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OK, make me spend on an 85mm for portrait photography!
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 5:49 pm    Post subject: OK, make me spend on an 85mm for portrait photography! Reply with quote

I have the Contax G Zeiss Sonnar 90mm f/2.8 but I don't think it's a portrait lens, because of harsh and busy bokeh (correct me if i'm wrong). Any recommendations in the 85mm range? I would like to get one for portrait photography. Tell me about your favorite 85mm!

EDIT: I use full frame camera.

Cheers,


Last edited by vanylapep on Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:51 pm; edited 3 times in total


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 6:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

may be the sonnar 85/2


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Depending on the distance to the target almost any lens with a focal length betw. 85 and 135 mm will qualify for portraits.
It's more or less a matter of taste. IMHO there is no need for the ultimately sharpness across the frame.
Anyway, I like my old Minolta lenses like the MC 85/1.7 and AF 85/1.4 for their very smooth and nice bokeh. However, even the Tamron SP AF 90/2.8 macro is a very nice portrait lens as well.


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 6:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tb_a wrote:
Depending on the distance to the target almost any lens with a focal length betw. 85 and 135 mm will qualify for portraits.


I have the Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 AIS, the Tair 135mm and the Meyer Optik 135mm. I feel like I need to be very far and also not shake my hands too much. It's OK if I do portrait with my family, I can be slow and take time, but in a more professional setting, I will struggle a bit more Smile

I feel like the 85mm will be a good compromise. Currently I use 50mm.


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can't see why a 90mm Sonnar would be unsuitable, unless it's too sharp, but an f/2 Jupiter-9 85mm is one favourite of mine, or for a "softer dreamier" effect, the Fujinon Soft-Focus 85mm f/4 was made for the job.

Remember, the "traditional" 85-135mm recommendation for a portrait lens was for use on 35mm full-frame, similar angles of view for an APS-C sensor would be achieved with approx. 57mm (Helios-44?) to 90mm (Tamron #52B?).

Good luck Smile


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My favorite 85mm 'portrait' lens is the Konica Hexanon 1.8/85 although I do also have and like the Zeiss Jena Sonnar 2.0/85 in rangefinder mount. A couple with the Konica on an A7II.







PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Which version of the Jupiter 9 is the "better"?


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

newst wrote:
My favorite 85mm 'portrait' lens is the Konica Hexanon 1.8/85 although I do also have and like the Zeiss Jena Sonnar 2.0/85 in rangefinder mount. A couple with the Konica on an A7II.
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Love the cat portrait!


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oh what a little sweet cat with blue eyes Like 1 small


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any of the classical 85mm is well suited for portraits - as long as you like the focal length (i myself prefer a little bit longer lenses such as the Minolta AF 2/100mm, the 1.8/105mm and 2/135mm Nikkors or the Canon nFD 2/135mm).

The following lenses are a bit soft wide open, but around f5.6 they are tack sharp with high contrast:
* Canon FD 1.8/85mm and nFD 1.8/85mm
* Konica AR 1.8/85mm
* Minolta MC/MD 1.7/85mm
* Nikkor 1.8/85mm

The Minolta MD 2/85mm has an excellent resolution and high contrast even at f2. Whether you like this for portraits or not is up to you.

The Carl Zeiss Sonnar 2/85mm (for Contax RF) exists in different versions (different optical constructions, and with or without coating). Wide open, these Sonnars have the typical soft Sonnar rendering, especially at closer (portrait!) distances.

I don't know the Asahi/Pentax, Zeiss C/Y and Olympus 85mm lenses, however.

Stephan


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vanylapep wrote:
newst wrote:
My favorite 85mm 'portrait' lens is the Konica Hexanon 1.8/85 although I do also have and like the Zeiss Jena Sonnar 2.0/85 in rangefinder mount. A couple with the Konica on an A7II.
[/url]


Love the cat portrait!


Thanks.


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GoldMark wrote:
oh what a little sweet cat with blue eyes Like 1 small


Thank you!


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Super-Takumar 1.9/85 is probably my best 85mm lens, although I was gifted a Canon FD 1.8/85 for Christmas that I am looking forward to using.
Tom

#1


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 8:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now i use for portrait

Hexanon 135/3,2

Hexanon zoom 70/150 f/4

A good lens for portraits is the Nikkor 85/2.


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 8:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thomas, even if you shoot using a bottom of a beer bottle, your black-and-white images will be always as much convincing. So, not fair!

There is a less conventional but a great option for portraits at the same more or less required focal range, already well discussed at the forum, Colorplan 2.5/90.


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vanylapep wrote:
Which version of the Jupiter 9 is the "better"?


Simple but true: the older the better. I'd look for a silver one with the focal distance printed on the front ring in centimeters: 8,5cm. I have a 1958 version from the KMZ factory, and a 1962 version from the LZOS factory (you can look up the factory badges - they're well-documented), and they're both superb: sharp wide open, but not too sharp for portraits. I've also taken some really nice landscape shots too. The only thing they're not great for is macro, but are you expecting great macro performance from a portrait lens? That doesn't mean you can't use them that way, but it's tricky.

I've seen posted shots with later black versions that look very nice, but I've also seen shots from those that look very much less nice.

