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Author Topic: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?  (Read 8120 times)

willrobb

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2011, 07:10:38 AM »
For shooting landscapes, any prime lens will perform excellently on the 5Dm2, L or no-L.

For shooting everything else, there's basically three groupings:

1) The cheapies, being the 135/2.8, the 50/1.8, the 35/2, the 28/2.8 and the 24/2.8. These are great, but have loud autofocuses and aren't comparatively fast. They are tiny and inexpensive, though, and (so long as you're not too concerned about bokeh) all have totally powerful optics, easily outperforming any zoom.

2) The mid-range, being the 100/2, the 85/1.8, the 50/1.4, the 28/1.8, and the 20/2.8. These autofocus silently, quickly, and in general have nicer build qualities, but on the flip side they halate wide open and are known for chromatic aberrations. However, shooting to avoid those situations, they take stunning photos.

3) The high range, being any L prime. These all provide knock-your-socks-off performance wide open, and as such are the best things out there for photographing anything involving people. Their only issue is that stopping them down beyond f/4-ish (depending on which lens) actually hurts image quality, so as a solution, don't stop them down :)

Hopefully this helps! I've actually used about 80% of Canon's primes, so these observations are based mostly on my own experiences.

Brilliant advice here from branden, it's always good to listen to someone who has used the lens and knows the pro's and the cons of each lens.

A lot of people are talking about the 50mm F1.4 prime with great reason, for the price and the quality of images you get it really is a lens anyone should have in their kit bag. Great for portraits and not half bad for landscapes either.

Someone mentioned the 17-40mm F4L for landscapes, it is an L lens, but pretty damn cheap these days and brilliant for landscapes. Anytime I travel I always have it packed, nice and light for an L lens as well.


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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2011, 07:10:38 AM »

Gothmoth

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #16 on: November 29, 2011, 07:28:57 AM »
Quote
A lot of people are talking about the 50mm F1.4 prime with great reason, for the price and the quality of images you get it really is a lens anyone should have in their kit bag. Great for portraits and not half bad for landscapes either.

and from my own experience i guess it must be the lens with the highest RTM rate for canon.

the EF 50mm f1.4 is the lens i have the most reclamations for (defect AF).
and i don´t mean back/frontfocus issues.... i mean that the AF is not working at all.

other then that it´s a great lens.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2011, 07:32:21 AM by Gothmoth »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #17 on: November 29, 2011, 08:58:26 AM »
Photo subjects are a non-cooperative four year old daughter and cityscapes  (I live in Chicago, so lots of good architecture...

I'd recommend the 85mm f/1.8 for the 'non-cooperative four year old daughter' - I had one of those (the 85/1.8, that is) and I've got one of those (the non-cooperative four year old daughter, that is).  I swapped the 85/1.8 for the 85mm f/1.2L II, and although that's a great lens, the slow AF makes it a challenge with a child who won't hold still.  The 85/1.8 focus much faster.

Many of the responses are suggestions for landscapes, but...the OP mentiones cityscapes specifically.  The prime lenses of choice for shooting architecture are the TS-E lenses (PC-E in Nikonland).  The shift feature enables you correct for the perspective distortion you'd normally get by pointing the camera up at a tall building.  The tilt feature is also great for landscapes, as you have complete control over depth of field.

Here are a couple of samples with the 5DII and TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II:


EOS 5D Mark II, TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II, 1/60 s, f/11, ISO 100, +10 shift


EOS 5D Mark II, TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II, 1/2 s, f/8, ISO 100, +12 shift
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Caps18

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #18 on: November 29, 2011, 10:09:11 AM »
If I had a FF camera - which I don't, I will once they release the 5DmkII ;) the firt lens I'd buy would either be the 85L or the 135L - probably the 85L just over the 135L. A nice wide angle zoom would be great for your landscape shoot. SOmething like in the 10-24 range I reckon

It's the 16-35mm range on the 5DM2... anything less than 14mm will have black corners and will be a fisheye.

I have the 85mm f/1.8, and it is just fine for daytime portraits.  For indoor shots of moving people, a flash would help or a higher ISO.
5D mark 2, 16-35mm f/2.8, 17mm TS-E f/4, 85mm f/1.8, 300mm f/4 + 1.4x, 580 EX Flash

neuroanatomist

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #19 on: November 29, 2011, 12:00:43 PM »
It's the 16-35mm range on the 5DM2... anything less than 14mm will have black corners and will be a fisheye.

Shhhh...don't tell Sigma that, because they they'll have trouble selling their 12-24mm lens, which is, "Designed for use with full frame digital cameras."  It's rectilinear and while the 3-stops of vignetting at 12mm on FF is certainly noticeable, I wouldn't call that 'black corners' as it's less than the vignetting on Canon's 24mm f/1.4 II).  If you meant, "anything less than 14mm from Canon...," ok then.
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stevevihon

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #20 on: November 29, 2011, 01:17:31 PM »
Thank you every so far for your advice.  I am not adverse to buying a L lens, but was curious on whether it is a must or nice to have.  Special thanks to Branden for the concise round up and to Nueroanatomist for the tilt-shift redo. 

