Two new E Mount Full Frame Lenses from Zeiss! Loxia 35 and 50 f/2!

Two new E Mount Full Frame Lenses from Zeiss! Loxia 35 and 50 f/2!



Zeiss has announced a couple of new lenses for the Sony E mount, specifically the A7 series. The new Loxia 35 and 50mm f/2 lenses are going to be superb I think and I love the fact that they are MANUAL FOCUS lenses.  These lenses feature a declick mode so you can turn the lens into a click less aperture lens or leave it with click stops. Zeiss says the Loxia line has distortion free optics, all manual focus, full metal casing and of course, the lenses are designed for full frame. The 35 and 50mm focal lengths are the two most popular amongst street shooters, Leica shooters and many enthusiasts. There is not much more I like more than a sweet 50mm or 35mm lens, and these two lenses are very welcomed in the Sony A7 world.

Below is what Zeiss says about the new releases:

With the new Loxia 2/35 and Loxia 2/50 lenses, ZEISS combines maximum image quality with classic ease of use for E-mount full-frame cameras

The ZEISS lenses Loxia 2/35 and Loxia 2/50 are the first members of a new family of manual focus lenses for the E-mount full frame. They are optimized for digital sensors and electronic viewfinders and feature a mechanical aperture setting and the mechanical deactivation of the click stop (de-click) for ambitious videography.

“Ever since the Sony Alpha 7/7r/7s helped compact system cameras break through to the full frame, there has been a growing desire for a ‘digital manual focus‘ experience that combines the best of both worlds. The Loxia 2/35 and Loxia 2/50 are the first members of a new family of manual focus lenses for the E-mount full frame. By entering this field, ZEISS not only wants to meet this desire, but exceed it,” said Christophe Casenave, Product Manager with ZEISS Camera Lenses.

The Loxia 2/50 will be available worldwide starting October 2014 and the Loxia 2/35 from the end of the fourth quarter of 2014. The recommended retail price of the Loxia 2/35 will be $1,299.00 and that of the Loxia 2/50 will be $ 949.00.

ZEISS Loxia lenses were specifically designed for Sony α7 cameras. This means that they can make the most of the mirrorless, full frame system, while giving you all the creative possibilities of ‘classic’ photography with manual focus at the same time.

And that’s not all: ZEISS Loxia lenses also provide everything you need to shoot high quality video, such as the unique DeClick feature for smooth adjustment of the aperture, for example.


As soon as I can get a hold of these lenses I will give them  a review! You can read more about the Loxia 50mm HERE and the 35mm Loxia can be seen HERE. 




  1. How do the loxias perform on a leica? Has anyone tested this? Also I watched Steve’s loxia review yesterday on youtube but now the video seems to have disappeared?

    • You can not attach an E mount lens to a Leica so these do not work with any Leica body. They are amazing on the A7II and A7s, VERY Leica like, and the 50 beating most Leica 50’s I have used.

  2. Do you really put a Zeiss 21 (E) on the little a7r despite Sonys warning that it will (unsupported) distort that tiny thin mount?

  3. Sigma ARTautofocus equal to Zeiss Otus £4k in many aspects.
    ART 85mm F1.4 should be released soon.

    Anyone who has Manually focused 1.4 knows how easy to miss by milimeters the focus point.
    Autofocus real handy at f1.4

  4. Well, considering I do a lot of shooting with a Canon FD 85mm f/1.2, mainly between f/1.2 and f/2, I’m not enthusiastic. I bought a Canon FD 50mm f/1.4 for $20 a few years ago. I got an f/1.8 for free with a camera because the body cap was missing.

    I understand Zeiss wants the lens dimensions to be befitting to the Sony A7 body and has no option but to go for f/2, but personally, I don’t mind at all shooting with a big lens on a tiny camera. I shoot a great deal with a 135mm f/2 on an Olympus PEN.

    I wouldn’t touch a 50mm lens which is less than f/1.4, I couldn’t separate my subject sufficiently.

    Of course, not everyone is a bokeh freak. I’m crazy about simple images.

    That said, I’ve got an incredibly sharp Canon FD 50mm f/3.5 macro, which I bought for $10.

    Why should a 50mm f/2 lens cost $1,000?

    To everyone his own, but I think, a company like Zeiss should put out lenses with potential instead of this.


