TBH: when i read your post: 5dm3+portrait+L is too expensive+ portrait @ F5.6... I laughed & wondered: Did you think spending $3000+ on the 5d3 will make your photo to be much improved? what enforced ur stance on never "lower" than F4.0?
Try to loose it out a-little bit... Shoot at f1.4, f2.0 etc.. experience it, have fun with them.. the L lense are especially designed to shoot at those aperture... the 50 1.4 & 85 1.8 isnt a slouch.. they do performe amicably well
Well, i had those primes before i had a 5D3. And buying L equivalent of those lenses will cost way more than the 5D3…and since i'm not a professional and i don't get paid for my shoots, i can't justify replacing all my lenses with L equivalent.
Actually, i asked this question because of a recent shoot i did with a friend who was using a 24-70 but not a Canon so i can't borrow and well, we were basically taking the exact same shot and his image was much sharper than mine was in the eyes and i even had to do PP sharpening and still can't compare with his unprocessed.
That's why i figured maybe a 24-70 might be more versatile and sharper than an 85 prime that is so old in design.
So are there actually any portrait photographers who actually use a 24-70 for shoots?
Maybe i should give an example of what i mean..
This was shot at F4 and focus was on the eye on the right…but..it's not sharp IMO…