f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 160

My Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens Review

93
A Top Quality Macro Lens for APS-C Cameras
Buy Now

In this Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens Review I will go over everything you need to know using the Sony A6500 and my Sony Nex-6 for the camera bodies. I took lots of real world photos and did some lab testing as well so strap in for this one!

The Zeiss Touit series is a lens line specifically designed for the crop factor (E) APS-C mirrorless cameras. This means they are significantly smaller and lighter weight than the full frame e-mount lenses that need to accommodate the larger full frame sensor. My Zeiss E-Mount Lens Guide is Here >> if you want to check out all the available top quality optical options.

The Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro lens is top quality in all regards and the price tag agrees at $999 US. Although a lot, after reviewing this lens with two different cameras over the course of a few years, it is totally warranted I would say. You get what you pay for when it comes to optics and the Zeiss touit lenses all have top quality build, sharpness, and output image quality.

My Zeiss Touit 12mm f/2.8 Lens Review is Here, and My Zeiss Touit 32mm f/1.8 Lens Review is Here for those interested in seeing the other two killer lenses in this line.

ZEISS Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens

The color and clarity produced by this lens are also top quality and it produces what I like to call a “look”. I know that sounds vague, but when you compare a real deal Zeiss lens vs other lenses, the Zeiss images just have a different pop to them. I believe it’s a combination of the lens coatings and actual optical elements themselves. The Zeiss Batis lenses and Zeiss Loxia Lenses also produce a very similar “look” in my opinion.

The Sony lenses with the Zeiss badge are also awesome, but they do not have the same killer look I am talking about. Please make your own judgment based on the sample photos, but from my experience this is the case. Also, check out some of my other lenses reviews and over time you will start to see the various looks lenses produce.

ZEISS Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens

I particularly like the out of focus rendering as well. Extremely bright areas butter out and even though they might be blown, it does not cause any degradation to other parts of the image. It has very good glare control and almost seems like a polarizing filter is built into the lens based on the incredible micro contrast and color present on the raw files. They are super crisp looking as you will see shortly below.

ZEISS Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens

The focus works amazingly well for macro photography when paired with both my older Nex-6 and the newer Sony A6500 which I used to review this lens. I thoroughly enjoyed using the lens and I only wish I could afford such a luxury macro optic for myself.

Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8M Macro Lens

Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro lens Key Features:

  • E-Mount Lens/APS-C Format
  • 75mm (35mm Equivalent)
  • Aperture Range: f/2.8 to f/22
  • Two Aspherical Elements
  • Two Low Dispersion Elements
  • Planar Optical Design
  • ZEISS T* Anti-Reflective Coating
  • 1:1 Magnification
  • Floating Elements System
  • DC Autofocus Motor
  • Minimum Focus Distance = 5.91β€³ / 15 cm
  • Filter Thread = 52mm
  • Weight = 10.2 oz / 290 g
  • Price = $999 BHPhoto
ZEISS Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens

Here are my other Zeiss Touit Lens Reviews for reference:

Zeiss Touit 50mm F/2.8 Lens Review – Video Version

In this Sony Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens Review I will go over everything you need to know using the Sony A6500 and real world photography! Please ask questions and comment below as always, and thanks for watching! Jay

My Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens Review
Exceptional Image Quality
At the end of the day, if you are dedicated APS-C camera user (A6500, A6400, A6300, A6000, etc), then the Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro lens is absolutely worth investing in. Optics like this hold their value and will last a lifetime. The images produced are steller quality on all accounts from my real world perspective and the clean elegant design matched with a top quality build make it an overall great optic. I highly recommend this lens for your macro photography needs.
Bang For The Buck
90
Feature Set
85
Build Quality and Design
95
Auto Focus
85
Image quality
98
Usability
92
Optical Quality
98
Low Light Performance
90
Fun Factor
100
Reader Rating0 Votes
0
Pros
Fantastic Image quality
Excellent build quality and a clean elegant design
Extremely fun and easy to use
Buttery smooth and excellent feedback on the manual focus ring control
Cons
No manual MF/AF or focus limiter switches
Autofocus is slower than most other e-mount lenses I have tested
Noisy autofocus if trying to use for video
The rubber design focus ring tends to collect dust
93
A Top Quality Macro Lens for APS-C Cameras
Buy Now

Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens – Sample Photos

First I want to show you the lab testing photos and then the real world shots after that.

