Guide to Zeiss ZF/ZE Lenses

Seeing beyond red for a new visual gestalt

Now in its 5th year, and still the most accurate and comprehensive work on digital infrared today, Guide to Digital Infrared Photography covers the entire process of digital infrared photography, from choosing a camera and lenses to field shooting, to the all-important post-processing of images.

Why not skip a year or two of arduous learning through trial and error?

Infrared has more than a few speed bumps. This Guide will cut months off your digital infrared learning process, so you can achieve top-notch results in infrared right away, starting with camera selection. The Guide is also a valuable resource for choosing lenses, post-processing, and reference example.

Numerous examples and considerable guidance are given for each of the topics below. It received feedback from both experienced infrared photographers as well as beginners, and is written to be accessible to all levels of experience.

Topics covered:

  • Overview—what infrared is, what to expect when starting out.
  • Camera selection—digital SLR, point and shoot, filters vs conversion.
  • Camera image examples— examples and what to expect from the Fuji F30-IR, Fuji F50-IR, Fuji S6000fd-IR, Canon EOS 5D-IR, Canon 5D Mark II-IR, Canon G9-IR, Nikon D70-IR, Nikon D200-IR, Nikon D700-IR.
  • Focusing and backfocus, including a special tip for Canon EOS users;
  • Sharpness issues of multiple kinds;
  • Filtration, both external and internal;
  • Exposure and white balance;
  • Hot spots and how to both avoid and work around them in post-processing;
  • Lenses, including “hot spot” and backfocus assessments for nearly all of the following SLR lenses:
    Nikon: 12-24DX, 17-35 AF-S, 17-55DX, 18-70DX, 18-200DX, 28-70 AF-S, 70-20 AF-S, 50-300 f/4.5 AI-S, 200-400 f/2 VR, 20 f/3.5 AI-S, 24 f/2 AI-S, 28 f/2 AI-S, 28 f/4 PC, 28 f/2.8 Schneider PC, 35 f/1.4 AI-S, 35 f/2.8 PC, 35 f/2.5E, 45 f/2.8P AI-IS, 50 f/1.4D, 50 f/1.8D, Olympus 50 f/1.2, 58mm f/1.2 NOCT-Nikkor, 60 f/2.8D macro, 85 f/2.8D PC, 85 f/1.4D, 105 f/2DC, 105 f/4 macro, 200 f/2 VR.
    Canon: 16-35 f/2.L, 16-35 f/2.8L II, 24-70 f/2.8L, 24-105 f/4L, Nikon 28-70 AF-S, 70-200 f/2.8L IS, 70-200 f/4L IS, 70-300 f/4.5-5.6 DO, 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L IS, 15 f/2.8 fisheye, 24 f/1.4L, 35 f/1.4L, Nikon 45 f/2.8P, 50/1.4, 50 f/1.8 II, 50 f/1.2L, 50 f/2.5 macro, Nikon 60 f/2.8D macro, 85 f/1.2L II, 85 f/1.8, Nikon 85 f/2.8D PC, Nikon 85 f/1.4D, 100 f/2.8 macro, 135 f/2L, 300 f/4L IS, 300 f/2.8L IS
  • Workflow: swapping and inverting color channels, techniques for grayscale conversion, color expansion, selective color, RAW-file conversion, color space and gamut, 16-bit vs 8-bit.
  • Photoshop actions and javascripts for generating variants of an image in both layered and contact sheet form, helping you to visualize the creative possibilities.
  • Resources—where to find additional information on camera conversions, filters, books, web sites, etc.

Lloyd Chambers (author, “diglloyd”)

Lloyd is a researcher and writer on photographic technique and technology, as well as Mac performance for photographers. His online publications include Making Sharp Images, Advanced Photography and Guide to Zeiss ZF/ZE Lenses. Lloyd writes for Photo Technique magazine and maintains an active blog, MacPerformanceGuide.com, and an extensive selection of photography and related articles.

Your infrared guide is great, better than anything else I've seen by quite a ways. It actually tells me how to get things done and a logical order to do things in.—Oscar Z

It was a welcomed surprise to see a photographer to tell things the way they are. In a practical way you include almost everything one needs about digital IR in your review...your Guide is a must read and must be mentioned — Paul R

I must congratulate you an a first class job in producing this guide. You have got me on a roll into digital IR.. — Howard F