PHOTOOG Photography writings by Olivier Giroux

16Jan/090

Why they did that, Sonnar edition

Continuing on the topic of the 85mm Sonnar, I think I’ve figured out why it has the shape it has. It’s an unusual shape. Usually lenses aren’t conical converging towards the first element.

Before I reveal the evidence, I quote a response on this thread:

The lens was virtually flare free and I shot the entire time without a hood. (Chris Sullivan)

So without further ado, look through the viewfinder:

sonnar_viewfinder
Photo Credit: Dickson Lau on Flickr 

Notice how the 85mm framelines of the Zeiss Ikon camera are not intruded upon by the Sonnar itself (sans hood). That’s nice if the lens can be used with confidence without the hood. It looks as though the engineers set out to just kiss the frameline with the lens, by design.

Images of this lens out in the field are so rare that I can't resist point out this minimalist sample of lens porn.  Also pointing out a sample below, check out Dickon Lau's photostream for more.

sonnar_front
Photo Credit: Dickson Lau on Flickr

sonnar_sample
Photo Credit: Dickson Lau on Flickr

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