September 30, 2014, 04:02:06 PM

Author Topic: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott  (Read 18081 times)

funkboy

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #45 on: April 12, 2014, 05:39:28 AM »
My €0.02:

 - I don't have the 35mm f/2 IS (yet), but I do have an old "made in West Germany" C/Y mount Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 Distagon.  I love it to pieces & the IQ is the best of any wide-angle I own, but it's pretty heavy & completely manual so I don't use it that much.  I should probably get a decent AF-confirm adapter for it so that I'll use it more.

 - I own the 40mm f/2.8 pancake (which I got at the same time as my 6D), and it pretty much lives on the camera.  Previous to the 6D/40mm combo I'd carry around my Fuji X10 whenever I needed to just "grab a camera", shove it in a coat pocket or small bag & go, but now it's the 6D.  The IQ, movie mode, & handling are just that much better that I want to have it with me whenever I want a camera.  I had a 17-40L for a long time when I was still on APS-C, and I'll be the first to say that the 40mm focal length on a crop camera is kind of "meh"; a little too long for use the way I use a "standard" lens & not long enough to have telephoto compression or reach worth mentioning. My "standard" APS-C lens for a long time was an adapted 28mm f/2.8 Distagon.  Conclusion: if you're an APS-C person then the 40mm pancake may not float your boat, but considering the pricing ($160 refurb at the moment) it's a must-have on full-frame; if you can afford an FF camera then you can afford a panacke - just get one :-).

 - The 35mm f/2 IS has intrigued me since it came out.  Of the three new "IS" wide primes, the faster aperture sets it apart.  The size & weight are right, but the price isn't.  I might bite if I can find a refurb somewhere slightly north of $400.  It would be a nicer "standard" focal-length lens on an APS-C camera too.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2014, 06:35:53 PM by funkboy »

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #45 on: April 12, 2014, 05:39:28 AM »

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #46 on: April 12, 2014, 07:34:28 AM »
Still no correction of the incorrect IS information though.........

Do a Google search of the lens + Hybrid IS and see what you find.  I understand what you are saying and it isn't a Hybrid IS system in the sense of the system on the 100L, but most review sources refer to the IS system in the lens as "Hybrid".  From FredMiranda, for example:

"The EF 35mm f/2.0 IS USM Standard Prime Lens from Canon adds hybrid Image Stabilization (IS) to a rear focusing system and ring-type Ultra Sonic Motor (USM) for not only quick and quiet autofocus, but steadier shots in low-light conditions. Optimized lens coatings help ensure exceptional color balance while minimizing ghosting, and full-time access to manual focus is provided while in autofocus (AF) mode allowing you to quickly switch between the two as you need them."

I don't know why you are making such an issue of this, but hopefully this will help...

First, I don't see that mentioning it twice is "making such an issue".

Second, why do a Google search? Copy and pasting something that is wrong does not make it right. More confusing for many, Canon actually have a feature called Hybrid IS, but it is not on this lens.

Why not just look at the Canon press release? "Canon Standard Prime Lens with Optical Image Stabilizer: EF 35mm f/2 IS USM Lens"

The manual: You can use the Image Stabilizer in AF or MF mode

The Spec sheet: OIS box

I appreciate you are brand building, however propagating erroneous information is not a brand I would expect you to want.

The fact that you also misrepresented what the IS actually does in panning mode is also frustrating. Your reviews are very nice, your supporting images a very welcome break from the usual journalist churn it out rubbish that is so common. You know how to take a photo and you actually use the gear to its potential rather than write about what you are given with no enthusiasm or knowledge in the hopes of a promotion to the motoring division of a big publishing house.

That I am asking for simple errors to be corrected shouldn't be seen as a negative, I am trying to help and make your branding authoritative.

Thank you for explaining where you are coming from.  I can now appreciate what you are trying to say.  There are a few posters on this site that seem to love to attack me regardless of what I write.  I will further investigate both of your points and make changes if warranted.
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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #47 on: April 12, 2014, 09:42:28 AM »
Thanks Mac, I had noticed that too, it is on the press release I linked to earlier, I had just read through the whole thing and realised where some confusion might have arisen originally.

Like I said, I wasn't trying to make an issue of it, just pointing out a simple E&O.

P.S. How's that 1DX coming on? Notice much difference between it and the 5D MkIII files?

