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Author Topic: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?  (Read 5187 times)

DrZin

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Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« on: September 16, 2012, 05:15:24 PM »
Hello everybody,

as a long-time CR reader I finally "dared" to create my own thread. As this is my first appearance here, perhaps some words of introduction. I got started in photography about 5 years ago. Now I still consider myself an amateur, however with some experience and enough mistakes to learn from :-). My main scope of interest is macro, event and street photography. Currently I reside in Augsburg, which is a city not far away from Munich (yes, the Oktoberfest city).
I have to admit - so far I was to lazy to create my own photo gallery, but here are a couple of shots, I've taken recently: http://bit.ly/QiISBG
BTW... sorry for my English, I'm neither native English speaker nor even German :-).

OK, but why am I actually disturbing you? There is no better motivation than a problem. Recently I finally decided to get a lens, which I was considering for quite a long time - Canon 85mm 1.2 II. With money spent and pangs of conscience got rid of, it eventually found its place on my table. I made focus adjustments as usual and went shooting. The walk ended with some not very well-thought-out shots but it was not essential this time. While considering the images on a bigger screen I spotted a phenomenon, which did not let me alone since then. It's bokeh fringing, which seems to be very pronounced, when wide open. Based on several reviews, I was of course aware, that this lens is prone to LoCA issues, but frankly speaking I didn't expect it to be such extreme at f1.2.
I did some investigation on this and also went through the pictures from this lens posted here, but after all I'm still unsure, if it should be considered normal.
Here are some of my samples, which display the issue:
- full size, f1.2: http://affemitkamera.de/temp/85mm_f1.2_full_size.JPG
- 100%, cropped, f1.2: http://affemitkamera.de/temp/85mm_f1.2_crop_100.JPG
- full size, f2.8: http://affemitkamera.de/temp/85mm_f2.8_full_size.JPG
- 100%, cropped, f2.8: http://affemitkamera.de/temp/85mm_f2.8_crop_100.JPG

Would be great, if you could take a look at it and share your opinions.

Thank you in advance!

DrZin

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Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« on: September 16, 2012, 05:15:24 PM »

Axilrod

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2012, 06:25:10 PM »
I think that has something to do with the angle the card was sitting at and the fact that you're shooting wide open with crazy shallow DOF.  I don't think it's really a lens defect, just the short hyperfocal distance and part of the letters are starting to get outside of that and fringing shows up.  It's a still a stellar lens, I wouldn't worry about it too much.
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drjlo

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2012, 01:46:29 AM »
That level of LoCA is perfectly in line with what's expected with 85L wide open.  In fact, if you were shooting brighter or more reflective surfaces, the LoCA would look much worse.  Similar level of LoCA also exists for 35L and 50L. 

If it bothers you, I suggest using Canon Digital Photo Professional software's DLO (Digital Lens Optimizer), which decreases LoCA quite a bit, along with sharper images.  Just be aware that applying DLO almost doubles the file size, so I personally apply DLO to RAW, convert RAW to Jpeg, then Uncheck DLO before closing/saving the RAW, which reverts it to previous file size.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2012, 01:48:35 AM by drjlo »

LightCrafterPhotography

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2012, 02:48:23 AM »
No need to panic. The nature of CA is such that it is more likely to occur the wider the aperture that is used. It is noticeable around highlights. The lens that you are using is the fastest lens in the world in the medium tele range, so you see more CA than with other lenses in its category.

The 85mm 1.2L II is a specialty lens. With the right vision and good hands, its a tool to make beautiful images with. It boils down to what did you buy that lens for? How are you going to use it?
« Last Edit: September 17, 2012, 03:08:35 AM by LightCrafterPhotography »

Gert Arijs

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2012, 03:35:01 AM »
It's a very annoying problem indeed... I see it in some of my lenses too. With Adobe Lightroom, you can correct this. It works fairly well, but has to be done manually (not sure if it can be correctly applied automatically). Good luck!
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Pakman

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2012, 06:00:36 AM »
Don't worry about it. My 85L II also displays the same characteristics. Consider two things first -

1) The letters are entirely black on white, so the CA is far more evident than usual.

