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Author Topic: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L  (Read 14122 times)

Zv

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #15 on: April 12, 2013, 08:42:43 PM »
If you have the space go for the 135L, the look from that lens is just incredible. Great for headshots.

85 1.8 is also a great lens, very sharp and on a FF kinda gives a more standard look. Prob good for full length or 3/4 portraits. However this lens doesn't perform well with any kinda backlight. You will notice strong purple fringing at the wider apertures. Somewhere around f/4 that goes away. But then why not just buy a 70-200 f/4L IS if you're using it at f/4 or narrower? Plus you get the ability to zoom to 135 if needed.

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #15 on: April 12, 2013, 08:42:43 PM »

Roger Jones

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #16 on: April 12, 2013, 09:03:01 PM »
The 85 is a great value and has excellent IQ. The 135 is in a league of its own, it seems to have magical properties. Get both, you'll enjoy using both and find unique opportunities for each one. If you are constrained by your budget start with the 85 then get the 135 when you can afford it.

Chosenbydestiny

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2013, 09:16:59 PM »
For full frame you'll want both eventually, the 85mm is a great start but if you have the space to work with and can afford it, I like the "character" of the 135L better than the 85mm 1.8.
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JonB8305

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #18 on: April 12, 2013, 09:22:11 PM »
I kinda want to build up an L collection so you guys haven't made this easy on my pockets  :P

JonB8305

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #19 on: April 12, 2013, 09:23:25 PM »
I replaced my 70-200 f2.8 IS II with a standard zoom and decided to buy the 85 f1.8 to have something in the telephoto range. I wasn't impressed: there was CA, non-rounded bokeh when not wide open, and it wasn't even close to as sharp as the 70-200. Of course, that's comparing a $350 lens with a $2000 one, but still, I wasn't impressed. I returned the 85.

My vote goes to the superior 135L. Or, if money is no object, just get the 70-200 f2.8 IS II. :)

Money is definitely an object or I would've gotten the 24-70 70-200 f/2.8 combo and called it a day.

Zv

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #20 on: April 13, 2013, 12:56:38 AM »
I bought my 135L used, was in mint condition but saved about $150 maybe more.

I was a bit let down by the 85mm 1.8, sharpness isn't everything. It's an old design and it does show in terms of aberations. I wonder does the Sigma do the same?

If space is really tight maybe the 50 1.4 would be better? Do you need shallow dof in a studio anyway?
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nWmR12

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #21 on: April 13, 2013, 02:49:29 AM »
If you are in studio and have limited space then I would go with the 85 first. Even on FF, 135 is a long for indoor tight studio, in less you are doing head shots. Now if it was outside then it be a tougher decision. I still use my 85 but after the 135...it tends to stay in the bag more times than not. Although when I need 85 then it is more than welcomed.

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #21 on: April 13, 2013, 02:49:29 AM »

funkboy

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #22 on: April 13, 2013, 07:05:26 AM »
I shoot with a 6D.

Well, I have both.  Started with the 85 1.8 on a crop (40D) and got the 135L as soon as I could afford it.  The 85 has excellent bang for the buck:  fast AF, good IQ (yes, there is plenty of purple fringing at wide apertures but nothing that simple CA correction in post can't handle), not very expensive, not very heavy.

The 135L has everything I like about the 85 1.8, turned up another notch. Size & weight (& cost) are still very manageable.  The AF speed & IQ are as good as it gets.  Also it works with teleconverters, which I often use with it.  I once had a 70-200 f/4L non-IS and sold it long ago because the 135L + 1.4x TC did most of what I used the 70-200 for, and I carry the 135L anyway.  Of course that was before the IS version...

On a crop body, 85 is more practical as the 135L really enters "telephoto-only" territory.  On your 6D (& mine), the 135L does what the 85 did on my 40D (low light shots & portraits in larger spaces) and the 85 does what my panaché of 50mm lenses did (low light shots & portraits in tighter spaces).

If you've got the money, get both.  I take them both with me whenever I can.


