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ZeissDistagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount
 
4.8

(based on 15 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (13)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

93%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Durable (10)
  • Strong construction (10)
  • Consistent output (9)
  • Nice bokeh (7)
  • Rugged (7)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Landscape/scenery (10)
    • Macro photography (5)
    • Low light (4)
    • Video (4)
    • Night photography (3)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Photo enthusiast (5), Pro photographer (5), Semi-pro photographer (4)
      • Was this a gift?:
      • No (14)

    Most Liked Positive Review

     

    Excellent Alernative to the 21mm Distago

    My workhorse for landscapes and scenery is the 21mm Distagon. I never leave a shot without the 21 being a part of the workload that day. That said, I got the 25 because...Read complete review

    My workhorse for landscapes and scenery is the 21mm Distagon. I never leave a shot without the 21 being a part of the workload that day. That said, I got the 25 because sometimes I want to get in a little tighter, yet conditions don't permit it (i.e. wading in water or on a rock cliff). Crispness and clarity are second to none, just as you'd expect. Even wide open in daylight, aberration is minimal to manageable.

    It's not quite as sharp as the 15mm or 21mm, but I doubt anyone would know the difference in quality unless you compared identical shots with each lens sitting side by side. The 15 will pull you into the scene like you dove through a window...the 25 will render the shot a little closer but will comparable clarity and contrast...and the 21 strikes a nice balance of wide-angle pull-in of the observer vs. bringing a little less of the foreground into the picture in lieu of concentrating more on the background.

    I could live without the 25 by doing what I could to move the 21mm up a few steps and *gasp* crop later on in post processing...but I am obsessive compulsive and do whatever I can to avoid having to crop. The 25 solves all compositional issues on the tighter end. The 15, 21, and 25 are the perfect trifecta for a landscape scene.

    VS

    Most Liked Negative Review

     

    Not the quality you expect from Zeiss

    I purchased this lens and the ZF2 f 1,4/50mm Planar because I need a complementary pair of prime lenses for travel assignments and the 1x/2x combo has always done well for me both...Read complete review

    I purchased this lens and the ZF2 f 1,4/50mm Planar because I need a complementary pair of prime lenses for travel assignments and the 1x/2x combo has always done well for me both on medium format and 35mm cameras. I have used my Hasselblad/Zeiss Distagon 50 and Planar 100 pair for hundreds of jobs and never needed anything those two lenses can't do.

    Given the price, the name, and the hype, I was hoping for the kind of quality you spend extra money for (Zeiss are leaning heavily on the Contax/Hasselblad cachet in how they have styled and marketed these lenses.) I bought these to shoot on a D700, and I would only think to use them on a full-frame FX camera, since you don't need this grade of glass for an APS-sized frame.

    Leaving out the suspense, this lens is a dud. The barrel distortion is out of control - considerably worse than my beaten-up Nikon AIS 2,8/24mm which I has been hoping to retire. Not only that but the vignetting is also out of control at f 2,8 and only just acceptable at f 4, so forget about using that nice bright aperture unless you are going for a cruddy keyhole look in your pictures. Oh, and at f 2,8 it is not even close to sharp in the corners. Again, the result looks likes a special-effects lens. The lens just doesn't have the coverage to match the angle of view. If you are shooting interiors and detailed scenery like I do, this is unforgivable in a name-brand wide-angle prime lens.

    The positives are all the things that Zeiss tell you in the marketing materials: build quality is excellent; the lens, hood and lens cap are designed to work together seamlessly; the electronic interface to the Nikon bodies works well and the auto-exposure results are consistently good; the fine-focusing really allows you to nail done the point that you want; the great bokeh from the circular diaphram gives a beautiful pictorial softness to out-of-focus areas; and when something is in focus, it is REALLY in focus.

    It's sad, because if you only used the central 50% of this lens (on a DX format Nikon for instance) you would have a really nice slightly-wide-to-normal lens. But you shouldn't have to buy a lens this big and this expensize to get that.

    I returned this lens and am now giving the f 2,0/28mm a whirl. I will post a review when I have a handle on how it performs.

    Reviewed by 15 customers

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    5.0

    My favorite all around lens

    By Ray

    from Philly area

    About Me Photo Enthusiast

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Consistent Output
    • Durable
    • Nice Bokeh
    • Zeiss Pop

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Landscape/Scenery
      • Macro Photography
      • Street

      Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

      I'm a wide angle guy and I shoot a mixture of everyting, from landscape to close up to street. I have the Zeiss 21, this 25, and the 35 f2.0. I love the 21 like nobody's business, but this is my most used lens - perfect focal length for me, right between 24 and 28, previously my two favorite focal lengths, and eliminating the need for both (it's actually almost 26mm, not 25, so splits the difference pretty well). Manual focus is easy for close ups, I use zone focus for street, and most landscapes are shot at infinity with it's very accurate hard stop. I have some nice gear, but a lot of days I just go out with this 25 f2.8 and my Df and that's all I shoot with. It's also got great close focus, so if you're not a hard core macro shooter, this might be all you need for that too...

