October 14, 2015

Zeiss Just Introduced the World's Best Wide-Angle Lens, the Otus 28mm F/1.4

Zeiss Otus 28mm
The series of lenses that are frequently referred to as "the best lenses in the world" just got a new addition.

Today, Zeiss unveiled the Otus 28mm f/1.4. Like it's predecessors, the Otus 55mm and Otus 85mm, the 28mm is expected to be optically superior to all other full-frame prime lenses at that focal length. Today's announcement is also significant in that the Otus lineup can now be considered a full set (albeit a small one) because it contains a wide-angle, a standard, and a telephoto.

As for the common complaint that Zeiss is engaging in hyperbole with its marketing of these lenses, the story goes like this. Zeiss gave its engineers a mission to design the best lens possible, irrespective of how much it would cost or how large it would be. What they came up with was the original Otus 55mm f/1.4, which independent testing later confirmed was the highest performing prime seen to date. The company then followed up with the 85mm f/1.4, which also proved to be optically superior to other primes at that focal length.

The Otus 28mm is expected to begin shipping in the Spring of 2016 with the option for either a Nikon or Canon mount. While the price isn't known yet, it's safe to expect it to fall somewhere in the range of $4000 to $5000. For more information about the Otus 28mm, head over to the Zeiss website. And for some sample photos taken with the new lens, head over to this flickr album    

Your Comment

15 Comments

The best lenses in the world and they haven't even started shipping, wow!

Aesthetically poor with no gears, wondering if it has a de-clicked iris and focus ring with built in hard stops. I hope the optical quality makes up for poor build design so they can truly claim their self proclaimed title... time and tests will tell, not the Zeiss marketing team.

October 14, 2015 at 8:25PM, Edited October 14, 8:25PM

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Shayne Archer
Freelance Camera Operator / Editor
82

Well, since this is their top of the line PHOTO lens, why would you expect gears on it...

October 14, 2015 at 8:44PM

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It doesn't come with declicked iris and the EF version is electronic only in 1/3 steps.
The Nikon version has a manual iris, (can't remember if its 1/2s?), and of course rotates the opposite way.

October 15, 2015 at 5:18AM

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Torben Greve
Cinematographer
900

Forget this, Sigma just introduced a 20mm f/1.4, and it has autofocus.

October 14, 2015 at 8:30PM

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Vidrazor
533

Where was it announced? It's of the "Art" variety I assume?

October 14, 2015 at 9:37PM

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Luke Neumann
Cinematographer/Composer/Editor
2717

Well... even the Arts haven't got Canon quality AF, and their image quality across the frame is slightly less than Zeiss.

The Sigma will stand or fall based on the ability to control distortion, which from the examples shown by Zeiss is pretty much non-existant in the 28mm Otus.

However, yes, the price tag is a bit steep, and you absolutely need high resolution to really benefit from the Otus.
On the 5D3 the only thing my 55mm has got going for it is clean sharpness from edge to edge.

Edit: look at that filter thread size... off to buy new filters again x(

October 15, 2015 at 5:16AM, Edited October 15, 5:17AM

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Torben Greve
Cinematographer
900

Sigma art lenses are sharp but have boring and sterile rendering.

October 15, 2015 at 8:35PM

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Wildlite
182

Would have prefered a 21mm, but I guess it doesn't really matter as I'll just be stroking it's smooth barrel at the store...

October 14, 2015 at 8:45PM

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I would think that a 25mm would make more sense for the range of the set although like someone said before I would had preferred a 21mm. But it does't really matter to me seeing as I will probably never buy, rent or use these lenses.

October 15, 2015 at 7:20PM

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Peter Staubs
Camera Assistant
453

you're so kewl man! I want to be like you and have an alexa over my shoulder. haha #onlymasterprimesandsummiluxglass #rogerdeakinsforever #organicimage

October 16, 2015 at 4:21PM

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This thing is ridiculously big. The Leica 28 1.4 is tiny.

October 15, 2015 at 8:36PM

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Wildlite
182

you mean 21mm 1.4? That lens isn't great optically. The voigtlander destroys it CA and resolution wise

October 16, 2015 at 4:23PM, Edited October 16, 4:23PM

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Leica have both a 21mm as well as a 28mm at 1.4 but both are for the rangefinder M series which make them pretty much useless for filming. That's also the reason they're small.

October 22, 2015 at 7:29AM

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Oscar Stegland
DP/Steadicam
1130

Let's be clear. We're talking about still lenses here.

October 16, 2015 at 6:26PM

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Steve Yager
Filmmaker
379

Hmm though its looking the perfect one but its totally out of my budget as well as reach!

October 17, 2015 at 1:58AM

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Atiqur Sumon
Graphics Desinger
74