Sunday, October 6, 2013

#MyHandsOn the Carl Zeiss Planar 50mm f/1.7

Some time last year, I got into using manual film lenses with an adapter to my then Olympus OM-D. I bought myself some 50mm f/1.4 Canon FD lens and absolutely fell in love with it! It's not the lens per se, but more of the change it brought to the process of taking photos. It slowed down how I took photos, but brought more "emotion" to how I took pictures as I had to put more work into taking shots. That good feeling of manual focusing has made such an impact in me that I knew sooner or later, I was going to do the same for the Fuji X-E1.

So, after getting into a lot of research, I found myself focusing on a specific set of lenses. The Carl Zeiss set of lenses for Contax cameras (C/Y) mount. Knowing that the only way I could get a hand on any of these was through eBay, I quickly subscribed and started to learn the ways of eBay (I am a first time user!). I wasn't ready to splurge on the "great" Zeiss lenses and wanted a starter lens to get me a feel of Zeiss lenses and how it performed.

Soon I found some good deals for a Planar 50mm f/1.7. I started bidding and after a day, was surprised that I won the bid (had to raise bid a few times though)! It was a pleasant surprise but now had me scrambling for an adapter, which I also got from eBay. Luckily there's a lot of choices there!

The lens was shipping from Germany, and I had to wait a good 3-4 weeks for it to arrive. When it did, I was so excited to use it, but couldn't -- the adapter was waaaay late, considering it was only coming from Hong Kong. The excitement after a few days turned into annoyance as the adapter I bought which I expected to arrive sooner didn't. In the end, I had to bring up an eBay case and got a full refund for the item I bought (good!). I had to buy a more expensive adapter this time though, and had it on priority shipping all because my India trip was coming up.

After about 2-3 days, the adapter arrived and oh boy was I excited to test it out! I brought it outside for some shots inside the house, relived the old manual focusing days and I was... sort of happy. ;) I was itching to go to some place to test it out but couldn't at the time, so in the end I resorted to shooting stuff around the house.

Photos here a some shots I wanted to share. I'm loving the bokeh. It has a pleasant way of rendering the out of focus areas, and produces good colors and contrast. It does flare a lot though, which at times bother me, but it's workable.

In terms of weight, the Planar 50/1.7 is a bit heavier than the Fuji 35/1.4. It does become a little front heavy when mounted in the camera.

 KIPON adapter. I'm looking into that Metabones Speedbooster. But probably next time. :)

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