ZEISS Distagon T* 35mm f/1.4 ZM Lens (Silver)

ZEISS Distagon T* 35mm f/1.4 ZM Lens (Silver)

ZEISS Distagon T* 35mm f/1.4 ZM Lens (Silver)

B&H # ZE3514ZMS MFR # 2109-165
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Product Highlights

  • Leica M-Mount Lens
  • Aperture Range: f/1.4 to f/16
  • Two Aspherical Elements
  • Three Low Dispersion Elements
  • Floating Elements System
  • ZEISS T* Anti-Reflective Coating
  • Manual Focus Design
  • Minimum Focus Distance: 2.3'
  • Filter Thread: 49mm
  • 10-Blade Diaphragm
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Color: Silver

ZEISS Distagon T* 35mm f/1.4 ZM Lens (Black) ZEISS Distagon T* 35mm f/1.4 ZM Lens (Silver)
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ZEISS 2109-165 overview

  • 1Description

Characterized by its speed and sophisticated design, the silver Distagon T* 35mm f/1.4 ZM from ZEISS is a wide-angle prime for M-mount rangefinder cameras. Balancing the versatile wide focal length is the notably bright f/1.4 maximum aperture, which aids in working in low-light conditions and also affords greater control over depth of field. The Distagon optical design, which helps to reduce distortion, is benefitted by the inclusion of both aspherical and anomalous partial dispersion elements to further suppress spherical and chromatic aberrations for high sharpness and clarity. A floating elements system is also employed to maintain image quality throughout the focusing range, even at the minimum focusing distance of 2.3', and a T* anti-reflective coating has been applied to individual elements to control lens flare and ghosting.

Wide-angle lens employs a Distagon optical concept to realize well-corrected imagery with virtually no distortion.
Fast f/1.4 maximum aperture benefits working in low-light conditions and also offers increased control over depth of field for selective focus shooting.
Two aspherical elements help to reduce spherical aberrations in order to realize a high degree of sharpness.
Three anomalous partial dispersion elements reduce chromatic aberrations and color fringing for improved color accuracy and clarity.
ZEISS T* anti-reflective coating has been applied to each lens surface to help minimize reflections and provide greater contrast and color fidelity.
Floating elements design helps to maintain consistent image quality throughout the focusing range.
Manual focus design enables a minimum focusing distance of 2.3'.
A 10-blade diaphragm contributes to a pleasing bokeh quality when working with selective focus techniques.
In the Box
ZEISS Distagon T* 35mm f/1.4 ZM Lens (Silver)
  • 49mm Front Lens Cap for ZM Lenses
  • Rear Lens Cap for ZM-Mount Lenses
  • Limited 2-Year Warranty, Extendable to 3 Years with Online Registration
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description

    ZEISS 2109-165 specs

    Focal Length 35mm
    Maximum Aperture f/16
    Minimum Aperture f/1.4
    Camera Mount Type Leica M
    Angle of View 62.15°
    Minimum Focus Distance 2.3' / 70 cm
    Maximum Reproduction Ratio 1:16.9
    Optical Design 10 Elements in 7 Groups
    Diaphragm Blades 10
    Filter Thread 49mm
    Dimensions : 2.5 x L: 2.6" / : 63.2 x L: 65.2 mm
    Weight 13.4 oz / 381 g
    Packaging Info
    Package Weight 1.2 lb
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 7.8 x 4.6 x 4.3"

