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ZEISS Milvus 100mm f/2M ZE Macro Lens for Canon EF

BH #ZE1002MZE • MFR #2096-563
ZEISS Milvus 100mm f/2M ZE Macro Lens for Canon EF
Key Features
  • EF-Mount Lens/Full-Frame Format
  • Aperture Range: f/2 to f/22
  • Two Low Dispersion Elements
  • Planar Optical Design
A portrait-length prime featuring a high 1:2 maximum magnification for close-up shooting, the Canon EF-mount Milvus 100mm f/2M ZE from ZEISS features a floating elements system for consistently high image quality when working with both near and distant subjects. Based on the classic Planar optical design, this lens features two anomalous partial dispersion glass elements to control aberrations and distortions for even illumination and sharpness throughout the aperture and focus ranges. An enhanced ZEISS T* anti-reflective coating has also been applied to lens elements to suppress flare and ghosting for increased contrast and clarity.
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ZEISS Milvus 100mm f/2 Macro Overview

A portrait-length prime featuring a high 1:2 maximum magnification for close-up shooting, the Canon EF-mount Milvus 100mm f/2M ZE from ZEISS features a floating elements system for consistently high image quality when working with both near and distant subjects. Based on the classic Planar optical design, this lens features two anomalous partial dispersion glass elements to control aberrations and distortions for even illumination and sharpness throughout the aperture and focus ranges. An enhanced ZEISS T* anti-reflective coating has also been applied to lens elements to suppress flare and ghosting for increased contrast and clarity.

The manual focus design is complemented by a rubberized focus ring for fine-tuned, precise control over your focus position. Additionally, Milvus-series lenses also feature an equally aesthetic and durable frosted, anodized metal lens-barrel surface along with a weather-sealed construction to protect against dust and moisture.

Short telephoto prime is designed for full-frame Canon EF-mount cameras, however can also be used with APS-C models where it provides a 160mm equivalent focal length.
Ideal for macro shooting, this lens offers a half life-size 1:2 maximum magnification along with a minimum focusing distance of 1.4' to suit working with close-up subjects.
Bright f/2 maximum aperture benefits working in low-light conditions and also enables extensive control over depth of field.
Planar optical design affords high sharpness and consistent performance throughout the focusing range to suit photographing at a wide range of imaging scales.
Two anomalous partial dispersion elements are used to significantly reduce color fringing and chromatic aberrations for increased clarity and color fidelity.
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 system helps to maintain consistent image quality throughout the entire focusing range.
Manual focus design is benefitted by focusing and depth of field scales along with hard stops at both infinity and minimum focusing positions.
Weather-resistant construction includes internal seals to guard against dust and moisture as well as a blue sealing ring at the lens mount to protect the lens-camera interface.
All-metal lens barrel has a frosted, anodized surface along with a rubberized focusing ring for both durability and improved tactile control.

ZEISS Milvus 100mm f/2 Macro Specs

Focal Length100mm
Maximum Aperturef/2
Minimum Aperturef/22
Lens MountCanon EF
Lens Format CoverageFull-Frame
Angle of View25°
Minimum Focus Distance1.44' / 44 cm
Maximum Magnification0.5x
Macro Reproduction Ratio1:2
Optical Design9 Elements in 8 Groups
Focus TypeManual Focus
Image StabilizationNo
Filter Size67 mm (Front)
Dimensions (ø x L)3.19 x 4.09" / 81 x 104 mm
Weight1.85 lb / 843 g
Packaging Info
Package Weight3.245 lb
Box Dimensions (LxWxH)11.55 x 6.75 x 5.5"

ZEISS Milvus 100mm f/2 Macro Reviews

Super sharp

By Guy
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-01-05

Super sharp. I use it on the GFX50R. Don't need to crop

Quality Image

By Burdette
Rated 4 out of 5
Date: 2020-10-29

I like this lens. But to be honest, the only reason I bought it is because Nikon stopped making the 105mm F/2.8 Macro lens which was a much better price and for my work just as good of a picture.