      I've read various reviews that talk about the technical short-comings of this lens, but most of them conclude that it's a wonderful lens in use despite those theoretical limits. I couldn't agree more - it's got plenty of that patented Zeiss pop and micro-contrast, great colors - what you expect of a Zeiss.

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      • No

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      (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      My very favorite lens!!

      By Bill D

      from Chicago

      About Me Pro Photographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Consistent Output
      • Durable
      • Lightweight
      • Rugged
      • Strong Construction

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Indoors/Low Light
        • Landscape/Scenery
        • Macro Photography
        • Night Photography
        • Weddings/Events

        Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

        This is an exceptional lens, low distortion of off axis planes, very close focus, excellent sharpness, super super lens.

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        • No

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        (22 of 22 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Better deal than the f2 version

        By Sunglasses

        from Montréal, Canada

        About Me Semi-pro Photographer

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

          Cons

            Best Uses

              Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

              The more you pay for a product, the more you want to believe it is the best... The Zeiss 25mm f2 is great, but not so great as to justify paying $700 more than the already great f2.8 version. I ordered both. I compared them side by side. And I was ready the throw the $700 IF it proved to be better. But the decision was quite easy to make: I kept the f2.8 version. I'll try to explain why and I apologise for my mistakes, as English is not my first language.Aside from the f2 one stop difference (which I don't need for landscape and close-ups), here are the criterias I used to compare the two lenses: 1) resolution; 2) distortion and field curvature; 3) easiness of focus; 4) colour, clarity, contrast; 5) weight and volume for travel; 6) creative possibilities; 7) and least but not last: cost. Let's treat them in order.1)Resolution. I took a few pictures (on my D800) of the same landscape (medium range to infinity) at f5.6, f8 and f11 (the f-stops I use the most for that focal length) and I was shocked to see only a *very* slight difference in resolution in Lightroom, on a 1:1 magnification factor! Actually, I had to look very carefully to see any difference at all, despite the 7MP difference stated by test labs such as DX0.[*]. The test labs do not confirm my field experience with the lens. Both f2 and f2.8 versions are very sharp.2)Distortion: dxo.com states 0.5% for the f2 version and 0.4% on the f2.8! (On the full frame D800, of course). I confirm that I see no difference on that chapter either. Distortion is not the same as field curvature caused by focusing at a few inches of the subject. The f2.8 lens has macro capabilities (1:2.3 ratio) but has some field curvature at close distances; at a few meters, the field curvature is gone, and both lenses perform almost in the same manner.3)Easiness of focus: the f2 version has 123 degree rotation ring, compared to the 327 degrees of the f2.8 version. From 10 inches to 2 feet, the f2.8 wins by a VERY big margin. It is a lot easier to focus as the ring has almost two time the amount of rotation. From 2 feet to infinity, there have about the same amount of rotation. As for the brighter focusing screen due to the additional stop of the f2 version, I didn't see any significant difference. Also, in addition to having more rotation, the f2.8 version is thinner which makes it easier and smother to rotate for my fingers. Here, the f2.8 wins at close distances.4)As for color, I saw no difference whatsoever, but I didn't have time to shoot in different conditions. Micro contrast is absolutely great for both lenses and a lot better than my old Nikon AI-S 24mm f2.8…5)Weight: the f2.8 version is 150 grams lighter, which can make a very slight difference if you walk, climb or travel. Also, it is somewhat thinner, but has roughly the same length. The f2.8 wins.6)Creative possibilities: that is the most important part. The f2.8 version has a lot more possibilities, because you can move at any distance of your subject. It is designed so that you can focus on an ant while seeing the whole forest behind! Or a flower, while throwing an amazing defocus effect on the mountain at the background. To me, this is pure gold: it allows to create amazing perspectives. It is a unique lens in its kind, while the f2 version is just another regular wide angle lens designed for medium range.7)Price. So let's sum-up. The major factor, aside from the additional 1 stop (which I have no use for at that focal length) is resolution. The question is : are you willing to pay $700 for a *very slight* gain in resolution, which will not even be noticeable on 13x19 prints? Are you also ready to sacrifice some close-up creative possibilities? As for me, the question was easily answered.Thanks for reading, I hope this will help you make an enlightened decision.[*]

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              (0 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              Great close-ups!