    ZEISS 2109-165 reviews

    Distagon T* 35mm f/1.4 ZM Lens (Silver) is rated 4.9 out of 5 by 11.
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from The most incredible M Mount lens I've used this lens for about a month shooting up and down the coast of central California. This lens is extraordinary. It is highly resolving and sharp with zero vignetting, even at f1.4. Shot wide open the lens has a gorgeous band of sharpness and bokeh galore. Shot at f5.6, it's incredibly sharp throughout the range. The construction was stellar. The click stops on the aperture ring click positively into place and the focus is buttery smooth. I wasn't expecting it to be this good to be honest with you. It's as good as, or dare I say, even better than my Leica lenses.
    Date published: 2014-12-12
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from An Excellent Alternative to Leica's Summilux Zeiss makes several excellent rangefinder lenses, and the new Distagon is no exception. The Distagon ZM is incredibly sharp, even wide open. Color rending is superb, and micro-contrast is fantastic. Subjectively I would say this lens has that 'Zeiss' look: punchy colors and a bit higher contrast. My only minor complaint about the Distagon is the odd shape: the lens has a mild barrel-like design. It's also on the larger size for a rangefinder lens. That being said, it's still much smaller than most modern SLR lenses. Of course, comparisons to the Leica Summilux-M are inevitable, but I personally have not used that lens. I think Zeiss does a great job at offering alternative to Leica's products. The Summilux-M costs more than twice as much as the Distagon. Is the performance worth the price? Personally, I think the Distagon is a winner.
    Date published: 2015-08-04
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Everything you would expect from the flagship of the ZM line Very sharp, very contrasty, perfectly smooth bokeh, even for a 35mm. The build feels pretty much perfect, and focusing is precise. It's a big lens on a rangefinder, but the performance more than makes up for it. It is as good on film as it is on the M 240. Being that it's a Distagon design, it also performs pretty well on Sony bodies. Of course, it was made the M mount, and it's best on a Leica or Zeiss Ikon. For a fast 35 your only other options are the Leica, and 2 Voigtlanders (not counting the 'classic' 35/1.4 because it's a special effect lens in essence, and the modern optics just do a different thing). Vs the 35/1.2: The Zeiss is sharper with more modern Bokeh, and better contrast. Though if you like classic character you may prefer the 35/1.2. Size is the same. Vs. the 35/1.7: I would say this lens is the only real competition. It's a lot cheaper and has 85% of the performance. But it's not a 35/1.4, and doesn't have the Zeiss signature with color images. Vs. the Leica: The Summilux FLE is very good, but not better. It's main advantage is size. Is that worth double the money? Not to me. I'm going to get years and years of use out of this lens in both professional and artistic applications, and I can't really imagine wanting more from a 35/1.4. Buy with confidence.
    Date published: 2016-06-03
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best 35 Being a 35mm FOV junkie, I've owned the much vaunted V4 35 Summicron, 35 ASPH Cron and a 35/2.8 Summaron. Last year I rented the Zeiss 35/2.8 C-Biogon. It's a stunning lens, light and inexpensive. A no-brainer if you can live with a slower 35. It's better than the Leica ASPH Cron. I also purchased this lens and relegated the Leica Cron to the back bench. Enter the ZM 35/1.4. Again, I first rented this lens. It's bigger and heavier than the C-Biogon by a substantial margin, but if you need those 2 stops or want that beautiful DOF, that's the price you pay for this lens. There is a little more VF blockage but I quickly adjusted. I also do not use the hood. The weight of this lens seems to be at the rear of the lens, making it still feel pretty well balanced on an M body. This lens (and the C-Biogon) do not suffer from focus shift. At 1.4 you can nail focus with this lens. The build quality is first rate, and seems a notch above my Biogon and 50 Planar. This lens enters Leica build territory where my other Zeiss lenses do not. The 35 Distagon also does not extend when you focus. The focus feeling is perfect. Not too loose or tight allowing for fine focus. The 1/3rd f-stops are nice and feel positive and tight. Great haptic feedback on this Distagon. I've never had the chance to use the Leica 35 Summilux, which is smaller and lighter, but twice the price. Bottom line: If you want the best 35 ever made for the M mount, and want a fast 35 this may be it. You could buy this lens, add in the 35 C-Biogon for times you don't need the speed or want the light weight, and still save over $2k on a new Summilux 35. Not sure what made genius at Zeiss approved this lens. Just glad they did.
    Date published: 2016-06-28
