New Sony 35mm f/1.8, Samyang 45mm f/1.8, and Zeiss 55mm f/1.8

mesmerized

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Hello there,

We have a great selection of lenses (and focal lengths) these days and as good as it is to have a wide range of lenses to pick from, it can also be a bit overwhelming. Now, I own the 55mm Zeiss and I have no qualms about it, albeit I always struggle to find the right application for it. Never know where to use it to maximize its potential. I'm also thinking of getting another lens and I'm wondering whether a 35mm or a 45mm lens would be better. I know there are some fans of 45's out there (especially for street photography) and the Samyang seems to be q very good lens in all respects. Would be great to have all 3 focal lengths but then again they are all within 10mm's of difference and swapping them would be a bit of a pain.

Where do you see those lenses excel? In what types of photography would you use them? And which ones would you pick for your own collection?

Thanks
 

JonathanF2

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The 35mm works best for environmental portraits and especially indoors where you don't want too much distortion, but still need a wider FOV. The 45mm is a 'tweener lens between 35mm and 50-55mm, probably better suited for travel since it's a bit less restricting than the 50-55mm, but gives more attention to the subject than a 35mm lens. I'm actually not a big fan of the Zeiss 55mm, which is weird because I really like the Voigtlander 58mm 1.4 lens, but for some reason the Zeiss 55mm didn't do it for me.
 

SpecFoto

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I use the 55 ZA as an all around lens, most times coupled with the 35mm ZA for people/portraits/travel, but with the 28mm f2 for landscapes and a wider perspective. These 3 are my lightweight kit, all with the 49mm filter thread. I find the 28mm is just a bit too wide for general people shots, (my wife was complaing why she was so small in many scenic shots) so I added the 35 a couple of months after getting the 28 and 55, and am very glad I did. I tried a 40mm, actualy 2, the Batis 40 f2 and Voightlander 40mm f1.2, but found I just didn't see enough differences from 35/55 combo to warrant keeping either of the 40's in lieu of one or both of the ZA's.

Also use the 55 with my Batis 85 and 135mm for my "serious" portrait shooting. It is a very sharp lens, see below, I love the color and detail it provides and I rarely leave home without it.
Alyssia-3525.jpg
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WNG

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If you didn't already own the 55 f/1.8, I would've recommended a 40mm. Like the Batis 40-f/2. It's a nice all-rounder focal length. Less tight than the 55, and almost as wide as the 35mm. It yields a very natural look and perspective. The 55 is great for subjects, portraits, and still life close ups as the distortion isn't evident. A 35's wider view is great indoors, landscapes/cityscapes, thus a great travel lens. Distortion isn't noticeable and it's also great for stitching. It's my favorite focal length on full frame. I would recommend a 35mm to be added to your inventory.
I prefer the look of a 24mm over 28mm. So, my trio would be a 24mm, 35mm( or 40mm), and a 60mm macro or 85mm f/1.8.
 

mesmerized

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Thanks guys.

I do have the 55 but I really struggle to, sort of, find applications for it. I thought it would be a good lens for street photography (given how close it is to the standard 50mm lens) but for some reason it doesn't seem to work that well for me.
 

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