I'm not trying to tell you you should get a Jupiter-9, or that it's the best choice. I don't have enough experience with different 85s to tell you that. I'm only saying I loved mine enough to get a second one. They are one of the cheapest options at that focal length, however.

Look for one in excellent mechanical and optical condition, maybe with original caps and case.

BTW, another possible option is the Helios-40-2 85mm f/1.5 (or the old silver Helios-40). The main drawback of these is that they're really heavy. They might not what you're looking for since they're famous for their swirly cyclone bokeh, but I thought I would mention them, at least. I quite like mine, and I think the normal non-swirly bokeh it creates is pleasing.


Last edited by KEO on Mon Jan 21, 2019 9:10 pm; edited 1 time in total


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

alex ph wrote:
Thomas, even if you shoot using a bottom of a beer bottle, your black-and-white images will be always as much convincing. So, not fair!

There is a less conventional but a great option for portraits at the same more or less required focal range, already well discussed at the forum, Colorplan 2.5/90.


Thank you alex
Happy Dog


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

nfd 85/1.8 (but I like longer 105-135mm)




PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vanylapep wrote:
Which version of the Jupiter 9 is the "better"?


The earlier KMZ Jupiter-9's are the best. Later black ones are much softer in comparison. The J-9 kept the original 7 element in 3 group design of the CZJ Sonnar 8.5cm F2. The Nikkor 8.5cm F2 and West German 85/2 Sonnar moved to a 5 element in 3 group design. My opinion, the original 1930s CZJ 8.5cm F2 and J-9 have smoother bokeh.


PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 10:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oldhand wrote:
Super-Takumar 1.9/85 is probably my best 85mm lens,...


Indeed, I've forgotten to mention this lens. I also like it's bokeh very much.
Maybe it's time for another 85mm lens comparison on my A7R II. Wink


PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2019 1:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had Super Tak 85/1,9, Konica 85/1,8 AR, Jupiter 85/2 black, Zeiss planar 85/1,4 AEG, elmarit 90/2,8, Vega 90/2,8 Voigt apo lanthar 90/3,5, elmar 90/4 and tried for a while of Minolta 85/1,7 MC.
The best is planar Smile but all were sold now.
I use projector lenses for the job. Meopta 70/1,4 Visionar 84/1,6, oh forgot to mention, I still keep Summicron 90/2 for some reason lol.


PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2019 2:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

M42 Super-Multi-Coated TAKUMAR 1:1.8/85


PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2019 5:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Super Takumar 85/1.9 is just lovely. I love the transition, and Super Taks have wonderful flare.
Leica 90/2 APO Asph Love the colour. But is $$$
Topcor 85/1.8 is expensive and rare, sharp at all apertures.
Canon FD SSC 85/1.2 is a lovely portrait lens that makes the background clutter just go away.
Meopta 70/1.4 projector lens, it's like the Helios 40 and Biotar 75/1.5 only smaller and lighter.
CZJ 80/2.8 Tessar or Biometar, Not as fast as the others, but have nice rendering and nice colour.


PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2019 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I briefly owned the Contax G 90/2.8 and I understand what you're saying. I was using it adapter with a Fuji X-T2 so I wasn't experiencing the full frame of the lens but I just found the background was never out of focus enough, or smooth enough, for me. Beautiful, sharp lens. But it wouldn't be my first choice for portraits.

Nikon 85mm f/1.8 As a Nikon shooter, the 85/1.8 has been nothing short of gorgeous. At this point I am using the AF version, though I generally shoot it using manual focus. The older AIS version has an equal reputation. I've also heard (and desire) the Nikon 85/2.

Nikon 105mm f/2.5 Keeping in the Nikon vein, the 105/2.5 is everything its reputation claims. Amazing, compact piece of glass. I've only just recently begun working with this lens despite hearing about it for years. Not sure why I always passed it over but picked a clean, AI copy up for under $100 and it's been one of the best values I've ever used. Great background rendering, lovely color, contrasty and flare-resistant, sharp plane of focus even wide open.

Tokina 90mm f/2.5
Soligor 135mm f/2.0
Tamron Adaptall-2 180mm f/2.5

Some other's I'd encourage you to consider would be the Tokina 90mm f/2.5 macro (sharp, possibly too sharp,but still a lovely rendering). Check out the Soligor 135/2 if you can get your hands on one. A little softer wide open but great for portraits in this way. More susceptible to flare than any of the others I've mentioned here but that can be used for effect. Easy to stop down for more sharpness. I picked one up for Nikon for just over $150 but I've seen them sell for $60 or less in less desirable mounts (unimportant in our age of adapters). Lastly, for a tighter portrait with more compression, I love the Tamron Adaptall-2 180/2.5 LD-IF (63B). Gorgeous lens. Each of these three lenses render non-distracting backgrounds, possess excellent mechanics (smooth, comfortable amount of throw to dial in critical focus, robust build quality).


PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2019 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

visualopsins wrote:
M42 Super-Multi-Coated TAKUMAR 1:1.8/85


Please notice the 6 elements 6 groups M42 Super-Multi-Coated TAKUMAR 1:1.8/85 is considered better than the 5 elements 4 groups Super-TAKUMAR so highly recommended here.