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Samyang 135mm T2.2 vs Zeiss ZA 135 mm f/1.8
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PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2015 5:52 pm    Post subject: Samyang 135mm T2.2 vs Zeiss ZA 135 mm f/1.8 Reply with quote

When the Samyang 135mm f/2 was released, there was a test on a Korean site comparing this lens with Zeiss ZA 135mm f/1.8 for Sony A mount cameras. The test showed better sharpness and CA control of Samyang and I felt disappointed by the quality of Zeiss if the test was true. However, there was a suspect that the reviewer focused the Zeiss not very carefully, lowering the quality of the shot at wide open. So far, there is no other test was done. I got the Samyang and I was really satisfied with it and recently I also bought the Zeiss from a good deal to add to my AF gears so I have a chance to revise that comparison. Currently I don't have the LA-EA4 adapter yet to use the Zeiss on my NEX-6 with AF, so I mounted it on the Minolta-NEX adapter, locked the aperture at f/1.8 and compared it with Samyang at wide open on NEX-6. Even though I can stop down Zeiss but it's hard to make it exactly at f2 so I just used the wide open setting. Other tests with same aperture with Samyang will be done latter when I have the adapter.

The result turned out to be very good for both lenses. The center sharpness of Zeiss and Samyang are almost the same, even though they're a bit different in aperture. Samyang it better by a thin hair and it has a bit better in term of CA control. I didn't compare the border and corner since I tested on APS-C camera, it doesn't make much sense. When I get A7ii or A7Rii I will test again.



I mounted the camera on a sturdy tripod to make the compared shots accurate. Photos were shot in RAW and no sharpness enhancement was used. I used the same shooting conditions so Samyang image appears to be darker due to the smaller aperture.

Zeiss at f/1.8



Samyang at T2.2

]

Center sharpness:

]

Another test:

Zeiss at f/1.8



Samyang at T2.2

]

Center sharpness:



They're both amazing lenses!


PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2015 6:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice to see this and although i like the Samyang a lot i envy you the Sony Zeiss Smile Can you be so kind and take a couple of pitures with a fixed WB (not auto) with the two lenses? The only weakness that my copy has is a warm color cast, it s not even warm in the yellow sense but slightly brownish. I read somewhere that not all the copies has this colour shift.

Tomas


PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2015 6:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tomasg wrote:
Nice to see this and although i like the Samyang a lot i envy you the Sony Zeiss Smile Can you be so kind and take a couple of pitures with a fixed WB (not auto) with the two lenses? The only weakness that my copy has is a warm color cast, it s not even warm in the yellow sense but slightly brownish. I read somewhere that not all the copies has this colour shift.

Tomas


Sure, Tomas, since it's already midnight here, tomorrow I will take more samples with fixed WB.


PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2015 7:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So today I compared these lenses with fixed WB (Daylight, 5150) and at far focus distance. What Tomas mentioned is correct, Samyang image is warmer, but I don't think it's brownish. The contrast of these photos are not high because I shoot through window glass and it's not clean, however, I think it's fine, just to show the difference in color cast.

Zeiss at f/1.8



Samyang at T2.2



PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2015 8:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thankx for those, yes it looks it s common then. Just took those fter i read your post, few minutes ago: WB 5250 K
In order: Samyang 135, Tair 11a 135 and Samyang 85













and three outdoor





PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2015 8:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your information, too, I didn't notice the color shift before because I always use AWB and RAW, then adjust the photo in RawEditor. The surprise here is the Samyang 85mm, which casts colder color in my impression, maybe I have to look into that carefully.


PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2015 9:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Samyang 85, 35 and 24 mm i have are all cooler than the 135, but are also older than the 135, the 14 mm i got a few months before the 135 also has this yellowish cast too. My specualtion is that the glass used in Samyang lenses has changed. Sa far as i know they outsource at least some of their glass. When there was the tsunami in Japan Samyang isuued a notice that there could be delays in supplying their lenses.


PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2015 2:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tomasg wrote:
The Samyang 85, 35 and 24 mm i have are all cooler than the 135, but are also older than the 135, the 14 mm i got a few months before the 135 also has this yellowish cast too. My specualtion is that the glass used in Samyang lenses has changed. Sa far as i know they outsource at least some of their glass. When there was the tsunami in Japan Samyang isuued a notice that there could be delays in supplying their lenses.


I also observe that the quality of the 135mm lens is better than the previous ones so I guess it's reasonable to think they changed the glasses.

So today I got the LA-EA4 adapter to properly control the Zeiss 135mm on NEX-6 and compare them at different apertures. Today I shot with the light source in front of the lens and didn't use the hood on Zeiss and the result showed more difference in the performance of these lenses, favoring Samyang. Only stopping down to f/4.5-f/5.6 then they're almost the same, otherwise Samyang produced sharper image with better contrast, less purple fringing than Zeiss. Zeiss lens show worse CA control when shooting against light source, maybe because the T* coat is not really effective in this case.

Since the 135/1.8 lens on APS-C works the same way as a 200/2.5 lens on full frame camera. I compared these lenses with Canon EF 200mm f/1.8 L (on 6D body) shooting from the same distance. Amazingly, even stopping down to T5.6, the sharpness of Samyang's image is still less than the 200L at f/1.8 and at f/2.5 Canon is clearly better. One might say that the different sensors can produce different images so I took a photo of the 200L on NEX-6 as a reference, they're almost the same, if not mention that on NEX-6 the image is a bit sharper, maybe due to the nosier ISO 200 of NEX-6.

However, consider the much difference in price (200L is 6 times and Zeiss is more than 2 times the price of Samyang), Samyang is still the winner that I can use in most of the situation, even though when I need the best quality I still need to use the 200L and when I need fast focus and lighter gears, Zeiss is still the best choice.

Samyang 135mm at T2.2 (on NEX-6)



Zeiss 135mm at f/1.8 (on NEX-6)



Canon 200mm at f/1.8 (on 6D)



Center sharpness comparision



PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2015 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes the Samyang is a very good lens and it also retains an excellent price/quality ratio of other Samyangs. On my relatively low pixel count ff D700 there is almost no difference between the corners and centre sharpness wide open. Antother interesting proprety: focus the lens at minimum focusing distance and put some oof highlights in the corners, at mfd there are no "cat eye" oof highlights instead the are perfectly circular, as you focus further though they get the shape of cateyes.

Tomas


PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2015 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tomasg wrote:
Yes the Samyang is a very good lens and it also retains an excellent price/quality ratio of other Samyangs. On my relatively low pixel count ff D700 there is almost no difference between the corners and centre sharpness wide open. Antother interesting proprety: focus the lens at minimum focusing distance and put some oof highlights in the corners, at mfd there are no "cat eye" oof highlights instead the are perfectly circular, as you focus further though they get the shape of cateyes.

Tomas


Is it what you mentioned?



This phenomenon was observed only on FF cameras, not APS-C cameras, I think because the internal elements moved backward while the lens focuses further, which makes the light comes from the corner can't cover the whole sensor Very Happy


PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2015 5:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well yes, i guess it works better when the lens is at mfd but the subject is further away, i ll take a pic this evening of some street lights. Also i never noticed the purple rims/borders in oof highlights in the pictures i took. Anyway i ll post a few later.


PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2015 7:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here are the examples, the background is distant cca 30 m

mfd:



1 m focusing distance:


2 m focusing distance: