Raise a glass to ZEISS
We take a closer look at the Batis 40mm f/2 CF lens, which is designed for Sony full-frame cameras
As part of the masterclass event at Eastnor Castle, AP had the chance to put the brand new ZEISS Batis 40mm f/2 CF lens through its paces, taking advantage of the surroundings to shoot a selection of portraits with the lens mounted on the Sony Alpha 7R III.
The focal length of 40mm is superb for environmental and on-location portrait shooting like this. Many photographers prefer this length to the more common 35mm or 50mm, and the Distagon T* 40mm f/2 optic provides a very natural perspective for images and helping to make the most of such a beautiful location.
Unlike many other ZEISS lenses, the Batis 40mm f/2 CF is an autofocus optic, making it ideal for shooting environmental portraits where the model is encouraged to move around the scene to create different poses, expressions and looks.
The lens is not just great for portraits. CF stands for close-focus, with the lens offering a minimum object distance of just 24cm, affording 0.3x magnification. A limiter switch enables focusing over the entire range or restricts it to either infinity to 40cm for everyday shooting, or 50cm-24cm for close-ups.
Like all Batis lenses, the 40mm features an LCD that shows the focus distance and depth of field. While the lens is rather large for its specification, it balances well with the Sony Alpha 7R III for shooting comfortably handheld. The optical formula utilises 9 elements in 8 groups, with 3 aspheric elements and 4 elements made of special glass with anomalous partial dispersion. In addition, it features a weather-proof construction, accepts 67mm filters and comes supplied with a bowl-shaped lens hood.
Shooting with a 40mm focal length results in a very natural perspective Sony Alpha 7R III, ZEISS Batis 40mm, 1/40sec at f/2, IS0 1250
Eye-Focus AF keeps your portraits sharp Sony Alpha 7R III, ZEISS 40mm, 1/40sec at f/2, IS0 400
The ZEISS Batis 40mm f/2 CF is on sale now, priced at £1,129.99. Look out for a full review of the lens in a future issue of AP.