    • Zeiss planar ZM 50mm 2.0 is very unique lens. I wouldn’t even choose 50mm Mitakon 0.95 over planar. I love planar character, sharpness and size combination. Absolutely lovely for portraits.

  5. Steve,

    As I don’t use Facebook I’m not able to post this question to Zeiss direct. Perhaps you can help once you get hold of a sample.

    The concept of a manually focusing lens corrected for the sensor is an excellent move. (Brings back memories of the R1.) But as it is an all manual lens, I take it that for viewing and metering the actual aperture set on the lens is what is used to view and meter? I ask this, as using my A7 with third party lenses, pin point focusing even with peak focus engaged, isn’t always guaranteed when focusing in the stopped down mode because of the extended depth of field. This is especially true in the f5.6 to f8 range, which is where I mainly use my lenses for maximum overall performance.

    In contrast, when I use a Canon EF 28-105 via a Viltrox Mk II adaptor I can view and use AF (albeit it somewhat pedestrian, but accurate) or manually focus wide open and still have the benefit of auto aperture if I wish.

    If it is the case that viewing is always at the selected aperture, it would seem to me that Zeiss missed a trick here in not at least giving users the option of a selectable auto aperture control.

    Any thoughts?

  6. Zeiss fabulous quality in optics and build but it’s the least surprising two lenses I can imagine to come on line considering the Sony prime lenses already on offer, 35mm & 55mm.
    I just hope we don’t all rush to buy them just because they are Zeiss. Now I have to wait until 2015 to see what they can come up with to enhance the A7 cameras and the Zeiss Lens catalogue.
    An opportunity missed in my book sadly.


  7. Talk about the most boring release. Two lenses that already exist and are mighty fine. I think the project started prior to the A7/native lens release and these guys decided to stick to their guns.. Im sure they are great lenses, but it’s sad they didn’t start with focal length they didn’t already pair with sony to make. Boring as hell

    • This is a very good point, and might very well be exactly what happened.

      On the other hand they might have a deal with Sony not to interfere with Sony’s own lens rollout in return for IP.

      These lenses might convince some Zeiss purists to switch to an A7 system, but I cannot see a large interest from current 35/2.8 and 55/1.8 owners.

  8. Meh.
    I’ll use Leica or Canon RF glass if I want the manual focus/character thing.
    My favorite lens on the A7s so far is a 1959 Leica Summicron 35mm F2 – 8 – Elements.
    Wonderful color and rendering 🙂

    We need more native AF lenses.
    85mm F/1.4 would be awesome.
    21 or 24mm F/1.4 would be awesome.

  9. I have a hard time wondering what the advantage of the Loxia 50 f2 is over the Sony/Zeiss 55 f1.8. They’re priced about the same with the 55 being faster with AF.

  10. id imagine these would be far better as they are designed for the sony sensor. Old lenses made in films days were obviously not made with sensor filters in mind. Still though why on earth have they put the horrible blue ring around them. Bad enough my A7 has an orange one already..

    • Not at all. Just about right. Zeiss lenses are never ever cheap, especially full frame Zeiss lenses. Metal barrel, true manual focus (not by wire) and distortion free optical designs. To me they seem priced about right and my money is on them beating the Sony/Zeiss lenses by a hair or more. The 35 is f/2 which makes it better than the Sony instantly if you want speed/shallow DOF in a 35. Not a huge step but like having a 35 and 50 cron, which cost $2300-$3300 each.

    • Contax G lenses would be “true” Zeiss alternatives for who doesn’t want to pay $$$. They do work fine on E mount via AF or MF adapters.

  11. Why?
    My 2 cents…
    Zeiss has a strong relationship to cinematographers and to both, sony’s professional video machines and consumer video and photography.
    Zeiss has seen a chance to make both video worlds and some photographers happy with adjusting existing quality lenses (ZM) to the promising and already professionally used Sony e mount avoiding crap like adapters.
    The photo lenses for fe mount by Sony Zeiss are not favored by cinematographers besides having some excellent optical quality for their AF and electronic aperture.

