Contax Carl Zeiss Planar 85mm f/1.4 Review

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  • Sharpness

  • Value For Money

CyberPOP.'s review of Contax Carl Zeiss Planar 85mm f/1.4


“Carl Zeiss Planar 85/1.4 that I have is in MM version....”

Written on: 17/05/2000 by CyberPOP. (1 review written)

Good Points
The best portrait lens I've ever used. No distortion and very sharp are the typical for Zeiss. But this lens has the most correct color saturation. The nice crystal shape bokeh is the great advantage, rendered this lens is the legendary lens.

Bad Points
Heavy and expensive

General Comments
Carl Zeiss Planar 85/1.4 that I have is in MM version. This lens is big, you will be surprised how big it is, compared to the focal length. This lens is a good definition of portrait lens. I used to use the macro lens for portrait but the macro lens was too sharp. It's not nice to bring out all wrinkles of my model. I put Zeiss Softar on it to make it softer, but the sharpness are lost. The same situation applies to many portrait lens -but not the planar 85/1.4. I don't know how Zeiss makes this lens but it's really great. There is no distortion whatsoever. Photodo rates it for 4.6, which is the highest on this focal length -compared to other brands. But I think the MTF value is only number, once you try it -you will know what I mean. Now I transit to 645 (studi0 and serious shot) and rangefinder (street shot and travel). However, I still keep one Aria and this planar 85/1.4 (and 50/1.4) as the SLR. Even though I don't use it as much as I did, but whenever I use it, I know what I am going to get from this lens.

  • Value For Money

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