September 23, 2014, 10:30:13 AM

Author Topic: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?  (Read 7723 times)

CarlTN

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #15 on: April 29, 2014, 02:51:31 PM »
One thing telling, an excellent portrait/wedding photographer in our area, can easily afford any gear.  She uses the ef 50mm 1.4 for some fill-in shots of guests and details at weddings.  I asked her why she didn't go with the L version as she did with every other lens (including the 85mm), and she said she had tried it and decided it just wasn't reliable enough for what she was doing with a 50mm.

She mainly uses the 24-70mm f/2.8 II, the 85mm f/1.2,II  and the 70-200mm /f2.8 IS II.  And you should see how she holds a lens between her knees when swapping out!  Changes lenses faster than anybody I've ever seen.

I wonder how often she has her sensor cleaned.  Admittedly wide aperture images (shot indoors with darker backgrounds) don't show dust spots very easily, which is probably why she's not very cautious about changing lenses so much.  But I wouldn't want to buy anything she sells used, after she's done with it.  You can't change lenses "fast" without putting excessive wear on the mounts.  It's far better to just use more than one camera body, so you can leave lenses in place and switch between them.  She should do this, especially since you say she can afford to purchase whatever she needs.

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #15 on: April 29, 2014, 02:51:31 PM »

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #16 on: April 29, 2014, 02:57:57 PM »
One thing telling, an excellent portrait/wedding photographer in our area, can easily afford any gear.  She uses the ef 50mm 1.4 for some fill-in shots of guests and details at weddings.  I asked her why she didn't go with the L version as she did with every other lens (including the 85mm), and she said she had tried it and decided it just wasn't reliable enough for what she was doing with a 50mm.

She mainly uses the 24-70mm f/2.8 II, the 85mm f/1.2,II  and the 70-200mm /f2.8 IS II.  And you should see how she holds a lens between her knees when swapping out!  Changes lenses faster than anybody I've ever seen.

I wonder how often she has her sensor cleaned.  Admittedly wide aperture images (shot indoors with darker backgrounds) don't show dust spots very easily, which is probably why she's not very cautious about changing lenses so much.  But I wouldn't want to buy anything she sells used, after she's done with it.  You can't change lenses "fast" without putting excessive wear on the mounts.  It's far better to just use more than one camera body, so you can leave lenses in place and switch between them.  She should do this, especially since you say she can afford to purchase whatever she needs.
I agree that two (or more bodies is the way to go if you can afford it.  Also, changing lenses quickly like that is just an accident waiting to happen.  Her luck will run out eventually and that will be a costly mistake.  Also, as you say, dust on the sensor at wide apertures isn't much of an issue, but dust on the lens will spoil the bokeh pretty quickly if there's enough of it and it's big enough.  Not that most people would notice...
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CarlTN

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #17 on: April 29, 2014, 03:10:30 PM »
One thing telling, an excellent portrait/wedding photographer in our area, can easily afford any gear.  She uses the ef 50mm 1.4 for some fill-in shots of guests and details at weddings.  I asked her why she didn't go with the L version as she did with every other lens (including the 85mm), and she said she had tried it and decided it just wasn't reliable enough for what she was doing with a 50mm.

She mainly uses the 24-70mm f/2.8 II, the 85mm f/1.2,II  and the 70-200mm /f2.8 IS II.  And you should see how she holds a lens between her knees when swapping out!  Changes lenses faster than anybody I've ever seen.

I wonder how often she has her sensor cleaned.  Admittedly wide aperture images (shot indoors with darker backgrounds) don't show dust spots very easily, which is probably why she's not very cautious about changing lenses so much.  But I wouldn't want to buy anything she sells used, after she's done with it.  You can't change lenses "fast" without putting excessive wear on the mounts.  It's far better to just use more than one camera body, so you can leave lenses in place and switch between them.  She should do this, especially since you say she can afford to purchase whatever she needs.
I agree that two (or more bodies is the way to go if you can afford it.  Also, changing lenses quickly like that is just an accident waiting to happen.  Her luck will run out eventually and that will be a costly mistake.  Also, as you say, dust on the sensor at wide apertures isn't much of an issue, but dust on the lens will spoil the bokeh pretty quickly if there's enough of it and it's big enough.  Not that most people would notice...

Glad we can agree on something... :P !!  Joking...Yes and worst of all, is lens internal dust (you can't clean it).  But as far as mount wear goes...I was especially troubled with the 1D4 body I rented back in 2012.  It had scratches around the mount edges, where other people who had rented it, were in a hurry to change lenses, and apparently they think "1 series bodies are indestructible, lenses are pretty stout too".  I cringe when people abuse gear...And again, I have no desire to ever buy a used camera or lens, from a rental facility!!  I try to buy used gear (which is rare) that is either basically almost brand new, or from other people like me.   

