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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 13 Aug 2012 (Monday) 20:02
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I need some input from previous owners of 35L and 50L lenses.

 
HyperCams
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Aug 14, 2012 13:34 |  #16

NotASpeckOfCereal wrote in post #14857493 (external link)
cybertwaddle.

"A high percentage of people"? C'mon, define some parameters here to back up this massive claim.

My sigmalux is consistent - sounds as consistent at misfocusing as your 50L.

Agreed!!! there are just as many 50Ls/85Ls/SigmaLuxs/et​c for sale at any given time as any other lens...just because people sell something doesnt mean the gear they sell is ****! I guess the 5D2 is **** because so many people are selling them lately? OR, maybe people are just upgrading to the Mark III, or are getting out of the 5D2 right now while the gettin' is good before the price drops to the floor at the end of this year with Photokina and year end sales on the MarkIII/etc..that is what I did..dont regret it at all..

BACK to the OP(I tend to ramble. sorry :cool: )
I LOVE my Sigma, it is PERFECT on ALL of my bodies EXCEPT the 5D2(which is the only one that has MA!)..got rid of the 5D2 for a 1Ds2 and 1D2n and the 50 is deadly accurate on both.
And the BOKEH is creamy/dreamy and ALMOST as good as the 50L.
The only reason I will be buying a 50L someday is for that extra bit of sharpness wide open...where the Sigma SOMETIMES faults. but, at ++3-4x the cost of the Sigma, I may have a lot of convincing to do to myself as I cannot find a single thing wrong with the Sigma. I love it just as much as the 70-200IS II I had. It lives on my FF camera as I know it just works.

I have owned 2(maybe 3) Sigma 50s over the past three or four years I think..only one needed to go in for calibration. IMHO, the Sigma 50 has LESS AF issues than most of Sigma's other lenses...especially their zooms(atleast every F/2.8 zoom they make/I have used has been inconsistant)

If you find a good Sigma, it has been my experience that they tend to rival the comparable L lens. Sigma makes a good lens. especially for us that do not make a ton of $ in this business(yet), or hobbyists..

IMHO..YMMV :p


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AlanU
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Aug 14, 2012 13:42 |  #17

NotASpeckOfCereal wrote in post #14857493 (external link)
cybertwaddle.

"A high percentage of people"? C'mon, define some parameters here to back up this massive claim.

My sigmalux is consistent - sounds as consistent at misfocusing as your 50L.

Not a speck,

I dare you to put that sigma 50mm on other camera bodies. I assure you your lens will react completely different from body to body. You may have a "lucky" combo that your Lens calibration jives with your camera body. That same lens you own can potentially have erratic AF behavior aswell as back or front focus even if the camera body is well within canon calibration specifications.

I dont need to backup this claim. Its a well known issue on the internet and a fact of life if you know individuals that work at camera stores. I do not work at a camera store but know many honest sales people that understand the facts of the sigma AF issues. I've tested so many sigmadud 50mm that I know as a fact I have zero confidence in the company that sells a product known to cause grief.

The 50L at least does not have HUH???? photos. Many copies have consistent amounts of back focus when it focus shifts. At least you can possibly detect the back focus if your using a super precision focus screen (not in the 5dmk3/7d unfortunately).

I'd prefer landing the shot with no suprises with a canon 50 f/1.4 instead of a sigma 50mm or 50L. Again at least the 50L is going to have a predictable back focus when stopped down from f/1.4 to f/4 in the danger zone of 5 feet. 50L f/1.2 will land the shot at f/1.2 though......


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MatthewK
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Aug 14, 2012 13:45 |  #18

I'll second the Sigma 50mm as well... used it as my only lens for about 6 months, and got some marvelous results. I went with the Canon b/c I could afford to, but wouldn't hesitate to shoot with the Siggy if I needed a new 50mm lens. I've sent nearly every lens I've owned into Canon for calibration at one point or another, so sending the Sigma in for adjustment wouldn't phase me one bit.


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PLLphotography
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Aug 14, 2012 13:49 |  #19

I use the 50L with an EG-S precision screen on my 5D II. that lens can and will) make you its b*tch. after a bit of alearning curve, you will fall in love with it. browse the lens sample thread on the 50L to see for yourself.


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AlanU
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Aug 14, 2012 14:13 |  #20

MatthewK wrote in post #14857822 (external link)
As others have said already, it comes down to focal length!

