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Date: 13/11/2014 | By: Mathieu

Minimalism – A macro afternoon with the Zeiss Touit 50mm (X mount)

zeiss touit 50mm review macro

Minimalism – A macro afternoon with the Zeiss Touit 50mm (X mount)

I have the Zeiss Touit f/2.8 50mm Macro until Christmas and there is a funny reason why. Since the official French Zeiss supplier went bankrupt, it currently is not possibile to order a Zeiss lens in France. This was bad timing for one of my French relatives who was on the verge of buying the Touit 50mm for her Fuji X-T1. Luckily, I found one sample in Turin thanks to our friends at the Riflessi Camera Shop. I phoned her up, asking if I should send it to her by post, but she said, “Ne t’inquiètes pas, Mathieu, bring it at Christmas-time instead.”

So here I am with a gorgeous Zeiss lens. What else could I do but take it out for a spin? (With her approval, of course!)

This article about the Touit 50mm revolves around my first impressions of the lens. I decided to shoot a series of “minimalistic macro shots” of nature at Valentino park. I thank Reba Baskett whose blog post about Macro Minimalism inspired the idea. I wasn’t always looking for sharpness (partly because of the wind) but more shadows and an intermingling of blurred colours. I also tried to make some close-ups look like a landscape of sorts. I am not an expert macro shooter so I’ll leave it to you to judge the results. It was an nice nice afternoon spent with the lens and the light was very beautiful.

Before starting with the gallery, here are a few thoughts I have about the lens following the hours I spent with it:

  • The lens is well build and very light. I love the rubber feel on the focus and aperture ring;
  • The focus ring is by wire and sometimes jumps back and forth too much especially when focusing really close;
  • Fast AF overall, but you’ll need to switch to manual focus when your focus distance gets really short;
  • Best sharpness seems to be between f/5.6 and f/11.

Many of the pictures below were shot by manually focusing with the X-T1, which is an absolute pleasure to do especially with the EVF and Dual View mode. I processed them in Lightroom by using the Film Simulation mode (Astia and Pro Neg Standard), slightly adjusting the basic settings (aperture, contrast, colour vibrance).

Enjoy the gallery and don’t hesitate to leave a comment!

X-T1, 1/60, f/ 28/10, ISO 400
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 2.8, ISO 400
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 56/10, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 5.6, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/180, f/ 28/10, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/180, f/ 2.8, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 56/10, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 5.6, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/500, f/ 28/10, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/500, f/ 2.8, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 56/10, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 5.6, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/125, f/ 4/1, ISO 500
X-T1, 1/125, f/ 4, ISO 500
X-T1, 1/125, f/ 8/1, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/125, f/ 8, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/125, f/ 8/1, ISO 400
X-T1, 1/125, f/ 8, ISO 400
X-T1, 1/125, f/ 8/1, ISO 800
X-T1, 1/125, f/ 8, ISO 800
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 11/1, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 11, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/250, f/ 4/1, ISO 400
X-T1, 1/250, f/ 4, ISO 400
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 28/10, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/60, f/ 2.8, ISO 200

Have you ever used the Zeiss Touit 50mm Macro? What did you think?


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About the author: Mathieu Gasquet

Mathieu Gasquet is a professional photographer with French and Italian origins. Besides running his own video and photography studio 3Dit Lab, he is also the official photographer for the National Cinema Museum in Turin. You can follow him on Google+, Twitter or Facebook!

  • http://www.mirrorlessons.com/ Mathieu

    @mandy and @jazz1 here you can find two portraits taken with the Touit lens (first two shots of the album):
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/gasquet/sets/72157633246409678/

  • http://www.mirrorlessons.com/ Mathieu

    I will take a few portrait shots with the lens today so I will let you know 😉

  • mandy

    bump. how good is it for portraits? is f2.8 sufficient?

  • jazz1

    Would this lens be useful for other situations in addition to macro shots. The photos look great!

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