Chosenbydestiny

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #23 on: April 13, 2013, 07:36:30 AM »
I kinda want to build up an L collection so you guys haven't made this easy on my pockets  :P

An L prime won't help you much in terms of sharpness and color for a studio shoot. In fact, you may want to consider a zoom like 70-200 f4 which is fairly cheap somewhere between the 85mm 1.8 and 135mm f2 and is also an L. A lot of my photographer friends who shoot for big magazines like Playboy use just a 70-200 f4 with their FF on a tripod for studio work. For near the price of a 135L you could buy the 85mm 1.8 and 70-200 F4 and have the best of both range, low light capability, and you'll have an L. For studio, everything else really is just bragging rights. ;) Think about it.
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Moritat7

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #24 on: April 13, 2013, 08:24:12 AM »
Why aren't you considering the 100mm f2?  I prefer it to the 85mm 1.8, which for me had too much CA wide open. It's a great lens for portraits and sports. That said, the 135mm is one great piece of glass.

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #25 on: April 13, 2013, 08:53:07 AM »
I kinda want to build up an L collection so you guys haven't made this easy on my pockets  :P

An L prime won't help you much in terms of sharpness and color for a studio shoot. In fact, you may want to consider a zoom like 70-200 f4 which is fairly cheap somewhere between the 85mm 1.8 and 135mm f2 and is also an L. A lot of my photographer friends who shoot for big magazines like Playboy use just a 70-200 f4 with their FF on a tripod for studio work. For near the price of a 135L you could buy the 85mm 1.8 and 70-200 F4 and have the best of both range, low light capability, and you'll have an L. For studio, everything else really is just bragging rights. ;) Think about it.


One of my friends used to shoot for Playgirl magazine, and he found that if he need to use his (then) 80-200mm the pictures were never popular  ::)

JonB8305

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #26 on: April 13, 2013, 10:19:26 AM »
If you are in studio and have limited space then I would go with the 85 first. Even on FF, 135 is a long for indoor tight studio, in less you are doing head shots. Now if it was outside then it be a tougher decision. I still use my 85 but after the 135...it tends to stay in the bag more times than not. Although when I need 85 then it is more than welcomed.

I guess I should further clarify, I don't only want it for studio shots, but I do want a better and sharper portrait lens than the 24-105.
I like to do outdoor shots and the f/4 has no bokeh at all, so im avoiding lenses with that aperture.

Shot with the 135 and 85 L's at a photo show and loved both of those out of all the lenses i tried. 

I rented a 70-200 once and it was pretty sweet as well.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2013, 10:23:31 AM by JonB8305 »

Chosenbydestiny

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #27 on: April 13, 2013, 12:16:19 PM »
I kinda want to build up an L collection so you guys haven't made this easy on my pockets  :P

An L prime won't help you much in terms of sharpness and color for a studio shoot. In fact, you may want to consider a zoom like 70-200 f4 which is fairly cheap somewhere between the 85mm 1.8 and 135mm f2 and is also an L. A lot of my photographer friends who shoot for big magazines like Playboy use just a 70-200 f4 with their FF on a tripod for studio work. For near the price of a 135L you could buy the 85mm 1.8 and 70-200 F4 and have the best of both range, low light capability, and you'll have an L. For studio, everything else really is just bragging rights. ;) Think about it.


One of my friends used to shoot for Playgirl magazine, and he found that if he need to use his (then) 80-200mm the pictures were never popular  ::)

Well, the original post clearly asks for two focal lengths that actually fall into your friend's unpopular range, if you were listening. ;) He seems smart enough to know what he wants, I'm sure you're aware that distortion from wider lenses aren't normally welcome for studio portraits, editorials, product shoots, etc. I was merely adding the idea of a complete solution that would give him everything for the price of the largest stretch of his budget. The 85mm gives creamy bokeh from the correct distance, is more compact than the 135mm and is just as good for portraits. It gets the job done. The difference in focal length is also not as big as most may think. Very similar characteristics despite the somewhat better color saturation on the 135L. But you can blur someone's ears away with both portrait lenses. ;) With the 70-200, he'll have that L glass he craves, for industry standard studio work in the most popular studio lengths and the utility for wherever else he might need it. I own, or have owned all of the above. The 135L is a wonderful lens, but you really have to make sure you always have the shooting room from that range on up. It is why professionals designate it as a headshot lens, and a good candid lens for events. With enough room and an unlimited choice of spots to shoot from, it can do everything. Unfortunately that's not how the real world works, so having something somewhat wider around can save you. Also, keep in mind that there is a focus limiter. There's a chance you'll forget about it when shooting a full body shot and coming in for close ups, a mistake that can cost you a good shot. If bokeh is all the OP is really after, the 85mm 1.8 bokeh is quite good on full frame, the 135mm is better, but not 3x the price better. Remember that bokeh isn't everything, lights and reflectors separate you from the typical bokeh look. Any lazy amateur can shoot bokeh all day long. A master of light manipulation will not rely solely on bokeh shots, be versatile. When shooting portraits in most cases, It's easier to move forward than it is to back away. 85mm is a better distance to direct and pose someone from without yelling or getting someone else to do it for you. There is a reason why these focal lengths are commonly designated to specific jobs, they just do those jobs so much better than other focal lengths. Eventually, you'll look for them all.
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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #27 on: April 13, 2013, 12:16:19 PM »

