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Thread started 05 Aug 2015 (Wednesday) 16:24
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Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM, reviewed by TDCat

TOGGLE RATINGS BETWEEN ALL AND TDCat (showing now: TDCat)
Overall Rating8.5
Overall Image Quality9.5
Value for Money6
Bokeh10
Sharpness9.5
Contrast9.5
Focusing6.5
Must Have5.5
Suitability to Intended Use8
Got What I Expected9
image
photo by Adrian
Ownership Status: "own"

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List all reviews of Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM
 
TDCat
Senior Member
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Joined Jun 2007
Bristol, UK
Aug 05, 2015 16:24 |  #1

I have recently recorded a simple chat / discussion about 8 good points and 8 bad points about this lens. My scoring reflects these.

https://www.youtube.co​m/watch?v=U8TElLcaTjI (external link)

The points for each are as follows.

Pros:

1. If you can nail the focus, the image quality of the lens is outstanding.
2. Very well built and manufactured as expected from the L lens series.
3. Very fast allowing use of fast shutter speeds & low ISO in low light.
4. Sharp wide open at f/1.2
5. Lens hood supplied is extremely effective and simple to fit.
6. Looks physically impressive (bragging rights :-) ).
7. 85mm focal length is a sweet spot for portraits to avoid
8. Images taken with this lens have a unique look.

Cons:

1. Focus accuracy. Micro adjustment may be needed.
2. I found I needed to change the way I worked with this lens to get good results. This can be off-putting after spending a large sum.
3. Really heavy (1kg).
4. Rear element is flush to the metal and very exposed.
5. Chromatic aberration is very apparent when using large apertures.
6. 85mm good for portraits but is long for smaller spaces. Fine for studio use.
7. Not weather sealed despite it being an L lens.
8. Slow to focus as it drags the hunk of glass around.


Below are the images shown in the video.


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Photo, Video & Audio Reviews and Tutorials | tdcat.com (external link)
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Van ­ Gogh
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Joined Jun 2013
Toronto, Canada
Aug 16, 2015 22:02 |  #2

Nice review!


Camera - 2x5Dmk3, C100 mkii, 70D, 60D
Lenses - 24-70mm f2.8L II, 70-200mm f2.8L IS ii, 85mm f1.2L II, 35mm f1.4 ART, 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS
Lighting - 3 x 600EX RT's, Printer - Epson 3880
Website - http://www.shotlifestu​dio.com/ (external link)

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NemethR
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840 posts
Joined Jun 2012
Pécs, Hungary
Aug 24, 2015 06:10 |  #3

In my opinion, you did not list 8 Cons :)

* The need for Micro-adjustement. --> You should do it on every lens. That is not a CON.
* Heavy --> At least you can hold it more steady. I would actually say its more of an advantage, then a disatvantage.
* Slow Focus --> Usually models have time to spare, so that would also not be an issue for its intended use.

The only REAL issue with it as I see it, is that it is not weather sealed, and the Cromatic abberration.


Roland | Hobbyst Photographer
Canon EOS 5Ds | Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM
Canon Speedlite 600EX II-RT | Canon Speedlite Transmitter ST-E3-RT

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TDCat
THREAD ­ STARTER
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Joined Jun 2007
Bristol, UK
Sep 21, 2015 16:54 as a reply to NemethR's post |  #4

Thanks for the feedback on the review.

I didn't know that about micro-adjustment. I thought it was a fix for lenses that were off.

I guess heavy can be good but I find the total 2.5kg to be a lot. It makes it more awkward to hold in odd positions and this is worse due to the excess weight at the front of the camera.

Totally agree on the focus if used for studio style / planned photography. I use this for candid shots too and subjects can often be moving. It sometimes tracks for just a bit too long.

Torsten.


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TDCat
THREAD ­ STARTER
Senior Member
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Joined Jun 2007
Bristol, UK
Sep 21, 2015 16:55 as a reply to Van Gogh's post |  #5

Thanks!!


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Anandnra
Member
31 posts
Joined Jan 2016
Tennessee, USA
Feb 08, 2016 20:24 |  #6

Good summarization of the pros and cons. I tend to agree generally with you.




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TDCat
THREAD ­ STARTER
Senior Member
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Joined Jun 2007
Bristol, UK
Feb 25, 2016 14:35 as a reply to Anandnra's post |  #7

Thanks. I still use this lens regularly. The results it gives on the full frame 5DIII never disappoint (when I manage to take a good picture).


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ddpham
Member
35 posts
Joined Feb 2011
Apr 05, 2016 00:16 |  #8

I am getting mine next week. cant wait!




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feiticeira
Hatchling
Joined Nov 2015
Germany
May 03, 2016 15:14 |  #9

wow gorgeous pictures! Now I need to save money :-P




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PCousins
Senior Member
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Joined Nov 2014
Weston-Super-Mare (UK)
May 04, 2016 01:12 |  #10

I use my 85L II for all types of photography, I love the 85mm focal length on my FF body. Yes it is slow, but I enjoy the challenge of using it. It takes lots of practice to nail the focus, you can hear the glass what I would call twitching, when the twitching stops fire off a couple of shots. I use BBF which helps give me a high keeper rate. The images it produces are tact sharp and just amazing. I have my camera set for Aperture priority.... On bright sunny days I use a 2 stop ND filter as without it when at f/1.2, ISO 100 your speed will be 1/8000s and exposure meter will be +2 stops. It sucks light in.
I love this lens, mine gets lots of use. I have the 200L F/2 Which I have written a review ob (please check it out) as well as the 135L f/2. Each all are masters of blowing the background out and creating beautiful bokeh but the 85 for me is the most enjoyable to use...

Here is mine on a 1d3, just look at that front element.....Wow !!!


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TDCat
THREAD ­ STARTER
Senior Member
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Joined Jun 2007
Bristol, UK
Oct 06, 2016 16:13 as a reply to ddpham's post |  #11

Did you buy the 85mm? How are you finding it?


Photo, Video & Audio Reviews and Tutorials | tdcat.com (external link)
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TDCat
THREAD ­ STARTER
Senior Member
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Joined Jun 2007
Bristol, UK
Oct 06, 2016 16:15 as a reply to PCousins's post |  #12

The front element always attracts either confusion or admiration. Nice camera BTW!


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Marko928
Hatchling
3 posts
Joined Aug 2017
Aug 10, 2017 10:40 |  #13

i have a cropped sensor and I feel like if i buy these lens times the 1.5 factor it would be too much in small spaces. Love the images though.




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Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM, reviewed by TDCat
FORUMS Gear Reviews Lens Reviews


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