I've made some minor revisions.  Thanks for the feedback.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #48 on: April 12, 2014, 03:01:10 PM »
Thanks Mac, I had noticed that too, it is on the press release I linked to earlier, I had just read through the whole thing and realised where some confusion might have arisen originally.

Like I said, I wasn't trying to make an issue of it, just pointing out a simple E&O.

P.S. How's that 1DX coming on? Notice much difference between it and the 5D MkIII files?
I'm glad things are resolved and sometimes it's hard to express tone on the internet because of its inherent negativity and lack of cues that you have in speech and from body language. 

Anyways, I'm really loving the 1D line features and particularly the stuff added by the new firmware.  For wildlife shooting, those features are priceless.  In terms of files, the reduced resolution is noticeable when I go to crop, but isn't terrible.  I don't tend to print my wildlife photos anywhere near as large as landscapes and architecture, and I've got the 5DIII for that work.  Besides, I still remember when a 6MP shot made the SI Leading Off double truck, so I'm not too worried.  The files are cleaner than the 5DIII, especially at ISO 3200 and over, and I find that it holds more fine detail at high ISOs in particular.  I shot at 25,600 the other day and the midtones and highlights looked incredible.  The shadows were a bit muddy, but DxO PRIME did good work with them.  Also, the AF seems better in low light than the 5DIII but that might just be subjective.

Also, I agree with your comments on Dustin's reviews.  He doesn't just walk around downtown and take pictures at Noon.  He takes his time and takes real photos that demonstrate what the lens is truly capable of in the hands of a real photographer.

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #49 on: April 12, 2014, 05:14:31 PM »
Thanks Mac, I had noticed that too, it is on the press release I linked to earlier, I had just read through the whole thing and realised where some confusion might have arisen originally.

Like I said, I wasn't trying to make an issue of it, just pointing out a simple E&O.

P.S. How's that 1DX coming on? Notice much difference between it and the 5D MkIII files?

I've made some minor revisions.  Thanks for the feedback.

Thanks for the nice review Dustin!   
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funkboy

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #50 on: April 12, 2014, 06:42:04 PM »
I'm glad things are resolved and sometimes it's hard to express tone on the internet because of its inherent negativity and lack of cues that you have in speech and from body language.

This cartoon is 10 years old & still sums it up nicely:



Wow, there's actually a Wiki article on it...

I think this one's fairly accurate as well: 
« Last Edit: April 12, 2014, 06:50:47 PM by funkboy »

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #51 on: April 12, 2014, 07:35:18 PM »
I found a use for the 40 pancake as an indoor full body portrait lens.  The photo below is a full frame example shot wide open. (5D3)

I'm considering the 35 IS for this role.  I think the extra stop and the IS would come in handy.  Mostly waiting for the price to come back down after the recent change in Canon advertising policy.

Current bodies:  5D3, 7D, 550D, S100
Favorite lenses: 135 f/2.0 L, 85 f/1.8 200 f/2.8 L, 50 f1.4 Sigma, 40mm pancake, 24-105 L.
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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #51 on: April 12, 2014, 07:35:18 PM »

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #52 on: April 12, 2014, 11:53:15 PM »
Another nice review by Dustin. I do like seeing what a lens can do when it's not just shooting a test chart!

My (very much unprofessional) $0.02 ... I currently have the 35IS and it's growing on me, but I'd call it a very nice lens rather than an amazing one. 

Perhaps my biggest reservation about the 35IS relates to the 40mm pancake.  Comparing them:
- my feeling is the 35IS is a little sharper, but there's not a whole lot in it
- my feeling is the 35IS has slightly better colour and contrast, but there's not a lot in it
- my thinking is the 35IS has slightly nicer bokeh, but there's not a whole lot in it
- the 35IS has noticeably faster and quieter AF - but that's not to say the pancake is bad in those respects, so query how much difference this is likely to make in practice (no doubt it depends in large part on what you're shooting)
- the 35IS feels more substantial and hence makes you think it may have better build quality - but I have no idea whether, in reality, the 35IS is likely to be any more durable.  (In this case I strongly suspect it is likely to be more durable than the pancake, but all the same I get sick of reading statements which seem to equate weight with build quality, and conclude anything light weight is lesser quality.  Isn't that like saying something made of steel is always a higher build quality than something made of titanium or carbon fibre?)
- of course, the 35IS has a one stop aperture advantage (which you'd rather have than not), and IS (worth at least another 3 stops - which allows you longer shutter times / lower ISO)
- the 35IS has 67 filter thread, which means you may already have filters you can use on it (unlikely with the pancake)
- the extra 5 mm of width (in the focal length) is noticeable on the 35IS but again, it's not very different - and to the extent there is a difference, each has its pros and cons
- much better focus ring

Weighed against that, the 35IS is around 3x more expensive than the pancake, substantially larger and over 2.5x heavier (even if it still ranks as a relatively small and light lens in the bigger scheme of things).

