Did it ever bother you that you have to make a choice between an art lens and a razor sharp standard 50 mm lens? Are you looking for a lens that is both at the same time: an art lens with an exceptional bokeh but also a crystal sharp modern type lens?
The same thoughts have been on our mind. We like the artsy unsharpness in out of focus areas, the wonderful texture in the bokeh and the creative options it offers but we do not want to miss extreme sharpness where we want it to be. No matter whether it's nature, portrait, street or documentary photography we like our photos to be artsy but also nothing but razor sharp.
Last but not least we want a lens that creates great colors as well as the type of contrast needed for black and white.
Finally it must be small, unobtrusive and lightweight to be a true Citograph lens.
This is the call for the perfect all-in-one 50mm standard lens: let's combine razor sharp pictures with a wonderful bokeh and overwhelming colors in one pancake lens.
Therefore with this project, we are going to launch the sharpest art lens ever produced. A lens that has just has the right balance between absolut sharpness, contrast and bokeh.
CP Goerz introduced the first Citograph lens – the Citograph 35, a one of its kind hyperfocal fixed focus lens successfully in 2017 through kickstarter and has just started to ship the lenses.
With this project we take Citography to the next level. Unlike the Citograph 35 its bigger brother - the Citograph 50 – offers the complete aperture range from f 2.8 to f 16 But it is a true Citograph again: ultra compact, ultra light, easy to use and it creates super sharp images. Like the 35 it is a professional grade lens based on the famous tessar type construction.
A lens type that was called “The Eagle’s Eye” for a good reason has been redisgned into a pancake size lens with great contrast, sharpness and extraordinary color richness.
The lens creates an exceptional image quality due to its outstanding focal point sharpness. The razor sharpness make this lens a high performance lens for the modern camera and their sensors. Full format or APS-C.
Looking at the bokeh characteristics of the Citograph 50 the charm of this lens becomes very clear. But of course we all know that Bokeh is very subjective and therefore very difficult to parameterize in a objective manner. So it is best that you see for yourself what you can do with this wonderful lens.
The Citograph 50 lense offers great color accuracy and intense expression of the colorful life around you. This can become a breathtaking feature when we you go out into nature or if you are into animal photography.
The Tessar type lens is probably the most outstanding lens design ever. It is relatively straightforward and consists of four elements in three groups, one positive crown glass element at the front, one negative flint glass element at the center and a negative plano-concave flint glass element cemented with a positive convex crown glass element at the rear. It was designed by the famous Dr. Paul Rudolph while he was working at Zeiss, Jena, and patented by Zeiss in the year 1902.
The advanced Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 50mm 2.8 is often referred to as “Adlerauge” (Eagle’s eye) due to its’ image quality and sharpness. Its elegant simplicity makes it the perfect design base for the Citograph 50. We have designed a tessar type lens with its typical sharpness, bokeh and contrast in a pancake lens of finest quality. With an estimated 150 million Tessar type lenses build in the 20th century this lens design is most likely the most successful one of all times.
But it was not only quantity that is outstanding. Quality of the images with great sharpness without being clinical or sterile was the big virtue of this lens. This is why at around 1925 people paid the same price for 100g of gold than they would pay for this lens. In today’s world this would mean over 4,000 US $ for this lens.
The C.P. Goerz Citograph 50 is true tessar type pancake lens. The visual language of the Citograph 50 is as unique as a fingerprint. Natural sharpness and soft, versatile bokeh characterize this lens. Only 23 mm of heigth (DSLR)/ 32 mm (Mirrorless) make this lens a tool to be tucked away in the photographers pocket to be ready in an instant.
At C.P. Goerz we wanted to continue the Citograph philosophy with a full grade but easy to use lens in a unique ultra-compact and light design. We guarantee superior quality of the components with a butter soft yet precise turn of the focusing ring.
A dream like soft bokeh supported by 12 steel aperture blades complete this resurrection of the eagle’s eye lens. The clickless aperture ring supports the photographer in his quest for the perfect shot – still or videography. The Citograph 50 supports spontaneity and real life photography. Its aperture ring is divided not only into the well know individual f stops but also into zones of different artistic characteristics. Photography is spontaneous and you can capture that magic moment instantly! You get a lens with specially coated glasses but with all the perfect Tessar type characteristics and flawless mechanical construction
The lens has been designed to be very compact and it looks tiny compared to modern lenses. It is a “Pancake” style lens with small dimensions but gigantic performance. The lens is very solid and serious. The focus ring rotates very smooth and perfectly damped.
From closest focusing distance to infinity it makes a 270° turn, which makes focusing very precise. The front element doesn’t rotate while focusing. The aperture ring has no stops and no clicks. Also distortion of the lens is very low and not visible. A big plus of the lens are the colors it recreates.