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #18 on: April 29, 2014, 03:28:30 PM »
I don't have the EF 50 f/1.2 L, I have the CN-E 50 T1.3, which is based on the 50L.  It is not a spectacular lens close up.  It seems fine a working distances of at least several feet, but once you get into the MOD area, it gets soft/milky with the aperture wide open.  I've also heard billions of complaints(ok, maybe I'm exaggerating a little) about Zeiss' 50mm(the still lens and cine version-CP.2) being a junker, too.

The 85 f/1.2 L II and CN-E 85 T1.3 are both awesome.  I love the 85 L on my 5DIII.

I have yet to understand the almost obsession and reverence that people have with a 50mm lens.  I do not own one for my still cams, and of the set of CN-E lenses that I own(14, 24, 50, 85 & 135), the 50 is the LEAST used focal length.

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #19 on: April 29, 2014, 03:45:31 PM »
I've spent time carefully looking through online sample images of the two Canon f/1.2's, the 50mm and the 85mm.  Consistently, the shots from the 85mm significantly outshine those from the 50mm in terms of sharpness and contrast.  In many cases, colors seem better rendered by the 85mm also.

I own and love the 85mm 1.2, and I feel I'm just starting to hit my stride and understand its wide-open capabilities. 

But, even before the latest Sigma anticipation, I've been craving something with a bit more room that allows me to step physically closer to subjects.  I've heard negative and positive things about the 50mm 1.2, but that is true about most lenses.

So, I found as many 50mm 1.2 online images as I could, and what I'm seeing is a consistent lack of sharp center focus.

What is really going on?  Is it a problem with the lens or the photographers?  Are the 85mm 1.2 images on, say, pixel-peeper, being taken by better photographers (because the lens costs more, and, with its several quirks, appeals to more experienced photographers)?

Is the 85mm 1.2 really that much better than the 50mm 1.2?  Because, from what I'm seeing in an overwhelming number of samples, the 50mm seems quite soft even dead center.  With portraits, I want the option of having sharp eyes without having to apply too much sharpening in post, and I can do this with my 85mm even at 1.2.

Thanks in advance for any insights.

If sharpness is your thing then yes the 85IIL is a lot better. My copy is one of the sharpest lenses (wide open) I own...and a I own a few...I've yet to see a 50 f1.2 L which is as sharp as my other primes. But I've always like the images I've got from it...but it's not what I'd call really sharp.

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #20 on: April 29, 2014, 04:14:23 PM »
I have both lenses and yes, my copy of the 50mm f1.2 L is a tad soft even at the center when shot wide open while my 85mm f1.2 II L is tack sharp.

35 & 50 mm are my favorite focal lengths to use for street photography, but I use the 35 more often because I don't have as many focusing issues compared to the 50.  Though the 50 does give a very different, almost surreal "look" when shot wide open which I love.

On both my 1DX and 5Dmk3, the 50mm f1.2 is slow to adjust focus wide open on servo mode.  I know it's a lot of glass to move within that lens, hence why I'm gonna rent and test out the Sigma 50 f1.4 to see if it does a better job.
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Ruined

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #21 on: April 29, 2014, 05:21:20 PM »
To the OP, the answer to this is relatively simple, IMO.

The 85L is sharper, yes.  But it requires the working distance of 85mm and a much more hefty/complex lens, plus has slow focus.

The 35L is sharper, yes.  But the quality of bokeh is much lower than the 50L; I'd even rank the overall bokeh quality of the 35 f/2 IS higher than the aging 35L.

The 50L is sort of a lovely bridge between these two.  It has bokeh reminiscent of the 85L II, while being more workable indoors and in tight spaces like the 35L due to the 50mm focal length.  Not to mention it is much smaller, lighter, faster focusing, and has less moving parts than the 85L II.

If they cloned the 85L II at 50mm at some point, that would be great.  But currently, for bokeh reminiscent of the 85L II at 50mm, the 50L is the only place you can get that.  It offers the flexibility of 50mm with beauty similar to the 85L II's bokeh.  As no lens is perfect, the tradeoff is reduced sharpness.  But for that bokeh, that is often a tradeoff worth making when 85mm simply won't work (or is not flexible enough).