Excellent Short Telephoto Lens

By George
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2020-07-10

No need to write a long technical review for this lens as their are many that are easy to find. Everyone touts the macro and even portrait capabilities of this lens but I did not find much out there about the use of the lens as a short telephoto for Landscape photography. I use this lens with my Nikon D850 and it is the first lens that I have purchased that keeps up with the Cameras high resolution digital performance. It’s sad that other lens makers aren’t keeping up here. This is a truly amazing Sharp, high resolution lens, Excellent in all respects. Thank you Zeiss!

Beautiful classic

By John
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2020-04-13

I choose 5 stars since there are not 6 on the scale. Yes, I would buy this again, even if it were more expensive. However, this review factors out the $$$ element since that is a matter of individual price-point tolerance and to me, while I can’t afford luxuries, the look is worth the $$$ and I can’t put any price on one-time right-light imagery. I’m using mine adapted on a Sony a7R3. Out of the box I install a Zeiss UV0 filter where it stays permanently. First off the negatives. If you haven’t already done so, stop reading this babble and go spend time with others’ experiences online. I didn’t do that and found out after the fact that others said some of what I noticed firstly. To appreciate this lens perhaps you might rent one for a while to understand its true place for you. I bought it because I already had the 2/50mm M Milvus and already loved that figuring this would be the same but with greater mag. I looked at Zeiss spec. charts but those don’t talk about real world fit. In many ways it is the same. But not… To repeat what has been largely said, this is indeed a limited application “niche” lens. You will fall in love with it and want to dump all others and sleep with it. You will also hate it to the point of destruction by explosion and cuss words. Get ready to face that IT will own YOU. First days experiences were not good by not understanding the true nature of the lens and its design. Insane paper-thin DoF/focus zone at close distances ~2-4 feet @f2 - f4. That is typical macro experience anyway but here it is even thinner because the lens sharpness shows you just what focus is and isn’t when you get it off the camera. Forget life without a heavy tripod. Handheld at shutter speeds 1/250 on a 43MP camera simply wastes time and electrons. Even with IBIS enabled the resolution of this lens is so fine that what you are used to handheld won’t typically work unless you want motion blur or like amping up your ISO. Not bad for me as I’m usually at ISO50-100 on a tripod or in bright sun for casual handhelds. This is not an APO lens so CA is high under expected circumstances. Typical purple and green fringed edges (fame center and fame boundaries are the same) under shot circumstances where v-dark meets highlights. It minimizes fairly well starting at ~f3.5. This can be fixed in post-processing if needed. This lens is not suited for spontaneous or action work. The near 360 rotation focus throw between min. and infinity is perfect for stationary subjects. Not so for much else. You’ll miss action events since it takes so much time to move great distances for fast focus. Unless you are large distances away to minimize focus efforts for moving subjects, forget about races, kid play, pets, sports, dragonflys, meteorites, etc. Motionless show cars, tabletops, flower buds, portraits, landscape, etc = good choices. Neutral comments. Well-knowns that matter not to me but you might care. It delivers 1:2 not 1:1 macro. I prefer the 1:2 visual limit. I haven’t tried extension tubes to go closer (and don’t want to since 1:2 is good for my needs). Manual-focus and aperture (Nikon mount version). Yes, that is exactly the features I want. I’m old-timer not an AF nut. I want control not speed. The aperture control locks at f22 when in default click stop mode. That is done for some cinema use. Annoying to have to button unlock it if going that far but I don’t care since I’m a still shooter and never stop down to f22. The aperture ring could be a little wider for easier reach around from behind control. Note that the Milvus 50M does that too. It is not a partly internal focusing design like the Milvus 50M is so it nearly doubles in length at full extension to closest focus. Heavy. Ok with me. I use a tripod anyway and want that stability weight at the lens. It’s better if you are using it adapted to use a mount with a tripod foot. That shifts a lot of the strain weight away from the camera socket similar to using giant zoom and to give better balance. Some positives. Image quality: 5+. It’s beautiful. The classic “Zeiss look”. Sharpness: 5. It can be so sharp at times that you’ll want to dial down contrast, or structure, or saturation in post processing. “Bokeh”: 5+. Beyond beautiful. At wide apertures the, painterly, impressionistic, smooth melded background look their designs are famous for come naturally. Build quality (form, fit, finish, and materials): 5. This is a finely crafted precision machine. Focus shift: 5. There is none! I tested it extensively by pixel peeping RAWs at each full f/stop and only see DoF growth not a shifted primary focus point at different apertures. Focus throw: 5. Very very very very long, precision, well-damped and smooth – great for stationary subjects. Handling: 4. It improves after adding a Zeiss lens gear for better focus grip handling. In my opinion everything in photography is a compromise. The images from Zeiss (this and other models) are stunning. I suspect that is largely because the flaws and limitations in a design are at least partly responsible for furthering its excellence and uniqueness. In other words; look closely at results. See how Zeiss seems to “leave it alone” to capture the quality in the look it is famous for. I guess that instead of throwing so much modernized correction and materials at theirs like everyone else does, their classic designs avoid the lifeless, sterile, flat, more just whatevers a lot of other lenses look like today. If you let the lens own you (as it will – just learn to happily get along with it) then you will be rewarded :) If you ask me, that makes the price irrelevant. You can’t buy this look otherwise. My comments here are of course subjective. I’m just sharing what I think, not arguing what you think.