So, my question remains about the value of the 35IS compared with the pancake.  The 35IS clearly offers more flexibility in that if you want to be able to handhold shots of still subjects in low light, the 35IS is way in front.  If you're subject is moving, the 35IS still has the advantage but the gap is much closer.  If you have enough light though, the 35IS's IQ advantage doesn't seem to be that great really, so if you're using it in well lit conditions, it's less clear to me whether that advantage is worth the extra cost/weight/size.

Put another way, and taking the position most people can hand hold a 35mm or 40mm lens at 1/60 second in most circumstances (noting the debate in one of the other message threads about whether 1/focal length is a suitable guide or if these days it's closer to 1/double the focal length, I'll use a compromise here), if you'll use the lens in circumstances where you want to handhold shots at shutter times longer than 1/60 second, the 35IS offers a clear advantage (and more so as you get into the 1/30 second range and longer).  Otherwise, though, you're paying quite a lot more for only extra stop of shallow depth of field ability, and a few other things which may be of limited practical value to some people (eg the better AF).

Even so, I'm enjoying shooting with the 35IS at the moment.  That could be just the "new toy" effect though - I'll see over the next few months how much use it gets.  I do agree though with person above who commented on how small the 6D becomes with the pancake on it - which is of value to me, given I tend to use this lens as a general walk around lens.

Dustin, if you have time, it would be great to hear your thoughts on what you see the 35IS adding to your kit compared with the 40 pancake, and also compared with your Tamron 24-70 VC.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2014, 08:13:07 PM by jd7 »
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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #53 on: April 13, 2014, 02:51:14 PM »
Another nice review by Dustin. I do like seeing what a lens can do when it's not just shooting a test chart!

My (very much unprofessional) $0.02 ... I currently have the 35IS and it's growing on me, but I'd call it a very nice lens rather than an amazing one. 

Perhaps my biggest reservation about the 35IS relates to the 40mm pancake.  Comparing them:
- my feeling is the 35IS is a little sharper, but there's not a whole lot in it
- my feeling is the 35IS has slightly better colour and contrast, but there's not a lot in it
- my thinking is the 35IS has slightly nicer bokeh, but there's not a whole lot in it
- the 35IS has noticeably faster and quieter AF - but that's not to say the pancake is bad in those respects, so query how much difference this is likely to make in practice (no doubt it depends in large part on what you're shooting)
- the 35IS feels more substantial and hence makes you think it may have better build quality - but I have no idea whether, in reality, the 35IS is likely to be any more durable.  (In this case I strongly suspect it is likely to be more durable than the pancake, but all the same I get sick of reading lens reviews which seem to equate weight with build quality, and conclude anything light weight is lesser quality.  Isn't that like saying something made of steel is always a higher build quality than something made of titanium or carbon fibre?)
- of course, the 35IS has a one stop aperture advantage (which you'd rather have than not), and IS (worth at least another 3 stops - which allows you the choice of longer shutter times or lower ISO)
- the 35IS has 67 filter thread, which means you may already have filters you can use on it (unlikely with the pancake)
- the extra 5 mm of width (in the focal length) is noticeable on the 35IS but again, it's not very different - and to the extent there is a difference, each has its pros and cons
- much better focus ring

Weighed against that, the 35IS is around 3x more expensive than the pancake, substantially larger and over 2.5x heavier (even if it still ranks as a relatively small and light lens in the bigger scheme of things).

So, my question remains about the value of the 35IS compared with the pancake.  The 35IS clearly offers more flexibility in that if you want to be able to handhold shots of still subjects in low light, the 35IS is way in front.  If you're subject is moving, the 35IS still has the advantage but the gap is much closer.  If you have enough light though, the 35IS's IQ advantage doesn't seem to be that great really, so if you're using it in well lit conditions, it's less clear to me whether that advantage is worth the extra cost/weight/size.