  12. Who needs more manual lenses?

    I am waiting for some fast Sony AF primes to use the full potential of the A7-line. A 20, 28 and a 85mm, F1.8 or F2.0 would be fine with me, Amen. Let’s not dream about some F1.4 lenses 🙁

      • Have you shot with many cameras? I have and although the A7r is not the fastest, it is not slow. It is also accurate. Unless you’re comparing it’s lack of ability to follow focus as well as a 3lb DSLR can, it’s really had to take that comment seriously.

        Of course, maybe you have a bad one. Maybe try another one…

        • I have, actually: D800, D700, 5D mk2, 5D mk3, D7000, D5300, 550D, X-E1, X-Pro1, a7, a7r, A77ii, RX1, RZ67II, would you like me to keep going? It still sucks. It’s slower than any DSLR, a7, a7s, a6000. It’s barely faster than the X-E1. Yes, it sucks. I bought it for its outstanding image quality and came from a D800. It’s no where near as fast or even, and more importantly, even close to as accurate. How can my comment not be taken seriously after having come from many different cameras with these specific lenses and I still have my opinion that it sucks. Is my opinion wrong? No. Is your opinion wrong? No. The fact of the matter is, it still is rubbish in my eyes and MF lenses work much better for my purposes. I don’t need something “not slow”, it’s either quick and accurate or off. That “not slow” AF has caused me to miss many shots and MF hasn’t. So take your condescending comment elsewhere, and leave me to being the one who actually uses and needs MF lenses and doesn’t need “not slow” AF.

          • Yes, I’ve owned and shot those cameras as well minus the Sony A77 and A7 and I have an original RZ67 and a collection of 670’s, Zeiss Ikons, and on and on (I like cameras)… The A7r does not have bad focus system, and again, maybe you have a bad one. My A7r is clearly faster than my X-E1 with most lenses. The X-E1 has caught up somewhat with the newer firmware and the 23mm but the x35 and the x60 vs. the FE35 and FE55? The X-Pro1? Seriously? People complain about an implied shutter vibration, at it’s loud double-click shutter, it’s lack of lenses, but focus speed issues? not really. Of course, I have a ZE of ZF lense mounted to mine so I’m looking forward to a lighter, native Zeiss 35mm but I’m quite happy with the quality and speed of the FE55. … and few cameras can match it for pure image detail.

          • I realize this is a little relative. I have a Zeiss Ikon with me today. It’s manual of course but I had a Nikon F5 yesterday. I shoot a lot of old cameras and in comparison, the Sony A7r focus speed is rarely an issue. My Olympus E-M1 seems to outperform it with follow focus and is definitely faster in most other ways but it’s really not that much faster and seems to even lock on a little better in low light. The last modern camera I had focus issues with was the X100, XPro, and a little with the early firmware in the XE1. Since then, I haven’t used a modern camera that I would consider slow (I haven’t used a Canon M yet…) much less one that was terrible.

  13. Sony really need to get their backsides in gear with more native FE lenses (preferably with that new fangled autofocus thing) or pretty soon the variations of the A7 bodies will outnumber the lenses

  14. A weird decision by Zeiss to make them manual focus. I mean they already have the Touit line with full system integration. The expected sales numbers apparently justify a new optical design (any detailed crosscheck with 50/35mm ZM lenses?), but no barrel design with AF. And the latter of course will reduce the possible sales numbers, with either FE lenses or cheaper vintage glass as competition. Or was that a condition imposed by Sony when licensing the utilisation of the Zeiss brand for their own FE lenses? 

    • Not weird when you consider the exploding market for video. Clearly Zeiss had it in mind when they made the aperture setting de-clickable as a user controlled option.

    • Both the companies would obviously have a joint strategy for their sales. But having them manual keeps the size smaller. I personally enjoy manual focusing and it is much more accurate when you get a hang of that. It could be scary if you haven’t tried yet.

    • I enjoy composing, so i love the manual focus. AF reminds me the frustration i always had as a kid when i couldn’t afford even cheap slr like used Nikon F65. Oo lord, how many missed shots i made and they always were the ones i anxiously waited to see.

  15. So we wait a year and this is the best Sony can do?

    I will keep my splendid Sony a7r CZ 55mm 1.8 AF combo and not spend one dime to pick up 1 stop against the AF CZ 35mm 2.8. I can shoot all my A-Mount Zeiss prime glass full auto focus with the Sony adapter & only suffer a break in form factor & weight and never miss a shot. If we have no Sony E mount lens upgrades with AF…I say politely this is ho-hum news at best. My Canon’s and Nikon’s are monsters to carry around but Sony still has given us nothing that is proportional to L or F/G lenses around which we can build an E mount Sony system.

