Reviewing my lens setup (5D3 portraits)

Dalsgaardfoto

I'm New Here
Long time reader, first time poster. So, the first post better be a long one... :)

Two weeks ago my Canon 24-105L had an error 01 on my 5D3. No amount of cleaning contacts would make it work. (Disabling IS it could shoot again, but with exposure +/-3 stops on manual. Now and then with dark viewfinder and hunting focus). Of cause it happened on the first of 11 studio photoshoots that weekend...

I really liked my lens lens setup (for the price), and with the 24-105 as my most used lens it would seem logical to replace it with a new one. Searching the web shows it's not an uncommon error, making me hesitate buying a new one.

I made this topic to get your views on my lens setup, and maybe a couple of suggestions.

My primary photographic interest is to photograph children, mostly 0-4 years. I have a studiosetup with Elinchrom flashes and have always used the 24-105L for this. Outside the studio i mostly shoot with primes, but currently its in the studio with powerfull lights i make some money.
I shot a wedding recently and really enjoyed it. I borrowed a 5D2, an extra 24-105L and a 85L from a friend. So far i have two weddings planed for next year, but would like more for the future.
The rest of my uses counts family photos, especially my son at 2 years, and now and then a bit of landscapes.

For the last year i've had the following lenses, paired with my highly regarded 5D3:
24-105L F4: Used for almost halv my photos. Perfect for the studio and fine for landscape. Not a lens that gets me excited in any way.
40mm 2.8 Pancake: I like it as a light walkaround lens, and for indoor shooting, especially in low light. Would often like it a bit wider though.
50mm 1.8: Doesn't get used much. Mostly with some Kenko extension tubes for cheap makro.
85mm 1.8: Doesn't get used much. I like it indoor for children playing, but...
135L F2: I just love this lens! Use it for almost all my outdoor work and play. And for indoor headshots. Actually, I choose this lens whenever it makes the slightest sense, and then some more :)
In general I think the 24-135mm covers my uses nicely. Sometimes 200mm or so would be nice, but i rarely wish for wider than 24mm.

For the next years i'd like to shoot some more weddings, and shoot children in "their" homes and natural surroundings. With this in mind I bought a Tamron 24-70 2.8 when my 24-105L broke. I do find the AF quite inconsistent, dislike the zoom ring going counter of Canon, having to turn the ring that much to zoom between 50-70mm, the onionrings, and will therefore return it to the shop. It seems a bit decenteret too.

So, what are my options?? Of cause i'd like the 24-70 2.8 ii, but it's a bit above budget. I can swap the Tamron for a used Canon 24-70 2.8 i, buy a new 24-105 (but hate the risk of another error 01), buy a 24-70 F4 IS or...?
I thought of buying a Canon 70-200 F4 (IS) for studio and a lot of outdoor work, and compliment it with a 35 F2 IS, perfect for group shots and indoor events. I also thought of the 70-200 F2.8 variants, but their weights concerns me, and i might have to sell the 135L to fund it - which would be very hard. And I would still need something better for studio.

The biggest issue right now are the studio shots. The 40 and 50mm can be used for group shots, but AF are too slow for children at play. I analysed the latest 1400 studioshots of 24-105L, and i used these focal lengths:
-40mm 1.64%
40-49mm 16.39%
50-59 24.51%
60-69 17.72%
70-79 8.82%
80-89 16.63%
90-99 6.25%
100-105 8.04%
Thats 60% less than 70mm, and 40% above. Sometimes 105-150mm would be usefull, but its far easier to crop in post, than to add half a leg :)

Hope you nice guys will give some feedback on where to go from here
Best regards, Martin (Denmark)
 

Jim Saunders

EOS R
Sep 9, 2012
1,125
14
hhaphoto.com
The Canon 24-70 f/2.8 is heavy but good optically and the AF is quick enough to track children just fine. There are lots of them for sale and as far as I know Canon still supports them.

Jim
 

sulla

EOS RP
Dec 31, 2012
336
119
Austria
www.flickr.com
Having used the 24-105 myself for many years I always appreciated the IS very much, and I miss that on my 24-70 2.8 II quite often, however, this is not really important to your situation...

Why not consider the new EF 24-70 f/4 L IS? It has good IQ, considerably better build than the 24-105L (which is a cheapo-L lens) and is way more affordable than the 24-70 2.8 L II.

f/4 should be no limitation for studio lighting. AF seems to be quick and should be a good deal quicker than in the EF 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM. (Although I don't know other STMs than my 40 STM's, and this one is rather - placid.)

Also, the excellent - and likewise rather nicely priced - EF 70-200 f/4 L IS or the really cheap and also optically excellent EF 70-200 f/4 L would be good compliments to the 24-70 f/4.
 

