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Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 135 mm f/ 3.5 Lens

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Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 135 mm f/ 3.5 lens

Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 135 mm f/ 3.5 lens

Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 135 mm f/ 3.5 lens

Format: 35mm SLR

Type: Prime lens

Focusing: Manual Focus (MF)

Lens mounts: M42

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Photos (11)

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Owners (54)

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Average price: $167


Focal lengthMax. apertureMin. apertureBladesMin. Focus (m.)Filter Ø (mm.)Weight (gr/oz)Length (mm/in)

Additional information:

Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 135 mm f/ 3.5 is a telephoto prime lens  for 35-мм SLR cameras with the M42 Screw mount. The lens has a built-in retractable hood. It is made of metal with a rubber-coated focusing ring.

Contributed by Rabkor:

The third version of a very popular lens was the so-called "zebra" (the previous two belong to the Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 135 mm f4). The build had been completely redesigned. The lens had a metal built-in retractable hood. Lens speed had increased up to f3.5. The lens had become shorter. It was equipped with an instant-return aperture. A new composition of coating was used, though it was still applied to the front lens only. The lens  came to be delivered in a brown leather case. The markings had remained.
The next variant of the lens was a "black pearl". The design had been changed again. Though optical scheme had not  considerably changed, the lens had got a multilayer coating, which was positive for its optical characteristics and color rendering. The aperture had changed a little and resembled  a ninjas' throwing star - shuriken (literally translated from Japanese as "sword hidden in the hand"). This design of the aperture is characteristic for the Contax / Yashica lenses produced in Germany. The lens  decreased by size again. The aperture of many Sonnar lenses sticks because of  thickening of  blades lubricant.
There was also a Sonnar with the S letter but without the Sonnar inscription on the lens barrrel. It may have been produced at some other factory (but it's just a long shot).
Besides, such "laconic" lenses appeared in the "electric" version (with three contacts and electronically controlled aperture).
And finally, the last, the fifth version of the lens. Its full name is the Carl Zeiss Jena DDR Sonnar MC f3.5 135 electric.
This variant has a better optical characteristics, excellent form factor, and electronically controlled aperture for cameras produced under the Pentacon's brand Praktica. The lens has a good contrast and, if you like, microcontrast. The colors, characteristic and very eye-pleasing, are distinguishable from the colors rendered by  other lenses.  The sharpness is very good. The lens preserves the maximum of  picture details . Besides, such sharpness is almost the same at all aperture values. The bokeh is very nice, smooth and soft. The lens speed f3,5 is quite sufficient for portrait photography. That value must be optimal,  as it enables to get a sufficient depth of  field, on the one hand, and leaves a nice and correct blurring, on the other.
One very important note - the Sonnar electric of the fifth version  with a 4-digit number  got a testing composition of the Т* coating. In what follows, this composition was applied to the whole Carl Zeiss line of optics. More than 5, 000 of such testing Sonnars were produced. But they are considered to be the best among the Sonnars for the m42 screw mount.

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Posted by: Dionisius   Date of publication: 16.01.2012

Photos taken with this lens Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 135 mm f/ 3.5:

Autor: Voroneg
4 0 8055

Autor: Voroneg
4 0 10445

Autor: Voroneg
3 0 8537

Cruising Airbus A380 - Crop
Autor: Gustavo Ferlizi
3 0 1969

Mechanical quality4.2114
Optical quality4.5912
Pricing / Value3.8513
Overall lens rating

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