85mm: Which one to buy used now to hold value for resale when RF comes out?

Which EF-mount 85mm will have the best resale value in 16-24 months?

  • Canon 85mm f1.2L II

  • Canon 85mm f1.4L IS USM

  • Sigma 85mm f1.4 EX DG HSM (Non-Art)

  • Something Else

  • Don't Buy an 85mm, You've Got the 50mm 1.2 and 24-70 2.0 Coming


Results are only viewable after voting.

Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
3,879
433
All makes sense. At these price points you have to be really happy with stuff to make the purchase feel right, you know? I got the control ring adapter with my EOS R but I may end up returning it. I think I'll be okay with my RF lenses for the time being. I'll hold out either for an 85mm or a potential 70-135 or 70-105 f2.0 portrait zoom. Not like I depend on this for income and a fast 50 and 28-70 are going to be juuuuuuuuust fine.

There's even a part of me thinking of returning my body-only kit and getting the one with the kit lens just to have something else. Is that a terrible idea?
I love my fast primes and don’t like anything slower than f2.0, so I wouldn’t spend money on a f4 zoom, BUT this is very subjective and personal. I know a couple of people who has built a very solid business just using the 24-105 and couldn’t live with a prime.

Me and zooms? Nope, well, it had to be the 28-70 in that case...
 

Act444

EOS 6D MK II
May 4, 2011
952
68
Have you thought about the 85 1.8? If you want to take the smallest hit on resale - a used 85 1.8 would seem like the way to go - if you MUST have a 85mm lens that is. Might be able to pick one up for < $300 actually.

As for the Ls...I had the 85 1.2 and ended up trading it in for the 85 1.4 IS. The latter is better basically in every way except aperture...
 

eyeheartny

EOS R | 50 1.2 RF
Sep 3, 2018
56
32
Have you thought about the 85 1.8? If you want to take the smallest hit on resale - a used 85 1.8 would seem like the way to go - if you MUST have a 85mm lens that is. Might be able to pick one up for < $300 actually..
What makes you bring up the "must have" aspect? Do you think there are other short-tele lengths that are more versatile and that have really outstanding lens options?

I think I'm going to rent the 85 1.2 and 85 1.4 in a month or so and see how I like them both. I'll have my 50 1.2 by then. If I love one, I'll get it, but I may very well decide that with the 28-70 on its way to me in early December, I can wait for the RF 85mm or an RF short-tele/portrait zoom sometime next year or early 2020.

Also, the used 85 1.8s go for only about $20 less than brand new ones.

As for the Ls...I had the 85 1.2 and ended up trading it in for the 85 1.4 IS. The latter is better basically in every way except aperture.
So what's your sense as to why some folks still claim the 1.2 is better in those intangible ways-- rendering, or focus falloff, or other things? Is it pure placebo/hype?
 

Act444

EOS 6D MK II
May 4, 2011
952
68
What makes you bring up the "must have" aspect? Do you think there are other short-tele lengths that are more versatile and that have really outstanding lens options?
Honestly it is a matter of taste, whichever you prefer. I have the 100 f2, which is the "sister lens" of the 85 1.8. I originally got it for maximum reach ability in a compact lens but also, perspective-wise, there are subtle differences between 85 and 100. Probably most noticeable if you shoot headshots of people...100 has a slightly more compressive (flattening) FOV. Remember too that lenses like the 24-105 and 70-200 cover 85mm...flexibility in exchange for (typically) resolution and rendering.


Also, the used 85 1.8s go for only about $20 less than brand new ones.
Wow, I've found WAY better deals than that in the past. Even my local store sold used ones for about a $50 discount. If you're willing to do EBay, you may be able to get up to $100 off vs. new.



So what's your sense as to why some folks still claim the 1.2 is better in those intangible ways-- rendering, or focus falloff, or other things? Is it pure placebo/hype?
Again, taste. Some swear by the 1.2 look which honestly is unique and can make photos stand out from the crowd. Personally, while I loved the look at 1.2, I generally found the AF unreliable, particularly with outer points...which limited its usefulness to me. The 1.4 IS version was a no-brainer for me, especially since the IS would make it workable on the 5DSR handheld. And it's got the resolution to go with it, too (unlike the 1.2 version)!
 
Reactions: eyeheartny

awair

EOS T7i
Jan 3, 2013
92
6
photo.awair.net
I would second the advice for the Canon 85/1.4L - the IS makes it much more usable than the 1.2L (version II), which I recently sold for a big loss...

