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Rumors => Lenses => Topic started by: sevki on January 24, 2013, 07:51:03 AM

Title: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: sevki on January 24, 2013, 07:51:03 AM
Hi All

I have the 5D mark III and 85mm f1.2 for taking portraits. I am so happy with it but it has slow focus and almost impossible to use for moving objects! so i dediced to but another lens which has fast AF, good for portraits and has amazing bokeh! so i found 2 lenses;

200mm F2 IS and 135mm F2

135 is very fast, not so heavy, good price (about 1000$), very good optic quality

200 has faster AF and plus IS, very heavy (about 2.5 kg), amazing optic quality and very expensive (about 6000$)

so do you think it is worth to spend that much money to go on 200mm? or do you think there is not increadible differences at photos of these two lenses that cost 6 times more expensive from 135?

thanks a lot
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: neuroanatomist on January 24, 2013, 07:55:37 AM
If you can afford it and have room to use it (outdoors or a large indoor space), get the 200/2!
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: Studio1930 on January 24, 2013, 08:45:27 AM
I own both and there is no comparison.  The 200 f/2 will blow you away with the images it produces and it will almost never miss a shot whereas the 135 can produce great images but it can not even come close to being able to lock in focus like the 200 can.  Low light photography is where the 200 f/2 really shines.  My 135 struggles in low light but the 200 f/2 thrives in it.  I am usually shooting it in areas where I need ISO 8000+ on a 1DX and it never hunts for focus.

If size and money are not an issue then the 200 f/2 is the way to go.  I will use my 135 when I need to be more discrete but usually I just use the big white and deal with the comments about the lens.

Also note that on a full frame camera, the 200mm is great for portraits in most situations (including indoors).  I shoot head shots as well as full length with no issues.  Here are two images straight out of the camera (no editing - proofs high school senior) showing what the 200 can do in good light and low light.

(http://studio1930.com/photocart/photos/13-high_school_seniors/10248-alysa_guzman/zm_495D1DD2_20121024AG-0311.JPG)

(http://studio1930.com/photocart/photos/13-high_school_seniors/10248-alysa_guzman/zm_0F3c1a32_20121024AG-0631.JPG)
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: sevki on January 24, 2013, 09:12:57 AM
What is your idea of a portrait? There is a huge difference between, for example, a head shot and an environmental portrait. The same framed portrait will give the face a quite different "look" when using an 85mm to using a 200mm, the face will look flatter and fatter with the 200mm ( http://education.niksoftware.com/2012/09/11/how-lens-focal-length-shapes-the-face-controls-perspective-a-lighting-tutorial/ (http://education.niksoftware.com/2012/09/11/how-lens-focal-length-shapes-the-face-controls-perspective-a-lighting-tutorial/) ). Having said that I bet nobody could tell the difference between images shot with either lens unless you put two different images next to each other, particularly if you use advanced techniques like the Brenizer method ( http://www.ryanbrenizer.com/category/brenizer-method/ (http://www.ryanbrenizer.com/category/brenizer-method/) ).

Unless you really know where you are going with your portraiture, or could post an example or two of where you are now, it makes much more sense to get the 135mm and see where that takes you.

What you told me is really what I think of too! but tell me if I am not true! isnt it like that? zoom lenses makes distortion! isnt it all about distortion to make object flatter and fatter? in tests there is almost no distortion of 200mm! do you say it will make the same effect too ?
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: RLPhoto on January 24, 2013, 09:14:40 AM
The 200 f/2 is the portrait lens. The 135L is the closest thing to it for budget users.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: Studio1930 on January 24, 2013, 09:21:03 AM
Many great portrait shooters like Stephen Eastwood use 200mm or longer for portraits depending on the model.  Shooting with anything lower can also recede the hair line and distort the eyes but it really is up to the photographer to pick the correct lens for the model you are shooting and to use the lens correctly (angles matter).  Personally I prefer the longer focal length to the shorter ones and can use more acute angles when using longer lenses without the fear of distorting their face, arms or legs like a shorter focal length might.

