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Author Topic: 85L or 135L?  (Read 24894 times)

Quasimodo

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #30 on: July 17, 2013, 06:15:18 PM »
I am also interested in the 85L so just a quick question. How slow / fast is the focusing as compared to the 50mm f/1.4?

Let say focus speed on 50mm f1.4 is 5, then I would say 85L II is somewhere 3.8 - 4. However, if you go from infinity to closeup, then is it -5.

Thanks for the info.  :) but -5 ... good god!

Hi JR, My tuppence worth for what it's worth.

The 85f/1.2 L II is a bit of a "specialist" Lens, Portrait I suppose is it's mainstay, but I'm not sure I agree with everyone re the "Tardy" autofocus performance in it's entirety, is it slower than the 135f/2 ?? Yes, but most Lenses are.

When I used to shoot it on the 1DMKIV & 5DMKII I would agree, it was slow, noticeably so, but I now shoot it on the 1Dx and the 5DMKIII and I don't see that much difference to say my 50f/1.2 L.

What the 85f/1.2 L II will do though is produce, SHARP SHARP Images at f/1.2 to f/2 with amazing Bokeh, nothing I have in my Lens bag can compare.

But, like any of the f/1.2, f/1.4, f/2 Lenses, it requires attention to detail, these aren't Gun & Run Lenses, having said that, in December 2012 I used the 85f/1.2 L II shooting "Snow Monkeys" in Nagano Japan, Huge Snow Falls, no protection (This is not a sealed Lens), on both the 5DMKIII & 1Dx, and I am totally Happy with the Images that came from the 3 days of shooting Wildlife in the Snow, not the Lenses normal use.

I used the 135f/2 during the same period, again, this also is not a sealed Lens, and although the 135f/2 was great, the Images from the 85 were a step better.

Thanks for the info. The reason that I sought this information is because my favorite "subject" are my two daughters who are still only when fast asleep. I don't want to end up frustrated with a fast prime only to OOF shots. I guess I need to postpone my purchase till my daughters grow up a bit more / calm down a little bit  :)

Cheers ... J.R.

LOL, you should definitely buy the 135 :)
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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #30 on: July 17, 2013, 06:15:18 PM »

mackguyver

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #31 on: July 31, 2013, 09:44:47 AM »
LOL, you should definitely buy the 135 :)
+1 and even with the 135 kids are tough to shoot!
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Vossie

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #32 on: August 01, 2013, 02:50:34 PM »
LOL, you should definitely buy the 135 :)
+1 and even with the 135 kids are tough to shoot!
LOL  ;)

Indeed, with the 85L you won't get them sharp unless you stop down quite a bit (and in that case why would you get the 1.2 i.s.o. the 1.8). Focus is not only slow, but (when used more open than f2) also needs to be very precise. With one-shot focus speed is reasable, but with the tiny DoF (especially when used at <~4 meters), a slight movement of the head will mean an out of focus shot. Same with focus-recompose (you really need to focus on the eyes and not on the middle of the face). With Servo AF, focus is hunting quite a bit and difficult to have high keeper-rates.

I have not owned a 135L (it is high on my wish list), but I believe its AF is miles faster. For indoor use it may be a tad long though.
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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #33 on: August 01, 2013, 04:54:48 PM »
i just like the 85L

bholliman

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #34 on: August 01, 2013, 05:39:58 PM »

The 135L has better bokeh than the 70-200II and It shows of you have big highlights in the BG. It's so good I haven't had a need for a 85mm and my 50L provides me the atmosphere If I want it. My only gripe is that sony has a F/1.8 version and IS...  :P (Anytime now canon for a version II)

Its all personal preference, but I find the 85mm focal length doesn't fit well into my system of primes.

+1

I own a 70-200 II, but my 135L gets more use.  I prefer the bokeh and color rendition.  The 70-200 is a suburb lens, but the 135 might be better, albeit not as flexible being a prime.

Personally, I am happy with currently collection of primes:  35L, 50 1.4, 85 1.8 and 135L and don't see enough benefit to the 85L to add it to my list of lenses to acquire.  I tend to use my 135 the most of my primes with the 35/50 my next favorite focal lengths.  Each photographer will have their own "right" answer to this question.

