Archive for: review
….. The Zeiss Otus 55mm f/1.4 is the best lens ever mounted to a Canon DSLR! DXOMark has completed their testing of the new king of the primes.
“Without doubt Zeiss has achieved their goal of producing the finest fast standard prime available on the market today for full-frame DSLRs, but at a shade under $4000, image quality like that doesn’t come cheap.
There are a couple of other concessions to consider as well. The Zeiss lacks autofocus and being slightly larger and heavier than the firm’s Apo Sonnar T* 2,0/135 it’s not particularly discrete.
Despite that the Zeiss Otus T* 1,4/55 is a breathtaking example of what’s possible, and will likely go down in history as one of the classic fast standard designs of our time.”
Zeiss Otus 55mm f/1.4 Results on the EOS 5D Mark III
Read the full review | Preorder the Zeiss Otus 55mm f/1.4 at B&H Photo
Canon used to make an EF 50mm f/1.0L lens. It was big, slow and expensive and only seems to get more expensive by the day.
We recently saw thoughts on Zeiss’ $4000 55mm lens, so why not look at another $4000 50mm lens?
There are three primary reasons to own this masterpiece:
- Used at larger apertures, gives a unique look which cannot be duplicated any other way. There is no way in software or with other lenses to duplicate its precise combination of artistically pleasing falloff and its unique rendering of out-of-focus areas. If you want this effect, you need this lens.
- For ultra-low light, f/1.0 is 1/2 to 2/3 stops faster than common f/1.2 lenses. In fact, this f/1.0 lens as about as much faster than an f/1.2 lens as an f/1.4 lens is faster than an f/1.8 lens.While the ultra-high ISOs of today’s DSLRs let us capture anything in any light hand-held with slow f/2.8 or f/4 lenses, we still can’t stop action at 1/125 in near darkness unless we have a lens this fast. High DSLR ISOs let us shoot indoor and night sports that are dimly lit, but if we’re shooting where there isn’t any supplemental lighting, we need the f/1.0 to stop action in the dark.
- Subject Isolation: no other 50mm lens can isolate a subject from its surroundings as strongly as can this lens. If you can’t control your background when shooting outside your studio, this lens lets you make the background go away.
I personally don’t have the same affinity for this lens that Ken does. I have used it a couple of times and even considered buying it. The knock against buying it; is repairs may prove to be difficult. While I’m sure there are parts out there somewhere for the lens, they aren’t sold by Canon anymore and could require a lot of legwork to find.
I found the lens to be heavy and SLOW, slower than the EF 85 f/1.2L II! For me that made using the lens less enjoyable. I do agree it gives a look nothing else does, but is it unique enough to justify the $3000-$4000 price tag? That can only be decided by someone with the money who takes the plunge. Although, you can still rent this lens at LensRentals.com in the USA.
Read the full review
We review the PocketWizard PlusX Transceiver
Justin has completed his review of the PocketWizard PlusX transceiver. If you’re looking for an inexpensive trigger for your Speedlites, these appear to be one of the best options on the market. They’re $99 USD and come with a full 2 year warranty from PocketWizard.
“With all the unreliable, untried, and un-warrantied triggers on the market, having something reliable and affordable is important to pros and amateurs alike. Pocket Wizard offers two years of warranty coverage on your transceivers, and with a long and reliable background in the photographic community, you can count on them being there for at least that long.”
Read the full review | PocketWizard PlusX $99 at B&H Photo
Justin has completed his review of the old Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM. The lens is about 20 years old now, yet still finds its way into a lot of people’s camera bags.
It’s a good lens optically, the AF and reliability of the focus motor can be a bit of an issue. However, for a mere $400, it’s well worth the money.
Read the full review | Canon EF 50 f/1.4 at B&H Photo
From The Digital Picture
Bryan at The Digital Picture has completed his review of the very good Canon EOS 70D.
Says Bryan about the EOS 70D
“In addition to a feature roll-up, the 70D gets brand new technology and becomes what is arguably now the best all-purpose Canon DSLR camera available without facing the much bigger price required to step up to the full frame models which currently start at $1,999.00 USD. The 70D’s reasonable price will have a big influence on its selection by many.”
