A Brief Inside Look at How Carl Zeiss Lenses Are Made

No matter how curious you are about the inner workings of your camera gear, the high cost of quality lenses probably keeps you from dismantling your favorite lens to take a peek at its innards. If you’ve been wondering about how a lens is made, you’ll enjoy this short look at how the Zeiss Touit lenses for Sony NEX and Fujifilm X cameras are assembled:

Each hand-assembled lens is comprised of over 100 individual parts. Care is taken to remove every last dust particle, and a special black lacquer is painted onto the glass. Once all of the pieces are in their proper places, each lens is inspected and tested for quality control before it’s packaged and sent off to an eager photographer.

The Touit 2.8/12 offers the most extreme wide angle fixed focal length in the current APS-C range. “It is an extremely sophisticated lens which has been equipped with the great effort and care that an extreme focal length of 12 millimeters requires,” explains Dr. Michael Pollmann, who is responsible for the development of the Touit lenses at ZEISS. The lens has eleven lens elements arranged in eight groups and was designed according to the Distagon optical concept. In addition, the lens has floating elements, two aspheric lenses and three lens elements made of high quality glass materials with anomalous partial dispersion. This lens is especially suited for nature and architectural photography. The product design of the Touit 2.8/12 has received an iF as well as a red dot product design award.


The Touit 1.8/32 offers the user an angular field that resembles natural eyesight. The goal during the development stage was to create an easy-to-use standard lens that the photographer can leave on the camera continuously and which can be used for a wide range of everyday situations. Touit 1.8/32 was developed according to a modernized Planar design approach that was adapted to today’s requirements: instead of six lens elements, which is common for the Planar, the Touit 1.8/32 is equipped with eight lens elements and therefore offers an even higher i]maging performance when used with digital sensors. The Touit 1.8/32 can be used in many types of situations: travel photography, family photos, photojournalism and portrait applications. The Touit 1.8/32 recently received an iF gold award and red dot product design award for its innovative product design.

As announced during photokina 2012, the Touit 2.8/50 Makro will come on the market at the end of 2013. Other focal lengths will follow.

We also recently published an article on how the glass is made for Nikon lenses.

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