« Last Edit: August 01, 2013, 05:42:33 PM by bholliman »
Bodies:  6D, EOS-M (22/2 and 18-55)
Lenses: Rokinon 14mm 2.8, 35mm 2.0 IS, 85mm 1.8, 100mm 2.8L IS Macro, 135mm 2.0L, 24-70mm 2.8L II, 70-200mm 2.8L IS II, Extenders: EF 1.4xIII, EF 2xIII ; Flash: ST-E3-RT, 600EX-RT (x3)

TommyLee

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #35 on: August 01, 2013, 07:28:46 PM »
earlier I said  ...with a few details...
that you could get the 135L AND a Sigma 35mm f1.4  ...... for the price of the 85L II (which I do love...)
well if you got the Canon 135 f2 USED  you could get.............................

a USED 135 f2, - beautiful with good reach and extendable to 190 with a 1.4x TC
a new Sigma 35 f1.4 - top of the performance heap
...and a used 85 f1.8  - a close performer-competitor of 85L f1.2...faster to focus

...all for  the price of a NEW 85 f1.2L II ......
close enough in price .... to call an even exchange... IMO

three lenses 35, 85 and 135...
fast, famous, well-performing glass
covering a wide and popular range...

I can speak for all the lenses except the 85 non-L ...just relying on comments and test results

what I say again is that the 85 L  is wonderful but too spendy and specialized - IMO - when compared to some great high-performing alternative sets of lenses

.....................................................NOW.............................

all that said ....and re-reading BECKSTORY post...  MONEY ASIDE

I say
just add the ....ethereal, magical.... 85mm f1.2L II  .....  and end this quest....

it is different.... the others are NOT of the same planet...
I know you waited for this to finally get said....

I like the 85L wideopen or .....usually below f1.4..
there..... it is special.... and there it .... welcomes the companionship of Sigma 35 f1.4....
others stay at home that day............... ok maybe the 14L sneaks a ride ....

but in the weak light........ those two rule IMO

you have to get out just before sunrise ...in a city.....to see what I mean


TOM
« Last Edit: October 27, 2013, 05:48:36 PM by TommyLee »

sdsr

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #36 on: August 01, 2013, 10:37:09 PM »
What about the Rokinon 85mm 1.4?  I really don't know much about it, but it's got great reviews online from users (online sellers like Amazon, etc.).

Does anyone have any experience with this lens?  For only 250 bucks...dang.  How good could it be?  I'm interested.

I briefly owned it when I had a Pentax K-5; the Pentax mount has a focus-confirmation chip, and so does the Nikon but not the Canon (I think, at any rate).  So the Canon mount may perform a bit differently.  If it doesn't, and if the copy I bought was typical (it performed much the same way as - dare I mention him - Ken Rockwell's review describes), be prepared for a rather frustrating focusing experience (as you doubtless know, it's manual focus only).  Sometimes the camera would "confirm" focus, but the photo would show otherwise; at other times it would be just fine.  Focusing at infinity was almost always a gamble.  Maybe it's fine if you use live view, but I gave up, returned mine, and switched to Canon a couple of months later; one of my first purchases was the 85mm 1.8 - a vastly more pleasant experience in every way (as are the Sigma 85 f/1.4 and Canon 85 L, both of which I've rented but don't yet own). 

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #36 on: August 01, 2013, 10:37:09 PM »

mackguyver

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #37 on: August 02, 2013, 03:47:11 PM »
Some more thoughts on this topic.  If I was just going to shoot relatively static people shots, I would go for the 85 about 90% of the time.  It's focal length is more versatile for portraits IMHO.  You can get head shots, full body shots, and everything in between by standing within about 15 feet of the subject on a FF.  The perspective is right for all of the shots.  The 135 on the other hand can do the same, but will require you to stand quite a bit further back, which can be a problem indoors or in tight spots.  The perspective is also a bit stronger, but both are natural. 

Personally, I will grab the 135 for head shots, outdoor work, events, or anytime people will be moving.  I take the 85 for just about every other portrait situation. 

If portraits aren't something you do a whole lot, the 70-200 f/2.8IS II is your best choice.  It's almost as good as both of these lenses in terms of shallow DOF and bokeh (for most purposes), and as good or better than either one in all aspects other than size and cost.
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Shield

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #38 on: September 06, 2013, 02:36:05 PM »

The 135L has better bokeh than the 70-200II and It shows of you have big highlights in the BG. It's so good I haven't had a need for a 85mm and my 50L provides me the atmosphere If I want it. My only gripe is that sony has a F/1.8 version and IS...  :P (Anytime now canon for a version II)

Its all personal preference, but I find the 85mm focal length doesn't fit well into my system of primes.