As an aside, the MFD of the 50L makes for some cool effects not quite replicable on the 85L II.  And, the 50L is weatherproofed with a filter! :)
« Last Edit: April 29, 2014, 05:30:49 PM by Ruined »

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #21 on: April 29, 2014, 05:21:20 PM »

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #22 on: April 29, 2014, 05:46:29 PM »
One thing telling, an excellent portrait/wedding photographer in our area, can easily afford any gear.  She uses the ef 50mm 1.4 for some fill-in shots of guests and details at weddings.  I asked her why she didn't go with the L version as she did with every other lens (including the 85mm), and she said she had tried it and decided it just wasn't reliable enough for what she was doing with a 50mm.

She mainly uses the 24-70mm f/2.8 II, the 85mm f/1.2,II  and the 70-200mm /f2.8 IS II.  And you should see how she holds a lens between her knees when swapping out!  Changes lenses faster than anybody I've ever seen.

I wonder how often she has her sensor cleaned.  Admittedly wide aperture images (shot indoors with darker backgrounds) don't show dust spots very easily, which is probably why she's not very cautious about changing lenses so much.  But I wouldn't want to buy anything she sells used, after she's done with it.  You can't change lenses "fast" without putting excessive wear on the mounts.  It's far better to just use more than one camera body, so you can leave lenses in place and switch between them.  She should do this, especially since you say she can afford to purchase whatever she needs.
I agree that two (or more bodies is the way to go if you can afford it.  Also, changing lenses quickly like that is just an accident waiting to happen.  Her luck will run out eventually and that will be a costly mistake.  Also, as you say, dust on the sensor at wide apertures isn't much of an issue, but dust on the lens will spoil the bokeh pretty quickly if there's enough of it and it's big enough.  Not that most people would notice...

Changing lenses too quickly is asking for trouble - having two bodies helps.

At the week end I shot a wedding with 1Dx + 70-200 and 24-70 on 5DIII - which was great until I wanted to swap the 70-200 for the 85L. Even in the heat of the moment, it's worth taking a few extra seconds to change lenses especially the rear element of the 85L so far out! It would be so easy to damage it.

 
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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #23 on: April 29, 2014, 07:01:03 PM »
I love the 50/1.2L for its look.  I usually stop down a bit, where it looks magnificent.  Actually, it looks magnificent at all apertures.  Even the slightly soft wide open look has a purpose.

privatebydesign

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #24 on: April 29, 2014, 07:47:09 PM »
One thing telling, an excellent portrait/wedding photographer in our area, can easily afford any gear.  She uses the ef 50mm 1.4 for some fill-in shots of guests and details at weddings.  I asked her why she didn't go with the L version as she did with every other lens (including the 85mm), and she said she had tried it and decided it just wasn't reliable enough for what she was doing with a 50mm.

She mainly uses the 24-70mm f/2.8 II, the 85mm f/1.2,II  and the 70-200mm /f2.8 IS II.  And you should see how she holds a lens between her knees when swapping out!  Changes lenses faster than anybody I've ever seen.

I wonder how often she has her sensor cleaned.  Admittedly wide aperture images (shot indoors with darker backgrounds) don't show dust spots very easily, which is probably why she's not very cautious about changing lenses so much.  But I wouldn't want to buy anything she sells used, after she's done with it.  You can't change lenses "fast" without putting excessive wear on the mounts.  It's far better to just use more than one camera body, so you can leave lenses in place and switch between them.  She should do this, especially since you say she can afford to purchase whatever she needs.
I agree that two (or more bodies is the way to go if you can afford it.  Also, changing lenses quickly like that is just an accident waiting to happen.  Her luck will run out eventually and that will be a costly mistake.  Also, as you say, dust on the sensor at wide apertures isn't much of an issue, but dust on the lens will spoil the bokeh pretty quickly if there's enough of it and it's big enough.  Not that most people would notice...

Changing lenses too quickly is asking for trouble - having two bodies helps.

At the week end I shot a wedding with 1Dx + 70-200 and 24-70 on 5DIII - which was great until I wanted to swap the 70-200 for the 85L. Even in the heat of the moment, it's worth taking a few extra seconds to change lenses especially the rear element of the 85L so far out! It would be so easy to damage it.

I worry about you guys sometimes. I have lenses I must have changed thousands of times and there is no discernible wear.

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #25 on: April 29, 2014, 08:09:11 PM »
I worry about you guys sometimes. I have lenses I must have changed thousands of times and there is no discernible wear.