Stephen Eastwood's site appears to be down, but here is an image he did showing the different focal lengths with a model who is not moving around.
http://gizmodo.com/5857279/this-is-how-lenses-beautify-or-uglify-your-pretty-face (http://gizmodo.com/5857279/this-is-how-lenses-beautify-or-uglify-your-pretty-face)

This is what you are looking for when his site comes back up...
http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm (http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm)
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: noncho on January 24, 2013, 09:51:56 AM
I'm sure that 200/2 is great, but is it 8 times better than 200/2.8?
I don't think that portrait photography is all about the blur, if it is for you - get 400/2.8 :)
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: skitron on January 24, 2013, 10:05:04 AM
If money is no object then by all means the 200L IS.

And if money is an object and you like that length, you might give the 200L non-IS a close look. IQ wise, it's basically the long end of the 70-200L IS2 but with better bokeh.

Plus it's compact, light, black, has as good or better AF. Also pairs with the Canon 1.4x TC as well as the 70-200 does. And it's inexpensive.

IMO, about the only dowwnside is that 200 and longer is a bear to shoot without IS, tripod, whatever unless its light enough to take the shutter speed way up.

Test shot of bird on a wire, ~70% crop:

[edit] Shot raw, no contrast, color sat, local contrast added in post. Only moderate sharpening and "hdr" added to bring out a bit more detail in the shadows and tame highlights. So hopefully this is a decent representation of what to expect from this lens.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: PavelR on January 24, 2013, 10:44:13 AM
I own both and 85/1.4, the best IQ I get with F 2.8 and much better subject isolation is on 200mm.
(AF of 200/2 is also faster and the most consistent.)
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: sandymandy on January 24, 2013, 11:02:02 AM
200/2 is a killer lens! Its one of the sharpest lenses ever also and that already at 2.0 aperture!
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: RLPhoto on January 24, 2013, 11:13:11 AM
The 200 f/2 is the portrait lens. The 135L is the closest thing to it for budget users.

I think you will find that the design brief for the 200 f2 was primarily lowlight and shorter long focal length sports, that it is used very effectively for portraits by some is a complimentary use for it. Certainly if you want to see ten or fifteen 200 f2's together just go to any ATP World Tour event. Canon made the 85 1.2 as a pure no holds barred portrait lens and considered AF of secondary importance to the "look" it gives.

I remember for years the sample images for the 300 f2.8 IS are head shots portraits, though nobody would doubt that portrait shooters are not the primary market for that lens! Though there are a few that use it, for instance I do, but primarily because I have one and don't need the 200 f2.

EDIT: Obviously the 200 f2.8 is the budget version of the 200 f2.

Used the 85L II, Found it kinda meh when I already have the 135L. The 200/2 is the best portrait lens canon makes IMO, its just expensive and heavy. Sure it can be used for sports as well.  ::)

The 200/2.8 is a lens I've never been particularly fond of when the 70-200LII does the same thing. I used the 200/2 at a buddys house for about an hour, and instantly knew it was in a league of its own.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: skitron on January 24, 2013, 11:53:11 AM
The 200/2.8 is a lens I've never been particularly fond of when the 70-200LII does the same thing.

I suppose the things to like about the 200L 2.8 are that you can buy a mint one for well under $500 and its tiny physical size, comparatively speaking.

I'd agree its not a lens to make you drool any more than the 70-200 IS2 is, but imo it is exceptional bang for the buck when the next step up IQ wise @200 is not the $2K 70-200 IS2, it is the $6.5K 200L 2.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: RLPhoto on January 24, 2013, 11:56:12 AM
200/2L > 135L/85LII > 200/2.8L

IMO, for portraits anyway
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: RMC33 on January 24, 2013, 12:38:41 PM
200 f/2 is an amazing lens. Since you are using a 5dMkIII be aware you may have to send the lens to Canon If you buy used. http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=5044.0. (http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=5044.0.) Ask if the service has been performed!

On the up side It is sharp, fast and has amazing IQ and I have YET to get an image out of it with any CA. I use mine primarily mated to a 1Dx (rental) and my 5d3. Like the longer tele's it has all the focus preset options and goodies.This lens is my goto for ski/snowboard work and I am hoping kayaking this summer as well (esp if I can snag up a 1Dx..Cooked my 7D last season).

