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Extended First Impressions: Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit (Fujifilm X)

by Chris Gampat on 04/23/2014

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit product photos (1 of 7)ISO 4001-60 sec at f - 2.8

Back around late last year, we took a very early look at the Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Macro Touit lens for Sony E mount and Fujifilm X mount cameras. We’re happy to say that the new 50mm f2.8 Touit lens is right now in the house and we’re currently underway with testing it. As the company’s third offering for the lens mounts and their first macro lens, it is also the company’s longest focal length. Rendering a 75mm field of view due to the APS-C sized sensors, the lens can double as a portrait optic as well as be used by anyone that just wants some glorious bokeh due to the way that the field of view and aperture work out.

With a full frame equivalent of f4.5 on a full frame camera, this lens is also by all means not small–but nor is it small on image quality.

Tech Specs

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit product photos (5 of 7)ISO 4001-50 sec at f - 2.8

Taken from Zeiss’s website

Focal length 50 mm
Aperture range f/2.8 – f/22
Focusing range 0,15 m (6.02 ″) – ∞
Number of elements/groups 14/11
Angular field, diag./horiz./vert. 31° / 26° / 18°
Coverage at close range 23,5 x 15,6 mm (0.93 x 0.61″)
Filter thread M52 x 0,75
Dimensions (with caps) E: 104 mm (4.09″)
X: 108 mm (4.25″)
Diameter of focusing ring E, X: 65 mm (2.56″)
Weight E, X: 290 g (0.64 lbs)
Camera mounts E-Mount
X-Mount

Ergonomics

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit product photos (2 of 7)ISO 4001-50 sec at f - 2.8

The new Zeiss Touit lens is fairly large for a mirrorless camera lens. But once you consider that it is a macro lens with a true 1:1 focusing capability, then it becomes a lot more understandable. The exterior looks and feels very much in tune with what Zeiss is trying to do with this line of products.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit product photos (4 of 7)ISO 4001-50 sec at f - 2.8

On the outside of the lens you’ll find metal comprising of around half of the lens with the lower half being rubber rings for control. These controls are the focusing and aperture rings.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit product photos (6 of 7)ISO 4001-50 sec at f - 2.8

The aperture range goes from 2.8 to f22 or auto. Each aperture has clicks that have 1/3 stops with the full stops being clearly displayed. We’re a bit perplexed as to why the company wouldn’t go down to f32 with this lens considering that it is a macro offering.

There are no other controls otherwise on the 50mm f2.8 Touit. Additionally, the Sony version won’t have an aperture ring.

Build Quality

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit product photos (5 of 7)ISO 4001-50 sec at f - 2.8

Zeiss’s 50mm f2.8 has a metal exterior broken up by a rubber focusing ring and aperture ring. The reason why the company went with rubber is because lots of their DSLR users complained that the ring got too cold in frigid weather. The body has a metal exterior (though not like their DSLR lenses) otherwise.

The overall build of the lens is quite solid and we like the rubber ring on this lens a lot more than we did on Zeiss’s previous offerings.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit product photos (3 of 7)ISO 4001-50 sec at f - 2.8

Additionally, the lens hood makes the lens look much larger than it really is. However, it still isn’t a small lens.

Ease of Use

Zeiss opted to not have a depth of field focusing scale on this lens–which is also what they did with their previous Touit lenses. We personally would have liked this though because not only would it make the lens feel more Zeiss like, but it would also help with focusing.

Otherwise, we recommend totally using autofocus. But if you’re going to try to get into the macro range, then consider switching out to manual focus.

Autofocus

The Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit lens is speedy to focus on the Fujifilm X Pro 1 that we’re testing it on. It feels very much like many other Fujifilm products, but there obviously are faster focusing optics. Once you get into the macro range, it slows down incredibly. We recommend just switching the camera into manual focus in that case.

Image Quality

So far, we’re really, really liking what the Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit lens can do. Here’s what we’re talking about.

AS ALWAYS, EXIF DATA IS IN THE IMAGE FILENAME. SIMPLY DOWNLOAD OR CLICK THE IMAGE. THE IMAGE URL WILL CONTAIN THE EXIF DATA

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit iirst impressions (7 of 7)ISO 2001-25 sec at f - 8.0

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit iirst impressions (6 of 7)ISO 2001-1700 sec at f - 2.8

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit iirst impressions (5 of 7)ISO 2001-100 sec at f - 4.0

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit iirst impressions (4 of 7)ISO 4001-320 sec at f - 16

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit iirst impressions (3 of 7)ISO 4001-550 sec at f - 2.8

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit iirst impressions (2 of 7)ISO 4001-750 sec at f - 5.0

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit iirst impressions (1 of 7)ISO 4001-2200 sec at f - 2.8

First Impressions

The Zeiss 50mm f2.8 Touit lens is impressing us so far, and as of writing this post we’ve had it for around three hours so far. We already know that Zeiss is capable of delivering outstanding image quality, but our full review will measure just how good it really is.

Stay tuned.

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