In real world shooting, I couldn't see a significant difference in quality between the two. The 85 lives on my 5D4 full time, and as for pairing with the R, I'm sure that as one of Canon's recent additions it will be well suited.
 
Reactions: eyeheartny

eyeheartny

EOS R | 50 1.2 RF
Sep 3, 2018
56
32
I would second the advice for the Canon 85/1.4L - the IS makes it much more usable than the 1.2L (version II), which I recently sold for a big loss...

In real world shooting, I couldn't see a significant difference in quality between the two. The 85 lives on my 5D4 full time, and as for pairing with the R, I'm sure that as one of Canon's recent additions it will be well suited.
Thanks! My 1.4 IS arrives today. :) I grabbed it during the eBay coupon about 10 days ago for $1365 shipped, so I figure if I a) don't love it b) don't return it during the 30-day window, I can sell it for what I paid or a bit less relatively easily.
 
Nov 20, 2018
5
1
I have the RF50 also and absolutely love it. It makes int so hard to buy a normal EF lens to mount on it. Wish they would release a 105 RF 1.4
That with the 50 would be perfect
 

eyeheartny

EOS R | 50 1.2 RF
Sep 3, 2018
56
32
I have the RF50 also and absolutely love it. It makes int so hard to buy a normal EF lens to mount on it. Wish they would release a 105 RF 1.4
That with the 50 would be perfect
I can't wait for the next round of RF primes to be announced. The 50 is such an amazing lens, I absolutely love shooting with it. I returned the EF 85mm I bought and will wait patiently for an 85 or 105mm RF lens.

Did you order the 28-70? I have that one coming in a week or so. Very curious to see how I like it. If I don't love it (size, weight, etc) I may return it and just shoot with the RF 50mm until something comes along I like better.
 

Rockskipper

Somewhere skipping rocks and taking photos
Apr 20, 2017
62
7
Don't forget to check Canon for refurbished (non R, too early for those).
 

Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
3,879
433
I have the RF50 also and absolutely love it. It makes int so hard to buy a normal EF lens to mount on it. Wish they would release a 105 RF 1.4
That with the 50 would be perfect
That is the EXACT combo I’m waiting for, swap out my 85 L IS for a 100 f1.4:love: I really miss my Zeiss 100 f2.0 what an epic lens, too bad it’s MF...
 

Larsskv

Enthusiast with Canon related GAS
Jun 12, 2015
748
158
I can't wait for the next round of RF primes to be announced. The 50 is such an amazing lens, I absolutely love shooting with it. I returned the EF 85mm I bought and will wait patiently for an 85 or 105mm RF lens.

Did you order the 28-70? I have that one coming in a week or so. Very curious to see how I like it. If I don't love it (size, weight, etc) I may return it and just shoot with the RF 50mm until something comes along I like better.
The RF 50 L is by far the best lens I have ever used. Got it a couple of weeks ago. It is so good I would not hesitate to replace my 35LII, 50L and 85LII for it, if I needed to. My 50L is already sold. It has the sharpness and bokeh you can dream of, and it has a background separation comparable to only the 85LII - maybe better. It is absolutely fantastic.
 

eyeheartny

EOS R | 50 1.2 RF
Sep 3, 2018
56
32
The RF 50 L is by far the best lens I have ever used. Got it a couple of weeks ago. It is so good I would not hesitate to replace my 35LII, 50L and 85LII for it, if I needed to. My 50L is already sold. It has the sharpness and bokeh you can dream of, and it has a background separation comparable to only the 85LII - maybe better. It is absolutely fantastic.
Agreed with all of your comments. Are you going to try the RF 28-70?
 

YuengLinger

EOR R
Dec 20, 2012
2,242
272
Southeastern USA
I wasn’t really prepared to pay the premium for the RF50, but I had to try it, and now I HAVE TO get it, it’s the best lens I have ever used along with the 200 f2.0, it’s razor, razor sharp wide open, no CA, awesome AF. Despite what I’ve read the vignetting isn’t bad at all and it’s a feather compared to what I expected for weight.