+1

I own a 70-200 II, but my 135L gets more use.  I prefer the bokeh and color rendition.  The 70-200 is a suburb lens, but the 135 might be better, albeit not as flexible being a prime.

Personally, I am happy with currently collection of primes:  35L, 50 1.4, 85 1.8 and 135L and don't see enough benefit to the 85L to add it to my list of lenses to acquire.  I tend to use my 135 the most of my primes with the 35/50 my next favorite focal lengths.  Each photographer will have their own "right" answer to this question.

I have a similar set of lenses; I use the Sigma 35 1.4, Canon 85 1.8, 70-200 II, and recently re-purchased the 135L.  Why?  It's light (compared to the 70-200) and 1 stop faster.  I don't shoot weddings, but the 85 1.8 I shoot all day @ F/2.2 and it's just flat out amazing - very light, fast AF, and any problems can be quickly fixed in Lightroom.  It's one of my favorite lenses.  My vote, get the 135/2 + the 85 1.8.

shashinkaman

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #39 on: September 09, 2013, 02:25:45 AM »
Alright everyone, I shoot portraits and weddings and here are my current lenses which I use on my 5DM3:

24-105 (great kit lens, but I might sell it)
24-70 f2.8 MK2
50 f1.4
(Sigma) 12-24 - some people don't like this, but I think I got a good copy
70-200 f2.8 MK2

I'm trying to find a reason to buy either the 85mm or 135mm.  Which should I buy?  I know I have that length covered, but they're such celebrated primes that I'd just learn to zoom with my feet more and I know my results would be good.

So, here's my question.  Both are very well-loved in the photog world, especially with portrait shooters.  Which should I get?  Or, should I be considering another prime altogether?

Thanks in advance!



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pwp

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #40 on: September 09, 2013, 06:38:58 AM »
I owned the 135 but got rid of it before getting my 70-200 IS II... Isn't it true that the 70-200 IS II sharpness/bokeh  comes so close to the 135mm that the 135mm isn't really a noticeable improvement over it? 
I'm with you most of the way on this. My agreeably sweet 135 f/2 is for sale due to lack of use. The 70-200 f/2.8isII is my go-to lens in this focal range. The files are awesomely sharp wide open, there's the undeniable  flexibility of the zoom and let's not forget the IS advantage.

However the barely worth mentioning, very minor disadvantage of the 70-200 is the bokeh. While it is rather good, is not in the same class as the other lenses being discussed here.

But hell, I don't shoot bokeh, I shoot my subjects and that's where the attention is 100%. Bokeh-Schmoka!

-PW

Pi

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #41 on: September 09, 2013, 09:57:58 AM »
I owned the 135 but got rid of it before getting my 70-200 IS II... Isn't it true that the 70-200 IS II sharpness/bokeh  comes so close to the 135mm that the 135mm isn't really a noticeable improvement over it? 

No.

Pi

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #42 on: September 09, 2013, 10:03:57 AM »
They are both great and have about the same physical aperture. The 85L has a 2 stop advantage handheld and 1 stop advantage for moving objects. The 135L is noticeably sharper with less PF wide open. The 85L is quite heavy. There is no clear winner except for the price.

I would use a monopod with both when possible.

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #42 on: September 09, 2013, 10:03:57 AM »

Dylan777

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #43 on: September 09, 2013, 10:13:53 AM »
They are both great and have about the same physical aperture. The 85L has a 2 stop advantage handheld and 1 stop advantage for moving objects. The 135L is noticeably sharper with less PF wide open. The 85L is quite heavy. There is no clear winner except for the price.

I would use a monopod with both when possible.

"There is no clear winner except for the price." ==>  and AF speed ;)

"I would use a monopod with both when possible."==> +1
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neuroanatomist

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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #44 on: September 09, 2013, 10:16:02 AM »
The 85L has a ... 1 stop advantage for moving objects.

Sure...if the ponderous AF of the 85L can keep up with the movement.  :P
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Re: 85L or 135L?
« Reply #44 on: September 09, 2013, 10:16:02 AM »