Sporgon

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #28 on: April 13, 2013, 12:30:34 PM »
I kinda want to build up an L collection so you guys haven't made this easy on my pockets  :P

An L prime won't help you much in terms of sharpness and color for a studio shoot. In fact, you may want to consider a zoom like 70-200 f4 which is fairly cheap somewhere between the 85mm 1.8 and 135mm f2 and is also an L. A lot of my photographer friends who shoot for big magazines like Playboy use just a 70-200 f4 with their FF on a tripod for studio work. For near the price of a 135L you could buy the 85mm 1.8 and 70-200 F4 and have the best of both range, low light capability, and you'll have an L. For studio, everything else really is just bragging rights. ;) Think about it.


One of my friends used to shoot for Playgirl magazine, and he found that if he need to use his (then) 80-200mm the pictures were never popular  ::)

Well, the original post clearly asks for two focal lengths that actually fall into your friend's unpopular range, if you were listening. ;) He seems smart enough to know what he wants, I'm sure you're aware that distortion from wider lenses aren't normally welcome for studio portraits, editorials, product shoots, etc. I was merely adding the idea of a complete solution that would give him everything for the price of the largest stretch of his budget. The 85mm gives creamy bokeh from the correct distance, is more compact than the 135mm and is just as good for portraits. It gets the job done. The difference in focal length is also not as big as most may think. Very similar characteristics despite the somewhat better color saturation on the 135L. But you can blur someone's ears away with both portrait lenses. ;) With the 70-200, he'll have that L glass he craves, for industry standard studio work in the most popular studio lengths and the utility for wherever else he might need it. I own, or have owned all of the above. The 135L is a wonderful lens, but you really have to make sure you always have the shooting room from that range on up. It is why professionals designate it as a headshot lens, and a good candid lens for events. With enough room and an unlimited choice of spots to shoot from, it can do everything. Unfortunately that's not how the real world works, so having something somewhat wider around can save you. Also, keep in mind that there is a focus limiter. There's a chance you'll forget about it when shooting a full body shot and coming in for close ups, a mistake that can cost you a good shot. If bokeh is all the OP is really after, the 85mm 1.8 bokeh is quite good on full frame, the 135mm is better, but not 3x the price better. Remember that bokeh isn't everything, lights and reflectors separate you from the typical bokeh look. Any lazy amateur can shoot bokeh all day long. A master of light manipulation will not rely solely on bokeh shots, be versatile. When shooting portraits in most cases, It's easier to move forward than it is to back away. 85mm is a better distance to direct and pose someone from without yelling or getting someone else to do it for you. There is a reason why these focal lengths are commonly designated to specific jobs, they just do those jobs so much better than other focal lengths. Eventually, you'll look for them all.


Hmmm.........I think my joke fell a bit flat  :(

Zv

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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #29 on: April 14, 2013, 05:14:27 AM »
@Chooseby - There is no need to use the focus limiter on the 135L, it already focuses really fast. Seems that would as you said just slow you down by continually switching. Leave it off, problem solved.

I disagree slightly by saying the 85mm 1.8 is just as good for portraits as the 135L. Perhaps stopped down but from f2-2.8 the 135L is king. If I knew I was going to be using wider apertures then I would reach for the 135L as it's sharper, has better contrast, color and very little CA. If you want a purple and green mess then the 85mm is perfect.

If it's creamy bokeh, shallow dof and awesome IQ you want then get the 85mm 1.2L but for me the 135L is better value for money ( all you need to do is take a few steps back).
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Re: Which Lens Canon 85mm 1.8 or 135 L
« Reply #29 on: April 14, 2013, 05:14:27 AM »