Canon EOS 70D at B&H Photo | Read the complete review
Justin has completed his review of the Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L ultra wide angle zoom lens from Canon. For a lot of people, this is their first wide angle zoom and becomes a workhorse.
I know one landscape/nature photographer who uses this lens extensively and it’s used for about 75% of images that he sells, and he sells a lot! This is a great lens for publishing and using all the time. I have a hard time recommending the 16-35 f/2.8L II to anyone other than an event photographer. The EF 17-40mm f/4L is a workhorse that is reliable and doesn’t cost a whole heck of a lot.
Justin likes it a bit less than I do, but the review is pretty positive.
Read our review of the Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L
Our review of the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II has been posted. Justin was eager to know whether or not it was worth the money over the very good EF 17-40 f/4L.
For the type of event work Justin does, it looks like he does think it’s better. Although I’d be less inclined to recommend it over its cheaper cousin if you’re primarily shooting landscape. The corner softness on the EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II isn’t any better than the EF 17-40 f/4L, the filter size difference could also be an issue for some people. However, if you need that stop of light, the EF 16-35 f/2.8L II is really your only choice in the Canon lineup.
“The 16-35mm f/2.8 L II beats my 17-40 f/4L in all aspects hands-down, except for cost. While I won’t find myself making the upgrade anytime soon, I did find the superior optics and faster aperture a boon in many situations I was in while working with the 16-35. The weight difference became less significant, and I actually mistook one lens for the other while packing my kit one day.”
Read the full review
Buy the Canon EF 16-35 f/2.8L II Lens
B&H Photo $1549.00 | Amazon $1699.00 | Adorama Err! No match for adorama.
The latest Canon midrange L zoom
Justin has completed his review of the Canon EF 24-70 f/4L IS. It’s a lens that has been pretty polarizing since it was announced. Some people loved the idea, a nice and light IS zoom and some people questioned why they’d buy it over the EF 24-105 f/4L IS, especially videographers.
I’m still on the fence, while I do like the lens, I’m not really sure it’s worth the $1400 pricetag, unless size and weight are your biggest concerns.
“I’ve never found the 24-70 focal range particularly exciting. It’s not wide enough to create an interesting level of distortion, nor so telephoto as to create a special compressed and isolated “look” to your subjects. I never LOVED my 24-70 f/2.8 L, I just used it every day. Like that lens, the 24-70 f/4L IS is a tool; one that is more than capable of getting the job done.”
Read the full review of the EF 24-70 f/4L IS | EF 24-70 f/4L IS at B&H Photo
Is this your next 35mm lens?
With Canon being slow in replacing their decade old EF 35mm f/1.4L with new technologies, Sigma has stolen a ton of hype from both the Canon & Nikon sides with the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM.
Is this the best 35mm autofocusing lens you can buy for Canon at this time? It just might be. There’s a couple of drawbacks, but for the money, I think you’d be hard pressed not to at least consider this wonderful lens from Sigma.
“The Sigma 35mm f/1.4 is the finest lens I’ve ever used from the company. It has impressed me more than many of Canon’s own primes. Perhaps some of that is a bias because my expectations were slightly lower or I was at least cautiously optimistic about this offering. Either way, I have been thoroughly sold on the lens and have given up my quest for a Canon 35mm f/1.4 L even if Canon does replace their lens soon (which they should).”
Read the entire review here | Buy the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM
New review up
Justin has completed his review of my favourite Canon lens, the EF 24mm f/1.4L II. I’ve never had anyone come back to me and say that I’m wrong about how good it is.
“One of the most impressive lenses I’ve ever used, in build and quality of images, yet I still sold it. Why? I found myself missing focus very often, this is a personal handicap, and not any fault of the lens. If you live in the world of wide-apertures and can rock a fifty or eight-five wide-open then this lens will certainly lend itself to your style and kit.”
I think this is the perfect fast prime for anyone that has APS-C, APS-H or a full frame camera. It’s especially great if you have cameras with various sensor sizes.
Read the full review | Buy the EF 24 f/1.4L II at: B&H Photo | Amazon | Adorama