    I just came back from the French Riviera where I shot my Oly OM-D with a Panasonic 42.5mm f 1.2 AF (based on Steve’s very positive review–yes–OMG applies to this set-up) and a native Oly 25 f 1.4 AF all night long without flashes and frankly–short of shooting in a Laugh in the Dark thrill ride settings–I again cannot see why I need a a7s with such a thin veneer of quality AF native lens offered. To my eye IQ suffers considerably when I set up an a7s (which I have rented and shot) versus a7 and a7r mounted with equally fine glass–in all but the most extreme settings–wherein would might lie my .0008 percent of my shots?

    Grab a Metabones Speed Booster and mount it on a GH4, OM-D or now a new Fuji X with the A to X Ultra or the EF to E Mount AF and I meet or beat these proposed Zeiss manual setups all day long.

        • what does “data code sharing” mean exactly and what would it have to do with Zeiss Loxia lens design vs. the Sony/Zeiss FE lenses.

          The simple point is that you damned Sony in your first sentence when this is a Zeiss product. If you would like to criticize Sony for their lack of Sony branded FE lenses then fair game.

          Personally, I’m giving them a break as we are not even one year into the FE mount. I believe Fuji had all of three lenses at launch in March of 2012, a couple more added 6 months later in September and then nothing for another year.

          • I have damned Sony? You bet…I have purchased and shot extensively with a few Sony products in the last two years: an a99, a65, a Nex-VG 30, four new Carl Zeiss FF AF lenses 24mm 2.0, 24-70mm, 85mm 1.4, 50mm 1.4 as well as a host of E mount CZ Lenses. All purchased directly from Sony–at full price.

            I further damned Sony by purchasing an a7 (with which I encounter some type internal sensor reflection when shooting winter night scenes in Gdansk, Poland in January 2014. I also raised and shared this issue with Steve upon my return).

            Not content with the beating I had been giving Sony, I went a step further and returned the a7, kept the FE 55mm 1.8 and 35 mm 2.8 native lenses and purchased an a7r. Of which I would have thought I spoke rather glowingly above. I also suggested that I would pass on these 3rd Party lenses and waited until my first Social Security check arrives before new FF FE CZ fast primes and 2.8 wide angle zooms are made available to this disrespectful troll. I also fervently wish my clients would damn my companies with the same graceless largess I have heaped upon your perceived victim.

            When I see Zeiss doing for Sony consumers that which I feel Sony ought to be doing for themselves–no–rather for clients that invest heavily in their technology–I fell compelled to attempt to challenge Sony to give us Glass That is Native & First Class. Sony’s CZ FE 55mm F 1.8–which DXO rates as very, very nearly as highly as the Vunder Glass CZ OTUS 55mm 1.4 tells us that Carl Zeiss licensed or not–NOT 100% Zeiss–that Sony– if focused– can rapidly bring forth excellent>outstanding glass. That the investment was not made sooner is–to my mind–a slight to those of us who vote by investing heavily in Sony photo systems.

            I am also most grateful that Sony has manufactured an outstanding–if rather fragile adapter–the LA E4 which offers full control, accurate and fast AF, and full data thru put not only for our A series glass but also for all of my Maxxum Minolta primes–which perform extraordinarily well on any of the cameras I have mentioned above–in particular the 35mm 1.4 and the 100mm 2.8 Macro.

            Personally and professionally, I feel no need to “give” Sony “a break”.

        • I think he’s saying that Sony has nothing to do with this announcement. Zeiss is making some lenses for the E mount: if that makes you mad at Sony, then that’s curious.

          • These are from Zeiss, NOT Sony. Sony is not putting these lenses out. The Sony/Zeiss lenses like the 55 1.8 and 35 2.8 are Sony lenses made in collaboration with Zeiss. These are Zeiss lenses 100%.

          • Is there a patent lawyer in the house? Who has the deed to the factory? Check the servers for emails and text messages between design engineers at both Zeiss and Sony! And if we find out in the future Zeiss folded its doors and was quietly spun off to Sony we will ravage our gear and never buy another modern product sans pedigree.