By Walter P.
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2021-06-22

This must be one of the best macro lenses on the market. I'm using it via adapter on an MFT body. I was afraid at first that using only 1/4 of the full-frame capacity of this lens would yield only mediocre performance, Not so. I can crop an image down to 1/8 of what is recorded on an MFT sensor and the detail remains excellent.

Amazing Contrast and Color

By John
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2021-04-29

I shoot primarily with a Nikon D850 and I am a stickler for clarity and resolution. The Zeiss Milvus 100mm f/2 ZF.2 delivers that plus amazing clarity and beautiful color rendition. I bought the Zeiss primarily for macro, but it is also a stunning portrait lens. I love my Sigma Art lenses, but I may have to save up for a Zeiss Otis next.

Absolutely Love This Lens

By Gerhard
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2021-03-15

This is Milvus lens is used on a Nikon D850. After having used this lens for a month now I feel compelled to write this review. This is not so much about the technical aspect of this lens as anyone considering this lens most likely has studied the specifications. The manual focusing of this lens should not be a deterrent as the long focus throw is simply as precise as it gets. I use this lens on a tripod for slow and deliberate photography. It is very satisfying to slow down and compose and have control of the situation. The color rendering is stunning. I cannot say enough superlatives about the Milvus 100m F/2. Without hesitance I say this lens is special in a way that's hard to describe. Please see my samples below. Thank you.


By Ken
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2020-11-16

This is a spectacular lens. While manual focus and only able to focus to 1:2 (half life size, not life size), it is capable of producing stunning photographs. Closeup and macro photography is usually manual focus so the lack of AF is not an issue. The long focus throw enables very accurate focus wide open, causing the subject to pop out of the background. The lens is heavy and very well built, with weather sealing, metal barrel construction and even a metal lens hood. The only downside is that Zeiss lenses are expensive.

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I’m wanting to digitize a lifetime of 35mm film, ...

I’m wanting to digitize a lifetime of 35mm film, and rephotographing rather than scanning seems to be the only practical way due to time and speed of operation. Concerned that this lens does not do 1:1. Was this limitation part of the optical design, or will an extension tube solve the problem? Any advice how to proceed, or an alternate approach?
Asked by: Danny
I thought the same thing and even bought some extension tubes, but haven't used them yet. I'll try them within the next week and get back to you.
Answered by: Ed
Date published: 2020-02-24

Will this be fit on Nikon D750 & D850?

