Is this new portrait lens for the Sony Alpha 7 series worth its stratospheric price, asks Andy Westlake
Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 Review: Test results
In our Applied Imaging lens tests, we used the Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 on the 42.4MP Sony Alpha 7R II.
Central sharpness is exceptional even at f/2.8, but the corners really aren’t too far behind. Stopping down to f/4 gives peak central sharpness, while the corners reach their best at f/5.6. At f/8 the lens gives uniformly excellent results from corner to corner, but at smaller apertures diffraction progressively softens the image.
In the nearest thing the Batis has to a flaw, pincushion distortion is plainly visible in our chart tests when we look at uncorrected raw files. Turn on in-camera lens corrections (or use profiled lens corrections in raw processing) and this disappears at a stroke, to give perfectly corrected images.
With its relatively large front element, vignetting is far from severe, with less than 1.3 stops falloff in illumination at the corners with the aperture set to f/2.8. Stopping down to f/4 reduces this significantly, and by f/5.6 there’s just a negligible amount of residual vignetting in the corners of the frame.