December 12, 2017, 12:06:30 AM

Author Topic: My experience with the new TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro  (Read 603 times)

Drainpipe

  • EOS Rebel 300D
  • ***
  • Posts: 63
  • It's all about the little things.
    • Check out my Instagram!
My experience with the new TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro
« on: December 03, 2017, 08:59:28 PM »
Overview

This will be a relatively short review, as I only have had the lens a couple days. I took some photos, and to start this mini-review I think the lens is a great product. This is without a doubt a great successor to the TS-E 90mm f/2.8. I am extremely inexperienced with tilt-shift lenses, so my terminology and other things may be WAY off. I guess I'm trying to say take this with a grain of salt because I may not know what I'm talking about  ;D

While the lens is a fantastic product, I was hoping for a lens that could solve all of the depth of field issues that are inherent with shooting macro, and I was unfortunately sorely disappointed. This is no dig on the lens, moreso that I dreamed up an unrealistic standard that I was hoping the lens could achieve. I think I can explain what I mean through a few photos.

To start, here's the copy I received:





Everything looks good. The lens is hefty, and you know it is an L lens. The knobs are supple in a way that makes them a joy to turn, especially the large tilt knob. There is a locking switch for tilt, but not for shift. Knobs to adjust tension on the two mechanisms are present, and are pretty small. Turning them all the way will essentially lock that adjustment. The focusing ring is grippy and almost too good to be true in terms of how well it is damped and the fine control you have. The front of the lens extends as you near the 1:2 limit for macro, but does not extend in a way that makes it annoying or obtrusive.

The lens' construction is part metal, part plastic. The only part on the lens that I thought felt cheap per se was the extending portion that houses the front element. I can't imagine what the lens would weigh if it were all metal, but that's one part I would change if I was in charge (ha).

Photos

What I will do is put one photo, then another of a 100% crop. Photos were processed with no changes from camera other than cropping and conversion to .jpg. Photos were uploaded to Imgur, which is notorious for poor image quality. For the pixel peepers I will say that the lens produced sharp images as long as I did my part. If you look at one of these photos and think it is sub-par, it's more than likely a result of the hosting source, cropping, and conversion. I was extremely satisfied with the image quality and rendition that the lens provided.


First, these are of some spiders I found outside. Both were with the lens at max magnification with 36mm of extension. The spiders were taken with a 270 EXII at 1/8 power. The tilt was set to the max, with the barrel pointing down toward the subject.

Spider - ISO 400, 1/200, f/13, 36mm of extension


100%


Another:


100%



Crab Spider - ISO 400, 1/200, f/13, 36mm of extension


100%


Here are some photos I took of a matchbook. These are taken with the same setup as above, minus the flash. The camera was set up on a tripod and focus was on the match heads. The first photos are with no tilt, the second group is with 1/2 of the range, and the third set is with the tilt set to the maximum. No extension was with the first set, and then 36mm of extension was with the second set.

ISO 100, 1/100, f/8

No tilt:


100%


1/2 range of tilt:


100%


Full tilt:


100%


This next set was taken at the max magnification of the lens, also with 36mm of extension.

No tilt:


100%


NOTE: These next two look like there was a bit of shake present.

Full tilt:


100%


To end, the lens can also do the selective focus that some people seem to love. These were taken at f/2.8, and the sharpness here at 100% is impressive to me.

Trees


100%


The only dandelion I could find


100%


Conclusion/End

When this lens was first announced, I thought for sure that I would be able to use the lens to selectively focus on the entirety of something like a spider, tilting the image plane so that the entire spider was in focus without the need to focus stack. Unfortunately Canon was not able to produce such a magical piece of equipment, but again that is moreso do to my inexperience with tilt-shift lenses and the workings behind them.

The TS-E 90mm Macro is a truly awesome lens. On the one hand I am torn because it is a lens I have practically no use for, but it is so well put together and made that I just want to own it because of how sharp and fantastic it is to use and operate. This is a seriously awesome piece of kit, and to someone who actually knows how to use it, it will be indispensable I think.

