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Author Topic: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4  (Read 2578 times)

plam_1980

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50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« on: May 01, 2012, 06:57:29 AM »
Hi everyone,

I wanted to ask for more opinions on the choice I have to make. I want to upgrade my 50mm 1.8 so I am wondering whether to go for 1.4 or 1.2. I know that the L lens is professionally built, better bokeh and faster of couse. But some reviews (the-digital-picture for example) say that the 1.2 is softer than 1.4. How much of an issue is that? How is the autofocus of both?

If I am going to use it in studio with lighting, is the extra f-stop really useful, or I can save some budget for other equipment?

On a different subject, I can buy on a bargain a lens, which distance-metering window is missing; can this be causing problems with dust entering the lens?

Thanks

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50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« on: May 01, 2012, 06:57:29 AM »

galen5150

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2012, 07:29:21 AM »
I have both and the 1.2 is definitely sharper from 1.4-2.0 IMO (not shooting brick walls and charts, just real life).  If sharpness is the most important thing to you neither is the best option as they aren't known for being real sharp wide open (stop them down and they're fine).

The 50 1.2 does produce an amazing image to me.  If I had to I could shoot a wedding with nothing but that lens and be pretty happy.  If you can swing it and you really want that focal length in a prime I'd get the 1.2.

bycostello

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2012, 07:38:35 AM »
imho i'd say in a studio environment then it is a bit pointless upgrading your 1.8

RLPhoto

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2012, 08:38:40 AM »
Short answer - yes if you've got the budget and can put up with the extra weight.

Long answer - better build quality, half stop of extra speed, much much better bokeh, IMO more reliable AF accuracy, weather sealed, better wide aperture performance f1.2-f2.8, very unique color rendering, and a lovely red ring. It's worth the cash of you can put up with the price and weight.

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2012, 09:14:21 AM »
http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/01/the-great-50mm-shootout

I like this article... I have the f/1.4 and both perform well.  I can't imagine the f/1.2 is really that much better to warrant the incredible increase in price.  And I rarely shoot anything wide open as the image does get softer... so I'm always between f/2.8 and f/4 with the f/1.4. 

There are the issues with the AF USM going bad in the f/1.4.  I read that those are generally related to trauma of the lens falling but if you keep a hood on the lens at all times, it does provide a measure of protection. 
Upgrade  path.->means the former was sold for the latter.

XS->60D->5d Mkiii:18-55->24-105L:75-300->55-250->70-300->70-200 f4L USM->70-200 f/2.8L USM->70-200 f/2.8L IS Mkii:50 f/1.8->50 f/1.4->100 f/2.8L->85mm f/1.8 USM->135L -> 8mm ->100L

Dylan777

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2012, 09:23:10 AM »

I was in your situation, wanted to upgrade my 50f1.4 to L. So, I borrowed 50L from a friend and compared with my f1.4 - shot with 5D III. Hint - it was little challenge to get decent shot.

My 2cents on 50L:
1. Bokeh - is a bit better
2. AF - a bit faster
3. Color rendering - is better
4. Feel VERY SOLID
5. Sharpness - not much better

At the end....I decided NOT to upgrade to 50L. Happy with 50 f1.4.

Body: 1DX -- 5D III
Zoom: 24-70L II -- 70-200L f2.8 IS II
Prime: 40mm -- 85L II -- 135L -- 400L f2.8 IS II

neuroanatomist

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2012, 09:37:23 AM »
http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/01/the-great-50mm-shootout

I like this article... I have the f/1.4 and both perform well.  I can't imagine the f/1.2 is really that much better to warrant the incredible increase in price.


From the article you link:  "What This Is, and Is NOT:  This is the MTF50, measured by Imatest, of a lot of 50mm lenses to determine their relative sharpness. ... It is not an attempt to determine the best lens. No real-world photographs are taken. Bokeh is not analyzed and compared. Color rendering, autofocus accuracy, chromatic aberration, build quality, flare resistance, and a dozen other real-world considerations aren’t considered at all."