I owned the 35L for some time, and it is a superb lens, probably the best prime Canon makes (no weather sealing is it's only drawback, IMO). It's sharp, has nice AF speed, beautiful color rendition; images from this lens sing! But, 35mm FOV didn't work with my vision, so I hopped up to 50mm, which is my "sweet spot" focal length. Currently, I shoot the 50L, and while it has it's quirks (focus shift, though it's easy to work around), it is simply awesome. It has weather sealing, fairly quick AF speed, gorgeous bokeh, practically flare-proof, and has an uncanny ability to lock focus in near darkness where other lenses will hunt and hunt.

**Note that the focus shift may interfere with your style of photography (if you shoot stopped down, in the "danger zone" MFD to ~6-10' range), so it'd be prudent to maybe rent the lens for a bit and see if you'll be hampered by it.

AlanU is bitter about the 50L, as he insists on demonstrating in every single 50L-related thread. No one will disagree with him regarding the known focus shift of the 50L; what most 50L OWNERS will disagree with Alan on is just how little it will affect your photography once you get to know it.

Alan, while you hunt for your mythical unicorn 50L, those of us shooting with the lens will enjoy the fantastic results it delivers
.

LOL!! If you shoot within the danger zone it will effect your photography.

I'd gladly drop some change for a 50L. Cash layout is not the issue whatsoever. The Unicorn 50L does exist if you find a defective one that works within the danger zone. I just have to find a unicorn :grin:

I guess bottom line is if you print an image from a 50L the results will be great due to the resolution lost in printing on paper. You will be able to hide back focus when you print small.

EG-S screen on my 5dmk2 may give me a fighting chance to deal with the focus shift.

If I found a perfect copy of a 50mm sigma I see absolutely no reason to buy a 50L. The bokeh of the sigma is almost on par with the 50L. Inconsistent AF is what keeps me away from the sigma 50mm.

Personally the 50mm is not one of my favourites. I'd rather have the 85L mounted if I want tighter shots or use my 24mm or 35mm depening on what events coverage I am doing.


5Dmkiv |5Dmkiii | 24LmkII | 85 mkII L | | 16-35L mkII | 24-70 f/2.8L mkii| 70-200 f/2.8 ISL mkII| 600EX-RT x2 | 580 EX II x2 | Einstein's
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Sony 2 x A7iii w/ Sigma MC-11 adapter | GM16-35 f/2.8 | Sigma 24-70 ART | GM70-200 f/2.8 |Sigma Art 24 f/1.4 | Sigma ART 35 f/1.2 | FE85 f/1.8 | Sigma ART 105 f/1.4 | Godox V860iiS & V1S

  
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billppw350z
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Aug 14, 2012 19:33 as a reply to  @ AlanU's post |  #21

I’ve owned and extensively used the 35L for six years and the 50L for five and a half years. I’ve done a lot of environmental portraiture and if I had to pick between the two; for a 5D2 I would choose the 85L or maybe even the 135L. :) OK…since I you are not considering the telephotos and from looking at the type of photography you do on your sites I would definitely go with the 50 1.2L due to the focal length.

Also…

I bought my 50 1.2L in December of 2006 because it has much better “L” auto focus accuracy/consistency than the Canon 50 1.4 at wide apertures.

When I was using my Canon 1.4 on my crop camera for environmental portraits, it was frustrating to find that the three with the perfect smile weren’t always the same three with the perfect focus. I’ve never had this problem with the 50L.

The L’s only marginally sharper, color/contrast can usually be fixed in post, and bokeh is in the eye of the beholder. While there is not much of a difference in the FOV between f1.2 and f1.4, it can make a big difference in what lighting conditions you can shoot in, and if you’ve ever missed that perfect smile, perfect moment, or perfect light because the picture was not in perfect focus, then you will understand why Canon can charge a premium for the L.

You can’t fix an out of focus picture in post and there are rarely “do overs” in photography. When the moment is gone, it’s gone.

And…

I know for a fact my 50L focus shifts, but it has never ruined a shot since I purchased the lens in December of 2006. I got it to shift when I first checked the micro focus adjustment. I figured since I had it on a tripod in front of a focus chart (rare occasion for me), I might as well check it for the “focus shift;” I found it to shift slightly from f2.2 to f4 and from MFD to a little over four feet from the subject when using the center AF point.

The reason the shift has never ruined a picture is probably because I almost always use one of the outer auto focus points, not because it’s a “work around,” but because it’s good technique. The only time I use the center point is when I’m in a poor lighting situation and shooting wide open, or at apertures smaller than f5.6 at a distance (like landscapes, group pictures, etc.) where it’s not noticeable.