Will this be fit on Nikon D750 & D850?
Asked by: Nestor
Yes, this lens is compatible with the D750/D850.
Answered by: Rob
Date published: 2021-02-01

Does it work with Z7 ii with FTZ adapter?

Does it work with Z7 ii with FTZ adapter?
Asked by: Ning
Yes. The Milvus 100mm f/2M ZF.2 for the Nikon F mount will be compatible with the Z7II when paired with either the FTZ or FTZII adapter.
Answered by: Jeremy
Date published: 2021-12-12

Is the lens compatible with Nikon F100, like ...

Is the lens compatible with Nikon F100, like Aperture Priority, and with the CPU chip as well?
Asked by: Scott
Scott, I use this lens ninety percent of the time in AP mode. I have three other lenses. The photos are phenominal. Great macro. I do not know what CPU is. Cher
Answered by: Cheryl
Date published: 2020-10-14

Is this a good lens for dental photography ?

Is this a good lens for dental photography ?
Asked by: Luis Carlos
Yes, excellent if you don't mind manual focus.
Answered by: Patrick
Date published: 2020-07-06


Since the EF mount version of this lens doesn't have manual aperture option, ..does it make sense to purchase a Nikon mount version and a converter for my EF mount DSLR in order to ease video work. Will it do the job or Nikon cameras got certain special features I don't know of that allow manual aperture to be enabled when the lens is declicked ? Many thanks in advance for your kind reply.
Asked by: Monrow
You would adjust the aperture of the Zeiss Milvus 100mm f/2M ZE Lens for Canon EF via the Quick Control Dial built onto the Canon EOS camera body. The Zeiss Milvus 100mm f/2M ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F is designed to have the aperture adjusted on current Nikon DSLR cameras via the Command Dial built into the cameras (as the aperture ring is designed to be locked at its smallest aperture to for the aperture to be controlled by the camera. The aperture ring may only be used on advanced versions of Nikon's current DSLR cameras if you input the lens' focal length and maximum aperture under the Non-CPU Lens Data section of the camera menu; otherwise, unlocking the aperture ring from the minimum aperture will result in an F-EE error message and will not allow you to release the shutter. The Non-CPU Lens Data option is not available on entry-level Nikon DSLR cameras. On older manual Nikon 35mm film cameras, the aperture ring would be needed to control the aperture, as you may not control the aperture from the camera body on older Nikon cameras. As Nikon's electronics and Canon's electronics do not communicate with each other, while you could use the Nikon version of the lens on a Canon camera to manually control the aperture, you would lose the ability for the lens to transfer EXIF data to the camera, as well as advanced metering capability. Unless you have to physically control the aperture on a Canon camera for video shooting purposes, there is no benefit to using the Zeiss Milvus 100mm f/2M ZF.2 Lens for Nikon F with an adapter on a Canon DSLR camera.
Answered by: Manzell L.
Date published: 2018-08-26

The included list of components mentions a ...

The included list of components mentions a "De-Click Key". What is that?
Asked by: Jeff
ZEISS Milvus 100mm f/2M ZF.2 Macro Lens for Nikon F has a manual aperture ring with clicked indicators throughout aperture range. Using the included De-Click Tool, this ring can be mechanically 'de-clicked' for smooth, silent rotation throughout the aperture range; making it ideal for video applications. The key is included in the manual box and you can switch between clicked and de-clicked on the lens mount.
Answered by: llinelva
Date published: 2021-07-20


Does the lens hood fit on the Milvus lenses in reverse position for storage (like the predecessor model)? I haven't found any pictures showing this, only with or without lens hood unfortunately.
Asked by: Anonymous
Yes, the lens hood can be reversed.
Answered by: Heather S.
Date published: 2018-11-13
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