Put another way, and taking the position most people can hand hold a 35mm or 40mm lens at 1/60 second in most circumstances (noting the debate in one of the other message threads about whether 1/focal length is a suitable guide or if these days it's closer to 1/double the focal length, I'll use a compromise here), if you'll use the lens in circumstances where you want to handhold shots at shutter times longer than 1/60 second, the 35IS offers a clear advantage (and more so as you get into the 1/30 second range and longer).  Otherwise, though, you're paying quite a lot more for only extra stop of shallow depth of field ability, and a few other things which may be of limited practical value to some people (eg the better AF).

Even so, I'm enjoying shooting with the 35IS at the moment.  That could be just the "new toy" effect though - I'll see over the next few months how much use it gets.  I do agree though with person above who commented on how small the 6D becomes with the pancake on it - which is of value to me, given I tend to use this lens as a general walk around lens.

Dustin, if you have time, it would be great to hear your thoughts on what you see the 35IS adding to your kit compared with the 40 pancake, and also compared with your Tamron 24-70 VC.

I don't disagree with you whole line of logic here, which is the primary reason that I parted with the earlier version of the 35mm f/2.  It needed to be frequently stopped down to f/2.8 anyway, so the light advantage was diminished vs. the 40mm. 

Still, I do have all three lenses, and I find that the images from the 35IS are just enough "extra-special" that I prefer them.  Here is a guy that has used the 35IS both often and well:  https://www.flickr.com/photos/michael_kafka/.  His images, in part, sold me on the fact that the 35IS could do some special things.

Here's the thing:  zooms are tools.  I just got back from traveling out of the country to shoot a wedding.  I took two zooms of the f/2.8 variety (Tamrons, actually).  Both stabilized.  Between the two lenses I could shoot just about every shot imaginable.  The flexibility of a zoom means that you get the shots you need when the pressure is up.

But primes are fun.  I own primes because I love photography.  You take a little more time with a prime, and you have to think a little more, but you get images that remind you of why you love photography.  Unique images.  More creative images.  Right now at home we are slowly trudging out of winter and there isn't much to shoot.  But I can go out and shoot something simple like this old leaf, have fun processing it, and then share an image that a lot of people will like.  That is the joy of a prime lens.

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6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #54 on: April 14, 2014, 09:41:17 AM »
Thanks for your thoughts Dustin.  And I do agree with you about primes - I do find something fun about using them which I don't usually feel about zooms (although the 70-200 2.8L comes close!).  It's just that I can't quite shake the feeling the price of the 35IS is still a little on the high side when you weigh up the pros and cons compared to options like the Tamron 24-70 VC, the Sigma 35 1.4 Art and Canon's own 40 pancake.  Anyway, I'm enjoying the 35IS at the moment, so for now maybe more time spent shooting and less time thinking about gear would be the best idea!   
6D | 24-70 4L IS | 70-200 4L IS | 70-200 2.8L IS II | 35 2 IS | 40 2.8 | 85 1.8 | 1.4x mk II | 430EX II

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #55 on: April 14, 2014, 09:50:17 AM »


Perhaps my biggest reservation about the 35IS relates to the 40mm pancake.  Comparing them:
- my feeling is the 35IS is a little sharper, but there's not a whole lot in it
- my feeling is the 35IS has slightly better colour and contrast, but there's not a lot in it
- my thinking is the 35IS has slightly nicer bokeh, but there's not a whole lot in it
- the 35IS has noticeably faster and quieter AF - but that's not to say the pancake is bad in those respects, so query how much difference this is likely to make in practice (no doubt it depends in large part on what you're shooting)
- the 35IS feels more substantial and hence makes you think it may have better build quality - but I have no idea whether, in reality, the 35IS is likely to be any more durable.  (In this case I strongly suspect it is likely to be more durable than the pancake, but all the same I get sick of reading lens reviews which seem to equate weight with build quality, and conclude anything light weight is lesser quality.  Isn't that like saying something made of steel is always a higher build quality than something made of titanium or carbon fibre?)
- of course, the 35IS has a one stop aperture advantage (which you'd rather have than not), and IS (worth at least another 3 stops - which allows you the choice of longer shutter times or lower ISO)
- the 35IS has 67 filter thread, which means you may already have filters you can use on it (unlikely with the pancake)
- the extra 5 mm of width (in the focal length) is noticeable on the 35IS but again, it's not very different - and to the extent there is a difference, each has its pros and cons
- much better focus ring

Weighed against that, the 35IS is around 3x more expensive than the pancake, substantially larger and over 2.5x heavier (even if it still ranks as a relatively small and light lens in the bigger scheme of things).

