Contax Planar T* 50mm f1.4 35mm Primes

Contax Planar T* 50mm f1.4 35mm Primes 

DESCRIPTION

A fast, high-performance standard lens incorporating the latest achievements in optical glass for correction of image errors. Valuable both for fast action and low light photography.

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-10 of 26  
[May 25, 2020]
Le Ne


Strength:

The only weakness is wide-open, it's serious enough that the 1.7 is more attractive because it cost less. Effectively you are paying for 1.4 and the performance actually lags behind Leica, Pentax, and Canon (USM) wide open. However start stopping down and the 1.4 and 1.7 are dead even. Logic matter to you? If you need wide-open excellence, it's not here and 3 other well known lenses surpass this.

Weakness:

Measurements form the Old Photodo site, which relied on testing using Hasselblad and Zeiss equipment btw... measured the 1.4 and 1.7 as the sharpest ever recorded at F8 for each. However the 1.4 among 9 other 1.4's wide open, ranked lower than Leica, Canon, and Pentax 50MM 1.4's wide open. Physics dictate, you can have one or the other and you can't have both ..., however Leica is so close behind stopped down that any difference is not visible or attainable for human eyes, and significantly ahead wide-open? It is truly the best to have, simply because you're going to get the finest wide-open performance. If you shoot outdoors, landscapes, people, street scenes...I'd want the Planar. If I was in low light, outside or inside ...Leica. Point is, there is a BEST lens BEST for situations but not BEST for it all

Price Paid:
250
Purchased:
Used  
Model Year:
1981
OVERALL
RATING
5
[Jan 16, 2004]
VincentD
Intermediate

Strength:

Fast, sharp, great Bokeh.

Weakness:

None

This was another of my Dad's lenses and it is an AE version. It is wonderfully sharp and renders colors superbly. Some of my favorite photographs have been taken with this lens. A great one for low light situations, like the canyons of NYC on a rainy day.

Customer Service

N/A

Similar Products Used:

CZ 50 1.7 (also great) Yashica ML 50 1.9(A bit cooler than CZ but very sharp and a Good lens)

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Apr 15, 2003]
Steve
Expert

Strength:

This lens is crispy!! Contrasty and the color rendition is spot on. If you want a normal lens this is perhaps the best in the world. These lenses are tanks and I have 5 manual focus Contax Zeiss lenses. The build quality is up there with Leica. Tack sharp at all apertures.

Weakness:

None. The best as usual!!!

One of the best of the best!!

Customer Service

They back their products up, if needed. I have never needed any service on a lens.

Similar Products Used:

Canon 50 1.4 Zeiss G

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Feb 20, 2003]
Nick R
Expert

Strength:

Optically stunning, fast, even fairly cheap for what it is. Superlative.

Well this is a stunning lens. What else can I say? If I had to have just one lens, this would be it.

Customer Service

N/A

Similar Products Used:

Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.5 Planar 50mm f1.7 And others too many to list

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Dec 13, 2002]
Lars Bryant
Expert

Strength:

Sharp, image quality. Build and feel quality superior than canon and nikon

Weakness:

The lack of af if you need af

Sharpest lense I have used but I now use canon 50mm1.4 instead because when I need af I get more sharp pictures. One day I brought both my cameras for street photo-contax and my canon with only the 50mm lenses. Used provia 400f in both and all the photos with the canon was sharp. The contax where 80% sharp. And comparing the sharp slides from the contax I could mot really see any difference with the ones with the canons. 2 of my photo friends looked at them too, and without knowing what camera I used they could not tell the difference either. I use a leica slideprojector with the 90mm2.5 colorplan-pro lense.

Similar Products Used:

Canon usm 50mm1.4 Nikkor af 50mm1.4 Carl Zeiss 50mm1.7

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
[May 08, 2002]
Bluefin
Intermediate

Strength:

color color color. small size, strong construction. low price for its performance.

Weakness:

none

This lens simply gives right color and contrast. I have been using this one for >5 years and it impress all my friends when they see the pictures. When they are talking about those new stuff like digital, AF, or APS, I am usually quiet. All I want to show them is that a old standard prime lens can give all colors they like better. This lens and 85mm/1.4 are my favorite manual focus lens so far. Currently I use CANON AF for street photography and leave landscape for my CONTAX and medium format.