+1

'Excessive wear on the mounts'??  Even the plastic bayonet mounts on (relatively) low cost lenses are pretty durable, although they'll wear eventually.  The metal bayonet mounts of bodies and most lenses will not wear appreciably even with many years of heavy use.
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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #26 on: April 29, 2014, 08:14:02 PM »
I worry about you guys sometimes. I have lenses I must have changed thousands of times and there is no discernible wear.

+1

'Excessive wear on the mounts'??  Even the plastic bayonet mounts on (relatively) low cost lenses are pretty durable, although they'll wear eventually.  The metal bayonet mounts of bodies and most lenses will not wear appreciably even with many years of heavy use.

+1

Plus, the bayonets are replaceable.

CarlTN

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #27 on: April 29, 2014, 08:16:35 PM »
I worry about you guys sometimes. I have lenses I must have changed thousands of times and there is no discernible wear.

+1

'Excessive wear on the mounts'??  Even the plastic bayonet mounts on (relatively) low cost lenses are pretty durable, although they'll wear eventually.  The metal bayonet mounts of bodies and most lenses will not wear appreciably even with many years of heavy use.

Oh really?  Ok, so lens mounts on Canon cameras and their lenses, are the only things in existence that do not wear when they come in contact with each other.  That's nice to know.  I'm glad people worry about me, I feel so loved.

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #27 on: April 29, 2014, 08:16:35 PM »

privatebydesign

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #28 on: April 29, 2014, 08:33:15 PM »
I worry about you guys sometimes. I have lenses I must have changed thousands of times and there is no discernible wear.

+1

'Excessive wear on the mounts'??  Even the plastic bayonet mounts on (relatively) low cost lenses are pretty durable, although they'll wear eventually.  The metal bayonet mounts of bodies and most lenses will not wear appreciably even with many years of heavy use.

Oh really?  Ok, so lens mounts on Canon cameras and their lenses, are the only things in existence that do not wear when they come in contact with each other.  That's nice to know.  I'm glad people worry about me, I feel so loved.

Don't be so silly it has got nothing to do with loving, or not, you as a person, it is about erroneous information put out because of speculation, theory, irrationality, bad teaching etc.

 The lenses are designed to go on and off. Mechanical wear is brought on by friction and the heat that causes, there is no heat generated in a 60° rotation and the friction is supplied via a spring specifically put there to do that job. Of course there is a microscopic amount of wear, but it is so minimal the lenses I have mounted thousands, if not tens of thousands of times show none and that is an empirical observation.

I remember when Canon moved the FD mount to the FDn mount, everybody said twisting the lens was a terrible idea and we'd get wear in no time, turns out that wasn't true either, and I do have fd lenses I have mounted tens of thousands of times.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2014, 08:37:56 PM by privatebydesign »
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CarlTN

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #29 on: April 29, 2014, 08:44:32 PM »
I worry about you guys sometimes. I have lenses I must have changed thousands of times and there is no discernible wear.

+1

'Excessive wear on the mounts'??  Even the plastic bayonet mounts on (relatively) low cost lenses are pretty durable, although they'll wear eventually.  The metal bayonet mounts of bodies and most lenses will not wear appreciably even with many years of heavy use.

Oh really?  Ok, so lens mounts on Canon cameras and their lenses, are the only things in existence that do not wear when they come in contact with each other.  That's nice to know.  I'm glad people worry about me, I feel so loved.

Don't be so silly it has got nothing to do with loving, or not, you as a person, it is about erroneous information put out because of speculation, theory, irrationality, bad teaching etc.

 The lenses are designed to go on and off. Mechanical wear is brought on by friction and the heat that causes, there is no heat generated in a 60° rotation and the friction is supplied via a spring specifically put there to do that job. Of course there is a microscopic amount of wear, but it is so minimal the lenses I have mounted thousands, if not tens of thousands of times show none and that is an empirical observation.

I remember when Canon moved the FD mount to the FDn mount, everybody said twisting the lens was a terrible idea and we'd get wear in no time, turns out that wasn't true either, and I do have fd lenses I have mounted tens of thousands of times.

But you said you worried about me.  Sorry just taking you at your word, I'll try to remember to not do that in the future.

It's good to know you have observed no wear after changing lenses thousands of times on the same body.  I don't plan on doing that, myself, nor do I have the need to.  And it's good to know that I can't trust my lying eyes, after seeing the wear I saw on the 1D4 I mentioned, that I rented.  I feel more relaxed now, because I know that camera and lens mounts, are a good case where metal on metal contact, causes no wear.  If the automakers could only learn this, we could drive our cars with no oil in the engine.

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Re: Canon's f/1.2's: What is really going on?
« Reply #29 on: April 29, 2014, 08:44:32 PM »