The Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* (C/Y) 35-70mm f3.4 was a standard zoom lens designed for the Yashica and Contax series of film SLR cameras. It was, perhaps, the first standard zoom of truly decent quality throughout its range. You could use it an any focal length and not really have any compromise relative the prime lenses of the time. That cliché “a tube full of primes” was (for once) true of it: at least in its day.


It’s since acquired a kind of cult reputation. Some think it remains the finest standard zoom you can get. But how much of this reputation is due to it being so amazing by the standards of when it was designed in 1982, and how much because it still deserves a place in the kits of some modern photographers?


So is this lens a piece of dark art, the like of which cannot be made by soulless modern lens makers? Of course not. But it is remarkably good and useful. If you want a zoom lens, and don’t mind paying four to five times as much, and putting up with a lens almost double the weight, the Sony G 24-105 has more range, is at least as sharp, and has a bit more contrast.

But not everyone either cares about or even wants that slightly more saturated look. And if you you do you might be prepared to trade it off for saved money and the fun (if it’s your thing) of using a vintage lens. This is a consistently crisp vintage lens, that can give results  you can be proud of, and not have to explain away by talking about its classic look.


If I were a landscaper on a budget who wanted the convenience of a single zoom, didn’t have a taste for more extreme focal lengths and regarded brilliant sunstars as a bit of an effect, I’d pair this lens with a more affordable A7 body in a heartbeat. And many other categories of user might find it great too. It’s often my all in one hiking kit: a decent sharp 35, 50 and 70 all in 475 grams. What’s not to like.


Lens Composition 10 elements, 10 groups  
Angular Field 64 degrees ~ 34 degrees
Minimum Focus 0.7m (2.3 ft)/ 0.25m for macrophotography(l:25)
Diaphragm Action MM fully automatic
F stop scale f3.4-5.6-8-11-16-22
Filter 67mm
Filter connection Screw-in type
Lens Hood No l metal hood, screw-in type (with 67/86 ring)
Weight 475 grams(1.1 lb)
Lens Size 70x80 5mm (2-3/4x3-3/16 in)
Lens Cap 67mm K-61, snap type


Product ($899) SN: ***9681
Condition: Excellent (EX)
Warranty: 2 Weeks Store

What You Will Get

- F/R Caps


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Opening hours: 12.30pm-7.45pm (Mon-Sat) 2pm-6pm (Sun)
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Next to Funan Mall / Nearest MRT: City Hall MRT

Contax Vario-Sonnar 35-70mm F3.4 T* MMJ CY Mount (used)


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