Hope this helps, and good luck with your purchase.


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snyderman
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Aug 14, 2012 19:49 |  #22

I'm fortunate to have both the 35 and 85L. Also owned the 50 f/1.4. Always thought the 50mm was kind of the red-headed step child in terms of focal length. Just my two-cents worth, though.

dave


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MatthewK
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Aug 14, 2012 23:14 |  #23

You forgot to highlight in red the part where I wrote: **Note that focus shift may affect your style of photography if you shoot in the "danger zone"... I even put 2 astericks ** next to it, to note emphasis. How could you miss it? Hey, no worries, the LOL is on you this time ;)

You know, I actually appreciate the "black sheep" status this lens gets from people like Alan. Knowing that I've figured out how to make great images with it despite all of it's shortcomings, is like a feather in my cap. Alan, someday, when you find your unicorn 50L, you and I will most certainly toast some e-beers together :) Until then, good hunting, sir!

AlanU wrote in post #14857973 (external link)
LOL!! If you shoot within the danger zone it will effect your photography.

I'd gladly drop some change for a 50L. Cash layout is not the issue whatsoever. The Unicorn 50L does exist if you find a defective one that works within the danger zone. I just have to find a unicorn :grin:

I guess bottom line is if you print an image from a 50L the results will be great due to the resolution lost in printing on paper. You will be able to hide back focus when you print small.

EG-S screen on my 5dmk2 may give me a fighting chance to deal with the focus shift.

If I found a perfect copy of a 50mm sigma I see absolutely no reason to buy a 50L. The bokeh of the sigma is almost on par with the 50L. Inconsistent AF is what keeps me away from the sigma 50mm.

Personally the 50mm is not one of my favourites. I'd rather have the 85L mounted if I want tighter shots or use my 24mm or 35mm depening on what events coverage I am doing.


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AlanU
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Aug 15, 2012 10:37 |  #24

MatthewK wrote in post #14860148 (external link)
You forgot to highlight in red the part where I wrote: **Note that focus shift may affect your style of photography if you shoot in the "danger zone"... I even put 2 astericks ** next to it, to note emphasis. How could you miss it? Hey, no worries, the LOL is on you this time ;)

You know, I actually appreciate the "black sheep" status this lens gets from people like Alan. Knowing that I've figured out how to make great images with it despite all of it's shortcomings, is like a feather in my cap. Alan, someday, when you find your unicorn 50L, you and I will most certainly toast some e-beers together :) Until then, good hunting, sir!

Mathew,

I just dont get the elitist attitude. We're discussing about a well known red ring manufactured defective (by design) auto focusing 50mm lens. Maybe today I'll just go out and purchase a 50L so I can shoot wideopen photos and be on your elite self proclaimed team being a 50L owner (i want a feather in my cap just like you). Granted I saw a photo of your maple leaf and its a nice shot wideopen. I just dont want to shoot f/1.2 all of the time to prevent the focus shift for my style of shooting. The fact that you have a 5dmk3 your now crippled due to the lack of using a super precision focus screen.

I informed Erik of the characteristics of the 50L. This type of information is valid especially to the ones are not aware of the 50L issues. People assume that an expensive red ring will be accurate. Its quite unexpected to have back focus issues due to inherent design. Just because you can purchase a 50L doesn't grant you a higher level camp in being a photographer. A person can always use auto focus and give a quick twist to compensate for the back focus. Its just odd that you'd have to do that if your shooting in the danger zone.

When I find a defective perfectly focusing 50L I know I'll be satisfied. At this moment in time I'm still on the hunt.

I purchased the 35L as a semi wide prime since I couldn't find a 50L. I now have the luxury of time to find a 50L. No rush since my canon 50 f/1.4 accurately lands the shots. If its absolutely imperative I'll use alien skin bokeh or gaussian blur in photoshop to make the background look like cream.