They are saturated, contrast rich and well-balanced. Its minimum focusing distance is only 35cm, so that it is also a nice lens to use for close up shots. The bokeh is unique and has a very slight, unobtrusive softness to it, which can be very appealing for portraiture. The lens has 12 aperture blades and creates a very special variable background rendering.
NEW: Pentax K!
We want to establish a kind of photography that focuses on the image not on technology. No gimmicks, just pure manual photography but easy to use, unobtrusive in its design with gretat quality and image results – that is what we want to create.
So Citography is a completely new form of spontaneous and pure photography, allowing you to create beautiful and highly professional photos of the world around you – create images that are just as unpredictable and spontaneous as life around you. Perfect quality, easy photography but affordable prices for outstanding meachnical and optical quality – that is Citography as well.
With the CITOGRAPH 50mm and of course as well in combination with the Citograph 35mm, you can truly express yourself and tell your very own story – from your own unique viewpoint, without compromising on image quality. They offer a creative freedom that has so far not been possible in photography
C. P. Goerz was founded in 1886 by Carl Paul Goerz. The purpose of the company was to establish a business for mail-order trade of mathematical instruments. Just a year later, cameras were included in the assortment. With the takeover of the production facilities of F.A. Hintze, the company began to produce cameras under the name of “Optische Anstalt C.P.Goerz” and, from 1890 on, the production of lenses followed. The outstanding quality of the C.P.Goerz lenses quickly spread and in 1894 C.P.Goerz was awarded the golden medal for excellent camera lenses at the world exhibition in Antwerp.
This award is today comparable to an Oscar in technology.
The young Emil van Höegh joined the company in 1892 and took over the management of the production, as well as the international sales management. Under his leadership, the world-famous lenses Dagor, Goerz-Hypergon and also the Höeghsche meniscus were introduced.
The "Photographische Rundschau" wrote in 1899:
"A rapid upswing occurred in 1893, when the double anastigmat calculated by Mr. von Höegh, the scientific employee of the company, came onto the market. The company became so immense that the workshop had to be moved into a large factory building."
For Carl Georg Schillings, the pioneer of animal photography and nature conservation, C.P.Goerz even developed special designs. C.P.Goerz lenses were built at other locations around the world under license agreements.
The company opened offices in London, Paris, St.Petersburg and in New York. In 1902 the first branch was established in New York, and in the same year the C.P.Goerz was converted into a stock corporation.
Through 1911, 300,000 lenses were produced and the number of employees rose to 2,500 and later to 12,500. C.P.Goerz was one of the world's leading optical manufacturers.
C.P.Goerz and Zeiss had deep ties and personal relationships were established between the companies. In Europe, C.P.Goerz merged with other companies in 1926 to form Zeiss Ikon AG. In the US, on the other hand, the Goerz American Optical Company continued to focus on the development and manufacture of film lenses.
Because of the high quality of Goerz lenses from 1939 onwards Bolex, at that time the leading manufacturer of 16 mm film cameras, equipped their cameras with lenses made by the C.P. Goerz American Optical Company. In 1972, the C.P.Goerz American Optical Company merged with Schneider-Optics and Goerz thus disappeared.
I have been engaged in photography and worked in the industry for more than 25 years.
As you know from my first project, the Citograph 35, street and portrait photography are my two biggest passions and my work has taken me all around the world. Lately I have started to get closer to landscape and nature through my exchange with other photographers. The Citograph 50 gives me the whole variety of opportunities to catch the world around me as it is.
The lens opens a lot of chances to to put my unique mark into every image. The 50mm is the standard lens that a photographer must have in his bag – always. But having it so compact and light I just leave on one of my camera bodies. So the Citograph 50 is the logical development of my Citography vision. Simple to use, great variety of uses and images that can be created without looking at technology all the time, that is my perfect always on lens. The Citograph 50 is my interpretation of an easy to use, light, small, simply perfect but not sterile lens.”
We will ship your rewards worldwide from Germany. For backers inside the European Union: VAT is not included and has to be added on your end. So please add 19% to your total pledge amount including shipping.
Please note there may be extra import costs/customs/taxes to pay upon delivery, depending on your location. Customs and taxes are subject to possible change and applicable law at the time of delivery will have to be taken into account.
If you have a question about shipping or handling, please don’t hesitate to contact us! If you have forgotten to add VAT/sales tax to your pledge, you can just raise it as long as the Kickstarter project is live.
Risks and challenges
Before starting this campaign, we have finished the first prototypes and headed to field tests. Additionally we have planned production with potential, competent suppliers.
Now, if this Kickstarter campaign is successful, we are ready to kick-off production. The lens will be made in Europe maybe some parts in Asia. Although, we have already planned everything very consciously and are working closely with industry professionals, we might encounter problems in the process of production which we cannot oversee by now. This may cause delays in the delivery.
- (7 days)