Zenit Zenitar 16mm F2.8 MC Fisheye A-mount lens review by Yugus

reviewer#8825 date: Mar-23-2011
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 3
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
price paid:150 CAD (Used)
positive:Small and Lightweight
Cheap, cheapest fisheye you can buy
Sharp stopped down past F5.6
(If the M42 version) it can be adapted to be used on almost every camera brand
negative:VERY soft wide open
Manual focus only (not really a negative... Its to be expected)
Poor flare resistance
comment:This is the most cost effective fisheye you can buy, because most people aren't ever to sure how much they'll use a fisheye if they had one so why spend over $600 on one when you can buy a pretty good one for less then $200. The Zenitar 16mm F2.8 fisheye can be found in several different mounts, mine is an M42 mount which can be adapted to be used on Alpha cameras. The lens is very wide (to be expected for a fisheye), and along with the fisheye effect it gives things a very unique perspective. This lens is very soft when shot wide open, though it turns into a very sharp lens when stopped down. One issue with this lens is how prone to flaring it is, and because of the extremely wide angle of view no impromptu hood/shade will help as odds are it will be in the shot. Even stopped down to F16-22 this lens produces sharp results even in the extreme corners. The build quality of this lens is very high, higher then most lenses these days, with tis metal construction it's build like tank, like the older Minolta lenses.

Overall this is a great lens for the price, and is something you should consider buying even if you don't think you'll use it often since they are somewhat hard to find now and (if its the M42 version) can be adapted to almost every camera. Its a fun lens to use when you want to see the world differently.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 21
  • sharpness: 4.12
  • color: 4.29
  • build: 4.14
  • distortion: 4.29
  • flare control: 3.76
  • overall: 4.12
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