              By Zhang

              from New York, NY

              About Me Semi-pro Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Consistent Output
              • Durable
              • Easily Interchangeable
              • Nice Bokeh
              • Strong Construction

              Cons

              • Heavy

              Best Uses

              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Macro Photography
              • Sports/Action
              • Video
              • Weddings/Events
              • Wildlife Photos

              Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

              Amazing clarity with objects at a close distance, but I withheld my last star because at infinity, the background will always seem slightly less sharp. Great with closeups and nice bokeh. Not as good with low-light situations.

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              • No

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              (0 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Zeiss Glass

              By Buzz

              from Washington DC

              About Me Pro Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Consistent Output
              • Durable
              • Easily Interchangeable
              • Nice Bokeh
              • Rugged
              • Strong Construction

              Cons

              • Heavy

              Best Uses

              • Indoors/Low Light
              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Macro Photography
              • Night Photography
              • Video

              Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

              In these days of fast auto focus lenses why would
              one spend money for manual focus prime lenses such as Ziess. The short answer is quality inages. You can have high megapixel light sensors but you musthave excellent lenses to complete the quality package. I am old enough to have been well established in my photographic career prior to autofocus so lack of auto focus is not a problem. Manual focus is so basic. Simple as that.

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              • No

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              (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Excellent Alernative to the 21mm Distago

              By Amudgarden

              from Phoenix, MD

              About Me Pro Photographer

              See all my reviews

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Consistent Output
              • Durable
              • Easily Interchangeable
              • Fast / accurate auto-focus
              • Lightweight
              • Nice Bokeh
              • Rugged
              • Strong Construction

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Landscape/Scenery

                Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                My workhorse for landscapes and scenery is the 21mm Distagon. I never leave a shot without the 21 being a part of the workload that day. That said, I got the 25 because sometimes I want to get in a little tighter, yet conditions don't permit it (i.e. wading in water or on a rock cliff). Crispness and clarity are second to none, just as you'd expect. Even wide open in daylight, aberration is minimal to manageable.

                It's not quite as sharp as the 15mm or 21mm, but I doubt anyone would know the difference in quality unless you compared identical shots with each lens sitting side by side. The 15 will pull you into the scene like you dove through a window...the 25 will render the shot a little closer but will comparable clarity and contrast...and the 21 strikes a nice balance of wide-angle pull-in of the observer vs. bringing a little less of the foreground into the picture in lieu of concentrating more on the background.

                I could live without the 25 by doing what I could to move the 21mm up a few steps and *gasp* crop later on in post processing...but I am obsessive compulsive and do whatever I can to avoid having to crop. The 25 solves all compositional issues on the tighter end. The 15, 21, and 25 are the perfect trifecta for a landscape scene.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

                Share this review

                (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                unique

                By geechee

                from charleston, sc

                About Me Photo Enthusiast

                Pros

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                      Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                      There is no logical reason to trash this lens. It is not built, and was never intended, to be a landscape lens sharp to the corners. It was built to be a wide-angle lens with incredible macro ability and good bokeh. From this perspective, there is no competition. I took it on hikes at Lake Tahoe with a D800E and Zeiss 100/2, and I literally could not tell which macro pics were taken with the 100 and which with this lens. You may not need, or even appreciate, this niche, but if you do, this lens is all there is.

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                      • No

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                      (2 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      It's a Zeiss - What more can you say?

                      By Prosecman

                      from Canberra, Australia.

                      About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Easily Interchangeable
                      • Rugged
                      • Strong Construction

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Landscape/Scenery

                        Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                        All the quality I expected from a Zeiss lens. I have used other brands, but this Zeiss lens is far and away the best. Fitted to my D800 - the perfect combo.

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

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                        (13 of 17 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        3.0

                        Not the quality you expect from Zeiss

                        By Landscape and Travel Photographer

                        from New York, NY

                        About Me Pro Photographer

                        Pros

                        • Consistent Output
                        • Durable
                        • Nice Bokeh
                        • Sharp
                        • Strong Construction

                        Cons

                        • Barrel distortion
                        • Poor in Low Light
                        • Vignetting

                        Best Uses

                          Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                          I purchased this lens and the ZF2 f 1,4/50mm Planar because I need a complementary pair of prime lenses for travel assignments and the 1x/2x combo has always done well for me both on medium format and 35mm cameras. I have used my Hasselblad/Zeiss Distagon 50 and Planar 100 pair for hundreds of jobs and never needed anything those two lenses can't do.

                          Given the price, the name, and the hype, I was hoping for the kind of quality you spend extra money for (Zeiss are leaning heavily on the Contax/Hasselblad cachet in how they have styled and marketed these lenses.) I bought these to shoot on a D700, and I would only think to use them on a full-frame FX camera, since you don't need this grade of glass for an APS-sized frame.

                          Leaving out the suspense, this lens is a dud. The barrel distortion is out of control - considerably worse than my beaten-up Nikon AIS 2,8/24mm which I has been hoping to retire. Not only that but the vignetting is also out of control at f 2,8 and only just acceptable at f 4, so forget about using that nice bright aperture unless you are going for a cruddy keyhole look in your pictures. Oh, and at f 2,8 it is not even close to sharp in the corners. Again, the result looks likes a special-effects lens. The lens just doesn't have the coverage to match the angle of view. If you are shooting interiors and detailed scenery like I do, this is unforgivable in a name-brand wide-angle prime lens.

                          The positives are all the things that Zeiss tell you in the marketing materials: build quality is excellent; the lens, hood and lens cap are designed to work together seamlessly; the electronic interface to the Nikon bodies works well and the auto-exposure results are consistently good; the fine-focusing really allows you to nail done the point that you want; the great bokeh from the circular diaphram gives a beautiful pictorial softness to out-of-focus areas; and when something is in focus, it is REALLY in focus.

                          It's sad, because if you only used the central 50% of this lens (on a DX format Nikon for instance) you would have a really nice slightly-wide-to-normal lens. But you shouldn't have to buy a lens this big and this expensize to get that.

                          I returned this lens and am now giving the f 2,0/28mm a whirl. I will post a review when I have a handle on how it performs.

                          Share this review

                          (4 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          5.0

                          Great Lens

                          By Fish Man

                          from Chicago

                          About Me Photo Enthusiast

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Consistent Output
                          • Durable
                          • Lightweight
                          • Strong Construction

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Landscape/Scenery

                            Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                            -nature
                            -wide angle close up shots of almost anything
                            This lens feels good and allows me to take close up pictures of just about everything.this works great on an FX or DX camera. this lens is silky smooth just buy and you will love it becuase its a nice change of pace from the Nikon offerings.

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                            • No

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                            (11 of 11 customers found this review helpful)

                             
                            5.0

                            Great lens

                            By samthase

                            from Las Vegas, NV

                            About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • Consistent Output
                            • Durable
                            • Nice Bokeh
                            • Rugged
                            • Strong Construction

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                              • Landscape/Scenery
                              • Night Photography

                              Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                              This is as wide as I need on my D700 and the options at 24/25mm are limited, since all Nikon primes in that focal length have a less than stellar reputation. The Zeiss has been nothing but a joy to use so far and I love its close-focus ability.

                              The usual great build quality and smooth focusing make this lens wonderful to use.

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                              • No

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                              (7 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              5.0

                              Solid Quaility and Build

                              By friendo

                              from Seattle, wa

                              About Me Pro Photographer

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Durable
                              • Rugged
                              • Strong Construction

                              Cons

                              • Manual focus only

                              Best Uses

                              • Indoors/Low Light
                              • Landscape/Scenery
                              • Street photography
                              • Video

                              Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                              Built with old school craftsmanship. It is a solid hunk of metal with an incredibly smooth focus ring - perfect for DSLR video. You are able to focus six inches away from objects.

                              Manual focus only, but don't miss the AF when using it. Overall image quality is equal to or slightly better than the best Nikon lenses.

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                              • No

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                              (8 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              5.0

                              Highly recommended

                              By Vince

                              from San Jose, CA

                              About Me Photo Enthusiast

                              Verified Reviewer

                              Pros

                              • Consistent Output
                              • Durable
                              • Nice Bokeh
                              • Rugged
                              • Strong Construction

                              Cons

                              • Addicting

                              Best Uses

                              • Indoors/Low Light
                              • Video

                              Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                              I was looking for a light wide walk-around lens on my D700 and D7000. I find my 14-24mm too heavy to use casually so I tried this lens. Initially doubt my manual-focussing ability but O boy I was surprised how easy it was. I think i made the right choice, only problem now is I'm looking to collect all the Zeiss ZF line which is going to be hard on my wallet.

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                              • No

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                              (7 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              5.0

                              A true gem

                              By privacy please

                              from the Australian bush

                              About Me Photo Enthusiast

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                                Cons

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Landscape/Scenery
                                  • Macro Photography
                                  • Wildlife Photos

                                  Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                                  I bought this because everybody seems to think you need a wide-angle lens, I had not really seen the attraction myself but thought I'd just give it a try.
                                  The close focus ability of this lens and its oozing of quality in a tiny little package has quadrupled my picture taking output over the week or so I've had the lens. This lens may force me to increase the size of my CF card! (I most often shoot medium format so the 25 feels like a micro toy on my D700! ZF.2 seems to work just fine on the D700, just attach and shoot)
                                  By the way I always prefer manual focus!

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                                  • No

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                                  (9 of 11 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  5.0

                                  Excellent Lens for Landscapes

                                  By Bob4gets

                                  from Sedona, AZ

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Comments about Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.8 ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F Mount:

                                  Very sharp and excellent color rendition. Works great with both my Nikon F4s and D700. I've had excellent results using it for landscapes.

                                  Share this review