So, my question remains about the value of the 35IS compared with the pancake.  The 35IS clearly offers more flexibility in that if you want to be able to handhold shots of still subjects in low light, the 35IS is way in front.  If you're subject is moving, the 35IS still has the advantage but the gap is much closer.  If you have enough light though, the 35IS's IQ advantage doesn't seem to be that great really, so if you're using it in well lit conditions, it's less clear to me whether that advantage is worth the extra cost/weight/size.

Put another way, and taking the position most people can hand hold a 35mm or 40mm lens at 1/60 second in most circumstances (noting the debate in one of the other message threads about whether 1/focal length is a suitable guide or if these days it's closer to 1/double the focal length, I'll use a compromise here), if you'll use the lens in circumstances where you want to handhold shots at shutter times longer than 1/60 second, the 35IS offers a clear advantage (and more so as you get into the 1/30 second range and longer).  Otherwise, though, you're paying quite a lot more for only extra stop of shallow depth of field ability, and a few other things which may be of limited practical value to some people (eg the better AF).

If Canon made an error with the pricing I think it was with the 40mm pancake. The lens is just too good for the price ! Canon could easily have 'crippled' it in such a way as to stop people like myself buying it; just give it a plastic bayonet mount, and that's the likes of me out of the frame.

Regarding the statement "there's not a lot in it', I'd say "There's nothing in it' !  ;)

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #56 on: April 14, 2014, 08:16:45 PM »

Glorious Decay by Thousand Word Images by Dustin Abbott, on Flickr

Very nice photo Dustin - I don't have experience with the Sigma 35 1.4 Art, but that photo looks pretty good to me!  However, I wonder if the Tamron 24-70 VC could have produced something pretty similar?  I don't believe my Sigma 24-70 2.8 could - it's just not that sharp at 2.8.
6D | 24-70 4L IS | 70-200 4L IS | 70-200 2.8L IS II | 35 2 IS | 40 2.8 | 85 1.8 | 1.4x mk II | 430EX II

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #57 on: April 14, 2014, 08:19:26 PM »

If Canon made an error with the pricing I think it was with the 40mm pancake. The lens is just too good for the price ! Canon could easily have 'crippled' it in such a way as to stop people like myself buying it; just give it a plastic bayonet mount, and that's the likes of me out of the frame.

Regarding the statement "there's not a lot in it', I'd say "There's nothing in it' !  ;)

SSSHHHHH!!!  Don't want Canon realising they've let a product onto the market that's not just a good product, but is good value as well!  Just think how depressing that would be for the managers, after all their hard work overpricing everything else in the last few years ...
 :)
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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #57 on: April 14, 2014, 08:19:26 PM »

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #58 on: April 15, 2014, 08:39:55 AM »

Glorious Decay by Thousand Word Images by Dustin Abbott, on Flickr

Very nice photo Dustin - I don't have experience with the Sigma 35 1.4 Art, but that photo looks pretty good to me!  However, I wonder if the Tamron 24-70 VC could have produced something pretty similar?  I don't believe my Sigma 24-70 2.8 could - it's just not that sharp at 2.8.

More than you might think.  You could achieve a similiarly shallow DOF by shooting near the minimum focus distance and zooming in to 70mm, but that would change the framing.  The 35mm is sharper (though the Tamron is no slouch).  The bokeh is also a bit softer with the prime. 

Still, I know what you are saying.  If you owned none of the options, I would say the Tamron is the most versatile tool, and I have been really pleased with my results from it.  I just enjoy primes, though, and I have enjoyed having the 35IS in addition to the Tamron.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #59 on: April 16, 2014, 11:59:42 PM »
Dustin,

As always, thanks for an awesome, down to earth review. You always get me thinking.

I will say I was a bit disappointed in your YouTube review. Not in the content, but in your voice! In my mind's ear, I assumed you would sound like you were off the set of Strange Brew (you are from Canada, right?) so this Southern Illinois accent you are sporting threw me off  ;D https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZCI39NWZ5g

Seriously, thanks for the incredible effort I'm sure it took you to pull this off.

Oh, I do have a question. As a fellow 6D shooter, I am curious to know if, with available light, you use the other focus points outside of the center one. Do you ever find yourself locking in focus with the center and recomposing? Personally, I am embarrassed to say that I am just starting to experiment with my other focus points.
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Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« Reply #59 on: April 16, 2014, 11:59:42 PM »