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Author Topic: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??  (Read 17028 times)

rhysb123

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40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« on: July 16, 2012, 07:14:41 AM »
Hi,

I've had my 40mm f2.8 STM Pancake for a few weeks now. It's barely left my camera. I love it.

I'm seriously wondering if I'll ever use my 50mm f1.4 again - ?

OK, the 50mm is faster but I reckon the IQ from the 40mm is better. Plus, there's something about the 40mm that just 'works' for me.

Basically I wondering what other 40mm users think?

(I'm also thinking about selling my 50mm to fund the 135mm L, so I need a bit of convincing please!).

Any thoughts?

Cheers

Rhys
5D mk2, 1Ds mk2, 17-40mm f/4, 40mm f/2.8, 50mm f/1.4, 85mm f/1.8, 70-200 f/2.8 and a whole load of film stuff...

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40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« on: July 16, 2012, 07:14:41 AM »

smithy

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2012, 07:38:01 AM »
Which body are you using it on, Rhys?  Crop or FF?
5D Mark III, 40D, 1V.  Bunch of strobes, lenses and other bits.
They're, their, there, it's, its, too, to, than, then, you're, your.  One lens, two lenses, the lens's aperture.

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2012, 08:11:30 AM »
I find f/1.4 and faster lenses ideal for indoor pics of single subjects (ISO 1600-3200).  f/2.8 lenses are too slow to use in dim light indoors without flash.  If you use flash indoors, then ditch the 50 f/1.4 because it gives you no advantage over other lenses.

pwp

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2012, 09:12:04 AM »
I like the reference to the 40 f/2.8 as being a functional bodycap. This week I took the family on a five day holiday down the coast, and used the non-work opportunity to run the 40 f/2.8 & Sigma 50 F/1.4 against each other. I find the focal length difference between 40 & 50 as perceptually similar to 24 & 28. Not much in it.

It's stimulating to go away with basically just one focal length. I enjoy the paradox that sometimes you need some kind of limitations in order to free your imagination and creativity. I've often traveled with just the 24-105 and loved the limitation. This time it was 40 & 50 on 5D3. As far as IQ goes, the 40 was a match for the 50 (which is a great copy) in the f/4.5-f/8 range. At f/2.8 the Sigma 50 was well ahead of the 40.

But it's not always about IQ. The 40 is fun in a weird intangible sort of way. People respond differently to the reduced mass. It's more compact and lighter on long walks and was easier for my young kids to handle. I like my kids to understand & appreciate quality. Overall, the 40 was neither better or worse, just different.

I do tend to shoot action moments with people, and on this holiday also a new breathtakingly active six month old Border Collie pup. The AF (AI Servo) was appreciably quicker with the Sigma and delivered more keepers in highly dynamic situations. In static situations the AF difference was imperceptible.

40 vs 50? I'll be keeping both lenses for now. But if one just HAD to go it would likely be the 40... f/1.4 vs f/2.8 is just no contest.

PW




nebugeater

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2012, 09:50:55 AM »
I am confused on this.  You prefer the 2.8 to the 1.4 ? 


40 vs 50? I'll be keeping both lenses for now. But if one just HAD to go it would likely be the 40... f/1.4 vs f/2.8 is just no contest.

PW

michi

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2012, 09:52:23 AM »
I don't know, I have both the 40 and the Canon 50mm 1.4.  Both are fairly new purchases, so I'm still excited about both which is probably a better comparison.  And with that said, I like the 50 1.4 better.  Now, if it was a 40 1.4,  that might be different.
I like the option of using the 1.4 in lower light, and I like how you can get even less depth of field to make things pop.  Sure, at 1.4 the 50 isn't as sharp, but it's still good enough if need be.
I'm definitely keeping both though, since the 40mm is so portable.  If you just take 24-105 or just a 70-200 for some reason, you can always stuff the 40mm in a side pocket without bulking up the bag or increasing the weight substantially.

rhysb123

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2012, 10:07:49 AM »
@smithy : I'm using it on a 5D and a 7D so I've got a 40mm lens on one and a 65mm on the other I guess.

It's a weird one to say that I prefer the 2.8 to 1.4. Personally, I find the 50mm f1.4 soft and unpredictable at 1.4 and I tend to use it at 2.0 or 2.2. When I think of it like that then the 40mm wins the battle - as it's lighter, sharper and the difference between 2.2 and 2.8 is negligable.

I think I want the 135mm L, that's the real problem! Unless I ditch the 50mm then there will be no 135mm!

Dilema!

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2012, 10:07:49 AM »

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2012, 10:47:13 AM »
@smithy : I'm using it on a 5D and a 7D so I've got a 40mm lens on one and a 65mm on the other I guess.

It's a weird one to say that I prefer the 2.8 to 1.4. Personally, I find the 50mm f1.4 soft and unpredictable at 1.4 and I tend to use it at 2.0 or 2.2. When I think of it like that then the 40mm wins the battle - as it's lighter, sharper and the difference between 2.2 and 2.8 is negligable.

I think I want the 135mm L, that's the real problem! Unless I ditch the 50mm then there will be no 135mm!

Dilema!

