My gear was stolen once. They took a Rebel with a 75-300mm f/5.6. You know the one. I doubt they even knew the difference. What's more, I was able to replace it with a 70-200mm f/4 L. Good trade.
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depends what you shot, how you shoot, and what you expect out of your equipment. Wedding photographers, for example flocked to the 21MP 5d2 but then were bitterly disappointed by the AF, slow shooting, camera lag, etc... It was a good camera but many things kept it from being a great camera or even exceptional camera. The situation got even worse with the intro of the 7d with features the 5d2 crowd was drooling over but had to downgrade sensors to get. The 5d3 added everything the 5d2 was lacking. Now the 5d3 camera is what everyone wanted the 5d series to be... a great all around camera that can do what you want when you want it without any compromises. For a landscape shooter, you may not find it as appropriate as others, but to others that have been struggling and limping along with the 5d2 for the last few years, this is a dream come true.
Yeah, but it is inexpensive and is missing that red ring, so it gets bashed a lot, thus it is worth defending. For every photographer that is actually using the improved capabilities of the f1.2, there are probably at least a dozen who buy it more for social or image reasons.
And if you don't make your living shooting wide open, but you still need/want that creamy bokeh, then it makes more sense to go with the Sigma 50/1.4. I tried comparing some images from the 7D+Sigma50/1.4 (that I used to have) and 5D2+85/1.8 and I can't decide which combo produces cremier background blur ... probably Sigma, but 85/1.8 is sharper .
But, I wouldn't call it an incremental upgrade, either - in the case of the 50L, it's just that the 'upgrade' you're getting isn't something that is readily measured in a test and plotted on a graph, you're paying for the smooth, creamy bokeh that the 50/1.4 just cannot deliver.
The "L" lenses are overkill for a 50D, but a FF body with just a 50mm f/1.4 is going to be disappointing. Save up until you can buy a camera with lenses.