If you have any questions, I will do my best to answer them. I no longer have the lens in hand, so I won't be able to take any detail shots. The ones that are available via Canon are much better than I could ever do anyways :)



Canon 5DIV, 5DII | MP-E 65mm 1x-5x f/2.8 | 100mm f/2.8 USM | MT-24EX
My macro Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/macrobrice

canon rumors FORUM

My experience with the new TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro
« on: December 03, 2017, 08:59:28 PM »

Click

  • Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS
  • *
  • Posts: 9558
Re: My experience with the new TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro
« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2017, 09:04:27 PM »
Thank you for this review.  8)

neuroanatomist

  • CR GEEK
  • ************
  • Posts: 21818
Re: My experience with the new TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2017, 10:53:04 PM »
Thanks for the first-impressions review!

When this lens was first announced, I thought for sure that I would be able to use the lens to selectively focus on the entirety of something like a spider, tilting the image plane so that the entire spider was in focus without the need to focus stack. Unfortunately Canon was not able to produce such a magical piece of equipment, but again that is moreso do to my inexperience with tilt-shift lenses and the workings behind them.

The thing is, it was pretty much not going to happen for two reasons.  First, the longer the focal length the more tilt you need.  Second, and more importantly in this case, the closer the subject the more tilt you need.  For example, at the MFD for the TS-E 90L Macro, sufficient tilt of the image plane so the entire spider was in focus (i.e. so the plane of best focus is oriented a full 90° relative to the sensor) would require ~40° of tilt applied to the lens...but the maximum tilt available is 10°. 
EOS 1D X, EOS M2, lots of lenses
______________________________
Flickr | TDP Profile/Gear List

Mt Spokane Photography

  • Canon EF 5-1500mm f/1.0L IS
  • ***********
  • Posts: 13744
Re: My experience with the new TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro
« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2017, 11:57:42 PM »
It is not going to me different from the old lens, except closer focusing.  For macro shots, your DOF will be greater due to tilt, but only by a small amount.  I am waiting for some 135mm reviews.

Drainpipe

  • EOS Rebel 300D
  • ***
  • Posts: 63
  • It's all about the little things.
    • Check out my Instagram!
Re: My experience with the new TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2017, 12:01:42 AM »
Thanks for the first-impressions review!

When this lens was first announced, I thought for sure that I would be able to use the lens to selectively focus on the entirety of something like a spider, tilting the image plane so that the entire spider was in focus without the need to focus stack. Unfortunately Canon was not able to produce such a magical piece of equipment, but again that is moreso do to my inexperience with tilt-shift lenses and the workings behind them.

The thing is, it was pretty much not going to happen for two reasons.  First, the longer the focal length the more tilt you need.  Second, and more importantly in this case, the closer the subject the more tilt you need.  For example, at the MFD for the TS-E 90L Macro, sufficient tilt of the image plane so the entire spider was in focus (i.e. so the plane of best focus is oriented a full 90° relative to the sensor) would require ~40° of tilt applied to the lens...but the maximum tilt available is 10°.

Right, and now after actually using it this makes more sense. I can dream of a day when lenses bend physics to my ideals ;D

Most of the time though I wouldn’t necessarily need 90°, more like 60-70°. I know this is still not feasible, but man would that be cool. I think I just need to learn how to focus stack!

It is not going to me different from the old lens, except closer focusing.  For macro shots, your DOF will be greater due to tilt, but only by a small amount.  I am waiting for some 135mm reviews.


I see. This may be a good time to pick up an old 90mm to use with tubes if I really wanted to.
Canon 5DIV, 5DII | MP-E 65mm 1x-5x f/2.8 | 100mm f/2.8 USM | MT-24EX
My macro Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/macrobrice

canon rumors FORUM

Re: My experience with the new TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2017, 12:01:42 AM »