September 23, 2014, 06:18:11 AM

Author Topic: 50 F1.4 durabilty question  (Read 10019 times)

Sporgon

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #15 on: July 08, 2013, 01:03:52 PM »
I'm surprised that canon used the weakest material on what was once one of the most popular lenses.

Maybe you'd find it less surprising if that statement is rephrased slightly...  "Canon used the weakest cheapest material on what was once one of the most popular lenses." 

</cynical>  ;)


Regretfully in a commercial world I think you're right.

But I still find it frustrating that one of the best optics is in the weakest package. If the 50L had similar optical qualities to the planar 1.4 I'd buy one tomorrow, but it is of course, a niche optic.

I'm hoping the mythical 50mm f2 IS will become a reality, at a realistic price.

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #15 on: July 08, 2013, 01:03:52 PM »

privatebydesign

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #16 on: July 08, 2013, 01:17:09 PM »
In the time I have had my 50 f1.4 it has traveled the world, many times. In that time I have broken the 24-70 f2.8, three times, and the 16-35 f2.8, also three times; all from drops, falls or general wear and tear rattling around in bags and loose in backpacks. The 50 has survived it all, with even less consideration than the L's, it has never been to Canon, has never lost alignment, and still focuses accurately at f1.4. It has proven to be my most durable travel lens bar none.
The best time to plant a tree is twenty-five years ago. The second best time is today.

Sporgon

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #17 on: July 08, 2013, 01:33:45 PM »
In the time I have had my 50 f1.4 it has traveled the world, many times. In that time I have broken the 24-70 f2.8, three times, and the 16-35 f2.8, also three times; all from drops, falls or general wear and tear rattling around in bags and loose in backpacks. The 50 has survived it all, with even less consideration than the L's, it has never been to Canon, has never lost alignment, and still focuses accurately at f1.4. It has proven to be my most durable travel lens bar none.


Do you want to sell it ?

privatebydesign

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #18 on: July 08, 2013, 01:51:13 PM »
In the time I have had my 50 f1.4 it has traveled the world, many times. In that time I have broken the 24-70 f2.8, three times, and the 16-35 f2.8, also three times; all from drops, falls or general wear and tear rattling around in bags and loose in backpacks. The 50 has survived it all, with even less consideration than the L's, it has never been to Canon, has never lost alignment, and still focuses accurately at f1.4. It has proven to be my most durable travel lens bar none.


Do you want to sell it ?

No  :) I have not been impressed with the EF 50 f1.2, though I really liked my FD one, so I'd only buy another 1.4, I have no interest in third party lenses and it seems I have the only solid reliable and accurate EF 50 f1.4 out there, so threads like this would have you believe!
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Jay Khaos

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #19 on: July 08, 2013, 02:01:11 PM »
I swear 50% of the "build quality" of L lenses is purely a marketing tactic.  They could have just as easily made plastic the "premium" material and dubbed it with some fancy name like "ultralight" line.  Metal has just as many downsides as it does positives, if you ask me.

I'd take a lighter 50mm over a heavier one any day as long as it's cheaper.  Hell, I'd take plastic versions of my entire collection and reduce my weight load by 75%.  While I'm at it, let me have the 5DIII in a plastic body for $1000-1500 less.

PS - What about materials other than metal or plastic.... what if Canon used a carbon fiber shell?  Would probably be way more expensive, but seems like it could be popular on workhorse lenses like the 24-70 and 70-200..
5DIII | 85mm f1.2L • 70-200mm f2.8L IS II • 50mm f1.8 II

ashmadux

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #20 on: July 08, 2013, 02:04:11 PM »
the 50 1/4 has been the wackiest canon lens ive owned. Great optics, can take wonderful pics, but i went through 3 copies that didn't focus properly (one was a canon refurb). Even now, my version- bought retail- can miss focus for the first 10 mins then can be accurate for next 20..... its the weirdest thing. I now notice some pretty consistent front focusing.

I used to walk exclusively with my 50 1/8, and have never had such bizzare focus issues.

Terrible, terrible quality control with this lens.


Ah, did i note not being to focus on anything beyond 10 feet or so...if i focus half way down the block or beyond, its blur city. wtf.

sigh this lens has been a LOT of trouble.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2013, 02:08:50 PM by ashmadux »
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Sporgon

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #21 on: July 08, 2013, 02:20:53 PM »
I swear 50% of the "build quality" of L lenses is purely a marketing tactic.  They could have just as easily made plastic the "premium" material and dubbed it with some fancy name like "ultralight" line.  Metal has just as many downsides as it does positives, if you ask me.

I'd take a lighter 50mm over a heavier one any day as long as it's cheaper.  Hell, I'd take plastic versions of my entire collection and reduce my weight load by 75%.  While I'm at it, let me have the 5DIII in a plastic body for $1000-1500 less.

PS - What about materials other than metal or plastic.... what if Canon used a carbon fiber shell?  Would probably be way more expensive, but seems like it could be popular on workhorse lenses like the 24-70 and 70-200..


