I get this Carl Zeiss Jena 135mm along with my Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 180mm f/2.8 and both lens are in M 42 mount and since I bought way too many lens, I can't afford to have time in testing each one thoroughly. I am afraid this good old popular Carl Zeiss glass will be sent to my friend before I can find time to take test pictures in the November rainy season of California.
This Carl Zeiss 135mm f/3.5 looks very much like my Schneider 135mm f/3.5 (M42) in terms of size. And the Carl Zeiss glass comes with a built in lens hood which is nice. In terms of build, the Schnieder has a classic style and antique look to it whereas the Carl Zeiss has a more modern look. Both are made in Germany and known to produce great pictures with smooth bokeh and great contrast.
Impressions & Notes
- Lens is well built, pictures are surprisingly sharp wide open in f/3.5 aperture
- Lens is small in size, 49mm filter size and it has a built in lens hood
- Lens has a large base and that allows easy conversion from M42 to K mount lens with an altered adapter.
- Focusing ring is bit too stiff for me for manual focusing. Compared this lens to Schneider 135mm f/3.5 (M42), I much prefer the focusing in Schneider. But the focusing throw is close to 3/4 turn. Manual focusing can be a bit harder than the Schneider 135mm f/3.5.
- Bokeh, color, and contrast are excellent in this lens. It has similar IQ qualities to my Schneider 135mm f/3.5, also from Germany.
- I used Cosina 1:1 matched macro adapter on some of the close up test shots, the outcome come very close to a Macro 1:2 lens
- Overall a good M42 lens that I have no hesitation in recommendation