The 50L does not really beat the 50/1.4 for sharpness, when you average across the aperture range (it's sharper sometimes, less sharp other times, at different points in the frame).  Where the 50L wins hands-down is in those other areas: bokeh, flare resistance, build quality, etc.
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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2012, 09:37:23 AM »

pdirestajr

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2012, 09:42:27 AM »
Since the OP stated this would be used mostly for studio work:

The AF speed, build quality, weather sealing doesn't really matter. And you probably won't be shooting wide open for the most part, so the larger aperture doesn't help much either.

That's a lot of money to spend on "better color" or a red ring (that doesn't improve image quality).

IMO, I'd spend the money elsewhere.

Heck, why not get the 50mm 1.8 mk1 (metal mount/ made in Japan/ better build quality). I just picked one up off of ebay for 150(USD)!!
7D | 5DII | EOS-3 | Nikon F3 | Mamiya 645 Pro-TL

EvilTed

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2012, 11:06:40 AM »
1.2 because it is more manly and built like a tank AND it's a frustrating feck of a lens to use :(

It's my current "project" and never off my MK3.
When you get a great shot with it, it's truly great and melts like butter.

When people say it's not sharp wide open, they mean it's not ALL sharp wide-open :)
The eyeball will be but everything else starts blurring from that point to a beautiful creamy background.
It's like shooting vampires.

I have the 1.8 and have seen the results of the 1.4 on a MK3 - the 1.2 is very different.
If you buy a 1.2, it's for shooting wide open at 1.2. If you find you are stopping down to 2.0 or more, save your money and get the 1.4 or the 2.5 macro.

My $0.02

ET

rocketdesigner

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2012, 11:15:44 AM »
Hi everyone,

I wanted to ask for more opinions on the choice I have to make. I want to upgrade my 50mm 1.8 so I am wondering whether to go for 1.4 or 1.2. I know that the L lens is professionally built, better bokeh and faster of couse. But some reviews (the-digital-picture for example) say that the 1.2 is softer than 1.4. How much of an issue is that? How is the autofocus of both?

If I am going to use it in studio with lighting, is the extra f-stop really useful, or I can save some budget for other equipment?

On a different subject, I can buy on a bargain a lens, which distance-metering window is missing; can this be causing problems with dust entering the lens?

Thanks


This from thedigitalpicture.com :

    "The image quality of the Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM Lens is similar to that of the far more expensive Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L USM Lens at 50mm at the same aperture settings. In fact, I would give the edge in corner image quality to the 50mm f/1.4 from f/2.8 to f/4.0. Otherwise, the two lenses are similar."

The above is the reason why I bought the 1.4.

I just spend several days shooting with nothing but the 1.4 for a still photo short documentary. While I wished I had a tele at times, nevertheless the practice in using my feet for dollying and the great photos I got were worth the effort.

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2012, 12:04:20 PM »
I actually just bought the Sigma...
Tried 3 of them in store, all of them had front focus issues, so I figured screw it, I'll buy it and just send it in under warranty to get it fixed...
I like the filter size so I can share between my 70-200 II, and I like the picture quality quite a bit better (when it's focused correctly!)

plam_1980

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2012, 12:15:39 PM »
Thanks everyone for the input, I guess I will get the 1.4, since as many of you mentioned, for studio, the exctra cash for the L is not justified (unfortunately I live in a country where I can hardly find them + the Sigma and do tests, so I have to purchase online). I'll spend the rest of my budget for 135 L since I am doing some indoor sports for friends too.

This brings me to the second part of my question - I can get a 135 L at a bargain, but the glass on the distance meter is missing. Can this be a problem - i.e. dust entering the lens, or it should be OK?
Best

kbmelb

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2012, 12:19:27 PM »
IMO the 50 1.2 regardless of what f/stop makes a much, much nicer image. It may not be sharper but the images are superior in every other way. f/2.0 and wider are magical but even 5.6, while not at it's sharpest, still has a way of pulling the subject out and having a WOW! effect. It really exemplifies why we choose primes to me.

Justifying the cost is an individual thing. If all you seek is sharpness the 50L might let you down. But if you seek the WOW! effect it shouldn't let you down.

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Re: 50 mm 1.2 L or 1.4
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2012, 12:19:27 PM »