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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 30 Aug 2010 (Monday) 13:38
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Why is the 85L II so different from other primes?

 
Bave
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Aug 30, 2010 13:38 |  #1
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I am curious to see why the 85L II is so different from other primes in the standard focal length. For one, compared to the 85 1.8 it seems to have such a narrow depth of field even at f10 or smaller. Obviously the AF is already slow but it seems like it takes multiple shots to hit perfect focus when shooting with larger aperatures (on full frame body). When it hits perfect focus it is extremely sharp and produces incredible images but it seems as if it is really limited in uses because it is not always spot on like a 70-200 or even the faster 85 1.8. BTW, our family has three 85Ls (one MKI and two MKII) so I have verified that there is similar performance with different copies.


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sapearl
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Aug 30, 2010 13:46 |  #2

A focal of 85mm is 85mm, be it on the the less expensive f/1.8 or the more pricey f/1.2. Now in fact, your DOF will be shallower on the f/1.2 than the other. People claim the AF on the more expensive one is slow - never used it myself so cannot say - but I do own the smaller, very light weight and very fast focusing f/1.8. I'm not sure what to tell you Bob. People say it is a wonderful lens, but that because of its razor thin DOF, you really have to exhibit care in precise focusing. It's a matter of very careful technique.

One thing you said perplexes me though - you say that at f/10 it has a pretty narrow DOF. At that aperture it would have a good DOF unless you were super close to the subject. Did I misunderstand you?


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egordon99
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Aug 30, 2010 14:09 |  #3

Bave wrote in post #10817386 (external link)
I am curious to see why the 85L II is so different from other primes in the standard focal length. For one, compared to the 85 1.8 it seems to have such a narrow depth of field even at f10 or smaller.

?????

Assuming the same camera-subject distance, the 85L and 85/1.8 should have identical DOF at f/10. In fact, they should have identical DOF at f/1.8 and narrower. Why do you think otherwise?




  
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Aug 30, 2010 14:11 |  #4

egordon99 wrote in post #10817614 (external link)
?????

Assuming the same camera-subject distance, the 85L and 85/1.8 should have identical DOF at f/10. In fact, they should have identical DOF at f/1.8 and narrower. Why do you think otherwise?

Thanks Evan - thought I was losing my mind; you summed it up better than I did ;).


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Bave
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Aug 30, 2010 14:20 |  #5
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egordon99 wrote in post #10817614 (external link)
?????

Assuming the same camera-subject distance, the 85L and 85/1.8 should have identical DOF at f/10. In fact, they should have identical DOF at f/1.8 and narrower. Why do you think otherwise?




I was trying to shoot pics of some toys (at approx 10 ft) and found the 85L to have a narrower DOF at f10. I was curious because my 85 1.8 doesn't seem to be as narrow. I will post some example pics after work today if I can. This was obviously not a controlled comparison so user error is entirely possible. However, this is what I've experience whenever using the 85L II.


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TheHoff
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Aug 30, 2010 14:22 |  #6

The two lenses may be slightly different in focal length but a few threads on this forum have shown the f/1.8 is calibrated to be "darker" than the 1.2. So if you shoot both at 1.8 or f/2, the 1.2 will be overexposed in relation to the 1.8 shot because the 1.8 is actually less of an effective opening even though both are at the same settings.


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Zerimar
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Aug 30, 2010 14:25 |  #7

I love the 85L II.

the narrow DOF that is offers is stunning, and it is tack sharp wide open at f1.2.

As for those who say it focuses slowly, it does compared to a 24-70 or 70-200, but IMO it's still pretty fast (atleast on my 1d2n) It's about as fast or faster than most standard kit lenses on a rebel and thats because it has to move a rather large piece of glass on the front end of the lens to focus.

It also doesn't hunt from infinity to macro like other lenses do, it goes straight to the focus and locks on very accurately and only seems to have trouble if something is coming at you quickly.


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JonK
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Aug 30, 2010 14:41 |  #8

http://vimeo.com/10568​546 (external link)

I "review" the focus speed in that video above


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SiaoP
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Aug 30, 2010 14:59 |  #9

Nice video Jon. States the 85mm f1.2 AF situation very well.


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Yusef
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Aug 30, 2010 15:02 |  #10

The 85 1.2 AF speed is like an 18 wheel semi truck trying to merge into fast moving traffic from a near complete stop.




  
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JonK
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Aug 30, 2010 15:04 |  #11

SiaoP thanks I hoped it would explain some stuff

Yusef wrote in post #10817927 (external link)
The 85 1.2 AF speed is like an 18 wheel semi truck trying to merge into fast moving traffic from a near complete stop.

Check my video above - I think you will see that's not quite the case.


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egordon99
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Aug 30, 2010 15:25 as a reply to  @ JonK's post |  #12

Why is this prime different from all other primes?
On all other primes, we shoot wide open, this prime we shoot stopped down....
On all other primes, we dip once, this prime we dip twice....

:lol:




  
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alpha_1976
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Aug 30, 2010 15:29 |  #13

Yusef wrote in post #10817927 (external link)
The 85 1.2 AF speed is like an 18 wheel semi truck trying to merge into fast moving traffic from a near complete stop.

It's slow only when going from MFD to infinity otherwise it's not that bad.


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silverap1
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Aug 30, 2010 16:46 as a reply to  @ alpha_1976's post |  #14

I love my 85L II but I always have to shoot twice (at least) to make sure I got a sharp copy...:oops:




  
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FatCat0
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Aug 30, 2010 16:53 |  #15

Bave wrote in post #10817695 (external link)
I was trying to shoot pics of some toys (at approx 10 ft) and found the 85L to have a narrower DOF at f10. I was curious because my 85 1.8 doesn't seem to be as narrow. I will post some example pics after work today if I can. This was obviously not a controlled comparison so user error is entirely possible. However, this is what I've experience whenever using the 85L II.

Could be possible that it's focusing slightly front or back as compared to the 1.8?




  
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Why is the 85L II so different from other primes?
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