Lab Testing

A couple of lab test shots of this cool old quarter I found at various apertures.

f/2.8
f/2.8
f/8

A quick sharpness test and be sure to click on the images for a larger view.

f/2.8
f/8
f/8

Real World Sample Photos with the Sony A6500

A few real world macro photography sample photos using the top quality Zeiss Touit E 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens and Sony A6500. First I took a bunch of photos around the office and its just amazing what the world looks like thru the filter of a top quality macro lens.

Don’t forget to click on the photos if you want to see a larger version!

Here is some wax coated string we use to try down cable to racks and stuff. it’s about 1/16th inch diameter string I would say for reference, and the roll is similar in size to a toilet paper roll, but not as thick.

f/4, 1/5sec, ISO 200
f/4, 1/6sec, ISO 200

Check out what a pencil looks like at 1:1 macro.

f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 1250
f/4, 1/8sec, ISO 200

Here is a grasshopper style fuse up close.

f/4, 1/3sec, ISO 200

Here is a knife I use at work to strip the sheath off thick power cable. Check out the depth of field and look how much the scene changes when I change the focus point.

f/5.6, .4sec, ISO 200
f/5.6, .4sec, ISO 200

Some lights on random equipment under very poor lighting.

f/4, 1/80sec, ISO 2500
f/2.8, 1/15sec, ISO 100

Here are some sample photos of random wire. I also included a few shots of the same scene at different apertures, so you can see how the depth of field can change the results.

f/4, 1/80sec, ISO 4000
f/2.8, 1/3sec, ISO 100
f/8, 2.5sec, ISO 100
f/2.8, 1/6sec, ISO 100

f/4, 1/4sec, ISO 100
f/2.8, 1/5sec, ISO 100
f/4, 1/3sec, ISO 100
f/8, 1.3sec, ISO 100

A few more random shots from work.

Here is what my computer monitor looks like up close.

f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 250

Here is a 100% Crop of the image above and you can actually see the individual pixels.

f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 250

Here are a few sample photos from outside with much better natural lighting. Take particular note on how incredible the colors and contrast look coming off this lens!

f/2.8, 1/1600sec, ISO 100
f/2.8, 1/1250sec, ISO 100
f/4, 1/1000sec, ISO 100
f/4, 1/320sec, ISO 100
f/4, 1/100sec, ISO 100
f/4, 1/80sec, ISO 100
f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 100
f/4, 1/80sec, ISO 160
f/4, 1/250sec, ISO 100

Here is a landscape style photo.

f/4, 1/640sec, ISO 100

Here is a portrait sample photo of my good friend using just window light.

f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 1600

Here are a few flowers and what not…

f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 160
f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 160
f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 640

And here are two decent bug photos I managed to get.

f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 160
f/2.8, 1/80sec, ISO 160

Real World & Lab Sample Photos with my Sony Nex-6

I took these sample photos a few years ago now, but I did not feel I had enough sample photos to write the quality review I wanted. So I got the lens back recently and used the A6500 as you already saw, but some of these Nex-6 sample photos are pretty darn good.

First a few lab style test shots of dime at an angle from the camera @ f/2.8, f/8, and f/16

f/2.8, ISO 100
f/8, ISO 100
f/16, ISO 100
f/4, ISO 200

A few real world macro photography sample photos using the top quality Zeiss Touit E 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens and Sony Nex-6.

Check out these dew drops on my bottle of water.

f/4, ISO 160

Some dessert bars up close.

f/4, ISO 100

Check out this action shot sequence I took of my Nephew.

A few bugs and creepy crawlers I managed to capture.

f/2.8, ISO 640
f/5, ISO 800
f/5, ISO 800
f/4, ISO 200
f/4, ISO 200

A few close-up flower photos.

f/4, ISO 100
f/5.6, ISO 400
f/2.8, IS0 200

A few more random captures with the Nex-6.