Shot with the 200 f/2. ISO 100 f/4 1/640. Bokeh is far better at f/2 but I wanted to see how it shot stopped down on static targets.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: 7enderbender on January 24, 2013, 12:47:50 PM
I personally would look at this by focal length first. I have the 135 and the 200 2.8L II - which are essentially really the same lens. Both are fabulous for what I use them for. I rarely have used the 200 for portraits per se. Not that it can't be done but I would always for the 135 first when it comes to portraits/headshots.

Obviously the 200L is in a different league for other reasons but I'd need a really good range of applications before I'd go for that - independent of budget.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: 7enderbender on January 24, 2013, 12:58:53 PM


This is what you are looking for when his site comes back up...
http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm (http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm)


Yes, I've seen those before. But what really is the take-away from that? What are the practical implications? Clearly, you don't want to use anything under 50mm for head shots. We kind of knew that already but this series makes it even more clear. And yes, even 50 through 85 can be borderline depending on the model. But seriously, what is the difference between 135 and 200 or higher here? If you shuffle those samples around or just show real life samples I bet most of us wouldn't be able to tell what was shot with a 100L, 135L or 200L. They all work for this really well and it becomes more a question of other factors that you may prefer or not. Distance to the subject and type of location being the more important ones here I think.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: RLPhoto on January 24, 2013, 01:11:44 PM


This is what you are looking for when his site comes back up...
http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm (http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm)


Yes, I've seen those before. But what really is the take-away from that? What are the practical implications? Clearly, you don't want to use anything under 50mm for head shots. We kind of knew that already but this series makes it even more clear. And yes, even 50 through 85 can be borderline depending on the model. But seriously, what is the difference between 135 and 200 or higher here? If you shuffle those samples around or just show real life samples I bet most of us wouldn't be able to tell what was shot with a 100L, 135L or 200L. They all work for this really well and it becomes more a question of other factors that you may prefer or not. Distance to the subject and type of location being the more important ones here I think.

http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/791634/0 (http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/791634/0)
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: jasonsim on January 24, 2013, 01:16:48 PM
If you don't have a 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM, I would definitely consider it and take it for a test drive even.  My experience, and I've had the 135 L and the 200mm f/2L IS USM (both now sold), is that the 70-200 II is faster to AF than the 200 f/2L.  I know, because I used to use both exclusively to capture indoor ice skating.  The 135mm could not keep up and many shots were missed because of it.

The zoom also allows for more shots.  Especially when you need to be stationary and the action is going towards and away from you. 

I sold my 200 f/2L IS and later on picked up a mint 200mm f/1.8L USM for half the price.  That is one of the sharpest lenses ever and mostly because it had lead in the elements.  Canon no longer produces elements with lead. 

Sample taken with the 5D III at 200mm f/1.8 ISO640:
 
(http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8002/7253023606_f234617167_b.jpg)
 
Here are some samples taken with the 200mm f/2L IS and 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II wide open and at 200mm:

5d II @ 200mm f/2 ISO160:
 
(http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7026/6561106027_d554461276_b.jpg)
 
5D II @ 200mm f/2.8 ISO320:
 
(http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7026/6573402545_e3d5d905a5_b.jpg)

Hope that this helps.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: Scarpz13 on January 24, 2013, 02:44:24 PM
The 200 2.8L II is an extremely affordable lens when compared to the 200L or even the 85L, which many consider as the "king of portrait" lenses. It's a stellar lens in my opinion, very much underrated.

(http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7151/6557084293_b04b0a51e4_z.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/dunghoang/6557084293/)
The Girl Who Catches Snowflakes (http://www.flickr.com/photos/dunghoang/6557084293/#) by Standard Deluxe (http://www.flickr.com/people/dunghoang/), on Flickr

That is a fantastic photo!
May I ask what you settings were? Or if this was processed alot in post? I would love for my portraits to look like this...
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: Standard on January 24, 2013, 03:05:49 PM
Quote
May I ask what you settings were? Or if this was processed alot in post? I would love for my portraits to look like this...

Aperture-priority AE
model was about 4.77 m away
Shot with the Canon 5D Mark II, center focus point and recomposed with back-button focusing, no cropping
ISO 400, f/2/8, 1/250, 0 EV

If you want, the complete EXIF info can be accessed on Flickr.

