Zeiss Planar T* 50mm f/2 ZM on micro-4/3 - Review / Test Report - Sample Images & Verdict
Lens Reviews - (Micro-)Four-Thirds

Sample Images

Here're a few sample images taken with the GF-1.

Click on a thumbnail to view the original file (opens in a separate window). Please note that the originals are FULL SIZE samples (=several megabytes) thus requiring a significant amount of bandwidth so please take care of the limited resources here.

Make Panasonic
Model DMC-GF1
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 40.0mm
Aperture: f/8
Exposure 1/800s
Make Panasonic
Model DMC-GF1
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 50mm
Aperture: f/2
Exposure 1/4000s
Make Panasonic
Model DMC-GF1
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/2
Exposure 1/4000s
Make Panasonic
Model DMC-GF1
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/2
Exposure 1/3200s

Verdict

The Zeiss Planar T* 50mm f/2 ZM may be an exotic choice for micro-4/3 users but it's certainly an interesting and viable one. Performance-wise it struggles at f/2 but it's perfectly usable for portraits due to a very high center performance and a pretty good bokeh (out-of-focus blur). At f/4 and beyond it's extremely sharp across the frame. Distortions, vignetting and lateral CAs are very well controlled and it shows that this is all possible without any auto-correction by the camera or RAW-converters - this is the real thing and not a compromise design.

The build quality is just stellar thanks to an all-metal body and super-smooth controls. In a world of plastic lenses this does simply rock! As mentioned the Zeiss lens is actually designed for the Leica M mount (and Zeiss Ikon) so you've to live with an adapter solution and as such without AF. However, thanks to the micro-4/3 camera design (magnified focus view, LiveView) this is less of an issue compared to adapter solutions on DSLRs. However, make sure that you can live with this workflow prior of rushing out and go for it.

Optical Quality:
Mechanical Quality:
Price/Performance:
      
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