I guess I'll jump into the waters in this thread. Is this camera for people who want--but can't afford--a pricey rangefinder, a la Leica?
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isn't the canon 70-200 f/4 non IS like $500?
I can't see there being an M9 beater in the pipeline for some reason....
There's no need to pump up on opinions. There are tons of reviews on the EF 50's. Virtually everyone identifies focus shift and border softness in the 50 1.2L. Photozone is pretty reliable: http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/472-canon_50_12_5d
In fact the 50 1.2L is not as sharp as the $369 50 1.4 at any aperture, and the borders never really sharpen up at any aperture.
What you get for an extra $1130 is a slightly improved bokeh, twice the weight, a loss of resolution across the board, and a red ring. Not a very good deal.
.... and also the far eye OOF as well
If you use flash indoors, then ditch the 50 f/1.4 because it gives you no advantage over other lenses.
Good and inexpensive don't go together in photography
its like saying.. cheap gas
The ends must be parallel to within a few 1/10000 of a inch, which is not your ordinary hacksaw job, so you will need a lathe, or you might get a tilt effect.
As for distance, you typically get a set of three tubes, the length varies by manufacturer, 6, 12, 25mm or 9mm, 16mm, 28mm. etc.
The amount of magnification varies from lens to lens depending on the design. primes are the easiest to use. The tubes come in sets of three so you can vary the magnification.