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent lens from near to far Zeiss set out to best the Leica Summilux 35/1.4 ASPH FLE lens. Whil I can't compare the two, the 35mm f/1.4 Distagon T* ZM Lens is truly excellent, if a little on the long side for a rangefinder 35mm. It has internal focus with a floating element design, so the length of the lens doesn't change with subject distance. Contrast is excellent and resolution and color saturation are high, so optical quality is outstanding at all apertures. This holds true from minimum focus to infinity. Vignetting is quite pronounced at f/1.4 until about f/4. On my M9-P with no lens profile there are very mild color casts in the corners, easily correctable with Adobe's Flat Field Correction plugin for Lightroom, with a reference image (I use a credit card sized piece of white plexiglas held to the lens for flat field reference images). If you are not fussy this probably is unnecessary, as the lens exhibits much less corner color error than other 35mm lenses I have used on the M9P. Even coded Leica lenses are not quite satisfactory in this regard, particularly the otherwise excellent 24mm/3.8 and 28mm/2.8 ASPH lenses. The ZM 35mm/1.4 has nice out of focus character, generally pretty smooth wide open, but somewhat busy at some middle distances. There is some uncorrected longitudinal chromatic aberration, which can lead to mild color casts in out of focus objects, becoming negligible by f/4. Most 35mm lenses I used are not nearly as good as the ZM 35mm/1.4, with much less good resolution, especially in the corners, and many more aberrations than the Zeiss. Optically this lens is simply outstanding. Focus is quite smooth, and the focus ring is not at all stiff on my copy of the lens. The Aperture ring is an odd design, and is actually the entire part between the stainless steel filter ring on the front and the focus ring. The forward section of the aperture ring is marked and knurled on the sides and bottom, while the rest of the ring closer to the focus ring is smooth. This is unlike the other ZM rangefinder lenses I have used from Zeiss, which only have a small rotating ring, but the design has not been a problem with me. Aperture changing is not stiff, but doesn't' get accidentally changed either. The lens cap is 49mm, but still has the same mediocre design of the earlier 43mm and 46mm ZM caps. You have to be careful attaching it or it's likely to get knocked off. I wish Zeiss would have made it more like their 67mm Touit series lens caps (which work well on ZF/ZE series lenses too). The ZM 35mm/1.4 is really worth the cost, in my opinion, yet it is a bargain compared to any current Leica 35mm lens. For essentially the same amount of money you could get the Leica 35mm/2.4 Summarit M, a minor reworking of their 35mm/2.5 design, which is not a bad lens, but is far slower and optically not as good in the corners in particular. The Summarit's only advantage is compactness. But the Zeiss 35mm/2.8 C-Biogon ZM is smaller and better than the Summarit 35mm/2.5 I used to own, and the 35mm/2.4 version of the Summarit is much less compact than the original f/2.5 design was.
    Date published: 2015-04-03
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from five leter word, Zeiss The best described in http://rangefinder.yodobashi.com/lens/carlzeiss_wide_e.html This very best lens captures the reality with the highest fidelity, and it represents ZEISS philosophy !!! I used Hasselblad with three lenses. Zeiss CF's 40, 80, 150mm and to be honest I miss their drawings even today. Some Zeiss lenses are special, and this new 35mm distagon is real example of mature optical formula with strong Zeiss character. There is very nice balance of sharpnes wide open and bokeh. I am impressed with this lens on my M monochrome and can't wait to use it on my film body with Kodak film. I have used Leica 28cron, 50lux asph, 35 summilux asph FLE, and personaly like this lens way better then 35 lux fle. You can find some of my recent photos here, https://www.flickr.com/photos/mattassano/
    Date published: 2017-05-22
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic addition for any M user Its hard to mention anything revelatory given how well reviewed this lens is, so apologies it you've heard it all before. It is an excellent lens, perhaps the sharpest one I own at present with a subtly different character from modern Leica offerings. While I do own a 35mm Summilux, from a rendering perspective any comparison would be silly, as my copy is a pre-ASPH version from 1969. So I can't comment on how much more or less the current Leica brings to the party. Back on the Zeiss, I find there really are only 2 negatives and a few nits. For an M-mount optic, the lens is large and heavy. The other knock is noticeable vignetting when shooting wide open. Finder blockage is minimal and while others find it a boon, I'm not all that fond of the 1/3 of stop aperture clicks. My objection is that it substantially increases the amount of twist necessary to effect a change of a couple of stops over Leica's half stop system. Really speed vs control. The plus list is a bit longer. Subjectively sharpness, color rendition, bokeh, micro contrast are all wonderful. The blend of these characteristics borders on magical. All the detail without any harshness. When used with the M10 the result can be quite sublime and smooth enough to feel more analog than digital. The focus ring is wonderfully smooth, neither too quick nor too long in throw. Just right to be easily focused when wide open. Build quality and feel is impressive, easily up to the standard of comparably price Leica offerings. If you are well off enough to be considering an FLE, I'd suggest you might consider buying this and a nice used early Summilux instead. The Zeiss will satisfy your desire for a more modern rendering while the Summilux can compliment it with that special Leica glow. The early Summilux is tiny, sharp as a tack when stopped down and offers a completely different look when wide open. Pair them and you can go small, large, old, new, sharp, dreamy for around a grand less the the latest Summilux.
    Date published: 2017-06-29
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Better and half the price of the Leica lens The quality and performance of this lens hands down beats the Leica Summilux 35mm F/1.4 ASPH lens at less than half the price of the Leica.
    Date published: 2017-01-18
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