I think you'll find many of the smaller, cheaper L lenses are made from plastic

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #21 on: July 08, 2013, 02:20:53 PM »

gnd

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #22 on: July 08, 2013, 02:35:16 PM »
Check the cost and benefits of Canon insurance for your gear.

privatebydesign

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #23 on: July 08, 2013, 02:44:09 PM »
Check the cost and benefits of Canon insurance for your gear.

Hey that is my F1N apart from the data back, I do have an FN-100 though  :) Used to use it for remote shooting, wow, the stuff we can do now with WiFi and remotes.
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AE-1Burnham

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #24 on: July 08, 2013, 02:57:13 PM »
Lenses are not made to be dropped.  ???

The 50/1.4 is really a good lens, it just has an out-of-date and relatively cheap build quality.
I have replaced 3 of these over 15 years, all AF-related problems - replacing it each time with the same lens because it was a standard in my bag and often would reach for it and paid for itself over and over again (I still own my 4th copy though it gathers dust these days). Today the 50/1.2L is in my bag instead of the 50/1.4 for 2 reasons: 1) weather sealing; 2) build quality/reliability.
Goodluck!
| 1Ds MKIII | 5D MKII | 24/1.4L II | 50/1.2L | 50/1.4 | 135/2.0L | 17-40/4L | 24-105/4L | 70-200/2.8L IS II | Ext 1.4 II | 600EX-RT x2 | 500 EX | 430 EX |

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #25 on: July 08, 2013, 03:37:36 PM »
Check the cost and benefits of Canon insurance for your gear.

Hey that is my F1N apart from the data back, I do have an FN-100 though  :) Used to use it for remote shooting, wow, the stuff we can do now with WiFi and remotes.

Picture was taken with a 5D2  8).
Stuff we do now with an EF50/1.4 is same with an FD50/1.4. Optically identical.


paulc

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #26 on: July 08, 2013, 03:51:27 PM »
When the 50/1.4 hits the ground while it's extended, the notches in the focus barrel can get warped out of place.  You can just push the plastic back into place which will get you going for a bit, but the real fix is the replace the barrel.  It's not impossible by any means.  Simply slipping the lens into your bag extended enough times is sufficient to damage the barrel, it's really that flimsy.

The barrel is a part that should be reinforced or made of something better than just plastic, but continuous improvement is a concept seemingly lost on Canon.  It's utterly perplexing to me how any company can make the same exact product for decades and never ever tweak it.  It's not like they're making manhole covers or bricks.

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #27 on: July 08, 2013, 04:00:20 PM »
I bought a used lens that had the same issue, back then, it was a $85 flat rate to fix it, so I went ahead and had it fixed.  Since then I've had two more which have been fine.
 
All I can say is don't drop the lens, or even bang it around in a camera bag, or abruptly collapse the lens.
I have not sold all three of my 50mm f/1.4's as well as my f/1.8's.  I have replaced it with my 24-70mmL which is much sharper.  I'd like the extra stops, but the lens was not really sharp wide open, and had to be stopped down anyway.  I use my 35mm L wide open with reasonable sharpness.

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #27 on: July 08, 2013, 04:00:20 PM »

old_york

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #28 on: July 08, 2013, 04:38:54 PM »
My 50 1.4 focus fail wasn't down to a fall, just down to sitting in the end pocket of my otherwise flawless Lowepro bag.
In a busy/crowded area, my bag (on my shoulder at the time) got crushed between myself and someone passing past me.

Afterwards, the 50 was still fine to focus at minimum focus difference, and fine to focus at infinity; but everything between about 2 and 5 metres produced inconsistent results.
A quick trip to a repair centre fixed it...but now it gets treated with kid-gloves.

Unfortunately I live in fear of another repair bill (about a third the lens' value), so am tempted most sorely to get the 1.2 L - Not because it's quicker or that it may be "better" in terms of IQ; but simply because (thanks to hearing about many other similar experiences) I crave the build quality I see in my L glass.
2 x 5D3;   7D;   24-70,2.8L II;   70-200,2.8L IS II;   100,2.8L IS macro;   20-35,2.8L;   50,1.4;   50,1.8;   40,2.8 STM;   15-85 ef-s;   Sigma 20,1.8;   2 x Speedlite 430EX II;

kbmelb

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #29 on: July 08, 2013, 05:27:36 PM »
I dropped the 24 1.4L (I) onto carpet from about 3 feet and it's focus motor and mount were damaged. Oddly Canon fixed for free.

I dropped 5D3 and 35 1.4 from 1 foot or so onto asphalt and the 35's focus motor was damaged. and the the hood absorbed most of the blow. that cost $300.

I've dropped my 16-35 II onto asphalt from about 3ft with out any damage and my 24-70 (I) from 3ft onto gravel without damage.

So I'm guessing either the older lens designs have cheaper parts or luck of the draw.

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Re: 50 F1.4 durabilty question
« Reply #29 on: July 08, 2013, 05:27:36 PM »