly, but never having had one, I can't say.

Rob C
Logged

ErikKaffehr
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 7642


WWW
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2013, 06:36:05 PM »
ReplyReply

Hi,

My experience is in part that my best zoom lenses performed as well as mine primes, but I generally tried to use high end zooms and not high end primes. One issue to consider is which aperture you shoot. High end primes are often built to handle large apertures well, but going down to f/5.6 or f/8 is a great equalizer.

There is a also a lot of sample variation. The Canon 24-70/2.8 has a problem with some plastic part (bushings on the fron lens group) wearing down. The lenses having this problem are said to be awful. The problem can be fixed by Canon.

Zooms often vary in quality depending on focal length.

I have a Sony 24-70/2.8 ZA (which is called a Zeiss lens). In general it's quite OK, but corners are horrible at f/2.8, you need to stop down to f/8 for really good corners. On the other hand the lens has a large sweet spot at all apertures, and in the sweet spot that lens is probably pretty good.

One issue to consider is that top performance is available within a very short DoF, I recently tested a Sonnar 150/4 for Hasselblad, and two zooms an older Minolta 80-200/2.8APO I have and a Sony 70-400/4-5.6. These tests were made on APS-C and would correspond to 54MP on full frame. (Yeah, I also made tests on full frame).

Here are some actual pixel crops:
http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/Images/Zeissness_3/F8/flower.html
http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/index.php/photoarticles/73-sonnar-150-cb-on-dslr-using-arax-tilt-adapter?start=1
http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/index.php/photoarticles/73-sonnar-150-cb-on-dslr-using-arax-tilt-adapter?start=4

Interestingly, it seems that most readers preferred the Sonnar 150/4 but the differences are very small. There were discussions about the color of the orange, BTW, but I measured the actual orange with my Color Munki spectrometer and it reproducs essentially exactly.

MTF plots indicated a very tiny advantage for the Sonnar in this case, but the curves are very close.
http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/index.php/photoarticles/73-sonnar-150-cb-on-dslr-using-arax-tilt-adapter

These tests were made at 3.9m object distance at f/8. I would guess that the zone of optimal sharpness is perhaps +/- 5cm.

Than of course, focus is by Live View at 11X magnification. Self timer and studio flash was used.

Interestingly, although the Sonnar has a long focusing thrust, exact focusing with live view is less than 0.5 mm back and forth on the focusing ring. You can barely move it without loosing some sharpness. The zooms are not easier to focus.

The test above was in the sweet spot for all lenses.

Best regards
Erik



Several zooms have been reported to be equal or better than the correspondent prime lenses. Among which I've read include Leica R 35-70m f2.8, Leica R 70-80mm, Zeiss 35-70mm, and Contax 645 45-90mm.
I've never seen the two Leica R. They are extremely expensive now. I have the Contax 645 45-90mm. It is a very sweet lens. It makes my 80mm and 45mm lens sitting on the cold bench almost forever.

I'm cleaning up all medium format gears. They are too heavy. I'm switching to light weight 35mm format. I'm in search of the zoom lens that can give me reasonably satisfaction like the Contax 645 45-90mm. It doesn't have to match the 45-90mm -- 35mm format to match the Zeiss medium format?  yes, I know, it's impossible. But I'd like the best possible.

Any other zoom that fall in this category? I've compared Canon L 24-70mm 2.8, good but not yet, it has to be better than that.  
« Last Edit: January 03, 2013, 06:39:36 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

EinstStein
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 291


« Reply #10 on: January 03, 2013, 08:22:14 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from Erwin Puts "Leica R lenses".

1: "The Leitz company had for a long period resisted the demands of working photographers to introduce zoom lenses. The official statement during that period was quite firm, but a bit short-sighted. Zoomlenses could never provide the image quality of the fixed focal length lenses and certainly could not operate at the wider apertures that Leica users were habitually using. This second part of the statement is still true, but the first part is not."

2: "Take the image quality of the LEICA VARIO-APO-ELMARIT-R 70-180 mm f/2.8 at its extreme position of 180 mm and compare this to the fixed focal length lenses of Leica. The vario lens is significantly better at all apertures than the LEICA ELMARIT-R 180 mm f/2.8, but not as good as the superb LEICA APO-ELMARIT-R 180 mm f/2.8. The same relation holds for the 4/100mm and the 2.8/100mm, but again this last lens can be trimmed to a very high level. Even the LEICA ELMARIT-R 135 mm f/2.8 is surpassed by the vario lens."

3: "The LEICA VARIO-ELMAR-R 35-70 mm f/4 is the first choice for a versatile standard lens for the Leica R system. In addi- tion it covers three important focal lengths, the 35 mm, the 50 mm and the 70 mm. Its performance is as good, if not bet- ter than that of the comparable lenses with fixed focal length at the same apertures, the LEICA SUMMICRON-R 35 mm f/2, the LEICA SUMMILUX-R 35 mm f/1.4, the LEICA SUM- MICRON-R 50 mm f/2 and the LEICA SUMMILUX-R 80 mm f/1.4."

