Geartalk: Low-light with the Zeiss Distagon 28mm f2

A lot of wide aperture lenses, f2.8 and greater, claim to be low-light capable. You have to take a lot of that with a grain of salt. Yes, their apertures can open up to f2, to f1.8, even to f1.4 and f1.2, but in reality, a majority of the photos taken at those apertures suffer from a lot of softness around the center, and almost certainly softness around the sides. There are very few lenses that perform well at their maximum apertures, in low-light. Happy to report that the Zeiss Distagon 28mm f2 ZE is one such lens.

The only problem i had with the lens in low light was focus accuracy and even focus detection. Shooting at an event today that was held in the the effective basement of Menara Maybank, i often found myself having to trust my instincts and poor eyesight for accurate focus; the Canon 5D Mark II failed to detect focus, and thus didn’t give out the audible beep nor did the in-viewfinder light indicator light up. There just wasn’t enough light to offer enough contrast for the focus detection to work properly. This plus the fact that the default viewfinder screen is not ideally designed to assist in low light MF, and i had a really tough time. I’m a glass half-full sort of guy, so the tough conditions, i took it as a challenge and a learning opportunity.

The following are the results. Click on any image for the full size.

Mohamed Adam Wee, CMO

Mohamed Adam Wee, CMO


An impish grin

Our resident sports expert

Our resident sportsman


Michael Buble?

Emcee for the day

Preparing to speak


Friends and colleagues


Ladies, in attendance

All smiles.

Silky, honest smiles