Customer Service

No need yet

Similar Products Used:

other contax lens. Minolta MC, CANON MD/AF

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Dec 04, 2001]
jason4774
Intermediate

Strength:

-super smooth focus and handling -high resolution -great contrast -wonderful colors -seems to capture deep blacks and bright whites better than other lenses. -shadow detail -very 3-D look to prints -in focus objects seem to snap from the background, and stand out. -cheaper and better than any other 50 1.4 you can buy -lovely ''''bokeh'''' to my eye. Where my canon simply gradually blurs into obscurity, the Contax seems to hold smooth, soft ''''haunting'''' resonances of objects that are hanging in the background (and yes, I tested both lenses for background blur, too)

Weakness:

Can''''t think of any. Nothing other lenses don''''t do worse.

After having my Contax G1 long enough, and seeing the quality of the prints the Zeiss lenses in that system made, I found a Contax body with the Planar 50 1.4 included, and snatched it up. I have a Canon 50 1.4 autofocus, so I decided to test them out, side by side, shooting a friend of mine in the kitchen making a cake, low light, both lenses wide open. Then, after getting the prints back, I showed them to her. She looked at the prints made by the Contax, without knowing which camera I used, and said "My god!" It amazes me (and disturbes more ''''scientific'''' reviewers) that there can remain any discernable differences between similar lenses by different manufacturers, based on established designs that have existed for a century or more, but the evidence is in the final product, and that was clearly visible to that friend of mine, who knows nothing about cameras. She just saw an obvious difference. I don''''t know what makes Contax lenses so d*** wonderful, but there''''s something to them that goes beyond resolution (which this lens tested higher than any other in it''''s class) and contrast (which the lens beats the hell out of my Canon equivilant.) It''''s hard to describe the difference, but it''''s there (my friend saw it without prompting), and to both our eyes, the Contax photos looked unbelievable. I have shot 30 rolls with this lens, and the photos I get still blow me away. I don''''t know what Zeiss does right, but they do it, better than anybody else.

Customer Service

never used

Similar Products Used:

canon af 50 1.4 canon af 100 2.0 canon af 200 2.8 mk II contax g 35 2.0

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Nov 24, 2001]
zapp
Professional

Strength:

Universal lens at any aperture

Weakness:

none

I started to appreciate this lens when using other 50mm lenses. Color, contrast, sharpness... is great even at 1.4. Super touch, smooth focusing.

Customer Service

superb, check out the homepage for pdf''s with performance curves

Similar Products Used:

Nikkor Ais 50/1.2, 50/1.4, AF 50/1.8, Minolta MD 1.7/50, Canon FD 50/1.4, EF 1.8/50

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Oct 13, 2001]
Matt Sam
Professional

Strength:

Sharp, fast, well built and not expensive. Well built, bulletproof.

Weakness:

None found

Nice lens, I think the best 50mm I''ve used. At f2 it''s simply wonderful. Most of 50mm are similar, but not equal.

Customer Service

not needed

Similar Products Used:

50mm1,4 FD canon, 50mm 1,4 EF Canon 50mm nikon not autofocus.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[May 24, 2000]
daniel steinberg
Expert
Model Reviewed: Planar T* 50mm f1.4

Strength:

This is the best 50mm lens made. If you need an inexpensive setup, get a yashica body, with this lens, which can be found used for $125. I blow up color images in the darkroom to 30x40 with this lens, and they are superb. The color and contrast hold really well at this extreme blow up. The quality of the construction of the lens is industrial. Hold up a lens from any other company in one hand and a zeiss in the other hand and you will see the difference. Zeiss makes other lenses look like plastic toys. These lenses are rock solid!!

Weakness:

none

Carl Zeiss lenses are the best lenses made, apart from Leica, which I haven't tried.

Customer Service

repairs can be expensive, and you have to send items directly to contax, which is an inconvenience.

Similar Products Used:

nikon
canon
pentax

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 26  

(C) Copyright 1996-2018. All Rights Reserved.

photographyreview.com and the ConsumerReview Network are business units of Invenda Corporation

Other Web Sites in the ConsumerReview Network:

mtbr.com | roadbikereview.com | carreview.com | photographyreview.com | audioreview.com