I process all my images but to the best of my recollection, this was not heavily processed. Just the usual histogram correction to adjust dynamic range, slight shift of WB Temp slider to blue with Tint slider to slight magenta to neutralize white, add slight split toning of cream/ blue hues to give it a wintery mood. Hope this helps.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: 7enderbender on January 24, 2013, 03:06:45 PM


This is what you are looking for when his site comes back up...
http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm (http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm)


Yes, I've seen those before. But what really is the take-away from that? What are the practical implications? Clearly, you don't want to use anything under 50mm for head shots. We kind of knew that already but this series makes it even more clear. And yes, even 50 through 85 can be borderline depending on the model. But seriously, what is the difference between 135 and 200 or higher here? If you shuffle those samples around or just show real life samples I bet most of us wouldn't be able to tell what was shot with a 100L, 135L or 200L. They all work for this really well and it becomes more a question of other factors that you may prefer or not. Distance to the subject and type of location being the more important ones here I think.

http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/791634/0 (http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/791634/0)


Those are wonderful but that's not the question. My argument is more that those could be taken by a person with that eye and talent for locations and lighting with a 200 or a 135 - and probably a bunch of other stuff. Just by looking at those I really have no clue as to what they were shot with. I've seen pretty similar shots that were done with the 50L or 85L. The difference in perspective at the longer end is not that obvious. And with regard to the OP what I meant to say is that it more depends on your style and how and where you like to work to decide between those two fabulous lenses - with the focal length being the most important factor.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: randym77 on January 24, 2013, 03:28:19 PM
I have both.  I use both frequently.  I love both of them. 

Why do I have both?  There are times when the 200/f2 is just too big and heavy.  I usually use it with a monopod at least, while the 135/f2 is easy to hand-hold for long periods.  Sometimes I photograph events where I don't want to be too conspicuous, or where it's not convenient to have such a big, heavy lens.  It slows you down a lot, and it really attracts attention, while no one looks twice at the 135. 
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: RLPhoto on January 24, 2013, 03:29:30 PM


This is what you are looking for when his site comes back up...
http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm (http://stepheneastwood.com/tutorials/Tutorials_Lens_Perspective.htm)


Yes, I've seen those before. But what really is the take-away from that? What are the practical implications? Clearly, you don't want to use anything under 50mm for head shots. We kind of knew that already but this series makes it even more clear. And yes, even 50 through 85 can be borderline depending on the model. But seriously, what is the difference between 135 and 200 or higher here? If you shuffle those samples around or just show real life samples I bet most of us wouldn't be able to tell what was shot with a 100L, 135L or 200L. They all work for this really well and it becomes more a question of other factors that you may prefer or not. Distance to the subject and type of location being the more important ones here I think.

http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/791634/0 (http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/791634/0)


Those are wonderful but that's not the question. My argument is more that those could be taken by a person with that eye and talent for locations and lighting with a 200 or a 135 - and probably a bunch of other stuff. Just by looking at those I really have no clue as to what they were shot with. I've seen pretty similar shots that were done with the 50L or 85L. The difference in perspective at the longer end is not that obvious. And with regard to the OP what I meant to say is that it more depends on your style and how and where you like to work to decide between those two fabulous lenses - with the focal length being the most important factor.

The photographer explains why those shots have the 200mm/2 look to them and how the 135L doesn't quite match up to it.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: ksagomonyants on January 24, 2013, 03:51:35 PM
If you can afford it and have room to use it (outdoors or a large indoor space), get the 200/2!

This. I've had 135 f2 and it's a great lens which helps you to take amazing pictures. But 200 f2 is absolutely stunning and it keeps its value very well. So, if at some point you'll change your mind and decide to sell it, you can always do that at a very good price.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: wickidwombat on January 24, 2013, 09:23:34 PM
I want a 200f2L IS so badly :(
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: wearle on January 24, 2013, 09:28:34 PM
The 200mm f/2.0L is an awesome lens.  I have both lenses, and I use the 200mm significantly more than the 135mm.  If you can afford it, there is only one choice -- the 200mm.  :)

It's fantastic for astrophotography too.