RustyTheGeek

EOS 5D Mark IV
Apr 27, 2011
1,631
4
55
DFW
rustythegeek.zenfolio.com
In reading your post, it seems to me that you have everything covered with your primes and really just need some encouragement/justification to get another 24-105L. So do it! I've had mine almost 5 years, I use it all the time and until I read your post I didn't know the error you mention even existed, much less was 'common'. So get another 24-105L for a great price and/or have the one you already own repaired.

I would also consider the 24-70 f/4L if you wanted to get a similar zoom with a newer design & great IQ.

And if you wanted to get extremely radical, I bet someone will suggest you get rid of almost all your other lenses and get the 24-70/2.8-II and the 70-200/2.8-II. They are both excellent lenses and many photographers have literally ditched several primes and just used those lenses instead. In many folks' eyes, those two lenses are indeed THAT good.

I'll be interested in hearing what you decide. (And I've got a new in box 24-70/f4L IS for sale if you're interested.)
 

Mt Spokane Photography

I post too Much on Here!!
CR Pro
Mar 25, 2011
16,633
1,590
Dalsgaardfoto said:
Long time reader, first time poster. So, the first post better be a long one... :)
Searching the web shows it's not an uncommon error, making me hesitate buying a new one.

There are way more 24-105mm L lenses than whichever is in 2nd place. So ... If there are 10X as many issues as other L Lenses, its still a relatively low percentage.

That's one of the fallacies of searching for issues with any product, you need to put problems in perspective.
 

zlatko

EOS RP
Aug 27, 2013
617
0
www.zlatkobatistich.com
It sounds to me like you only need 4 lenses, and you already have two of them:

24-70/2.8 II - over your budget, but it's so worth it. It's excellent for almost everything.
35/2 IS - perfect smaller lens for events & groups.
85/1.8 - you have it. Perfect when you need a little reach.
135/2 - you have it. Perfect when you need a little more reach.

Done! :)

P.S. I love 28mm and 50mm too, but the above sound like they'd be more immediately useful to you.
 

sagittariansrock

EOS 5D Mark IV
Sep 20, 2012
1,690
1
Houston, TX
24-105 is what works for you. Both in terms of focal lengths, and actual user experience.
And in Denmark, you have a 2-year EU warranty instead of the usual 2-year.
And, considering how many people use the lens for the lens, finding some who had problems doesn't mean much. It's all scaled up. Roger Cicala doesn't name this as one of the more frequently repaired lenses (and he does name both the Tamron and the Canon v1).
I wouldn't hesitate to get this one repaired or get a new one, whichever makes more sense financially.
 

Dalsgaardfoto

I'm New Here
Thanks for all your replies so far.

While searching the error i found this thread: https://www.flickr.com/groups/canon24-105/discuss/72157624859596530/ which shows a lot of users have encountered the problem. But as some of you stated, this lens has sold very well, and thats important to remember.

I now consider buying this lens again. I can get a new white box copy from the UK for £420 with 5 years warranty.
The company who repairs Canon equipment in Denmark charges about £70 to estimate the cost of the repair. I fear it would cost at least £200 to repair. So i think selling the faulty lens and buying a new one with a good warranty would make sense.
Having read your answers makes me think about the 24-70 F4 IS again (£550 in UK but only 1 year warranty). A newer hybrid IS and the macro mode would come in handy now and then, but of cause i loose the long end. Having read about the lenses on lensrentals, the decrease in sharpness around 35-50mm worries me. In this area the 24-105 seems to win, even at F8 theres a clear difference. But tests charts is one thing - is it really that noticable in real world pictures??
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=823&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=2&API=3&LensComp=355&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=3&APIComp=3

zlatko, I like your suggestion, only problem seems to be the price. :)
 

jd7

EOS R
CR Pro
Feb 3, 2013
886
253
Dalsgaardfoto said:
Having read your answers makes me think about the 24-70 F4 IS again (£550 in UK but only 1 year warranty). A newer hybrid IS and the macro mode would come in handy now and then, but of cause i loose the long end. Having read about the lenses on lensrentals, the decrease in sharpness around 35-50mm worries me. In this area the 24-105 seems to win, even at F8 theres a clear difference. But tests charts is one thing - is it really that noticable in real world pictures??
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=823&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=2&API=3&LensComp=355&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=3&APIComp=3

I can only say I have ended up pretty happy with my 24-70 F4 IS, after getting it serviced by Canon. If interested, you can read more at http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=21846.0

I'd be interested to know if anyone else has had an experience similar to mine.
 

tayassu

EOS RP
Jun 17, 2014
361
0
500px.com
What about the Sigma 24-105 Art? Should be a great performer...
That and a fast prime like the 35/2 + your two teles would be nice :)
 
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