2) Most of the CA is occurring in places that are not in the plane of focus. For example, you have focused on the "E" in "Frieden" in both shots, and if you look at that letter, there is significantly less CA than the surrounding out-of-focus letters.
Its normal for this to happen in parts just borderline out-of-focus. For example to the left of the "E" you see purple CA and to the right you see green CA. Look at the wonderful background bokeh, and you'll see what I mean. You cannot see CA there.

Hope this settles your worries. Great concert shots btw.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2012, 06:03:56 AM by Pakman »
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DrZin

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2012, 07:01:49 AM »
Thank you all! This is really great to see such feedback. It's also good to know, that there is nothing wrong with my copy. Although I still find this phenomenon somehow disturbing, I can live with it. In other words – it's relieving to not to be the only one :).

The 85mm 1.2L II is a specialty lens. With the right vision and good hands, its a tool to make beautiful images with. It boils down to what did you buy that lens for? How are you going to use it?
I bought it basically with event photography in mind. All other lenses I have are 2.8, which often turned out to be not enough, especially while taking pictures in pubs, clubs, etc. Flashgun can help of course, but its application is sometimes very limited by the location and in the long run it also can be annoying for the artists as well as the public.

(…) Perhaps you are just overreacting because your are from the most narrow minded country in whole germany :)
Could be correct but as I'm not a German national I can only say: "No idea, what you're talking about." :)

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2012, 07:01:49 AM »

K-amps

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2012, 08:52:52 AM »
Looks part of the package... Another thing... at tight portraits, you might notice some "nose" bulging of the subject aka Barrel distortion. Lastly. you need to use proper AF points and not focus/recompose with this lens.

If you can understand these issues, it is a wonderful lens... it is eccentric, but none like it!
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LightCrafterPhotography

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2012, 11:33:33 AM »

In this case, you already have it all figured out. You have the right tool for available light photography. What remains now is for you to get that vision in your images. The 50mm 1.2L is also useful for that purpose.


Thank you all! This is really great to see such feedback. It's also good to know, that there is nothing wrong with my copy. Although I still find this phenomenon somehow disturbing, I can live with it. In other words – it's relieving to not to be the only one :).

The 85mm 1.2L II is a specialty lens. With the right vision and good hands, its a tool to make beautiful images with. It boils down to what did you buy that lens for? How are you going to use it?
I bought it basically with event photography in mind. All other lenses I have are 2.8, which often turned out to be not enough, especially while taking pictures in pubs, clubs, etc. Flashgun can help of course, but its application is sometimes very limited by the location and in the long run it also can be annoying for the artists as well as the public.

« Last Edit: September 17, 2012, 11:53:09 AM by LightCrafterPhotography »

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2012, 12:38:37 PM »
Lightroom 4 will remove CA automatically, but it does not always do a perfect job.
More importantly, it will reduce or eliminate LOCA also called purple fringing.
For Example, here is a before and after of purple fringing from my 85mm f/1.8.  Its a 1:1 crop at high ISO.
Before:

 
After:

DrZin

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2012, 04:23:16 PM »
Good tip, Spokane. Thanks!
Currently I'm still using LR 3.6 but perhaps I should take a look at the newest version again. I've had version 4 already installed, but back then the release was plagued by several bugs, so I decided to go back to the proven and good working predecessor.

revup67

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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2012, 04:37:20 AM »
I might suggest also reading this excellent review pointing out the strengths of this lens and what to do and what not do.  Also note the author's mention of turning "off" electrical manual focus" if your camera supports this feature as in the 5D Mark III.

Go here:   http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-85mm-f-1.2-L-II-USM-Lens-Review.aspx

At the same web site, if you click on Tools, the ISO.. then pull up this lens on one side and then the say 1.2 version I on the other side you can do some sharpness comparisons.  Note the purple fringing at 1.2 and 1.4 and watch it get less and less as you change the F stop to say F10

Hope this helps further.
Thanks
Rev
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Re: Canon EF 85mm f1.2 II - issue or am I just overreacting?
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2012, 04:37:20 AM »