Ok wondering if this might be slightly controversial to some purists and F2.8 or less fanatics..
I would like to hear from other working commercial pros, no offence to everyone here who shoots beautiful shots wide open of models, wedding or family all the time.
Currently looking to get a / some new lens, why? the 24-105 is good but not great. Sharpness is ok (poor at 24 and 105 and soft at F4, from F5.6-11 its great and F14 onwards is very soft. Having F4 is ok but 2.8 or less would be much better to have, and generally the Out Of Focusness of lens is smoothish and pleasing, generally nicer than my 50 1.4- comparatively F4-8, but obviously you cant get anywhere near the 50 at F2 and similarly nowhere near as nice as my 135L.
I'm on my second one now as last broke too many times and the focus was out finally, but my new copy doesn't seem quite as sharp as previous when it was new. So I'm now looking for options to work with my type of work.
I use a 5D mkIII if thats relative and shoot tethered to Capture One Pro 95% of the time, and 75% on a tripod too.
Now I don't want 100 replies saying the 85 1.2L is the best.. I know I use one occasionally when needed that look. Or the 50 1.2. I may well get the 50 1.2 soon but the lack of close focus is putting me off slightly.
Firstly I don't get the chance to shoot much fully wide open on jobs, I do commercial work (advertising, corporate, people, lifestyle, still life and some architecture all with a lot of retouching) - which dictates what needs to be in the shot and how it will look. And normally you have to show some background OOF but not completely melting away to show a sense of reference to the location/background & person in foreground or product photography that has to be fairly sharp for the most part.
I use studio lighting most of the time and to me the main quality in photography is in the lighting and knowing how to light a scene really well or control daylight. IMHO this does much more than buying a really expensive lens.. I'd rather always buy more lights and modifiers than lens.
I never really need to go over my 135mm and its stunning for shallow DOF portraits but doesn't focus close enough for some product work, neither will my 50mm. Which is where the 24-105 works with a slight macro on it. I find shooting smaller objects at closer distance at F11 on around 40-55mm gives me a more natural to slightly dynamic look with more depth of field than zooming in and loosing DOF. For much of my really nice bottle shots its always the 135 though.
So would the 24-70 focus as close as the 24-105, and how much sharper will the mkII be? And is the OOF noticeably smoother?
Now the 24-70 range has always left me scratching my head. I use 35-55 settings the most along with 75-100 for portraits, plus 24-30 a fair bit for backgrounds for comps , architecture and landscape.
So i hear you say why not 24-70 for most then 85 for portraits - well i'm usually tripod'd and when shooting a succession of different heights and shapes business people in busy stressful environments I don't want to be moving the tripod to recompose the shot every person, from much experience its clumsy and looks like you are flaffing.
This where the 75-100 zoom range works so well ( most are shot at F8 for some focus drop off and best sharpness)
and I can get some slightly wider or even tighter if options are needed.
So why not the 70-200 for those then? well quite frankly I hate it, I know it is an amazing lens but its huge it puts non model sitters off, and is unbalanced and generally I woundn't use over 135.. and as I said the 135L is beautiful and so much more balanced.
In my opinion Canon needs to make a F2.8 24-105 or F2.8 28-110 both with slight macro that is tack sharp, little distortion & vignetting whilst having a smoother OOF / bokeh than the 24-105 or 24-70 more like the 50 1.2. And I would pay a lot for this
Are there any others in my school of thought / use out there? And what would you recommend ?