Thousands of fans, four high-performance lenses
Every two years Cologne hosts photokina, the world’s most important imaging trade fair. And from September 16 to 21, 2014, around 185,000 film and photography fans, from 160 countries, attended this year’s event by the Rhine.
Many of the fans headed straight to ZEISS in hall 2.2, stand C-018, where they could talk with optics experts and experience close-up four new lenses that really whet your appetite for photography.
Voices, music, and people ambling here and there. The sounds of a typical trade fair – were it not for the constant clicking of cameras. And there was plenty of that at the ZEISS stand. An inspiring 4k image gallery was projected onto six large displays next to the stand, while at the large ‘application island’, at the heart of the stand, visitors could try all the latest ZEISS lenses on different camera models. Many took advantage of the offer, eager to not just see the high-performance optics on display, but to actually hold them in their hands and take pictures. ZEISS made sure partition walls and logos were not the only motifs available to photograph. A model railway was set up with toy trains circulating, and plants and stone decorated the stand, offering many opportunities for macro and telephoto shots.
Not everyone is interested in photography or came to Cologne to inspect the new ZEISS lenses. Visitors could also find out about ZEISS binoculars, such as the new Victory SF binoculars (the field of sports optics was again well represented at this year’s stand) or the photographic quality of the new Lumia smartphones from Microsoft which have built-in ZEISS optics. Meanwhile, a drone hovered between the visitors, with the ‘pilot’ steering the drone using the cinemizer OLED virtual reality video glasses from ZEISS, which receive images wirelessly from the board camera of the flying object.
A host of ZEISS experts were on hand at the booth and on the application island to talk to users and answer specific questions. The opportunity for visitors to try the lenses on their own cameras was particularly popular. They could also try the new high-performance optics, which were unveiled for the first time in Cologne. ZEISS brought four new lenses to photokina: the Otus 1.4/85, the Loxia 2/35 and Loxia 2/50, as well as the Distagon T* 1,4/35 ZM.
ZEISS previously launched the Otus 1.4/55, the first member of a high-end SLR family of lenses with manual focusing, in the fall of 2013. The Otus 1.4/85 expands this lens family with a classic portrait focal length that, on closer inspection, turns out to be a fast and versatile lens that can fully leverage the high-resolution sensors of high-end full-frame cameras. This means that images can be created with a quality and look which, up until now, only expensive medium-format systems could have achieved.
“In my view, the new Otus is a lens that leaves no wish unfulfilled,” says Christophe Casenave, Product Manager, ZEISS Camera Lenses. “And it is particularly satisfying to me that others see it that way too. During photokina, the Otus 1.4/85 received the CHIP Foto Award for the best full-frame DSLR lens.”
Watch the product video for our Otus 1./85: click here
The new ZEISS Loxia 2/35 and Loxia 2/50 lenses, which also made their debut, are the first members of a new family of manual focus lenses for the E-mount full frame. “These lenses combine maximum image quality with classic user comfort. They enable photographers to take a backseat and capture natural forms of expression in the motif. The manual focus, the mechanical aperture ring and the DeClick feature, i.e., the mechanical deactivation of the aperture, also make the Loxia family a great choice for semi-professional video shoots as well,” adds Christophe Casenave.
Watch the product video for our Loxia 2/35 and Loxia 2/50: click here
With the launch of the Distagon T* 1,4/35 ZM, the fourth new product unveiled at photokina, ZEISS continues the success story of its ZM lenses and defines a new standard for the market. The high speed of this lens is the first convincing argument for connoisseurs and fans of rangefinder photography. It reveals a pleasing bokeh at a maximum aperture opening of f/1.4. “For the M system, there is practically no other alternative to the new Distagon T* 1,4/35 ZM. It’s the best ZM lens you can get at these conditions,” concludes Christophe Casenave.
Watch the product video for our Distagon T* 1,4/35 ZM: click here
There was plenty to see and try out at the ZEISS stand. And for those who couldn’t make it to Cologne, ZEISS Camera Lenses’ social media team kept everyone in touch with the goings on at the event, answering questions from the community via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. ZEISS’s social media channels were home to a range of detailed conversations.
Even before the trade fair, the teaser campaign attracted lots of interest. As part of the campaign, people received hints about new products to be presented at photokina by solving small tasks linked to ZEISS and photography. The highlight of the campaign was a photo contest called “You and your photo at photokina”. More than 100 people submitted their high-quality images; and 24 pictures made it to the short list. The happy winner is João Pereira from Portugal, who attended photokina at the invitation of ZEISS.
“We had six intensive and successful days in Cologne,” says Michael Schiehlen, Director of Sales, ZEISS Camera Lenses. “When you’re busy all year long developing first-class optics, it’s always a great experience to talk face to face with end-users. This motivates all of us to keep working hard when we go back to work. Most visitors to our stand can hardly wait to hold our lenses in their hands.”