Softness at f/2 or wider was my experience too when I borrowed a friend's 50 f/1.4.  If you don't like it wide open, then you'll be happier with the 135 than your 50 f/1.4.  If you have something like the EF-S 17-55 or 24-70 already, then you're right that less than 1 stop won't make a big difference.  I found the 35L and 50L to be much better wide open than the 50 f/1.4.  If you're looking for better wide open performance near 50mm, then you'd have to look at the Sigma 50 f/1.4 and the Canon 35L and 50L.

Dylan777

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2012, 11:01:31 AM »
The main reason I buy prime lens is SPEED + BOKEH

This is just me, f2.8 for prime? well...not quite fast enough for me.  My 50mm f1.4 is SUPER sharp at f1.8 - 2

And if I want sharp lens at f2.8, then my 24-70 II will take care of that - I HOPE  :o

$199 Vs $2300  ;D
« Last Edit: July 16, 2012, 11:32:05 AM by Dylan777 »
Body: 5D III(x2) -- A7r
Zoom: 16-35L II -- 24-70L II -- 70-200L f2.8 IS II
Prime: 40mm -- 50L -- 85L II -- 135L -- 400L f2.8 IS II -- Zeiss FE 55mm f1.8

briansquibb

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2012, 11:14:34 AM »

The main reason I buy prime lens is SPEED.

This is just me, f2.8 for prime? well...not quite fast enough for me.  My 50mm f1.4 is SUPER sharp at f1.8 - 2

And if I want sharp lens at f2.8, then my 24-70 II will take care of that - I HOPE  :o

$199 Vs $2300  ;D

I buy prime for IQ  and low weight.

DOF on fast lens is almost unusable for non telephoto when wide open.


EOBeav

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2012, 11:30:11 AM »
If you use flash indoors, then ditch the 50 f/1.4 because it gives you no advantage over other lenses.

Aperture controls more than just light, you know. It's more important function is to control depth of field. Even if you shoot at f/2, you gain a lot of background blur over f/2.8.
In landscape photography, when you shoot is more important than where.

Gear: Canon 5DmkII, 17-40mm f/4 L, 50mm f/1.4, 70-200mm f/4.

briansquibb

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2012, 11:31:28 AM »
If you use flash indoors, then ditch the 50 f/1.4 because it gives you no advantage over other lenses.

Aperture controls more than just light, you know. It's more important function is to control depth of field. Even if you shoot at f/2, you gain a lot of background blur over f/2.8.

.... and also the far eye OOF as well  :o :o :o

EOBeav

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2012, 11:44:37 AM »
.... and also the far eye OOF as well  :o :o :o

If you're shooting in a situation where you need more DOF, then you can get there on an f/1.4 lens. If you're shooting solely with an f/2.8, you can't get any wider. This thread isn't about shooting technique, it's about the virtues of one lens over another.
In landscape photography, when you shoot is more important than where.

Gear: Canon 5DmkII, 17-40mm f/4 L, 50mm f/1.4, 70-200mm f/4.

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2012, 11:44:37 AM »

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2012, 12:10:13 PM »
.... and also the far eye OOF as well  :o :o :o

If you're shooting in a situation where you need more DOF, then you can get there on an f/1.4 lens. If you're shooting solely with an f/2.8, you can't get any wider. This thread isn't about shooting technique, it's about the virtues of one lens over another.

Yes, but if the OP is not using the it at f/1.4 because it does not meet his IQ criteria and thinks that f/2 to f/2.2 is the biggest he is willing to go, then the DOF difference between that and f/2.8 is not that great.  Is it worth it for him to carry around an extra lens for 2/3 or 1 stop difference in DOF?  Only the OP can decide that, but that is also why I mentioned primes around the same focal length that are sharper wide open.  From what the OP writes, it looks like he can get more value from the 40 than his 50, which is why he is considering selling his 50 to fund the 135.  I guess what I'm trying to say is that it doesn't do one much good to have unused lenses -- if he thinks that he would use the 135 more than the 50 given that he likes what the 40 does, then the trade makes sense to me.

briansquibb

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2012, 12:14:07 PM »
.... and also the far eye OOF as well  :o :o :o

If you're shooting in a situation where you need more DOF, then you can get there on an f/1.4 lens. If you're shooting solely with an f/2.8, you can't get any wider. This thread isn't about shooting technique, it's about the virtues of one lens over another.

Yes, but if the OP is not using the it at f/1.4 because it does not meet his IQ criteria and thinks that f/2 to f/2.2 is the biggest he is willing to go, then the DOF difference between that and f/2.8 is not that great.  Is it worth it for him to carry around an extra lens for 2/3 or 1 stop difference in DOF?  Only the OP can decide that, but that is also why I mentioned primes around the same focal length that are sharper wide open.  From what the OP writes, it looks like he can get more value from the 40 than his 50, which is why he is considering selling his 50 to fund the 135.  I guess what I'm trying to say is that it doesn't do one much good to have unused lenses -- if he thinks that he would use the 135 more than the 50 given that he likes what the 40 does, then the trade makes sense to me.

Well put

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Re: 40mm Pancake Killed the 50mm??
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2012, 12:14:07 PM »