    • >> I meet or beat these proposed Zeiss manual setups all day long.

      I have E-M1, Fuji X (several), Canon FF among others with a good inventory of lenses and I personally have nothing that beats my Zeiss 21mm manual (ZE) mounted on my A7r in shapeness and quality at 21mm. I was seriously thinking about ordering the Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 in ZF.2 or ZE but hopefully this native mount should be equal or superior than dealing with an adapter and you get the EXIF and a lighter lense as a bonus.

      I really like my Olympus E-M1 (and Fujis) too as they are very good but there’s no denying the pure detail and quality that can come out of a Zeiss + A7r pairing. Try one sometimes and shoot the exact same images and it will become obvious

    • My E-mount system, if you agree that it is a system, even without any “Pro grade” 2.8 zooms.

      All lenses are used via an adapter.

      Contax 25/2.8
      Voigtlander 35/1.2
      Zeiss ZM 50/2
      Contax G 90/2.8

      I would say, 80% of the time I will be shooting with my 35 and 50. And frankly speaking, spending over $500 on any lens that only covers half of the 35 mm area is hard to justify.

    • You mean the ZE 55 f/1.8? AF isn’t everything, not to mention the a7r and the ZE 55 has terrible AF. I’m faster with MF than that lens and it’s AF. Also, these lenses are made to be MF, weather sealed, transfer EXIF, has click less aperture, and did I say made to be MF? Why would I buy a camera with sub-par focusing and a DSLR lens, rather than just use the DSLR?

      Also, when has Zeiss ever released an AF lens apart from Sony/Contax, etc.? Never.

    • Agreed. We already have two native 50mm FE mounts being the Sony Zeiss and the Mikaton 50mm. Though I am sure both of these lenses will be awesome surely some varying focal lengths are needed in the FE line-up.

  16. Guys why dont you wait and see? I’m sure there would be adapters in the future.
    Also a lens specifically made for a camera would always be better in theory. I was in fact waiting for these before I buy a7s

    So excited!!

    • If we wait to see, then we will lose our ability to make nonsensical statements about a company that has only been making lenses for about 150 years. Why would they even think about making a couple of lenses without consulting our wisdom? Just to prove how silly they are, I’m going to pre-order one of their ill conceived lenses. Manual focus only.. who do they think that are? Leica?

  17. Okay, so we now have a Zeiss lens line named after a mythological giant (Otus) and another named after a genus of birds of the finch family (Loxia.) I suppose this isn’t really any more strange than the made-up names of the past (Planar, Distagon) but it still seems a bit goofy. Oops… watch, next there will be a new lens series called the Zeiss Goofy…

  18. What advantage do these have over a Zeiss ZM lens with an M adapter? I’m sure they focus closer, but otherwise are they any better than the 50 Planar or 35 Biogon?

    • This was my initial thought as well. I have both a 50mm f/2 Planar and a 35mm Biogon in m-mount and I’m not seeing any advantage at all to purchasing these. The m-mount can be adapted to a lot of camera systems but you can’t say the same for the e-mount.

      • The 50mm f/2 Planar and a 35mm Biogon were designed back in the days of film, for film. So as others have mentioned, they haven’t been designed for digital use, nor corrected for corner sharpness.

        • You also get electronic aperture control, EXIF and de-clickable aperture setting for video.

          Still, yet to be determined if they have corrected the Biogon specifically for digital – if so that make a big difference.

        • Robert, all the evidence points to these lenses having identical optical cells to the ZMs.

          Even Zeiss themselves replied to a comment on their blog asking why the MTFs were slightly different compared to the ZMs, that the thickness of the cover glass on the sensor is to blame.

          Reviewers will be able to say for sure, but all the signs right now are pointing at a really straightforward recasting of the 2/35mm Biogon ZM and 2/50mm Planar ZM into E-mount barrels with digital aperture recording. And nothing more.

      • Why do you need to see these as a replacement for a ZM. They are alternatives. They are modern equivalents for the E-mount that have some modern functionality, no need for an adapter and have a hood packaged in as opposed to those that may be thinking of buying a ZM, and then an adapter and a hood and need to live without EXIF information.

    • Also the lenses can be designed to be used with the 2mm of cover glass, makes some difference at f/2, not a lot of difference at f/8. Plus convince of having the electronic data in the image files.

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