4: "In his Lens Compendium, Erwin Puts write about the 35-70mm Vario-Elmarit-R ASPH f/2.8 that "the 2.8 performance is better than the 2.8/35 and the 2/35
at 2.8", and compares it to it's 1997-littlesister, the 35-70mm Vario-Elmar-R ASPH f/4.0 (which is generally acclaimed as a lens with a fantastic picture quality) by saying, "the newer 2.8/35-70 has 11 lenses, many of
which are of exotic specification, proving the effort to go up just one stop. With this lens Leica introduces an interesting strategy and that is building a low aperture lens to very high optical standards of performance. The luminous energy flowing through a lens of aperture f/2,8 is twice the amount of a lens with an aperture of f/4 and the effort to control and manage this energy flow is very demanding. It is not well recognized how difficult it is for a designer to control aberrations when stepping up one stop."

Logged
ErikKaffehr
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 7642


WWW
« Reply #11 on: January 03, 2013, 11:57:28 PM »
ReplyReply

Hi,

So Erwin Puts says that Apochromatic Zooms are better than non Apochromatic primes?

Best regards
Erik


Quote from Erwin Puts "Leica R lenses".

1: "The Leitz company had for a long period resisted the demands of working photographers to introduce zoom lenses. The official statement during that period was quite firm, but a bit short-sighted. Zoomlenses could never provide the image quality of the fixed focal length lenses and certainly could not operate at the wider apertures that Leica users were habitually using. This second part of the statement is still true, but the first part is not."

2: "Take the image quality of the LEICA VARIO-APO-ELMARIT-R 70-180 mm f/2.8 at its extreme position of 180 mm and compare this to the fixed focal length lenses of Leica. The vario lens is significantly better at all apertures than the LEICA ELMARIT-R 180 mm f/2.8, but not as good as the superb LEICA APO-ELMARIT-R 180 mm f/2.8. The same relation holds for the 4/100mm and the 2.8/100mm, but again this last lens can be trimmed to a very high level. Even the LEICA ELMARIT-R 135 mm f/2.8 is surpassed by the vario lens."

3: "The LEICA VARIO-ELMAR-R 35-70 mm f/4 is the first choice for a versatile standard lens for the Leica R system. In addi- tion it covers three important focal lengths, the 35 mm, the 50 mm and the 70 mm. Its performance is as good, if not bet- ter than that of the comparable lenses with fixed focal length at the same apertures, the LEICA SUMMICRON-R 35 mm f/2, the LEICA SUMMILUX-R 35 mm f/1.4, the LEICA SUM- MICRON-R 50 mm f/2 and the LEICA SUMMILUX-R 80 mm f/1.4."

4: "In his Lens Compendium, Erwin Puts write about the 35-70mm Vario-Elmarit-R ASPH f/2.8 that "the 2.8 performance is better than the 2.8/35 and the 2/35
at 2.8", and compares it to it's 1997-littlesister, the 35-70mm Vario-Elmar-R ASPH f/4.0 (which is generally acclaimed as a lens with a fantastic picture quality) by saying, "the newer 2.8/35-70 has 11 lenses, many of
which are of exotic specification, proving the effort to go up just one stop. With this lens Leica introduces an interesting strategy and that is building a low aperture lens to very high optical standards of performance. The luminous energy flowing through a lens of aperture f/2,8 is twice the amount of a lens with an aperture of f/4 and the effort to control and manage this energy flow is very demanding. It is not well recognized how difficult it is for a designer to control aberrations when stepping up one stop."


Logged

EinstStein
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 291


« Reply #12 on: January 04, 2013, 08:07:17 PM »
ReplyReply

No, you can't generalize his statement to other APO or non-APO lens.
Logged
wildlightphoto
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 652


« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2013, 04:43:36 PM »
ReplyReply

So Erwin Puts says that Apochromatic Zooms are better than non Apochromatic primes?

Puts is comparing specific lenses.  I wouldn't extrapolate to the general case.
Logged
scooby70
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 219


« Reply #14 on: January 05, 2013, 05:51:26 PM »
ReplyReply

I don't think I've ever had a zoom or prime lens that wasn't good enough except maybe the Canon 17-85mm I had which was really pretty bad at the wide end. The rest have all been acceptable at the very least. However, most zooms can't do f1.4-f2.8 or macro either or at least none that I've ever owned have.

I mostly use primes and personally I buy lenses on specification, the overall look they produce and how they are to use. Ultimate sharpness either at the centre or across the frame doesn't keep me awake at night worrying and neither does the primes v zooms question. I'd still expect the very best prime to be a little better than the very best zoom though.
Logged
Stephane Desnault
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 68


« Reply #15 on: January 07, 2013, 09:00:51 AM »
ReplyReply

On the Nikon side, the 14-24mm 2.8 super wide angle is reported as better than the 14mm 2.8 in *all* the tests I've read, by a fair margin...
Logged
kers
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 771


WWW
« Reply #16 on: January 07, 2013, 12:32:59 PM »
ReplyReply

On the Nikon side, the 14-24mm 2.8 super wide angle is reported as better than the 14mm 2.8 in *all* the tests I've read, by a fair margin...

As a nikon user I agree 14-24mm is a remarkable lens. from 2,8 till 11 from 14 till 24mm.
I do not like the 24-70 nikkor optically, but the autofocus is very fast...(can be more important sometimes)
The 70-200 vII nikkor is very good and again blazing fast autofocus.- even a beautiful bokeh...
I like best the 1,4g 85mm lens and the three PCE  lenses. non zoom
Logged

Pieter Kers
www.beeld.nu
Pages: [1]   Top of Page
Print
Jump to:  

Ad
Ad
Ad