Wade
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: dslrdummy on January 24, 2013, 09:56:08 PM
The 200mm f/2.0L is an awesome lens.  I have both lenses, and I use the 200mm significantly more than the 135mm.  If you can afford it, there is only one choice -- the 200mm.  :)

It's fantastic for astrophotography too.

Wade
Fantastic shot of pugsley. I have the 70-200 f/2.8 ii but that sharpness beats it. Seems to me the advantage of the 200 f/2 is that you are potentially getting three lenses in one: a great lense for indoor sports or low light photography, a good portrait lense and with an extender a more than adequate medium telephoto (up to 400mm f/4) for outdoor sports shooting.
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: wearle on January 25, 2013, 04:03:42 PM

Fantastic shot of pugsley. I have the 70-200 f/2.8 ii but that sharpness beats it. Seems to me the advantage of the 200 f/2 is that you are potentially getting three lenses in one: a great lense for indoor sports or low light photography, a good portrait lense and with an extender a more than adequate medium telephoto (up to 400mm f/4) for outdoor sports shooting.

Thanks! Yes, it is a very versatile lens; however, its only weakness is its weight. It can become quite heavy after several hours of hand-holding. :(

Wade
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: wearle on January 25, 2013, 04:10:02 PM
"It's fantastic for astrophotography too."

It is funny how opinions differ  :)

http://www.welsh-house.net/andy/review200f2.html (http://www.welsh-house.net/andy/review200f2.html)

I believe the author was a little naive in thinking that the lens would not have to be stopped down for astronomical purposes.  Stars are the ultimate challenge for any lens.  In fact, every lens has to be stopped down between 1 and 2 stops to get good stars in the corners.  As a result, the 200mm f/2.0 still has a speed advantage after stopping down, and the four inches of light gathering ability is nice too.  ;) 

Wade
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: emag on January 25, 2013, 05:55:12 PM
I believe the author was a little naive in thinking that the lens would not have to be stopped down for astronomical purposes.  Stars are the ultimate challenge for any lens.  In fact, every lens has to be stopped down between 1 and 2 stops to get good stars in the corners.  As a result, the 200mm f/2.0 still has a speed advantage after stopping down, and the four inches of light gathering ability is nice too.  ;) 

Wade

I concur.  The lens excelled for his (way too many) cat, dog and baby photos.  Short of a Schmidt camera, nothing is going to do well for astro at f/2, and it requires a curved imaging surface.  The old 300/4L (non-IS), discontinued now but arguably Canon's best affordable long lens,  has always been considered sharp, but even it is best used at f/4.5 for astro.  I'd love to have a 200 that I can only use at a measly f/2.8 for astrophotos!
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: sevki on January 26, 2013, 11:24:46 AM
so finally I realised that 200mm is sharper and has better focus but 135mm gives photos more close to real, I mean what I see in real with my eyes!
Title: Re: 200mm F2 IS OR 135mm F2
Post by: skitron on January 26, 2013, 08:41:27 PM
yes , if you want that the ears looks bigger on a child than  they are,  you shall continue with 200mm lens  instead of a shorter lens as 135mm , 85mm or 50mm

A head/shoulder shot of a young child using a full frame and 50mm lens needs about a 3 foot subject to camera distance to fill the frame. For me, it's much more probable to photogragh a kid substantially further away. At 12 feet, a particular perspective and subject proportions are observed by the human eye. If I shot it with a 50mm lens, which is considered very close to what a human eye sees, I've captured these perspective and proportions observed at 12 feet distance. If I then crop the shot to end up with a head/shoulder shot, I have not changed anything I observed with the naked eye or what I photographed, and I end up with exactly the same perspective and proportions as if using the same 12 foot subject to camera distance and using a 200mm lens so it fills the frame with a head/shoulder shot. No? Isn't the magnification of a 200mm on a full frame 4X and 3 feet times 4 equals 12 feet?

Sure you can argue you don't like what it looks like with the 12 foot distance/perspective, or that a kids ears are too big in your opinion, or a girl is too fat in your judgement, and even argue that both could benefit asthetically from the skewed and inaccurate proportions that shorter pespectives and focal lengths afford in order to mask a reality, but it doesn't make sense to me to claim that longer focal lengths make for disproportion, when in fact the opposite is true.