The 85 wasn’t all that sharp on my 1dx2 and the EOS R with higher res shows it’s weaknesses even more, the purple fringing and sharpness wide open is disappointing... AF, vignetting, distortion, IS, handling etc is very very good. AF is better on the R and I can get all of the sharpness out, except it isn’t the sharpest lens to begin with...
Still, it is a very good portrait lens on my 5DIV, and I definitely benefit from the IS. When I buy a pro oriented RF body in the future, I might very well still be satisfied with the ef 85mm f/1.4L IS--and spend money on the 50mm 1.2.

As far as pinning down resale values right now with RF being phased in, things are less predictable--especially since maybe even Canon doesn't know for certain what their transition timeline looks like. But I am required to say here: Used EF lens sales will be an important part of the Canon ecosystem for some time to come. :cool:

I guess I just made a similar "move" with the Tamron 45mm 1.8 VC, which is due at my door any moment now. I've been wanting for so long to replace my worn out ef 50mm f/1.4, but I have little hope of a new 1.2 L version ever coming for EF. So I'm waiting for a better RF body to come along, and then the rf 50mm f/1.2. But for $400 for a good quality 45mm 1.8 with IS right now, I'm happy to bide my time. I'm guessing I could, in a year or so, still get $225 or so for it used. But only guessing.
 

Larsskv

Enthusiast with Canon related GAS
Jun 12, 2015
748
158
Agreed with all of your comments. Are you going to try the RF 28-70?
I don’t think so. I prefer primes, and f2 isn’t sexy enough to make up for it being too large, heavy and expensive. If I was a professional, I might see it differently.
 

Larsskv

Enthusiast with Canon related GAS
Jun 12, 2015
748
158
Still, it is a very good portrait lens on my 5DIV, and I definitely benefit from the IS. When I buy a pro oriented RF body in the future, I might very well still be satisfied with the ef 85mm f/1.4L IS--and spend money on the 50mm 1.2.

As far as pinning down resale values right now with RF being phased in, things are less predictable--especially since maybe even Canon doesn't know for certain what their transition timeline looks like. But I am required to say here: Used EF lens sales will be an important part of the Canon ecosystem for some time to come. :cool:

I guess I just made a similar "move" with the Tamron 45mm 1.8 VC, which is due at my door any moment now. I've been wanting for so long to replace my worn out ef 50mm f/1.4, but I have little hope of a new 1.2 L version ever coming for EF. So I'm waiting for a better RF body to come along, and then the rf 50mm f/1.2. But for $400 for a good quality 45mm 1.8 with IS right now, I'm happy to bide my time. I'm guessing I could, in a year or so, still get $225 or so for it used. But only guessing.
I think the Tamron 45 f1.8 is great. I sold it because I couldn’t get it to focus correctly with the outer focusing points on my 1DXII. On the EOS R it should be a great performer.
 
Mar 14, 2012
2,241
135
That is the EXACT combo I’m waiting for, swap out my 85 L IS for a 100 f1.4:love: I really miss my Zeiss 100 f2.0 what an epic lens, too bad it’s MF...
I wish thath the EOS R was wider and the grip moved farther away from the lens mount. There isn't much finger space with the RF 50 mounted.
 
Reactions: Viggo

eyeheartny

EOS R | 50 1.2 RF
Sep 3, 2018
56
32
I don’t think so. I prefer primes, and f2 isn’t sexy enough to make up for it being too large, heavy and expensive. If I was a professional, I might see it differently.
That makes sense. I preordered because I wanted to get my hands on it, but I will be taking advantage of B&H's return policy if I don't absolutely love it. I'm an amateur and $3k is too much to spend if I'm not crazy about the lens. The way I feel about the RF 50 is gonna be hard to beat with a zoom but I'll for sure give it a try.
 

Larsskv

Enthusiast with Canon related GAS
Jun 12, 2015
748
158
That makes sense. I preordered because I wanted to get my hands on it, but I will be taking advantage of B&H's return policy if I don't absolutely love it. I'm an amateur and $3k is too much to spend if I'm not crazy about the lens. The way I feel about the RF 50 is gonna be hard to beat with a zoom but I'll for sure give it a try.
Let us know about your experience with the 28-70!
 

Normalnorm

EOS 7D MK II
Dec 25, 2012
470
76
A used 85 1.8 is already very affordable and thus re-selling at the end of ownership is hardly likely to result in a large loss. ATM there is an excellent 85 1.8 FS on FM for $275. I can hardly see much further decline in the price unless you really thrash it.
I had one for years and loved it. The flaws are overstated IMO.