Conclusions

Positives:

As you can clearly see this lens is phenomenal and although the $999 price tag sounds steep, you do get a special piece of glass that produce wonderfully dynamic macro photos that just shine. The sharpness, color, clarity, and contrast are all fantastic in my opinion. Glare control is excellent and chromatic aberrations are pretty much non existent. I also love the how the background out of focus areas render. The bokeh balls on the lights in the lab look dynamite as well.

It’s really rare I test a lens that is this good in all areas, but the Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens hits it out of the park when it comes to image quality.

Negatives:

ZEISS Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens

Now, one negative I can point out for sure is the autofocus speed with moving subjects is not very good. Due to the type of lens, the focusing element has an extremely long travel range, which is what allows it to focus on things so close. The lens also has no focus limiter switch, so it can take a second or two to focus on things from time to time. Moving subjects like kids for example can be difficult to capture with this lens, although not that hard really. It’s just not super snappy like a regular non macro lens, or a macro lens with a limiter switch to narrow the focus range. This really is a purpose built lens first, but it can also be used for portraits and many other things as well if you are aware of the limitations like focus speed.

With that being said, when using for macro photography, the lens seemed to have intelligence as crazy as that sounds. I know the camera is focusing the lens, but it’s what it felt like as the user. The lens would just focus on the subject and always seemed to stop exactly where I wanted it. On the bugs eyes for example, it just new. On the flowers, it usually just picked what I wanted. Occasionally it did not though, and I would just put the lens in manual focus and adjust accordingly with the buttery smooth focus ring. Not a big deal.

Also, if I really want to be nit-picky an aperture de-click feature would be nice to have in addition to a Manual Focus/ Autofocus physical switch, and focus range limiter switch.

Build Quality:

ZEISS Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens

Overall the build quality is excellent. The lens feels extremely solid and the focus ring is as smooth as butter when turned. It’s also easy to turn with the rubber design that is different than most other lenses I have tested. It has a long enough focus throw that making minor adjustments is very easy, but when making long focus changes a lot of rotations are required.

FInal Word:

I’ve tested all three Zeiss Touit Lenses that are currently available and each optic gets the same “wow” reaction from me, although they each have a different optical purpose. The Zeiss Touit 12mm f/2.8 Lens is an ultra wide angle and is excellent for Landscape Photography and anything else requiring a wider view of the world. The Zeiss Touit 32mm f/1.8 Lens is excellent for portraits, street, and anything else a ~48mm effective view of the world can capture for you.

At the end of the day, if you are dedicated APS-C camera user (A6500, A6400, A6300, A6000, etc), then the Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro lens is absolutely worth investing in. Optics like this hold their value and will last a lifetime. The images produced are steller quality on all accounts from my real world perspective and the clean elegant design matched with a top quality build make it an overall great optic. I highly recommend this lens for your macro photography needs.

I really hope you got what you were looking for in this review and please feel free to ask questions or comment below.

Have a great day, Jay

My Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro Lens Review
Exceptional Image Quality
At the end of the day, if you are dedicated APS-C camera user (A6500, A6400, A6300, A6000, etc), then the Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 Macro lens is absolutely worth investing in. Optics like this hold their value and will last a lifetime. The images produced are steller quality on all accounts from my real world perspective and the clean elegant design matched with a top quality build make it an overall great optic. I highly recommend this lens for your macro photography needs.
Bang For The Buck
90
Feature Set
85
Build Quality and Design
95
Auto Focus
85
Image quality
98
Usability
92
Optical Quality
98
Low Light Performance
90
Fun Factor
100
Reader Rating0 Votes
0
Pros
Fantastic Image quality
Excellent build quality and a clean elegant design
Extremely fun and easy to use
Buttery smooth and excellent feedback on the manual focus ring control
Cons
No manual MF/AF or focus limiter switches
Autofocus is slower than most other e-mount lenses I have tested
Noisy autofocus if trying to use for video
The rubber design focus ring tends to collect dust
93
A Top Quality Macro Lens for APS-C Cameras
Buy Now

Zeen is a next generation WordPress theme. It’s powerful, beautifully designed and comes with everything you need to engage your visitors and increase conversions.