Michael Topham pairs the Zeiss Batis 85mm f/1.8 by with the flagship Sony Alpha 7R II and puts its delight factor to the test
Zeiss Batis 85mm f/1.8 Review – Features
While the Zeiss Batis 25mm f/2 conceals an optical construction of ten elements in eight groups and draws on the manufacturer’s Distagon design, the Zeiss Batis 85mm f/1.8 features 11 elements in eight groups and is based on the Sonnar design. (A name that’s derived from the German word for sun, <Sonne>, and refers to the symbol of utmost brightness). Three of the lens’s 11 lens elements are made from what Zeiss describes as ‘special’ glass, while it also inherits the manufacturer’s T* anti-reflective coatings to eliminate the effects of flare and ghosting.
The aperture is adjustable from f/1.8 to f/22 and unlike the Zeiss Batis 25mm f/2, it’s the first Batis lens to feature built-in optical image stabilisation. Combined with in-camera stabilisation, this pairing provides the benefits of both systems and should effectively counteract any accentuated camera shake that can occur from handholding a heavier lens for medium telephoto focal length. The lens uses specially designed high-performance linear motors to drive the autofocus and the filter thread (67mm) doesn’t rotate on focusing, which will please filter users. In other respects, the lens has the ability to focus within 80cm of a subject and measures slightly longer than the Batis 25mm f/2, resulting in it being 140g heavier.