5Dmkiv |5Dmkiii | 24LmkII | 85 mkII L | | 16-35L mkII | 24-70 f/2.8L mkii| 70-200 f/2.8 ISL mkII| 600EX-RT x2 | 580 EX II x2 | Einstein's
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maximus_73
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Aug 15, 2012 12:30 |  #25

I have both, and both are great.
35L is not really wide on 5D MKII. I mainly use this for full body portrait, group shot. Be careful with head shot only because it might get distorted.
50L better(IMO) than 35L in term of Bokeh, slight better color rendering, and contrast - newer coating. 35L is sharper wide open, but 50L is not bad at all like many people say. If you grade the sharpness of 35L vs 50L, I would say 10 vs. 9.0 respectively.
I use 50L most of the time, and mainly shoot tight shot, single person shot, and sometimes group shot if I have room.
You can never go wrong with both lens. It's all about your preferences. I know it is really difficult to compare and choose between a Ferrari or a Lamborghini.

Hey, looks like you and me eventually have the same gear... :D


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Aug 15, 2012 13:11 |  #26

AlanU wrote in post #14861654 (external link)
Mathew,

I just dont get the elitist attitude. We're discussing about a well known red ring manufactured defective (by design) auto focusing 50mm lens. Maybe today I'll just go out and purchase a 50L so I can shoot wideopen photos and be on your elite self proclaimed team being a 50L owner (i want a feather in my cap just like you). Granted I saw a photo of your maple leaf and its a nice shot wideopen. I just dont want to shoot f/1.2 all of the time to prevent the focus shift for my style of shooting. The fact that you have a 5dmk3 your now crippled due to the lack of using a super precision focus screen.

I informed Erik of the characteristics of the 50L. This type of information is valid especially to the ones are not aware of the 50L issues. People assume that an expensive red ring will be accurate. Its quite unexpected to have back focus issues due to inherent design. Just because you can purchase a 50L doesn't grant you a higher level camp in being a photographer. A person can always use auto focus and give a quick twist to compensate for the back focus. Its just odd that you'd have to do that if your shooting in the danger zone.

When I find a defective perfectly focusing 50L I know I'll be satisfied. At this moment in time I'm still on the hunt.

I purchased the 35L as a semi wide prime since I couldn't find a 50L. I now have the luxury of time to find a 50L. No rush since my canon 50 f/1.4 accurately lands the shots. If its absolutely imperative I'll use alien skin bokeh or gaussian blur in photoshop to make the background look like cream.

Sorry my statement hit a nerve, but really it wasn't elitist... it's just counter to what you are always preaching, so it may have come off that way to you. Honestly, compared to most photographers on this forum I'm amateur, so "elitist" is one of the last titles I could hold. I think in the future, instead of providing the counter-weight to your statements, I'll just give the link to the 50L thread and let people see that they too can make such images despite all the negative press.

It's good to inform users of the issue, but you never seem to list the ways to work around the issue either. While you extoll the negatives of the lens, I extoll the virtures, but if you notice I also mention that it isn't perfect and requires more work to get it to perform. You seem to infer that I simply gloss over the negatives, which is simply not true.

On the 5D3... the lens is a whole different beast when paired with the new AF system. No need for extra precision screen now, at least for what I use the lens for (walkaround, general usage). And I shoot stopped down quite often, and images turn out just fine. On the 5D2 it was a different story.


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lerroy
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Aug 15, 2012 16:21 |  #27

out of interest 5d mk3 and 50L focus issues back focus still prelevent?


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AlanU
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Aug 16, 2012 03:39 |  #28

I'm wondering if the 5d3's new advanced Af changes the characteristics of the 50L....hmmm sounds promising.


5Dmkiv |5Dmkiii | 24LmkII | 85 mkII L | | 16-35L mkII | 24-70 f/2.8L mkii| 70-200 f/2.8 ISL mkII| 600EX-RT x2 | 580 EX II x2 | Einstein's
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NotASpeckOfCereal
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Aug 17, 2012 01:22 |  #29

AlanU wrote in post #14857857 (external link)
Not a speck,

I dare you to put that sigma 50mm on other camera bodies. I assure you your lens will react completely different from body to body. .

Well, it's outlived a 7d, a 1D3 and is now on a 5D3 so I have one answered Alan. What was wrong with your post was the false claim about statistics.

My copy of the Sigma has the focus shift problem and it is consistent. Just like the 50L. It doesn't have erratic AF.


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Caekys
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Aug 17, 2012 01:46 |  #30

lerroy wrote in post #14862905 (external link)
out of interest 5d mk3 and 50L focus issues back focus still prelevent?

Only when stopped down. It was a optical design issue, nothing to do with the focusing mechanism.

Shooting at f1.2 has no problem. If really need to stop down to f2.8-f4, simply just hold the DOF button while focusing.


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I need some input from previous owners of 35L and 50L lenses.
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