The reason I sold my D300 and lens was that I found there to be a lot of noise at ISOs above 640 and that my 17-55 2.8 had trouble focusing in dimly lit settings (a circus I attended with my wife and daughter where I tried to get a shot of them enjoying the show that turned about grainy and out of focus).  So, my thought was to move up to the 5D Mark II (I am aware people feel there are the focusing issues since it kept the 5D's AF and did not move up to something like the 7D has).  Will full frame be the miracle worker I am looking for in low light?  Not sure, hopefully it will be improved so I will not continue to have my "on-going camera purchase regret" I have had when I bought a Contax NX, Contax G2, Leica M7 and Nikon D300 (yeah, I got some issues with this...)

Back to the lenses -- I am willing to step up to L lenses (I think the 17-40 suggestion by Canon 14-24 is a great suggestion since most architecture does not move unless there is an earthquake), but am trying to be smart about how I build up my system since I want to break my habit of buying, regretting, selling and buying again.

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #21 on: November 29, 2011, 02:13:19 PM »
I really like the 16-35mm f2.8L II.

I rented the 35mm f1.4L and it is much more useful in low light compared to f2.8.

A 50mm 1.4 is on the way.

Don't know what'll be next. I'd really like one of those 400 f2.8 II's, but no winning lottery tickets here.

I would recommend renting a lens for a few days to try it out, unless you can score a good deal on a used one. Some say that renting is wasted money- money that could go towards the purchase of a lens, but at the 4 figure mark for a new one, I disagree.
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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #21 on: November 29, 2011, 02:13:19 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #22 on: November 29, 2011, 02:25:09 PM »
Back to the lenses -- I am willing to step up to L lenses (I think the 17-40 suggestion by Canon 14-24 is a great suggestion since most architecture does not move unless there is an earthquake)

It's true that most architecture does not move  ;)  but most architecture does have straight lines.  Straight lines and the 'massive barrel distortion' (photozone.de) of the 17-40mm lens don't always play well together.  With the 17-40mm on FF, you're better off shooting at 24mm or narrower, or if you must shoot wider, try to keep straight lines away from the edges of the frame and to frame your intended subjects loosely so the area cropped away by post-processing distortion correction doesn't cut off something important.
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FOB2009

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #23 on: November 29, 2011, 06:42:17 PM »
Don't forget Zeiss. I have the 100/2.0 and 21/2.8. The newer 35/1.4 and 25/2.0 look incredible. See diglloyd.com for reviews.

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #24 on: November 29, 2011, 08:29:16 PM »
I have both L and non L lenses to use with my 5D MK II.  A 15mm fisheye, a Tokina 17mm f/3.5, 50mm f/1.4, and a 85mm f/1.8.

The camera will work great with non L primes.  It does not have the high photosite density of a 7D, so its less demanding of lens resolution. 

However, I also use some "L" primes and they are a step up.  35mm L, 100mm L, 135mm L, 300mm f/4 L. 

I feel comfortable with the images from all of them, the 50mm f/1.4 is the weakest, but still very good.

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #25 on: November 29, 2011, 08:37:54 PM »
Weird timing for this thread, I was out and about the other day, and I saw a guy with a 1D (or 1Ds, didn't get a close enough look but it def wasn't a 5D+grip, and had no flash). With a niftyfifty attached. He took a few shots, then dove into his bag to change lenses, I though he'd be going for the L-prime after doing a test or something with the cheap lens. But then he put on a 35/2, seems he just wanted wider...
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elflord

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #26 on: November 29, 2011, 09:17:42 PM »
Will full frame be the miracle worker I am looking for in low light? 

Maybe not a "miracle", but you will have no trouble shooting at and beyond ISO 640, and it will autofocus all through its range if you use the center point, plus you will get an extra stop using a fast prime instead of an f/2.8 zoom.

In auto ISO, the 5D Mk II will go up to ISO3200, and it will autofocus quite easily there. Obviously it's not as good as ISO 100 but it is certainly usable.

pelebel

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #27 on: November 30, 2011, 06:20:24 PM »
Personally I'm a pixel peeper and I would not go for a non-L lens on my 5DmkII. But that's me. You may find that some are great for you!
5D mkII, T2i with 24-70mm f/2.8 L, 135mm f/2 L and 50mm f/1.8 II Photographes de mariage et d'évènements à Québec

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #27 on: November 30, 2011, 06:20:24 PM »

te4o

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #28 on: December 01, 2011, 05:55:09 AM »
Don't forget Zeiss. I have the 100/2.0 and 21/2.8. The newer 35/1.4 and 25/2.0 look incredible. See diglloyd.com for reviews.

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You avoid the AF issues and get an eternal built. No electronics to get in the way. And with the mega-ultra-low-light-high-iso-low-MP-high-IQ-canon-future dawning no one needs IS any more. And no zooms either... ???
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Picsfor

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #29 on: December 01, 2011, 06:29:59 AM »
I also use 2 primes with my 5D2 that are non L

one of the old plastic fantastic - 50mm f1.8 MkII
the other is the 100mm f2.8macro.

I have found the odd occasion when i can find the lens being 'out resolved' by the sensor, but in 3 years, i'm talking just a few times - and i really was pushing it to do things it wasn't really designed for.

As for the 50mm - can't fault it. I take it out 50mm days, just camera, lens and nothing else to see what i come back with. Natural light can be so much fun...

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Re: Primes to go with a 5D Mark II -- does anyone not use a L prime?
« Reply #29 on: December 01, 2011, 06:29:59 AM »